Striving to give our readers the very best in festival coverage, Courtney and I set out to redefine “the interview.” Our goal was to give readers some insight as to what their favourite artists get up to during a festival like NXNE, so we handed those artists the reigns. Whether joining a band to catch a set, hanging at one of the many day parties or simply seeing an artist on a recommendation, this year we took a backseat.
We’re very pleased to present to you Backseat Driving. Buckle up and enjoy the ride.
Every summer, Toronto becomes a flurry of BBQs, boat cruises, rooftop parties, secret alleyway shows and in-store previews. For a week in Toronto, NXNE takes over and becomes every music, media and filmmakers dream destination. Where friends, new & old, come together to enjoy the thing that matters most: music.
This year, Yuli and I took to the streets to check out the who’s who during NXNE and give y’all our opinions, photos, videos and thoughts.
Today’s the day! Santogold’s…I mean, Santigold‘s new album ‘Master of My Make Believe’ is now available in stores just in time for her May 15 show here in Toronto @ the Kool Haus. Everything about ‘Master of My Make Believe’ is pure perfection, from being co-produced by TV On The Radio‘s Dave Sitek, to working with Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) Switch, Diplo, Ricky Blaze, Boyz Noize, Q-Tip, etc. Santi’s history of producing and writing songs has allowed her to choose some of the most influential names in music to create a beautifully mastered album.
From her reputation, Santi White’s performance will be high energy and have the audience raging for more, and Pink Mafia wants you to be a part of this special event! Keep checking back on the site for #HumpDayHandOut for your chance to win some tickets to see Santigold.
For now we leave you with 2 singles from ’Master of My Make Believe’ …
Coming to Toronto, on May 15 2012, the dynamic songstress, Santigold, will be pleasuring viewers with a live show at Kool Haus.
No stranger to the music scene, Santi White a.k.a. Santigold has also collaborated with a number of great artists including, MIA and Pharrell Williams. She’s written for Lily Allen and been featured in Kanye West’s track “Brooklyn Go Hard”. Needless to say, the girl knows her shit.
When Vancouver cannabis activist and Cannabis Culture Magazine creator Marc Emery started 4/20, did he know the event would become an annual, global tradition? Today, Emery is serving the better part of a five year sentence for illegal possession and trafficking of marijuana seeds. He was extradited to the United States in 2010. Emery being behind bars hasn’t stopped his fellow activists from demanding reforms of current North American legislation on Marijuana possession. Political activists and casual smokers have been gathering on April 20 to defiantly smoke up since the early nineties when the tradition began.
4/20 is recognized as a global day of celebration by dozens of cities in North America, The United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Northern Ireland and New Zealand. Today, a high profile, free event gives a global population of activists, pot smokers and music lovers a chance to do something special. Toronto is one of many locations around the world to hold a memorial for musician Bob Marley. At 4:20 p.m. today, people will gather at Younge and Dundas Square to sing “One Love” and celebrate Marley’s contribution to activism and music. Marley’s name is almost synonymous with reggae, guitars and activism. The event, hosted by Universal Music in Canada, is meant to celebrate his life work as well as new documentary “Marley“, directed by Kevin Macdonald (The Last King of Scotland, State of Play).
Canada is only part of the global activist movement to stop the criminalization of pot. While still incarcerated, Emery writes the aptly named Mark Emery Prison Blog for Cannabis Culture. In a recent post he brags about the enormity of this year’s celebration, noting that certain schools closed down for the day, predicting 4/20 absences. Some people may not know how to feel about education giving way to kids getting stoned. Its no mystery that opinions on this subject are as numerous as genetic stains of the plant in question. Yet, 4/20 celebrations have become engrained in the culture of Canadian cities and this year’s global, spring celebrations are not limited to the usual rallies and marches.
Launching tonight is one of the best Friday Night 19+ event series held at the most quintessentially entertaining venue space possible, the Royal Ontario Museum! As the first child in Ottawa to request for their birthday party to be held at the Museum of Science and Technology and a proud girl-guide who slept at every museum in Ottawa, more than once, it’s safe to say, I’m an avid lover of all things that incorporate knowledge and hands on learning experiences. Now, at 25, I can also add avid party attendee to my list of accomplishments, thus, this event is quite possibly the culmination of all things amazing in my humble opinion. A part of me thinks there is a large section of the community that agrees whole heartedly with this.
That being said, Friday13 dates back to the execution of the Knights Templar for “witchcraft” in the fourteenth century. This date has been the topic of superstition, religious beliefs and urban legends woven into western culture for centuries.
With big names like Justin Bieber, Drake, and Album of the Year award winner Michael Bublé out of town, the hat tip to Canadian independent talent was centre spotlight at the JUNO Awards this weekend in Ottawa. From the dumbfounded look on Leslie Feist’s face as she accepted her award for 2012 Artist of the Year, to the pitch perfect performance from Halifax’s Hey Rosetta!, the list award recipients from last night’s JUNOs broadcast are a great indication of impact independent talent is currently having on record sales across the country and the direction the industry has seemingly been shaped. With record labels like Dine Alone and Arts & Crafts taking home a number of top awards including New Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year and Alternative Album of the Year, Blue Rodeo’s Hall of Fame induction speech was one of the few major acknowledgements of interest that dazzled the room. And with a warm smile from the industry’s head table, the Big Three did in fact get their piece as the new inductees nailed a tasteful performance with Sarah McLaughlan, unsurprisingly coupled with an emotional ovation of support from the audience.
There is way more than just being a funny gal when it comes to Debra DiGiovanni. A proud supporter of her fellow comedians, a twin and someone who gives back to charitable causes, Debra spoke to me via the telephone: “You know, I was never popular in high school. I had friends and I made them laugh. But I was never seen as a class clown. It wasn’t until I got into my mid-twenties and I broke out of my parents house and became my own person in Toronto.”
It was from here that Debra discovered her inner funny bone through working the phones at City-TV. She tells me, “When I worked at CITY, they really let you just be the person that you wanted to be. Whoever that was. I really discovered that I did have this funny person inside of me because I got to develop this character, this person over the phones.”