I feel that if this post were only a few weeks late then I could apologise for not having written in a while. But as it’s over a year since my last post it’s probably going to be easier to catch everyone up than to apologise about it!
Over the last year I’ve been up to a myriad of exciting musical endeavours and I’m hoping that come 2015 I’ll have an album for you all.
Around June/July I was really lucky to meet Barry Walsh and Tasso Argyrakos while I was working next door to their tattoo studio, Ink City North. At the time they were organising lots of in-store events and after hearing me practice they asked if I wanted to play a few tunes at their next soirée. I jumped at the opportunity as I was growing weary of open mic night shenanigans, and so my first proper gig in Montreal was a show at Ink City North supporting reggae legend Vernon Maytone.
A huge and heartfelt thanks has to also go out to Facteur Malice for the stunning photos she took of me at the show, it’s been nice to have some photographic evidence of me playing solo! ;)
Around the time I met the boys at Ink City North, I also began saving my tips from work and taking some guitar lessons with Mr Tim Dobby. This really helped improve my confidence and it was lovely to have someone other than a YouTube tutorial to direct all my musical questions at! I’m really hoping that you’ll all be able to hear my playing in my upcoming recordings and we’ll agree that my time with Tim was money well spent! ;) You can also listen to Tim’s delightfully pretentious band, Lakes of Canada, by hitting their name.
Between October and Christmas, most of my time was eaten up with my guitar lessons and with work. I dabbled in comedy for a brief time but I managed to get caught in some drama that made the whole thing infinitely less appealing and I refocused on making music my full time gig. However, during my brief flirt with comedy we were lucky enough to make a few good friends, one of them being the talented Kate Connor. After going to support Kate when she performed at The Wiggle Room for their weekly variety show Voix de Ville, I asked producer/co-host/all round comedic individual Paul Ash for a slot on the next show.
Voix de Ville is a variety show with a “monarch of the mountain” element thrown in for fun! At each show, all the acts are competing for crowd votes in order to win the grand prize of $100 and the honour to return the following week to defend their title. Guys, I won 4 weeks in a row! I really can’t express what a confidence boost that whole Wiggle Room experience was but I had a blast and I met some super awesome people, including everybody’s favourite republican Kitty Vanderbuilt & artist Salgood Sam who drew this awesome sketch of me performing!
Still on a high from my run at The Wiggle Room I decided to pursue paid gigs more seriously in and around the city and to peace out open mics for a little while! The first of these was a slot at Bar de Courcelle, allbeit it was the middle of the Canadian winter and it wasn’t the busiest show I’ve ever played, it was a nice foot in the door and a nice reminder that I’ve still got it! ;) Since then I’ve had a couple of slots at Mad Hatters and I have more coming up later this month. (I’ll include a full list of upcoming shows in the side bar).
ALSO! I’m ashamed of myself for forgetting, Kayla and I got engaged on Christmas Eve, I suprised her with a beautiful ring made by Meshu which is essentially a map of where we met and all the places we went on our first date. I think she was suitably surprised and as it turned out she was also working on a surprise for me! I’m the proud owner of a Taylor 214-ce and he sounds beautiful and he looks nice and he’s full size. Perfect! If you’d like to see a video of Kayla surprising me you can click here.
Anyway, back to the chronological order of things! I’ve had a really exciting year, and I feel like I’ve managed to build a wee Canadian fanbase for myself. I was delighted with my recent placing in the Cult MTL - Best of Montreal readers poll this month which I feel also proves that I’ve been adopted as an honorary Montrealer by everyone here! ;) I couldn’t ask for a better result than coming 3rd place to Leonard Cohen!
I think that brings us up to date! A year is a long time though, and surely I’ve forgotten to mention some stuff/people along the way! If you feel that you’ve been overlooked lemme know and I’ll apologise profusely!