may 3, stones throw sound system
A dream session at Revival by the Stones Throw posse of Peanut Butter Wolf, Madlib and DJ Egon, aka Eothen Funky 16 Corners Alapatt, turned into a nightmare when the club's sound system cacked out midway through Egon's funkified opening set. Oddly enough, it happened just after he'd asked for a moment of silence in honour of late, great soul jazz keyboardist/composer Weldon Irvine, who committed suicide April 9. In the middle of a live version of Irvine's Turkish Bath, the sound shut down, abruptly ending Egon's spot. After a few tense minutes of wire-tugging, things were back on track and the ever unpredictable Madlib had the crowd shouting along with the Specials' A Message To You Rudy.
Ex-Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee -- in town to talk up his new metal mess -- stopped by to see what the fuss was about. But Lee left in a huff when Madlib dropped Can's Vitamin C into the mix, perhaps taking it as a jab at his current hepatitis C flap with estranged wife Pamela Anderson.
may 6, jack breakfast
I want Jack Breakfast to play at my wedding. Trading off with Jason Collett, Glenn Milchem, Raising the Fawn's John Crossingham (whose entire band showed up to support him) and the always amusing Fembots as part of Rancho Relaxo's Radio Mondays local songwriters series, Breakfast stood out from the pack with his nifty suit-and-tie combo, adorably bashful demeanour and gossamer-delicate acoustic love songs, sung in a shuddering stop-and-start tenor. Great guitar chops, too, and it's so nice to hear ballads that ain't boring. And, yes, that was Crossing Jordan's Jill Hennessy flashing "Rock on!" signs with twin sister Jacqueline front and centre at Rancho.
Thumbs up for Rheostatics singer/songwriter and guitarist Martin Tielli, who got a few bucks richer this week.
Tielli, also voted Toronto's best guitarist in NOW's 2000 Readers Poll, was co-winner with Eve Egoyan of the music component of the K.M. Hunter Artists Awards. Established to support Ontario artists and chosen by Ontario Arts Council juries from among recommended grant applicants, the awards split $40,000 annually between literature, theatre, music, visual art and dance.
Tielli recently dropped his solo acoustic disc, We Didn't Even Suspect That He Was The Poppy Salesman, as well as the Rheos' Night Of The Shooting Stars, and also re-released his long-out-of-print Circo disc, put out under the name Nick Buzz.
"I'm starting to record another solo record today, so some of the money will go there," Tielli explains. "Maybe I'll buy a nice steel-stringed guitar as well. That'd be nice."