I sprinkled a lil snow here for you, no shovel required… 😛
Quick catch up: we’ve firmed up book release/a big push for In Praise of Men for Summer 2017! In the meantime, I’ve done something slightly cheeky that might “jeopardize a sales segment”, but for which I can not apologize. In life, one must stand for what they believe in, and so it is with firmly planted feet and a strong heart that I type these words today.
Without a bunch of fancy rhetoric, I stand with Standing Rock and #NODAPL. All of the cultures that commingle in my blood- especially the Mi’kmaq in me- scream: NO MORE! WE’VE ABUSED THIS COUNTRY’S NATIVE PEOPLE AND THEIR LAND LONG ENOUGH. And clearly, I am FAR from alone- have you seen this yet(?): Veterans At Standing Rock.
I am also deeply disgusted by the hateful, racist, unpatriotic acts that birthed BLM (and I don’t mean the Bureau of Land Management), and to speak plainly: Donald Trump is #notmypresident, and NO WHERE in this book will you find him mentioned. If revealing these sentiments somehow seems inappropriate, I understand. You’re entitled to your opinion, as well as a refund of your pre-order, which I shall courteously and promptly return should you request it.
Now, the big reveal. On election day, after anxiously casting my vote, I rushed off to see Suzanne Vega at a local record shop called the Electric Fetus. With her was Bowie guitarist Gerry Leonard. I thought he seemed familiar (had seen him on the Reality tour, but from nosebleed seats in a stadium, ages ago), but couldn’t place where. When it hit me hours later, I thought about how much had happened since last seeing him, of how I no longer made music, and of how that other bright soul on stage with him was no longer among us, which then led to thinking about… Prince. It was an emotional evening out the gate.
Around midnight, final polls arriving, a group of us decided we needed a drink (despite rarely drinking). We wandered into a legendary dive bar called The CC Club, and just after clinking our glasses hopefully, I looked up and caught “Clinton Calls Trump To Concede…” scrolling across the silent TV screen. At that PRECISE moment, Heresy by NIN arrived on the overhead. During the first chorus, a drunk, tear-smudged blonde climbed on top of a table and began screaming about her reproductive rights; several others across the room teared up, and all across the bar, heads shook and we looked at each other in disbelief. Was this our future? Had this really happened? We were terrified.
By the final chorus of Heresy, I knew what I had to do. I began silently singing the ONLY song I’d ever heard that could accurately convey the mood in that room to myself, then began messaging former TC Electropunk compatriots, old band mates and friends in like-minded acts who I felt would also have something to say. In less than a week, we assembled and covered the Bowie/NIN collab I’m Afraid of Americans; on week two, we entered post-production, decided to shoot a video and assembled a crew; by week three, we shot the video, mastered tracks and recruited a handful remixers from different countries (Britain, France, Africa, Russia, etc.). Here on week four, we’re rolling out tracks and preparing for the release of video remix #1.
Gentlemen and Ladies, please meet A*O*A:
Cover Art by Robertson, Whitlatch & Calder
You can listen FREE (and if you dig it- own it FOREVER, with a portion of proceeds benefiting #NODAPL) here: a-o-a.bandcamp.com
Last, I’m pleased to announce that I just wrapped an on-air with Joe Kelley at WVOF, and while it was music focused, we did discuss the book and its’ forthcoming release. Will post the archive here later this week, and hope you approve.
With Much Love & Holiday Cheer,