Michael A.M. is a fave around The Barber Shop, a rare breed who can hang with the old dudes as easily as the young turks and tattooed poseurs you find all around the scene. Born of good Polish stock and Canadian street schooling, the role of the cock-sure introvert drafted by music began to develop.
Playing bass for the highly acclaimed 40 Sons led to many gigs and opportunities to prove his mettle in all genres.
A while back he began fleshing out a series of songs that paint a very artistic cornucopia of a tapestry, the originality and burgeoning songwriter was now fronting. Using some great friends and musicians to craft his debut here at BOXO Studio, the project FÜNYBOHT is an homage to, but not limited to, an inside wink that everyone can get.
He’s brutally and hilariously honest and a hell of a player in a world of insipid music, he’s a worthy ambassador of millennial music for the century.
Going solo tonight, the heart of this sonic voyage is helming a great trip on the FÜNYBOHT express.
Blues music is remarkable because it’s humble roots in the call-and-response cotton fields have grown to an omnipresent worldwide phenomenon. From the wood and steel basics to the classic rock, metal, roots and kid pop you hear on AM radio, the patterns and modes are everywhere. We’ve had a bunch of good ones on this show over the years, and no one ever complains about what it does or doesn’t sound like, for every blues player is putting his own stamp on the tradition. Playing and paying homage to the greats while still writing original music is what Julian Pail Band do so very well.
Take some old friends reacquainted with and mix in some Texas boogie ala’ Stevie, smooth blues like Robert Cray and the Banasamanian groove and you’re getting there. The trio of Julian Paul, Kevin Voutour, and Armand Faguy show the chops and discipline that years together produce, yet still have the youthful enthusiasm and unity of long trusted friends that you don’t often see. They play a style that people can relate to, providing material for a whole demographic that already loves what they’re cooking.
As fate would have it, these boys grew up in and around this neighbourhood so the quick trip from Brantford was just like coming home – and having a blast at Barber Shop Podcast
Eclectic. Whenever I see that word I’m filled with equal parts of anticipation and dread. To me, it means an art form based on a widely accepted model that has been heavily modified with the uniquely personal in such a way to attract as many converts as it manages to alienate the comfortable. This I believe, is the case with C.A. Smith.
Growing up with a dad who worked at a top 40 radio station, C.A. was surrounded by the trappings and the wrappings of the business. Ever present in his burgeoning musicality was the formula for pop perfection. As healthy as you want to make it, including some fat and sugar in the mix never hurts when it comes to winning over the crowd.
Because he was and is a soulful individual with a genuine concern for his fellow man, the power contained in the simplest of tunes made his style come to the surface with a surprising control and confidence, assured and unhurried.
Beginning his mid career journey with the well respected inde band GORP as a drummer who wrote, C.A. Smith began to see his days were numbered in that role, his songs and their sounds beginning to drift apart in space and time.
Feeling the need to continue as a group but without the supporting cast, he did what only he would be expected to do and set out on his own, a hip- hoppy, folky one-man-band of sorts, emerging as the hero incumbent Mayor McCa, as much a side show as a serious artist to be heeded. It wasn’t long before the critics heard through the hubris the poignant brilliance of a true singer-songwriter, the truth revealed once again thru the sly guise.
Evolution, revolution and fate all conspired to shift gears once again to the present persona of…. Himself. C.A. Smith – international storyteller and music man. Writing for many as a professional, hunkered down in London England and pinching himself all the time, C.A. Smith has arrived and it’s about time.
Call it folk, call it roots, call it whatever you want to, the music of C.A. Smith isn’t for everybody but it sure the hell is for everyone.
Relax for the next hour and enjoy the life and times of this kind, thoughtful and interesting dude – on Barber Shop Podcast.
There are few originals in the arts as the art form almost always supersedes the individual. I’m music, the early influences that shape a performer are themselves an amalgamation of the ethos personified in the ones who went before. Jake Heibert was and is one of those special cases where the ear worms and status quo of his formative years were a sonic jambalaya of punk, ska, blues, rock and new wave music that challenged the status-quo of the day in the most frenetic manner.
Determined to make a passion into a calling, Jake set about learning the lessons and climbing the steps necessary to turn the melodies in his head and the stories he was writing into something unique but familiar, something personal yet universal. Dedicated and focused, Jake sought out the music teacher who could teach him to play in the style and with the aplomb he required, nothing less would do.
Digging deep into the mystic musical history book, his love of early New Orleans Jazz and the children it fostered became his personal roadmap. Kansas City Jazz Blues, Texas Jump Blues and the slick swing sound so favoured by the greatest generation were mixed with the skank and punk and Detroit muscle and incubated within the smart, restless kid from Southern Ontario to make something pretty great.
Riding crest on the scene in the 90’s, Jake and a whole crew of devotees caught a worldwide rage for all things swing. Form of jazz and blues were lumped in under the umbrella, the new converts unconcerned as long as there was the energy, fashion, passion and verve of sharp dressed men and women showing up and showing off. Big Rude Jake was front and centre in that time, his reach impressive in an era before YouTube and Twitter. People liked what he hid because it was real and it was good.
Times change and music fads come and go. Those who threw themselves at the train in an attempt to ride for free were soon cast aside and forgotten as the last carriages faded into the distance – but not Jake. Because this was who he was, and this was HIS music, the authenticity remained intact and his fans continued to show the love he earned.
You can still catch Big Rude Jake fronting a big splashy band these days but just as often you’ll find him playing solo, stripped down to the parts that are truly important. Yup, these days you can find him at peace with the world, playing what he loves and now living here, the place he needs to be, Hamilton.
On this very night the most famous female singer in the world was performing her sleight-of-ear in Toronto and Ivy James couldn’t care less. Oddly at odds with the stupid and banal, this Oakville chanteuse has more rings on her tree of life than seems possible, an artist building her stage brick by brick with no blueprint in sight. In an era of likes and follows where talent show results and raw nepotism are often mistaken for talent, she is the real deal.
For those of you new to this forum, the “real deal” means believable. Honest, committed songwriting with crafted word play, crisp, impassioned playing with a definite groove and a voice both fierce and fragile add up to something wonderfully refreshing indeed.
An early knack for rhythm and melody served Ivy James well, and the shiny sneer of mid/late 90’s pop punk sparked the real fire in her to perform and soon she was forming the relationships that led to the creative collaborations – that led to the band – that allowed the simmering creativity escape the chains of youth. Never shying from a new challenge, pluck and determination began to mould the bass playing band mate into the engaging chanteuse and centre of attention she has now become.
It’s always nice to have someone new drop by Barber Shop Podcast with a quiver full of arrows and a killer attitude. It’s nice to see someone from out of town who doesn’t want for conviction. It’s nice to know that whatever the year and wherever the place, the truth continues to recruit it’s army of snipers who always shoot to kill.
Ivy James shows no fear on this night as she shares her songs and stories with the world, the least we can do is show no fear and listen.
Something new, something great, every week on Barber Shop Podcast.