The calendar year is coming to a close. I love how people do end of year posts and they are always so supper sappy – as much as I love unicorns – I do have a special place in my heart for Unicorn Meat. So this is going to be realistic yet magical…..
Although we have made plans, I’m not certain what’s in store for the band, the label, or even just little ol’ me in the year to come, but for everything that has been the past year:
to all the amazing people who have been working alongside the band, the label, the community to continue to work against the random factors of Life through creating art! Thank you for fighting the good fight. Your support and love and sheer wild bewildering believing has provided our little band with a beautiful community, a stunning audience at our shows, and the joy of performing.
To have you come to a show, post your thoughts on our Facebook page, hangout with us on Twitter, send us an email (see below), talk to us about your thoughts on music, life, love, community, change – we have been very privileged to engage with you. Thank you for sharing in our music!
Our last show of the year is Friday Dec 16th at the legendary Velvet Underground in Toronto – it will be loud and lovely. If you are at the show we would love to have your thoughts on the new songs!!! We will definitely need your feed back on songs!!! (see below)! SBS + Friends are then heading away to the Hart House Farm to write, and record demos for the upcoming album due out Spring 2012. We will be sharing demos in late December an early January.
Every day is a new year – not in a shmultzy kind of way – but in the way that love, joy, merriment, peace and resolutions can be had at any time! Don’t sweat the insanity that is supposed to be “The Holidays.” Besides – The End is Nigh! Which means we get to begin again.
Much love, your band always,
We will be releasing new tracks very soon – if you’re interested in being a part of our listening panel – please provide your info below! In the comment section – you can write Listening Panel! THANKS!
I’ve been down and out and under inspired recently – it’s a bad habit to get into!
I’ve been letting the things I can’t control, overwhelm me – so instead – here is a little short story that’s been in my books but hasn’t gone anywhere – if you want to add to it, change it, insert characters – please feel free to do so (just link back here please!):
There are nights when you remember things long forgotten. What is this sensation of remembering? It is not always regret, nor fondness. Memories run away with us occasionally and take us to a time that never actually existed; we forget how memories can be hyper-complete: hyper-coloured, hyper-emotional, hyper-beautiful, hyper-real. But no – they are only memories. He has only memories and they are rotting his mind. If he were to let go and make new memories he would be sure to regret them. The future merely becomes the past – the past merely interrupts the future. What is a mind to do?
In my last few posts I’ve been obviously obsessed with combining the ideas of art and business.
Do art and business always go hand in hand? Of course not! But there are times when they do. Everyone should have the ability and a safe space to self-express and business has little to do with that. (Self-expression is not exactly the same as being an artist or creating art – if you want to argue with this please feel free). Business is really an exchange of goods or services – forget the dollar sign if it makes you uncomfortable. Think of business as a way to fulfill a need that you have (instead of a want which is what we do in consumerist culture). Cool? Cool.
Artists and entrepreneurs share similar characteristics and our work has similar properties:
- We both have great passion
- We move from initial concept through stages of development to a final product or work
- We are constantly looking to explore and learn
- We have to deal with a lot of constructive (and not so constructive) criticism
- Financing or Funding our dreams is a hefty aspect of our work
- We find what we do very satisfying
- We are willing to invest emotionally, physically and financially into our projects
- If we fail (or deem something a failure) we will eventually get back up and try again or try something new
- We are risk takers (even if the risks seem small)
If you are a CEO or a COO or a HR Manager or a Team Lead (essentially someone who is allowed to make final decisions) you should consider hiring more artistically inclined people to your teams. Artists aren’t sensitive – we are critical and analytical. We synthesize great amounts of information and see patterns and themes in disparate ideas. Business leaders always tell their teams to think outside of the box and then put them in a closed bare walled boardroom to brainstorm. I have no idea why so many brainstorming sessions (even in creative industries) take place inside of board rooms – this is brainstorming not contract negotiation. You would actually have to be a very skilled artist to make use of a blank space like a boardroom to create brilliant ideas without external inspiration- and let’s be honest the vast majority of your staff are not creatively inclined. Alternatively you could provide time or encouragement for your team members to express their creative sides or propose ideas which are tangent to your business.
Artists – we need to be more business saavy – the world of the record label, large gallery, movie studio or television network, essentially the idea of big media business currently is in pieces and in future will be replaced by the Apples’, Googles’ and Yahoos’ of the world. These companies are not made for artists – they are entrepreneurs – they use art, music, literature to further their businesses – but they are not in the business of art. Google is not really interested in meaning – they are interested in information – these are very very different ideas. And in practice Apple is not interested in creativity – they are interested in facilitating creativity. Now of course, inherent in the Apple process are aspects of art and design – but they use these as tools for their software business (as discussed by Colin Gibbs in the post “As Always Mobile Music faces Uncertain Future” Jul 17 2010 on GigaOm.com).
The profitable and meaningful media future will require a hybrid in the media industry. A hybrid company that has the brains of a technology based corporation and the heart and soul of a community based artistic organization. Any thoughts on building the foundations or staples of the a sustainable new media ecosystem or the real ticket – the business model to support that ecosystem? If you have the monetization aspect down – I’d love to treat you out to coffee ;).
Wards Island Toronto
Last Tuesday May 11, I had a pretty awesome opportunity to have dinner with Dr. Gretchen Roedde. When I arrived at her island retreat she already had dinner ready! (Tasty Thai shrimp with roasted vegetables, fried rice, and curried cauliflower – tasty!) At this point if you have no idea what I’m talking about you may want to refer to “The Doctor and Me part 1” which is below.
A little bit about Dr. Gretchen Roedde:
Me and Dr. Gretchen Roedde on the Toronto Island Ferry
She grew up on the island, then decided to pursue an anthropology degree, had a vision that she would help people through medicine and decided just like that to go to medical school.
After completing med school at McMaster University she and her family moved to a small remote community in northern Ontario so she could help train Aboriginal health care workers. She has two lovely children a son and daughter – both of whom she adores. (Her son plays in a punk band too! The band is called “Crank Radio“)
Gretchen is so totally cool, and has stories that are pretty rad. My favourite line from our conversations was “Those who wonder are not lost.” She even came by my Mom’s workplace just to say hello! So my family is totally taken by her warmth!
She graciously let me read her manuscript for her upcoming book titlted “A Strange Calling”. When I went over for dinner I decided to take my little handy-cam with me. You will find links to her articles on the blog sidebar (on the right hand side of the page!)
We recorded a bit of our conversations that night and I wanted to share them with you – super inspiring:
*Note – you may want to listen to the video through headphones.