Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Kathleen Edwards- Utrecht, Netherlands April 26, 2003

When some people walk away from a career in music, they may explore other endeavors in the arts such as art, film or writing. Others may want to stay connected with the music scene, manage bands, host a radio show or open a bar or pub to double as a small venue to play whenever they feel like it (I'm thinking maybe someone like Jeff Healey) and drink for free. Others want to settle down in their hometown away from the spotlight and the rigours of touring to open and run a cafe called, quite fittingly, Quitters Coffee. Quitters isn't just a cafe, it's also a place to eat for lunch with events in the evening (theme trivia nights, Sens games on the tube) and a cozy great place to hang out in the suburb of Ottawa, Stittsville. If I live in or around Ottawa, I would seriously be a regular customer. If there's anyone I would like to have barista the shit out of my latte, it would be Kathleen Edwards.

Always humble and always a proud ambassador for Canada, Kathleen Edwards has been of a favourite of mine since first hearing songs from her debut album, Failer. Who names their debut album, Failer? (well...the Posie's debut album, Failure, for one) Seems doomed from the beginning fight? But if you've followed Kathleen's career, you come to know her sense of humour and casual self deprivating personality that truly separates her from the pack. When you're at a Kathleen Edwards show you always feel welcome, entertained by her off-cuff comments and it's a pleasure to spend the next hour or so in her presence.

In reality, Edwards is only stepping back from music, just a bit. In the past year, she has played more than a handful of gigs in and around Ottawa and was noticeably visual during the Junos (see the video on the TDIT Facebook page) this past spring in Ottawa and more importantly (at least to me anyways) she performed during a visit from Rogers Hometown hockey on March 19th. Hearing that Kathleen has played more gigs this year than previous years, it's a good positive sign she is more interested in performing more and who knows, maybe recording a new album wouldn't be out of the question. Not being controlled by a record label or pr agencies much be a refreshing change when you've spend a majority of your adult life dedicated to music. It's like pressing the pause button, taking a look around you and discover what is really important in life and pressing the refresh button to pursue what feels right. There are many veteran artists that have bypassed record labels and independently released music with the help of crowd sourcing sites and their fans (Juliana Hatfield for one) and recording from their home studios (Paul Westerberg). I could see in the near future, Kathleen possibly pursuing this route that allows her to control the process so she can make music on her terms. Fingers crossed!

This summer when I was preparing (downloading/ripping) music for my annual roadtrip, I added Kathleen Edward's, Failer to my iPod. I've had this on CD for years, but since it wasn't on the pod I hadn't listened to it as much as her other albums that were previously ripped. I must admit I listened to that album more than anything else all summer and rediscovering it's brilliance was wonderful. I was recently digging around my live KE shows and found a number of shows from earlier in her career. The show I'm posting is her second ever show in Europe and it showcases songs from the Failer era and like most artists, songs that aren't performed regularly anymore. When someone in the crowd requests, Hockey Skates, she responds that this is probably the only song they know. Does she underestimate her fanbase or is she right? The "hit" single might in fact be the only song they would recognize. Anyways, the sound in this recording is remarkable and as the notes indicate, I'm not sure if this was a radio broadcast, soundboard or audience recording. It's a good one and if you like her early stuff, this is a must hear. As a bonus, there's an interview and in-studio performance of Independent Thief at the end.

I know Quitters is only the name of her cafe and it's all tongue n' cheek fun, but trust me she'll be back. If you're in or around Ottawa or better yet, Stittsville, drop into Quitters Coffee and say hi to Kathleen Edwards from TDIT.

SHARE! Please do NOT sell or convert to lossy mp3!

Muziekcentrum Vrendenberg
Utrecht, Netherlands
Blue Highway Festival
April 26, 2003
FM or AUD?

1. Independent Thief (solo acoustic)
2. National Steel
3. One More Song the Radio Won't Like
4. Westby
5. Copied Keys
6. Hockey Skates
7. The Lone Wolf
8. 12 Bellevue
9. Mercury
10. Six O'Clock News
11. Changes (Black Sabbath cover)
12. Maria
13. Interview
14. Independent Thief (live solo acoustic in studio)

KATHLEEN EDWARDS - 2003-04-26 Utrecht . rar

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

The Weakerthans- WECC, Winnipeg, MB Dec. 3, 1998

A couple weeks ago, the West End Cultural Centre (WECC) celebrated 30 years as a music venue in Winnipeg. The renovated church has since become an institution for music fans of all genres and musical styles. The WECC has endured many trials and tribulations dealing with financial difficulties as well as upgrades for much needed renovations about eight years ago that helped refresh this vital venue. An excellent well written article appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press: And The Bands Played On, detailing the history of the WECC and I was amazed about how many people were responsible for keeping this venue operating for so long. An interesting and informative read!

Personally, I have attended many many concerts, readings, plays and fundraisers there since the doors first opened. I honestly can not remember the first show I attended at the West End, but there were several talent /hootenanny nights I was at in the late 80's for sure. The earliest ticket stub I can find is from Moxy Fruvous in 1992, but there are numerous too many to count (or remember) shows from the late 80's, 90's, 2000's and right up to present that I was at. I have seen some great concerts there and it has become my preferred venue to record at as the much improved sound system is clear and crisp and depending on the size of the crowd and the setup of the room, you can usually get pretty good sight-lines to the stage. With the renovations came a upper mezzanine that allows a view over top of the crowd on the floor and a more chatter-free sound area. If they expect a smaller "intimate" size crowd, the seating is arranged with tables and chairs. With a medium size crowd, the chairs are in rows (no tables) and for a sold out (or expected larger crowd) show, it's a general admission free for all standing. As far as I remember all the shows I've been to at the WECC are general admission, no reserved seats. The atmosphere at the WECC is much more relaxed than bar shows with a less drunken vibe and more people-friendlier staff (mostly volunteers). They host many all-ages shows and I've seen everything from punk to jazz, folk, blues, rock and everything in between.

The first time I saw the Weakerthans live was at the WECC as an opener in 1998. It was the Bonaduces album release for their brilliant record, Democracy Of Sleep and the Weakerthans and B'ehl opened the show. The band was performing many "new" songs at the time, that would appear a couple years later on Left and Leaving as well as songs from the debut, Fallow. I recorded both the Weakerthans and Bonaduces sets and have hoarded these recordings for almost 20 years. I thought it was about time I shared the Weakerthans set as I finally transferred the cassette to CDR and I've listened to this recording a lot in the past few weeks. It sounds fantastic, the sound is clear without too much distractions and it's a rare early performance from a band that personifies the spirit, energy and sense of community and social conscience of Winnipeg. Very similar to the mandate and purpose of the West End Cultural Centre. We are lucky to have a lovely venue like the West End and proud that the Weakerthans are from my hometown.

Please do NOT sell or convert to mp3!

West End Cultural Centre
Winnipeg, MB
December 3, 1998
AUD Master

Sony mic> Sony WM-GX35 Recording Walkman> Maxell XLII 90 Cassette> Fisher Cassette Deck> Teac CD recorder> CDR> FreeRip> WAV> Direct WAV splitter> FLAC> rar

01. The Last Last One
02. Diagnosis
03. Aside
04. Letter Of Resignation
05. None Of The Above
06. This Is A Fire Door Never Leave Open
07. Watermark
08. Left And Leaving
09. Confessions Of A Futon Revolutionist
10. Wellington's Wednesdays
11. Everything Must Go!

THE WEAKERTHANS- 1998-12-03 WECC, Winnipeg, MB FLAC. rar 

Sorry folks, the file is no longer publicly available for download. For some unknown reason, I had a takedown down notice for copyright infringement. I've shared the Weakerthans many times in the past so I don't think the band has a problem sharing live shows, but perhaps their publishing company, record label or overzealous lawyers have an issue. Please PM me first if there are any objections sharing live shows on this blog.

On that note, please PM me if you are interested in the show. I will try to hook you up!
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