Wednesday 20 September 2017


"the only thing that can stop a bad guy with a gun
is a good guy with a gun"

(Wayne LaPierre, NRA - National Rifle Association/USA)

there's a storm on the horizon

it's been brewing for some time now
becoming more and more visible
it's getting closer
and closer

it was a game we boys played as kids
in Woodstock Ontario back in the 60's
people of colour only on television
in black and white

one dressed as a cowboy and another as an indian
the cowboy is a good guy, the indian is bad
(obviously and in keeping with the script)

harmless fun really, stuff we saw on our 14" monochrome TVs
Daniel Boone and F-Troop - shows like that after school

twenty years before MTV
thirty years before the internet 
forty years before the iPhone
fifty years before Donald Trump

spreading peanut butter 
on my bleached white wonder bread
in a world bereft of imagination; dimension
my afternoon treat with grape jelly sometimes
in Ontario Canada - normal stuff that meant nothing
just eating - chewing - swallowing

oh right ... commercials
the price we pay to watch television
"wrongful death" and "dog bites"
my personal faves


oK, I really got it later on in life

visiting Ybor City Florida - near Tampa in late December 2004
New Year's eve actually - BIG football game - parade
it's still early, drifting towards the midnight hour
it's warm here - tropic thunder in the distance
most men packin' a concealed firearm
just in case someone
needs an adjustment

stepping off the plane in Fort Lauderdale a week earlier
leaving a brutal cold winter in Toronto
thinking - wow - this is paradise
palm trees - warm weather here
realizing something different
in a few short days

right, like everyone's obese here.  ok - half
transexual transformation billboards - personal injury law firms
super-sized families at Denny's whipped cream emporium
gorging on the American dream - scrambled eggs
and steak or sausages, pancakes
home fried taters and gravy
texas toast and jam 
pie and ice cream

all you can eat
git-ter while she's hot

ordering way more than they need
because they can wrap it up and take it home
to munch on later and later 
heated up in the

really getting the hypocrisy in American culture
all that "land of the free - home of the brave", bullshit

but mostly really seeing it for the first time
how white Americans think they're better
and entitled to more than anyone else

my mom had recently passed and I was going through 
a caustic catharsis culminating

introspection, trying to find something - anything
real - meaningful - awake

why am I in this place?

it's dead here

nothing but anger and sadness
pretending to be proud
boner - I mean bonus

free parking on the outskirts of the city
where the colored folk live on the dark periphery
having been pushed out of the inner core years earlier

no street lights here - garbage strewn everywhere
a parasite infested mongrel pissing on a crooked hydro pole
that familiar disturbing look up whilst
echoing off the cracked pavement
a winter wonderland 
turned tropical


colored's not welcomed

ok, the odd Cuban - maybe Mexican (a stretch)
but they look out of place here
nervously trying to fit in
but really not

everyone is really intoxicated
because that is what's on the agenda
pretentious paleface - the narcissism rampant/abundant
football jocks and grimey girls in skimpy slippery sexy
teasing the boys - cause that's what's real now
no apologies, no regrets and all OK - cause

"got my hands up, they're playing my song"

It's a party in the U.S.A.

I'm stunned and numb
looking out and over at the passing parade
guy's holding his beer up and yelling at them
"hey baby - right here - right here"
grabbing his crotch

maybe all this?  is just a bad dream

don't get me wrong
I see the world as a good place
where change can still happen

where we can co-exist painlessly
but it's still important, to actually look
at what's really happening
because millions

onion dipper

so hey dude - fuck-nuts
just who do you think you are 


excuse me sir
I've had a little too much to drink

but I would like to shake your hand
you are an inspiration to me
and I'd like to thank you
for that



staying awake

I will embrace everyone equally
because I and millions like ME
don't subscribe to this narrow point of view

diversity vs division
it's a no brainer
so why?

maybe it's a glitch in the system
a rogue app - I can install Malware
and fix this - ok gimme a sec
  in the meantime?

It's a party in the U.S.A.
let's RAWK

the Britney song is on
YUM - hot - fuk this shit

distract me, make it
all go away

Sunday 10 September 2017



Spearmint Lake - 1991

In May 1991, I received an OAC/Ontario Arts Council grant to fly out to Spearmint Lake (60 km northeast of Chapleau), a remote lake only accessible by air - to record an album of music celebrating northern Ontario.  Rented van w/gear, driving up alone that early August and flying out, I set up a make-shift studio in the large tent, powered by a generator buried back in the woods and recorded sounds from the lake/woods (exterior) and integrated those sounds into an ambient mix of layered music synthesizers and samplers all inspired by the location.

When I returned to Toronto and began mixing it, I realized that I was 10 minutes short of having a full album, so I wrote 2 more pieces, Gone Forever and Frogs in my home studio in Parkdale that autumn in memory of my time at Spearmint months earlier.  My wife Jody Terio had gathered some early morning frogs on a pond at her Aunt Joyce's out in the country (Uxbridge), through a binaural/ambisonic microphone onto a portable digital audio tape recorder and I integrated them with what I had laid down at home and Frogs was born.  This piece sounds best under a good pair of headphones and in a darkened room.

I recently gathered HD images from the internet that reminded me of Spearmint and assembled this in Final Cut in a few hours.  It was a magical 10 days alone in the wilderness, surrounded by wildlife, the aurora and a black bear which was spooky scary but exhilarating.

More pictures and stories about my time at Spearmint Lake in my blog below entitled 'NOCTURNE'