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THIS MONTH'S CONTRIBUTORS Thank you, we love you!

Jenny Arndt Patrick Crummey Kerry Duncan Bart Gazzola Matthew Harley Chris Illich Greg Janssen Marinko Jareb Melissa Morlacchetti Kate Notwell Falynn Shaw David Suzuki Bob Vandervalk Annie Wilson Adam White Jordy Yack

We've come a long way since the first issue of The Sound. Back then every release was another learning experience, another reason to keep trying, keep dreaming. Trust me, I've learned a lot, and tried very, very hard to keep this going. For a long time, I thought I'd be burnt out by 50 issues. Can you believe it? 50 issues of this thing. Can you believe that we have roughly 600 articles on our website (and that's missing a year)? That's a whole lot of text. For a long while (throughout 2018), I told myself and a few others close to me that I'd evaluate the future of The Sound at Issue 50, but as I sit here typing this, I realize that I hadn't even given the future of The Sound a single thought since the turn of the year, and I don't think I will any time soon. This past month, a peer's music festival shut 'er down. When I met with Raf in May to talk about the festival, I didn't realize that it was going to be done with, and when it started surfacing that Livestock was finished, I wasn't sure how to react. Was I happy for him? If you love something let it go, right? Or was I upset that another piece of culture in Niagara was about to fade away in that moment. Here's this thing that a friend of mine started, around the same time I started The Sound, and he's ready to move onto the next adventure. Congrats for making it for five years Raf, can't wait to see what you come up with next. One door closes, another one opens. All we can do is to just keep going, working, creating, trying to figure out how we fit in to this region and this world. We do our part, try to inspire, try to promote, and really, just try to just be good people. Who knows what the future holds for any of us? Not me, that's for sure. Is The Sound going to get left behind? Maybe. Well, most likely. But until that realization comes, I guess I'll just have to put my head down and keep making magazines. It's been an integral part of my life for the past five years, and I'm not sure what I'd do otherwise. The thing is, The Sound keeps growing, or at least I think it is (we have three Patreon subscribers, you should subscribe too!!), so I can't pack it in just yet, right? Anyways, thanks for reading and for all of your support. Props to all the writers that have graced these pages, all the advertisers that have funded it, and to all the creators that give us something to write about. We made it to 50! This door's still open. Time to start dreaming of Issue 100. — Chris Illich

Most major cities in Canada and around the world have an alternative paper that covers the culture of their city or region, but few have the thriving arts scene, vibrant entrepeneurs and paper-worthy stories that our region has to offer. In addition to our monthly paper, posts fresh and exclusive content on our website. If you like what you see on these pages, write to us, write for us, join the conversation online, tell your friends, tell your parents, tell your boss, tell anyone. C’mon. The Sound STC a locally owned city magazine. It was was founded in April 2015 by Chris Illich. The Sound is published monthly and 4,500 copies are distributed free of charge through more than 200 locations in the Niagara region. The contents in The Sound STC are those of the writer, and do not reflect the views of The Sound STC.


Young people have been speaking out for their rights. Many are wise beyond their years. Without the blinkers of ideology, workaday priorities and ingrained values, they can see clearly what’s happening. They’ve had to step up for their own futures because too few of their elders are willing to accept that rampant consumerism has been an illusory quest for happiness at the expense of the planet’s lifesupport systems. “We have learned that if we don’t start acting for our future, nobody else will make the first move,” a Guardian article signed by 46 young people, including 16-year-old Swedish student Greta Thunberg, said. Kids understand that their well-being, safety and lives depend on a healthy planet, with clean air, good water, nutritious food and a stable climate. And many are skilled at distinguishing truth from lies. But while tens of thousands are marching in streets worldwide — for the #FridaysForFuture youth climate strikes that Thunberg started and more — they don’t always see much evidence that adults with the power to make change are listening.

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“We’re feeling the burden of it, so it makes sense that I would care the most,” 15-year-old Lily Gardner of Lexington, Kentucky, told the Guardian. “But I think it’s really difficult to get politicians and legislators to take our voices seriously, especially because they believe that we do not have any voting power.” What if we gave them that power? A cheeky movement to lower Canada’s voting age from 18 to eight might sound... out there. But I’m not seeing much evidence that adults are any better at making political decisions than young people. So many grownups are electing politicians who don’t even accept climate science, let alone the need to treat climate disruption as an emergency. Many governments and politicians around the world seem more beholden to the fading fossil fuel industry than the people they’re supposed to represent. “Politicians have known about climate change for decades,” Thunberg and her fellow youth wrote. “They have willingly handed over their responsibility for our future to profiteers whose search for quick cash threatens our very existence.”

This is not hyperbole. Every reputable scientist in every climate-related discipline, from oceanography to atmospheric physics, is saying we have little time — not much more than a decade, if that — to turn things around, to keep from pumping so many greenhouse gases into the atmosphere that they can’t be re-absorbed or broken down before Earth heats beyond its ability to support human life. Every legitimate scientific academy and institution in the world agrees. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has worked with scientists and researchers worldwide to regularly compile and summarize the research and evidence to share with government leaders and policymakers. There’s no shortage of solutions. Many are being deployed and new ones are being developed all the time, but not quickly enough. The only thing holding us back is lack of political will. Yet many grown-ups are willing to risk that all these scientists and their research are wrong – even though we’d still end up with cleaner air, water and soil and healthier people if we took their advice and it turned out they all somehow missed something. Those who are gambling away our youth’s future often support politicians who are likewise willing to bet against impossible odds.

Young people may not always make the best or most informed decisions, but given that their futures are at stake and they understand that change is possible and necessary, I can’t imagine they would make worse decisions than their elders. As adults, we must do all we can to support our youngers. The Friday youth walkouts are expanding to a Global Climate Strike on September 20, kick-starting a week of activities that people of all ages are invited to join, and culminating in another strike on September 27. We should encourage our kids and grandkids to take part and get out there ourselves. Let the children speak, and listen to them. We should also make sure to take our election responsibilities seriously, asking candidates about their climate plans and voting for those who are committed to a cleaner, safer, brighter tomorrow. Should we let the kids vote? As the 18to8 campaign says, “Let the future decide the future.” David Suzuki is a scientist, broadcaster, author and co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation. Written with contributions from David Suzuki Foundation Senior Editor Ian Hanington. Learn more at


There’s an old Irish saying: ‘you can watch a thief, but you can’t watch a liar’. It’s a phrase that keeps coming to mind as we inch closer to another federal election. It wasn’t so long ago that talk of ‘sunny ways’ had many Canadians feeling the warm and fuzzies all over. Four years later, many of those same Canadians are feeling something – but it ain’t warm, or fuzzy. The 2015 federal election was a resounding rejection of the Harper Conservatives just as much as it was an endorsement of the Trudeau Liberals. Canadians were sick of being lied to. With Harper, it wasn’t so much that he said anything that was a total lie, it was more that he just didn’t say anything at all. Lie by omission, if you like. The Harper government was notorious for skirting journalist’s questions, and slipping unpopular legislation into massive omnibus bills. Instead of addressing climate change, Stephen Harper just silenced the scientists. You get the picture. The same tactics cannot be applied to the Trudeau Liberals. Justin Trudeau and his marry band of sycophants prefer Trump-like lies. Big, steaming piles of bullshit. In fact, the problem with Justin Trudeau isn’t that he does not say anything – it’s that he says too much. For example: electoral reform. The phrase ‘electoral reform’ isn’t something you would hear coming out of the Conservative party. Largely, this is because the Conservatives have never wanted it. First-past-the-post suits them just fine. However, electoral reform is something many Canadians would like to see implemented. Knowing this, Justin Trudeau promised it in 2015. Once in power, with a majority government no less, the Grits began back-pedalling for the exact same reasons the Conservatives have never wanted it in the first place – it runs against the grain of partisan party politics.

I don’t think anyone is naive enough to think that a politician will keep every promise they make on the campaign trail. However, when that promise is a critical piece of the party’s overall platform, and one of the reasons they get elected – then yeah, expectations are different. It’s at this point the Liberals closed ranks and started with the lies. They made two entirely false statements to justify not following through on electoral reform: there wasn’t a consensus, and it could reduce local representation. In 2017, local MP Chris Bittle made the case for the government’s retreat from electoral reform, even citing Fair Vote Canada. I knew it was bullshit, so I reached out to Réal Lavergne, the President of Fair Vote Canada, to find out if Mr. Bittle was accurately representing their conversations in his arguments. He wasn’t. As Mr. Lavergne explained to me, it goes without saying that the nature of representation would change under PR (proportional representation). However, all the models of PR that have been proposed for Canada were regionally-based models that retained an important role for local representation. What can be said is that PR would have placed a greater burden on would-be MPs to gain support from a larger demographic of voters. Mr. Lavergne said he remembered meeting Mr. Bittle very well and that the issue of local representation had come up, but at no time was the possibility ever considered that St. Catharines would be left without a local representative. The claim by the Prime Minister, echoed by Mr. Bittle, that there was no consensus for electoral reform, is a fabrication and pundits across the board were quick to denounce the self-serving nature of the government’s broken promise. Mr. Lavergne pointed out that Fair Vote Canada had been present in every session

of expert testimony presented to the Special Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reform, and after reviewing the submissions found that 88 per cent of witnesses called before the committee recommended PR. The record of public consultations was equally clear. The tens of thousands of Canadians who participated in the public consultations were unequivocally and massively in favour of PR. Electoral reform is an example of spreading ‘fake news’, essentially saying something that is categorically false to support your own narrative. However, the Trudeau Liberals have invented other ways of lying that are even more entertaining (or infuriating depending on your mood). One of the most inventive is the lie-by-contradiction tactic. Here, the best example is climate change. Again, in 2015 Canadians were promised meaningful action on the issue of climate change. This would have been a relief after ten years of the Harper Conservatives pretending that it just wasn’t happening. So, in order to woo us, Justin Trudeau spoke often about how the Liberals would handle the climate file differently. They did. Just not the way environmentally minded voters were hoping they would. Whereas Stephen Harper did nothing, Justin Trudeau did too much. The Liberals opted for the lie-by-contradiction method – implementing two policies that were in direct opposition to each other and so, cancelling out any meaningful change. They imposed carbon pricing while at the same time buying a pipeline. Given the fact that the Alberta Tar Sands are Canada’s most epic contribution to greenhouse gas emissions, passing carbon pricing, while simultaneously enabling much more oil to be pumped and transported, equates to handing out bailing buckets on the Titanic.

The lie-by-contradiction also figured in our foreign policy. In August 2018, Minister Chrystia Freeland set off a diplomatic row with Saudi Arabia. Canadians felt about two minutes of pride seeing our government standing up for human rights. Then, we quickly remembered that that same government was also selling military hardware to the Saudis. On both climate change and foreign policy, the Trudeau Government displayed a jaw-dropping ability to speak out of both sides of it’s mouth. Selling Albertans on a new pipeline, while at the same time selling the rest of Canada on carbon pricing. Tweeting about human rights in Saudi Arabia, while at the same time NOT cancelling an arms deal with the regime. Finally, the piece de resistance. The ultimate dirty lie: just blame the other guy. In January 2019, ‘the other guy’, was Jody Wilson-Raybould (JWR). This tactic backfired spectacularly, as JWR wasn’t willing to play the part of scapegoat. The fallout was glorious, and I say glorious only because the whole SNC ordeal, and WilsonRaybould's response gave Canadians a glimpse of what integrity looks like. Wanting to protect a major corporation in his home riding from criminal prosecution, Justin Trudeau interfered with the rule of law, breaking codes of ethics in an attempt to influence the Attorney General’s decision. I can say this because in August 2019 the Ethics Commissionaire confirmed it in a report. This tactic could have worked if Jody had been willing to play ball – but she wasn’t. The Prime Minister was made to look the ass day after day as the lies he tried to spin continually ran up against a wall of truth. First, he claimed the accusations were false. Then he said it could not be so because Raybould’s presence in cabinet said differently. The next day JWR quit cabinet. Trudeau was gobsmacked, and looked it. How dare a member of his rank and file not fall on the sword when called upon? Even now, despite hours of testimony, recorded phone calls and even a report saying he did wrong, Trudeau still refuses to accept any responsibility. Actually wait, he accepted the Ethics Commissionaire's report, but then denied he was responsible for that report found? I think that’s right. At least Gerald Butts is gone, that little Machiavellian turd. Actually, wait – he’s on Trudeau’s campaign team. Shit, these guys really don’t learn do they? It is also worth noting that the Liberal doublespeak, and SNC affair, has even further complicated our position on the international stage. At the same time the Prime Minister was interfering with the rule of law in the SNC case, he was using the principal to stand the moral high-ground against the Chinese government’s arguments regarding Huawei executive, Meng Wanzhou – something that hasn’t gone unnoticed in Bejing. So that makes two cases where two of the world’s most repressive regimes, Beijing and Riyadh, appear more principled then Ottawa. Thanks Justin. The sad reality is, we voters have few alternatives to Justin Trudeau. In next month’s issue, I’ll discuss some options on how I am considering facing this election. For now, all I know is that I can’t vote Liberal. I didn’t like Harper, and I don’t like Scheer, but at least I knew where they stood/stand. Trying to figure that out with the Liberals is like trying to nail jello to the wall – infuriating and pointless. I can watch a thief, but I can’t watch Justin Trudeau. | 5

is a talented Oglala Lakota and Lumbee blues guitarist and vocalist from Southeastern North Carolina who excels in playing roots, bottleneck slide, and country blues Piedmont-style guitar.

Procession of Nations – SAT, 10AM Always a very powerful and moving

part of Celebration of Nations. It displays, in glorious sight and sound, the breadth and diversity of Indigenous peoples who live within the Niagara region and who travelled long distances from across Turtle Island to participate. As a point of solidarity and inspiration, it is vitally important that we showcase the resilient beauty of our cultures and peoples. NOTE: This year’s procession will feature seven Eagle Staff Carriers and many Nations proudly carrying their flag. All are welcome to join in the backyard of the PAC. Bring a blanket and a friend.

Empathic Poetry Cafe – SAT, 4pm A powerful showcase of Indigenous


The sacred fire will burn once again in the backyard of the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre as they partner with Kakekalanicks Indigenous Arts to bring Celebration of Nations, a gathering of Indigenous arts, culture, and tradition to downtown St. Catharines from September 6-8. More than 40 events will take place in the core, within the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre’s four venues, as well as The Mann Raceway Plaza (the FirstOntario PAC’s outdoor gathering space commonly referred to as “the Backyard”), and within spaces at Brock University’s Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts. The three-day gathering showcases a wide variety of Indigenous arts and artists, ranging from traditional to contemporary music, dance performances, sunrise ceremonies, film screenings, creative workshops, an outdoor artisan market that includes food vendors, and hands-on workshops and an activity zone for both children and adults. The full weekend will include 40+ free events! “Our theme for 2019 is Empathic Traditions: Honouring Mother Earth,” explained Artistic Director Michele-Elise Burnett. “The programs we’re producing will present a wide range of Indigenous artistic expression and knowledge, combined with scientific research, designed to nurture human connections to the natural world that foster environmental ethics and manifest our responsibility for future generations.” Artistic Producer Tim Johnson added, “We’ve recruited a group of prestigious allies

6 | September 2019

who are working hard to address the complex environmental issues that are challenging the health of our living earth. These include Brock University, the Canadian Biosphere Reserves Association, Centre for Climate Change Management at Mohawk College, Niagara Parks Commission, Plenty Canada, Ontario Nature, Trent University, Walpole Island Land Trust, Youth Circle for Mother Earth, Canadian Commission for UNESCO, and many others. In addition, we’ve asked our participating artists to present creative works that reflect upon this year’s theme.” “Celebration of Nations has become a wonderful tradition of cross-cultural learning and celebration each year. With a focus on honouring Mother Earth, this year’s Celebration will encourage us to focus on sustainability and the natural environment that we are fortunate to share with all of the people and First Nations of the Niagara region” said St. Catharines Mayor Walter Sendzik. Celebration of Nations is an opportunity for Niagara residents and visitors to actively participate in an inclusive and engaging community gathering that provides cultural and historical insights infused within entertainment and social activities that forge connections and strengthen the bonds of community. For full schedule of more than 40 events and to sign up for workshops, visit the website:

NOT TO MISS MOMENTS: Master Canoe Builder Chuck Commanda: Birch Bark Canoe – ONGOING Over the past four centuries,

colonialism, natural resource industries, and climate change have severely altered Algonquin ways of life. The birch bark canoe, however, continues to be a link to cultural strength, retaining the power to bring people together for a common cause. The art of building birch bark canoes was lost for generations and Commanda hopes to help Indigenous communities reclaim that part of their culture and spread the knowledge to others. All are welcome to visit Commanda (and assist him!) while he undertakes his build in Algoma Central Lobby between 9am–4pm daily from Aug 25 to Sept. 7. NOTE: The completed canoe will be proudly displayed at the FirstOntario PAC.

Down the Dirt Road: Origin and Evolution of the Blues – FRI, 7:30PM Travel along the visceral

and deeply emotional dirt road of the blues from the Mississippi Delta to St. Catharines! This headline concert, from the producers of RUMBLE, features renowned bottleneck slide player Lakota John, and multiple awardwinners: Harrison Kennedy Murray Potter and the Pappy Johns band! NOTE: Lakota John

artists from diverse nations performing storytelling and poetry styles that address unique Indigenous perspectives involving empathic traditions and environmental consciousness. The event will be hosted by Janet Marie Rogers, a Mohawk/Tuscarora poet, spoken word, performance artist and media producer from the Six Nations of the Grand River and feature Dennis “D-Scribe” Scherle, Danielle Boissoneau, Kahsenniyo Tahnee Williams and Kay’la Fraser.

Unsettled Scores: Contraries: A Chamber Requiem & RADAR – SAT, 7:30PM An evening of music

by the powerhouse composing team of Spy Dénommé-Welch and Catherine Magowan. Featuring world class Indigenous-Canadian and allied musicians, this evening showcases two compelling works that respond to Canada’s missing and murdered Indigenous persons, and the Residential School system. Deeply meaningful, moving and provocative, these works invite the audience into a new conversation around difficult Canadian histories that bridges mutual respect and understanding.

Backyard Programming – SAT + SUN from 10am–6pm Visit the

backyard of the PAC and take in the Métis encampment, sit by the sacred fire, enjoy interactive activities and an artisan market, listen to music and teachings on the backyard stage and learn more about the beautiful culture and traditions of the Indigenous community. Celebration of Nations is part of a long-term vision of Kakekalanicks, the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre, and the City of St. Catharines to build on the Two Row Wampum teaching that promotes all Nations walking together, in parallel, with respect, compassion, and understanding to cultivate an inclusive community for our shared future. All are welcome!


With September just around the corner, we at the Niagara Falls Public Library are excited to once again offer a full slate of Mental Health and Wellness programming to connect you with others and help you feel your best as summer fades away and the days start to get shorter, darker, colder. First off, St. Catharines-based author and mental health speaker Darcy Patrick

( is back with a free foursession course based on his book Creative Writing for the Mind, Body and Soul as well as his just-released My Guided Meditation: Using Meditation as a Therapeutic Tool to Focus Your Overactive Mind. Running Tuesdays, September 3, 10, 17 and 24 at 6pm at the Victoria Avenue Library, Darcy will walk you through some tried-and-true strategies on how to change your negative thinking by using writing as a therapeutic tool in your everyday life. Copies of the books will be on sale for $20, but all you really need to bring is a pad of paper, something to write with and an open mind. Darcy, who is also a Facilitator with Family Support Niagara and a seasoned presenter who has spoken throughout Southern Ontario, ran the course here at NFPL back in the spring and customer feedback was very positive. If you missed it the first time around, here’s your second chance. You can register in advance at or by calling 905-356-8080 or by visiting your local library. For more on meditation specifically, consider checking out the five-session course Certified Meditation Instructor Carey Baglieri ( is leading Wednesdays, September 4, 11, 18, 25 and October 2 at 6:30pm at Victoria. The course, which explores a variety of different meditation techniques, also ran back in the spring and, like Darcy’s, received strongly positive customer feedback. Whether you’re an experienced meditator or a curious novice, take an hour out of your week and work

on your meditation skills in a supportive group environment. Register in advance at or by calling 905-356-8080 or visiting your local library. Finally, sleep. We all know how important a good night’s sleep is, but as the days get shorter and darker it can be difficult to stay on a healthy sleeping schedule. If you’re struggling to get to sleep, stay awake and join us for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Sleep on Friday, November 1 at 7pm at Victoria. Niagara-based Clinical Psychologist Dr. Jen Rouse will share some evidence-based strategies for developing and maintaining healthy sleep habits. This program is part of a new weekly series of Friday night afterhours programs at the library, so keep an eye out for other Friday night happenings here throughout the fall. That’s all for our fall Mental Health and Wellness programs, but the Niagara Falls Public Library also offers a number of adult programs that offer you great opportunities to learn new skills, meet new people and destress. These include book clubs, painting classes, Crafternoons, concerts, film screenings and more. Check out my.nflibrary. ca for details, or visit one of our four locations throughout Niagara Falls. For now, stay well. Greg Janssen is a Community Development & Programming Librarian with the Niagara Falls Public Library. Reach him at




poet Mori McCrae's poetry book Sex/Death in Canada: Land Of No Middle Ground is released through Grey Border Books.


Barbara Bucknall releases her long-anticipated Witch Poems book in the Mahtay Community room. Come meet the author and discuss her witching history.

• MAHTAY CAFE (Sept. 8, 2-5pm) A VICTORY GARDEN FOR TRYING TIMES LAUNCH Join Debi Goodwin for the

launch of her memoir on grief and gardening. A Victory Garden for Trying Times is a personal journey of love, loss, and healing through the natural cycles of the earth.

• MAHTAY CAFE (Sept. 17, 6-8pm) MAKE A MICRO POEM AND POETRY ZINE Presented by St. Catharines Poetry Slam as part of this year's Culture Days programming. Join members of the St. Catharines Poetry Slam collective in one of two fun-filled microworkshops. Learn how to make your very own mini-zine from one sheet of paper. Spend up to 30 mins. creating. Drop-in for all ages.


IN GALLERIES NOW CARL BEAM: US AND EVERYTHING An exhibition of works by contemporary indigenous artist Carl Beam. Carl Beam (Ojibwe, 1943 – 2005), born Carl Edward Migwans, is one of the most important artists in Canadian Contemporary Art History, noted as the first Canadian of Native Ancestry to have his work purchased by the National Gallery of Canada as Contemporary Art. • FIRSTONTARIO PERFORMING ARTS CENTRE

THE FREDRICK HAGAN GIFT This exhibition focuses on 37 lithograph prints produced by Hagan in northern Ontario during the years of World War II and immediately following. They show an incredibly responsive artist who is always looking and attentive, finding new sights and textures, and expressing himself in a diverse range of styles and methods. They were acquired for the AGS permanent collection in 1989. The GPAG collection also includes a large number of Hagan’s prints, drawings and some of these will be included in the exhibition. • GRIMSBY PUBLIC ART GALLERY

WHAT'S EATING YOU? The photo diptychs presented here combine Betty Crocker recipe cards with flash fiction. Embedded in the actual recipe

are short stories – mostly about interpersonal relationships, family dynamics, disappointment, failure, shame, and awkwardness. And looking over it all is the quintessential ‘70s food icon rendered in a gilt macaroni portrait, with an upgraded title to suit our current era: Master Chef Boyardee.



Illustrating his body of work, this collection includes numerous individual pieces, painting series, personal portfolios (including sketches and maquettes), archives and artifacts. Although he studied art at a number of institutions world wide, he is largely self taught. His first one man show took place in 1960 at the Isaac's Gallery in Toronto which established the artist's presence and began his notoriety for nostalgic, illustrative and didactic paintings. From examining life growing up on the prairies, the history of various ethnic and regional groups, to religious, philosophical and social commentaries, Kurelek was an artist who was wholly reflective, critical and spiritual.



In this exhibition, Cayuga beadwork artist Sam Thomas examines the dark legacy of the Canadian Indian residential school system. Working alongside 120 survivors and their families, Thomas sheds light on what happened behind the doors of

these church-run, government-funded institutions. When Thomas envisioned the exhibition only twenty-eight of Canada’s original 140 residential schools remained. Less than one year later, after funding had been secured and the work had begun, just eleven schools were left standing.



An exciting new exhibit juxtaposes contemporary found object sculptures with trench art created during the First World War 100 years ago. Niagara-on-the-Lake artist Ronald Boaks has created a series of intriguing sculptures from pieces of metal and other material salvaged from junkyards and elsewhere. The sculptures are displayed alongside both utilitarian and artistic objects crafted by soldiers in the trenches during the Great War, 1914-1918.


A COMMON LAND TRANSFORMED A Common Land Transformed imagines an alien terrain, rich with unfamiliar life-forms billowing out of their containers. Inspired by microbiology, I use an aesthetic of cellular accumulation to reference the vast numbers of the human race, swarming beyond what is sustainable. Like the Romantic paintings of the 19thcentury, this work taps into the wonder we experience in nature. • PLATE GLASS GALLERY AT THE NIAGARA ARTISTS CENTRE

COMPOUNDING VISION Torontobased artist Charmaine Lurch interrogates complex histories of humans and the environment. This exhibition presents the artist’s recent work exploring borders and boundaries, in painting, photography, sculpture and installation. • RIVERBRINK ART MUSEUM

CAROLYN WREN: TASK AT HAND For over twenty years, St. Catharines-based artist Carolyn Wren has explored the relationship between identity and place. Known for her large-scale drawings and relief prints that poetically conflate landscapes and the human body, during the last decade she has turned her attention to the written narratives that have shaped her worldview. By transcribing texts such as Homer’s epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey, and Virginia Woolf’s iconic feminist essay A Room of One’s Own, Wren manifests personal and cultural terrain in monumental physical forms. Alongside significant early works such as War Map Dress Trilogy, this exhibition premieres recent drawings and immersive, experiential installations. The structure and labour of Wren’s method are the threads that bind her work; be it hand-carving, printing, writing, or embroidering, Wren finds meditation in the repetitive tasks of life. • RODMAN HALL ART CENTRE

CAROLYN WREN Curated by Marcie Bronson VENICE BIENNALE, 2019: MayGLASS 24 to August 2019 OF EMERGENCY BREAK IN11,CASE

Image detail: Charmaine Lurch, SYCORAX MAN, 2019. Photo Credit: Toni Hafkenscheid

An illustrated lecture by Derek Knight, Associate Professor, 109 St. Paul Crescent, St. Catharines, ON Visual Arts, Brock University

COMPOUNDING VISION September 12, 2019 to February 1, 2020 Opening Reception September 12, 2019 • 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm 8 | September 2019

Thursday, September 26, 7 pm | Free Event Carolyn Wren, The Sisyphus Project, 2017, performance

(50Crescent, one-pound rocks, two felt packs, 250-foot 109 St. Paul St. Catharines, ON hill on the Key River, Ontario). Image courtesy of the artist. Yin Xiuzhen (b. 1963, China), Nowhere to Land, 2012, installation with used clothing, steel, stainless steel, mirrors, vehicle light, 330 x 240 x 210 cm. Photo: Derek Knight


Well, 'the time has come," the Walrus said,"To talk of many things: of shoes — and ships — and sealingwax — of cabbages — and kings — and why the sea is boiling hot — And whether pigs have wings." Why, yes, your intrepid #artcriticfromhell is 'pleased' to offer you an update on what is happening now regarding Brock University and Rodman Hall Art Centre. Allow me to explain my silly opening quote / metaphor; with those references to 'kings' — as in dismissive arrogant types — that wish we'd just defer to our 'betters' on the topic of RHAC; 'cabbages' as in reheated bile in Brock PSAs that are opaque in their obtuseness, ahem; and 'whether pigs have wings' – no need to explain that one, I hope, since I'm sure you saw that flying pig, too, when Brock asserted they NEVER planned to sell RHAC to those developers, whom I guess would be working for free, cough cough. But perhaps I should warn you, before we begin, as when The Sound broke the story regarding Brock — or the Hutchings Cabal, as it's more accurate to term it such — planning to sell RHAC back in the Spring, Dean of Humanities Carol Merriman insinuated that we were 'fake news.' Mind, we weren't the ones proffering mistruths so baldly, such as saying they'd supported RHAC strongly, when they've declined to fill three (3!) positions there in the last few years, emaciating the gallery through a process of 'demolition by neglect', to paraphrase Rebecca Caan. Ah, forgive my skepticism: when I commented the other day that I was unsure if I should finish this update, or watch Evil Dead, a friend who's involvement has been more in depth and nuanced then mine suggested the movie, as it has a clear end... Since we last talked about Brock and RHAC, there's been a few developments, several of which have been reported in The Standard, with varying degrees of (in)accuracy. The story has also been picked up at a national level by Canadian Art. They provided articles that both detailed the original 'plan' this past spring by Brock to divest itself of RHAC and 'steal the collection for two dollars' (Mark Elliot), but also the revised plan to hand over the space and the collection to a community board, with a more appropriate — and realistic, from both a financial and cultural position — plan for 2023. Several faculty have been adamant and insistent on making sure the university knows what it would be losing, and what the true stakes and real stakeholders are, in this debate. Praise to several of these, which includes Donna Szoke and Amy Friend. Also this summer, St. Catharines City Council, at the urging of Councillor Carlos Garcia, and after presentations by former St. Catharines Cultural Coordinator Caan and former Councillor Mark Elliot (who, when he won the STC Arts Award for Making a Difference, repeated his assertion that Brock 'stole' RHAC and the collection for a toonie, and he will happily reimburse them — even with interest, so $4 — to get it out of their hands), struck a committee to gain information and break the Stalinist silence from the Hutchings Cabal at Brock. This is specifically regarding the most recent feasibility report by Alf Bogusky and Ann Pappert. City Hall, after all, offered

support to the university regarding their MIWSFPA endeavour, and as pointed out at that same Council meeting, citizens of this city would be coming to them, not Brock, to ask why RHAC was shuttered and why we have no longer have a quality public gallery here. They — again, unlike the Brock cabal — would not find it so easy to ignore questions and concerns, and would demand some accountability from Brock administration. Some necessary praise: the students (Rachel McCartney and Sarah Martin, especially) at MIWSFPA have been amazing, in both protesting and making their voices heard, and not being interested in the refusal — whether ideological or just ignorance — on the part of said cabal to not take their concerns seriously. With protests at various Brock events to derail the spin, one of the reasons why myself, and others, are somewhat hopeful, is due to them. The 'new' board that has recently incorporated with intent to have RHAC and its collection returned to them has several notable names with significant experience (one of them, Reinhard Reitzenstein, made one of my favourite comments during the Van Zon consultations, pointing out that neither Van Zon, or his AGN types, had any idea or experience for what they were talking about). The relevant information from their PSA released in late June: Rodman Hall Art Centre Inc. is a community-based not-for-profit corporation whose first order of business is to develop a phased transition plan with Brock University to return the public art gallery back into community hands. This initiative is a constructive response to Brock University’s goal to reduce their financial obligation for the art museum. Rodman Hall Art Centre Inc. is dedicated to ensuring the future excellence of Niagara’s award-winning professional art museum, and to provide inspiring contemporary art exhibitions and public programs. RHAC Inc. intends to raise funds from a wide variety of sources, engage community volunteers and leverage the historical home and gardens to createa cultural destination for residents and visitors to Niagara. Unlike, again, the opaque curtain that Brock employed regarding their decision, this RHAC Inc. update also offered biographical information and the relevant experience of their board members. These include Jean Bridge (Chair of RHAC inc., who's both an artist and educator of long standing in the community, as well as the 'founder of nGen Niagara Interactive Media Generator, now Innovate Niagara and the Generator at One'), Ken Lucyshyn (Executive Vice-President, Aggregates & Construction at Walker Industries Holdings limited. That company's name may be familiar to you from the recent Niagara Pumphouse Walker Industries Art Competition) and the aforementioned Reitzenstein (internationally renowned artist, Associate Professor of Sculpture at the University of Buffalo. His past experience is impressive, having 'served on the Boards of MacMaster University Museum of Art and the Art Gallery of Hamilton, and Grimsby Public Art

Gallery'). In past conversations about RHAC, the fact that the grounds, as well as the gallery spaces, are a treasure to be preserved is acknowledged with the presence on the RHAC Inc. Board of Darren Schmahl (horticulturist and educator at Niagara Catholic District School Board and the Niagara Parks Commission School of Horticulture.' It is very edifying to have 'an authority on the history of the gardens at Rodman Hall and contributor to their current design' as part of this group). The group is rounded out by two excellent examples of the balance present in this group: Shawn Tylee (Manager, Corporate Affairs, Rankin Construction). He brings a wealth of knowledge in Business Marketing, Strategic Planning, Client Relations and Contract Negotiations to' the group. Again, this is important as Brock — with Van Zon, but this self serving ignorance has been repeated by others there, afterwards — has implied the 'irrelevance' of RHAC, while instructing them to not scuttle the MIWSFPA fund raising of the past decade, and then neither supporting nor replacing staff whom could raise and enhance RHAC's public profile... and Dr. Peter Vietgen. Vietgen is an 'Associate Professor of Visual Arts Education in the Teacher Education Program at Brock University and the current President of the Canadian Society for Education through Art'. All are experienced and informed choices to shepherd RHAC towards 2023 and being rid of Brock's mendacity (as I must mention AGAIN that blaming Doug Ford for this 'austerity' is self servingly disingenuous, since Van Zon was jibbering about developers long before Ford as a premier was even suggested by the most absurd of comedians...). This is a hopeful turn, and one that surely wouldn't have happened, I suspect, if V.P. Finance Hutchings hadn't departed for job with the City of Brantford. An amusing aside: a friend works at an auto shop, and described how, in the midst of changing Hutchings' radiator that he was subjected to a gleeful monologue by the former Brock employee as to how glad he was to finally rid the uni of RHAC. Rather funny, when you consider the eagerness with which he and his lot blamed Doug Ford for the necessary cutbacks, though this all started several years ago before the idea of Ford as Premier was anything other than a bad joke. Amusingly, again in a painful manner, is that a similar ignorant wielding of a bloody axe under the misguided mendacity of austerity is ALSO what Hutchings was doing, aping Doug. Is the RHAC and Brock saga over? Not bloody likely, your intrepid #artcriticfromhell would say. After all, a little over a year ago, many of us thought Brock would no longer foster plans, public or secretive, to 'steal the collection and building' (again, I praise Mark Elliot's acerbic exactness). It is not inappropriate to be wary until 2023, and the building and collection are out of Brock's grasp: but I must end with this. Is the cultural community willing to step up, in terms of support both financial and vocally, to ensure RHAC survives? We're having this conversation again because a window to ensure Brock behaved appropriately was missed. Will we miss it again?




to join us for the official opening of Curtain Call, a new public art piece by artist Lilly Otasevic on the Carlisle Street facade of the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre in downtown St. Catharines.


opening reception for Compoudning Vision, a show by Toronto-based artist Charmaine Lurch who interrogates complex histories of humans and the environment. This exhibition presents the artist’s recent work exploring borders and boundaries, in painting, photography, sculpture and installation.




The Niagara Falls Night of Art is a free, family-friendly event that will include art installations, art exhibitions, live music, and hands-on interactive crafts and activities for all ages. With many local artists ranging in talents from music, photography, poetry and literature, to visual and avant-garde art, there is certainly something for everyone


(Sept. 19, 6-10pm)

SHIFT (BY LETOURNEAU ART) The goal of this project is to showcase to the community of Niagara Falls the integration of art forms: visual art, photography and dance; to showcase talent, determination and creativity. This show will be a zoom-in lens on how Letourneau Art appropriates the movements of dance she captures on the camera to the canvas.


(Sept. 26, 6-11pm)


This is the opening reception for Transformations, a show that investigates the positive and negative transitions and transformations that shape human beings and the world. EXHIBITING ARTISTS: Emily Andrews, Yvonne Benyo, Irma Bull, Danny Custodio, Renu D’Cunha, Sandy Fairbairn, Janny Fraser, Janet Ingrao, Arnold McBay, Colleen McTigue, Lauren Regier, Kaitlyn Roberts, Jon Shaw, Bruce Thompson, Kim Van Stygeren, Art Weaver & Jan Yates.



STRANGE HAPPENINGS & RARE FINDINGS Opening reception for Emily

Andrews' show, Strange Happenings & Rare Findings. A collection of surrealistic oil paintings that explore an alternate dimension through unlikely scenarios. LIVE MUSIC by: Rita Visser Music, Matthew James Blake, Joel van Vliet, Thunderclap & Electric Wildlife.


7-11pm) | 9



As the Summer of 2019 winds down, events like In The Soil are behind us but with September now here, the latest iteration of Culture Days is soon to begin, also offering several days of visual and cultural events and activities. Culture Days 2019 in St. Catharines offers a variety of events and activities for individuals of all ages. Your intrepid #artcriticfromhell tends to favour visual arts in his mad and frenetic 'guides', and there's several exhibitions that will be opening for the first time and others that, if you've not had the chance to visit yet, offer a prime opportunity to do so over the September 27-29 weekend. Now, some of these activities are open to all, and you can simply attend: others, however, require registration and are limited in space. Everything you need to know can be found at, and there is even a downloadable PDF that is a handy chart, divided by day so you can effectively plan your activities. Unsurprisingly, you'll find me at the opening reception for Transformations at City Hall (50 Church Street, 3rd floor), which is from 4 -6pm on Friday September 27: this group show 'investigates the positive and negative transitions and transformations that shape human beings and the world.' The annual juried exhibition of St. Catharines artists has some fine participants this year. This will be on display into 2020, but knowing several of the artists involved (Bruce Thomson, Jonathan Shaw, Emily Andrews – just to name a few) I'm keen to see how they interplay and interrelate. I'll be returning to City Hall to offer further thoughts and responses to this show, in a future issue of The Sound. But before I get into what are time dependant activities, consider that over the three days, several spaces are continuously open. Niagara Artist Centre (354 St. Paul Street, 12-5pm Friday, 12-4pm Saturday), The St. Catharines Museum and Welland Canals Centre (1932 Welland Canal Parkway, 9-5pm, Friday through Sunday) and the MIWSFPA's VISA Gallery (12-6pm, Friday through Sunday) are three notable ones. Rodman Hall Art Centre will also be open, and Carolyn Wren's retrospective Task At Hand has been extended into October, so you can experience that massive and intense series of installations. NAC has multiple visual offerings. In the main back space, is teiakwanahstahsontéhrha we extend the rafters by the multidisciplinary but very digitally savvy artist Skawennati: 'A futuristic saga set in 3025 yet firmly rooted in the ancestral Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) confederation story and featuring historical figures such as Tekanawí:ta, Jacques Cartier, and a president addicted to Twitter! This new machinima — an animation-style movie produced on the virtual reality platform Second Life created specifically for a youth audience.' The Plate Glass Gallery which is easily seen even when the gallery is closed will feature Magic Carpet by Diana Hosseini, and Emily Andrews (who has a fine work in Transformations) is on display in the Dennis Tourbin space at NAC. Near to NAC is the VISA space in the Walker: the official address is 15 Artists’ Common but if you walk to the front of the school, near the large sculptures in the grass, you'll find the main lobby and the VISA is in that space. Kira Pretty's exhibition Home, From Above, will be installed during Culture Days, and 'this solo exhibition is the culminating project for an independent study course, where Pretty is exploring a combination of photography and video work.' The St. Catharines Museum and Welland Canals Centre is further afield and is a more historic than artistic site, perhaps: permanent exhibits 'illustrating the history of St. Catharines and its people: The Welland Canals, Follow the North Star (the Underground Railroad), and the Ontario Lacrosse Hall of Fame & Museum. Temporary exhibits include: Outbreak: the Spanish Flu, Victorian Tweets, Blowing Our Own Horn: The Niagara Symphony Orchestra

10 | September 2019

at 71 and the Mack School of Nursing Alumni Photo Exhibit.' Their hours are longer, however, which gives you more options for fitting this into your weekend Culture Days plans. Speaking of location: there's several new venues this year, for Culture Days, in addition to the regular sites. Rodman Hall, of course, has numerous workshops happening, but before speaking of those, one that happens on the Friday evening is at the OddFellow's Temple on James Street in downtown STC. Although the Encaustic Painting & Collage Workshop (taught by Sandy Middleton, one of my favourite photographers – mmm, too specific a term, as she does wonderful images in wax and sometimes woven) happens on the hour, from 4-8pm (so five sessions, that evening), it requires pre registration. There are also activities taking place at the Pen Centre, a new space added to the Culture Days, and it has two workshops that caught my eye: an Expressive Painting Workshop (with the fine artist and educator — and dancer, ahem — Geoff Farnsworth) and Cell Phone Photo Art with Danny Custodio and Jessica Bishop-Custodio. Danny will also have work on display in Transformations at City Hall. This is a good spot to point out that St. Catharines Culture has a FB page, which more specific information both about the teachers and locations, and with updates so you can maximize your Culture Days experience: this can be found at @StCathCulture, and as sometimes times / events shift, is a valuable resource. Some sites are closer than others (as with City Hall, Rodman and VISA, for gallery-going): this also applies to workshops, so from 1:30-3:30pm on Saturday there's the Tree-Mendous Creative Collage Workshop with artist Dena Colling Gelentso at the Dr. Huq Library at the Kiwanis Aquatic Centre (425 Carlton). But to return to Rodman Hall, it is a cluster of activity: I'll only mention two things, among the tours (both of the exhibitions and the historic space) and how the Carousel Players will be on site (with The Drama Garden), too, which is the Photo Transfer Workshop, which happens both Saturday and Sunday, from 12:30-4:30pm. This is taught by David Figueroa. Simultaneously, Making A Monotype Hybrid (which is a printmaking method) is being facilitated by Meka Manfreda, also at Rodman Hall. All of these mentioned are drop-in for all ages, and very brief, so you can easily visit many of them during the day. That is by no means all that's happening on Saturday, but the online / downloadable schedule is a must-have, to plan accordingly. As usual, your intrepid #artcriticfromhell is offering a teaser. Returning to St. Paul, on Sunday afternoon there is a Pull a Print: Intro to Screen Printing Workshop, that's happening at the Niagara Artists Centre / Roly Poly Space, with Colleen McTigue (interestingly, there's a lot of fun printmaking / photography / collage focused workshops this year). This happens from noon to 5 PM, and is also a drop-in, all ages activity. The last event / activity / collaboration I want to mention is something that perhaps best exemplifies what Culture Days can be, at its best: this is a Community Collaborative Mural Making with Jana Simms-Bergsma, which runs from 10am-12pm, and is again all ages and a loose, come-and-go format. The blurb: 'Join in as you contribute to a collaborative mural as we also beautify this downtown location. Guided by a professional artist – we will take our inspiration from our beautiful garden city!' This site is the corner of St. Paul and Court Street, in Downtown St. Catharines. Some of the Culture Days 2019 highlights I've mentioned require pre registration, but many are open and easy and can be visited at your leisure. Again, I've only offered a taste, so visit them online or on FB, and plan ahead for the many interactive and interesting options available to you, in the 2019 incarnation of Culture Days.

Photos of past Culture Days events courtesy of Danny Custodio


Visual Art & Crafts

Location Rodman Hall Art Centre 109 St. Paul Cresc.

Oddfellows Temple, 36 James St. City Hall, 50 Church St., 3rd Floor St. Catharines Museum 1932 Welland Canal Pkwy. MIWSFPA, 15 Artists Common NAC, 354 St. Paul St. The Pen Centre, 221 Glendale Ave. Dr. Huq Library, 425 Carlton St. Downtown, at St. Paul & Court St. Start Me Up Niagara Work Action Centre 203 Church St. NAC Shop/Studio, 433A St. Paul St.

FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre 250 St. Paul St.



Friday, Sept. 27

10 am to 5 pm Art Exhibition on view


Saturday, Sept. 28 12:30 to 4:30 pm Photo Transfer Portraits 1 to 4 pm Carousel Players 12 to 5 pm Exhibition on view 2 pm Historic Tour 3 pm Exhibition Tour

Second Floor 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 pm* pre-register Exploring Encaustic Painting 4 to 6 pm Opening Reception Art Exhibition on view



Sunday, Sept. 29 12:30 to 4:30 pm Photo Transfer Portraits Create a Card Printmaking Mermaid Crowns 12 to 5 pm Exhibition on view 2 pm Historic Tour 3 pm Exhibition Tour Third Floor 12 to 4:30 pm Essential Collective Theatre

9 am to 5 pm | Museum Exhibits on view 1 to 5 pm | Art Exhibition on view 12 to 4 pm | Art Exhibitions on view 12 to 4 pm Cell Phone Photo Art Learn the Steel Drums Expressive Drawing 1:30 to 3:30 pm Tree-Mendous Collage 10 am to 12 pm Collaborative Mural

12 to 4 pm Collaborative Mural 12 to 5 pm Make a Fall Centrepiece 12:30, 1:45 & 3 pm* pre-register Intro to Lino Printmaking 12 to 5 pm Intro to Screen Printing 11 am to 4 pm, check online or print program for activity times Human “Bee-In”: Music Puppets & Performance Indigenous Storytelling Instrument Petting Zoo Foster Festival Readings Poetry @ PAC Improv Niagara Micro Poems & Zines Art Exhibit on view Film House Shorts Series Contact Improv Dance Twitches & Itches Theatre Niagara Society of Architects


Being invited into a space not built by you, or for you, offers the inherent need for trust and vulnerability. When audiences entered into the Come to the Edge Cafe on August 24/25 at the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre, audience members were transported to a land of imagination built by, and for, wheelchair users with Cerebral Palsy (CP). This evolving storyscape replaced the traditional confines of theatre with an unlimited creation of shape and space, prioritizing the communication options for performers and participants with CP. The team working on this production aimed to foster an empathetic and reflective space for participants to sit in a potential level of unknown, discomfort, and to ultimately trust that they could not necessarily know the answers to questions like ‘Where are we? What’s it like to not know exactly what’s happening around you? What’s it like when you have to re-evaluate the things that don’t exactly apply?’. Come to the Edge is a collaborative development of immersive theatre, creating a new understanding of performance through dance, play, and improvisation. The central performance elements built by and for the Imagining Possibilities Leadership Team, made up of

12 | September 2019

automatic and manual wheelchair users with CP. The group has been working with St. Catharines based creative collaborators from the March of Dimes Canada and the Brain Injury Community PET (Personal Effectiveness Training) Re-Entry Program to welcome audiences to trust in the idea that 'not knowing' is an opportunity for learning and empathy. The performances are supported by facilitators Jenny Jimenez and Stephen Sillett from Toronto-based organization, Aiding Dramatic Change in Development (ADCIC), as well as a much broader team of musicians, artists, and support workers. With a long-standing history in St. Catharines, the ADCIC has been working with the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine & Performing Arts (MIWSFPA) since 2016 with the first iteration of “Imagining Possibilities”, the precursor to Come to the Edge. As a facility that was built under the universal standards of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) for inclusive physically spaces, this began a longstanding partnership for reshaping how St. Catharines builds and understands performance theatre. David Vivian, a faculty member at the MIWSFPA and an ongoing collaborator with

ADCIC explained that "Inviting the lead artistic team to join us and local artists in our first spring season at the MIWSFPA theatre was one of the highlights of our inaugural year in 2015-16. Come to the Edge is a long term project that has continued to develop over the years and bring together artists in a number of Ontario communities”. The development of the show over the past several years has taken this community and discussions about it global with performances and workshops in Toronto, Belgium, Prague, Hamilton and St. Catharines. Connecting with the Imaging Possibilities Movement through the Engaging Possibilities Conference at Brock University in 2015, Kris Daunoravicius has been involved with the growth and evolution of this project ever since. A local to St. Catharines and core member of the Leadership Team, Daunoravicus travelled with the ADCIC team to Belgium in 2017 for a week of Envisioned Scenography workshops for the disabilityfocused Huize Eyckerheyde Residence. In speaking with Daunoravicus and Elaine Drover, another member of the Leadership Team, both utilized a range of augmented technology, body movement, facial expressions, and sound to

showcase the range of experiences and stories that were being brought into the creative process during the years of work it took to create the latest version of this production. In speaking with Come to the Edge performer and ADCIC collaborator, Frank Hull and longtime Leadership Team member Laura Leskur, they shared how the creation of this show was rooted in growing one another’s understandings of the other performers, and building a movement vocabulary unique to each performer and each moment of interaction. With a longterm career as a professional wheelchair dancer, Hull spoke to the multiple layers of relationality and equity between those involved in the show, “there has to be those moments where we are becoming equal together, regardless of how my ability may be different from Laura’s. But if we are moving together, we need to find a way to move together and not overpower one another”. As a verbal CP performer, he explained that “my world is very instant when I communicate. What I’m learning with this group is Im facing my own ableism. It got me thinking about how from my role I have not been patient enough, not just with this group”. He elaborated on his reflections of needing to be more cognisant of not finishing other people’s sentences, but instead, learned to give people time to communicate within their abilities in order to share and explain their perspectives on the situation. Utilizing her Bliss Board system, Leskur also elaborated on these points, highlighting the necessity for patience as to “not miss the magical moments” and the necessity of utilizing body movements and the range of abilities in each performers arms and legs to construct meaningful exchanges. In discussing the necessity of moving towards an inclusive way of facilitating theatre for the performers, Sillet explained that “we created the processes with the community of those who are nonverbal in mind. There’s a lot of routes we could take which would be much easier to get an impact in the short-term, but it wasn’t our aim to go there. Our aim was to try and work honouring the deep engagement. The idea of re-establishing the relationship between the audience, and what their journey is going to be, the community making it”. Hull asserted that his role in adding the movement and dance elements to the show has been “a dream come true to work with manual and power wheelchairs to create movement together,” emphasizing the liberation of spaces focused on the lived experiences of the team rather than a more traditional methodology of prioritizing the audience. In reflecting on his work with the Imagining Possibilities Movement, Vivian explained how “my specific interests in working with the company lie in aspects of accessibility, universal design and the development process of improvisational, immersive performance spaces under very specific conditions. It has been a very humbling learning experience that we will adapt for my university course development and professional practice”. Breaking from the expected traditions of theatre development, the broad range of creative in communities in St. Catharines can take the fundamental ideas of change to expand who is in the audience, who is on stage, and how can we expand the experiences and interactions between these world.

ever working on that show! One of the coolest things about it was meeting so many talented and inspiring people from Niagara and giving them a platform to showcase themselves. For myself included, LOQ acted as a launch pad to new exciting opportunities. It was tons of work to bring it all together, but the main thing I learned from it was that if the passion is behind the project, then that will shine through in the end result.

a show we can be proud of. It's silly, wacky, different and good clean fun!

This fall you’re also releasing a web series titled The Harder They Fall, how is that show different from Hilarity?

The Harder They Fall is a four part comedy series project I am working on with director Brad Murphy of Pacific Productions with assistance from the Niagara Falls Cultural Development Fund. It's definitely one of the most ambitious projects I've ever tackled and we've collaborated with so many awesome people to bring it to life. The series follows the trials and tribulations of a comedian trying to succeed while living in Niagara and all of the highs and lows along the way. Spoiler alert: It may contain one or two puns.

How did the opportunity to make this show come about? I had been in talks with


would like to hope that it would be. Although, the goals of these episodes are not to highlight myself, but rather the great local comics that we will be showcasing on our shows. They are the stars of each episode and we hope to introduce them to a whole new audience of people who will hopefully realize what great talent we have in Niagara and will come ANSFOR TRout and M support them at live comedy events across the region. If I can squeeze in a few puns here and there then that's a cheeky bonus!






Back to School

Your brand of humour / comedy is very punny – it’s fast, slightly observational and kind of absurd. Do you see this show as an opportunity to be more personal and an opportunity to connect more with your audience and community? I


For those who are unaware, you had a popular web series called Live on Queen with David Green. What was that experience like, and what did you take away from it? I had some of my funnest times

are similar in the fact that they feature and showcase great local talent with stand up comedy performances and sit down interviews on the famous orange couch courtesy of Band on a Couch. We are also creating sketches and videos for each episode which ANSFO have been a blast to TR work Ron! M One of the biggest differences is that we have a great hardworking team of professionals at YourTV who have helped create ON ATI

Backstreet could come back then why can't I?! The real catalyst though was our co-host and coproducer DJ Brooks. He had just completed his long term run hosting the 'Ice Dogs This Week' TV show for Cogeco and was looking to develop a new comedy themed show. Once he approached

me with the idea and we started clicking on fun things that we wanted to create then the wheels were in motion.


Hey David, glad to see you’re back in front of the camera again, what brought you back? Well I figured if



Your new show Hilarity in the Horseshoe premieres September 18 (9pm). What is the concept behind it, what can audiences expect from it, and how does it differ from Live on Queen? The concepts



Cogeco in the past about bringing our 'Live on Queen with David Green' web series to the channel and they had shown interest in it, but the programming season schedules did not align at that time. I then focused my efforts on creating a few short films and establishing the Garden City Comedy Festival but always in the back of my mind I knew I wanted to work with YourTV when the timing was right. In comedy, timing is everything, and fortunately that time is now!



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This October, one of Canada's most prolific bands head out on tour to celebrate the reissue of their fourth record, Navy Blues, which was released just over 20 years ago in 1998. We had the opportunity to chat with guitarist and singer Patrick Pentland about their upcoming tour and some of Pentland's memories of playing in the band.

To start, with your Navy Blues reissue tour coming up, what has it been like revisiting those songs from 20 or so years ago? It’s always interesting to go back and realize

that we might have been playing some of those songs from that record but we weren’t doing them as they were recorded. We have had to go back and realize that the songs have changed a little bit over the years. We’re also doing some songs that we’ve never really played before too. But, we’re doing the whole record and it has been fun to relearn these songs and realize that they sound pretty good, maybe even better now, than when they were previously released.

Looking back at 30 years of playing in the band, how were you all able to keep the original lineup together? That in itself is a gigantic feat, people grow up and move on but Sloan kept on going.

I always feel like we’re on the verge of that, but the stock answer we always give is that ‘everything always gets split evenly’, so no one person is making more money than anyone else, which is usually why bands break up. We’re at an age now where we’re not really able to do anything else or start over with a new career, so we just keep on going. We get along ok and its not just the four or five of us, there’s plenty of people around us to keep us busy too.

I grew up in the 90s when Can-rock was at it’s peak, what was it like being such a prominent part of that scene? We were

all in our mid 20s when things started taking off and we were very busy all the time because we weren't just touring Canada, but we were touring all over the world. There were a lot of bands that were becoming very popular in Canada that we didn’t want anything to do with, so we just kind of did our own thing.

14 | September 2019

Are there any particular records that stick out to you as some of your favorites?

I mean, I feel like this Navy Blues record was kind of when we finally decided to be comfortable and have fun and not worry about what other bands or critics were saying about us. We just embraced rocking out as opposed to worrying about being cool or hip. That record was a bit of a watershed moment because we just went off and did our own thing and didn’t worry about anyone else. It was quite successful too, and "Money City Maniacs" became a huge hit for us.

What would consider to be an iconic moment in Sloan’s career that you was a big turning point or a really big moment in your life? A big moment for a couple of us was when we were recording One Chord to Another and we had a horn player come in and lay down some horns on "Everything You’ve Done Wrong" and "Take the Bench". It was mind blowing how much the songs changed into something so different than anything we had ever done before. It was a really big moment just sitting in the control room just wondering what we had done. No one was doing anything like that, or at least no one that we knew. Bands were doing horns, just not in the Canadian music scene at that time.

What do you love about being in this band and where do you see it going in the future? We’ve just been doing this for so

long, but there’s also a certain type of freedom from being in a band. For instance, I'm at home talking to you, rather than being at work. With that comes other problems, but as far as the future of the band? I don’t know. We’re going to do this Navy Blues tour and then talk about whether or not we’re going to do another record. The last record we did was with Universal in Canada who we hadn’t worked with in a long time, so we might do another record with them. The thirtieth anniversary is coming up too, so we will have to do something big for that too. Sloan perform at the Partridge Hall at the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre on October 9.

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Pikutiskaau (Mother Earth) + Weengushk Film Institute Shorts




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USA, 104 m

Creat Pavar and g foota the w the m Acade Howa opera Pavar

“T b li s a b -

For over forty years, the Film Studies program at Brock University—one of the first programs of its kind in Canada—has kept film projector bulbs glowing brightly with BUFS, alternately the Brock University Film Society or Series.

We are pleased to welcome BUFS back to The Film House for Thursday night premieres of first-run features. As Scott Henderson of BUFS explains, “BUFS is a chance to talk film and keep the vibe of film culture alive in Niagara.” Look for a red ‘B’ marked on calendar Thursday nights indicating a BUFS-hosted screening. These nights will include occasional panel discussions, Q&As—and always—lively discussion about great films.

ONTARIO FILM AUTHORITY RATING General (suitable for all) Parental Guidance Advised NR Not Rated

FIRSTONTARIOPAC.CA Box Office: 905-688-0722 250 St. Paul St. / St. Catharines

Adult accompaniment 14Adult accompaniment 18Restricted to 18+

Wed 2 Sun 2


After he’s attacked on the street at night by a roving motorcycle gang, timid bookkeeper Casey (Jesse Eisenberg) joins a neighborhood karate studio to learn how to protect himself. Under the watchful eye of a charismatic instructor, Sensei (Alessandro Nivola), and hardcore brown belt Anna (Imogen Poots), Casey gains a newfound sense of confidence for the first time in his life. But when he attends Sensei’s mysterious night classes, he discovers a sinister world of fraternity, brutality, and hyper-masculinity, presenting a journey that places him squarely in the sights of his enigmatic new mentor.

From her childhood in the steel town of Lorain, Ohio to ‘70s-era book tours with Muhammad Ali, from the front lines with Angela Davis to her own riverfront writing room, Toni Morrison leads an assembly of her peers, critics, and colleagues on an exploration of race, America, history, and the human condition as seen through the prism of her own work. Inspired to write because no one took a “little black girl” seriously, Morrison reflects on her lifelong deconstruction of the master narrative.




USA, 2019. Directed by Riley Stearns. 104 min. 14A

USA, 2019. Directed by Timothy GreenfieldSanders 119 min. G




Sun 1 Sep 4PM / Wed 4 Sep 7PM Wed 11 Sep 7PM

“This documentary is an unabashed love letter to her life and work.” - Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-Times

Thu 12 Sep 7PM / Fri 13 Sep 9PM / Sat 14 Sep 9PM / Sun 15 Sep 7PM / Tue 17 Sep 7PM / Fri 20 Sep 6:30PM / Sat 21 Sep 4PM



Created from a combination of Luciano Pavarotti’s genre-redefining performances and granted access to never-before-seen footage, this film will give audiences around the world a stunningly intimate portrait of the most beloved opera singer of all time. Academy Award winning filmmaker Ron Howard examines the life and career of famed opera tenor Luciano Pavarotti. Featuring Pavarotti, Spike Lee, Stevie Wonder, and Bono.

In this funny, uplifting tale based on an actual lie, Chinese-born, US-raised Billi reluctantly returns to Changchun to find that, although the whole family knows their beloved matriarch, Nai-Nai, has been given mere weeks to live, everyone has decided not to tell Nai Nai herself. To assure her happiness, they gather under the joyful guise of an expedited wedding, uniting family members scattered among new homes abroad.

“This love letter dedicated to opera’s biggest rock star, the larger-thanlife Luciano Pavarotti, achieves something most documentaries about the deceased rarely do: It brings a man back to glorious life” - Steve Davis, Austin Chronicle

“This is a simple but genius film that sheds light on Chinese culture and philosophy while delivering a doozy of a paradigm shift.” - Tara McNamara, Common Sense Media

USA, 2018. Directed by Ron Howard. 104 min. PG

USA, 2019. Directed by Lulu Wang. 98 min. PG

Sat 14 Sep 6:30PM / Wed 18 Sep 7PM / Sat 21 Sep 9PM


Tue 6 Aug 7PM / Thu 8 Aug 7PM / Sat 10 Aug 6:30PM / Sun 11 Aug 7PM / Tue 13 Aug 7PM Wed 14 Aug 2:30PM / Fri 16 Aug 6:30PM


Republic of Macedonia, 2019. Directed by Tamara Kotevska, Ljubomir Stefanov. 87 min. G

USA, 2019. Directed by Joe Talbot. 120 min. PG

The last female beehunter in Europe must save the bees and return the natural balance in Honeyland, when a family of nomadic beekeepers invade her land and threaten her livelihood. This film is an exploration of an observational Indigenous visual narrative that deeply impacts our behavior towards natural resources and the human condition.

Jimmie Fails dreams of reclaiming the Victorian home his grandfather built in the heart of San Francisco. Joined on his quest by his best friend Mont, Jimmie searches for belonging in a rapidly changing city that seems to have left them behind. As he struggles to reconnect with his family and reconstruct the community he longs for, his hopes blind him to the reality of his situation.

‘While the characters and events are real, the artful design of this film and its allegorical resonances seem to put Honeyland in its own genre – that of a real-life fable.” - Liam Lacey, Original-Cin Wed 25 Sep 7PM / Sat 28 Sep 6:30PM Sun 29 Sep 4PM / Wed 2 Oct 7PM

“A witty and idiosyncratic takedown of machoism that doesn’t shy away from its uncomfortably terrifying aspects.” - Sandy Schaefer, Screen Rant

Thu 26 Sep 7PM / Fri 27 Sep 9PM / Sat 28 Sep 9PM / Tue 1 Oct 7PM / Fri 4 Oct 6:30PM Sat 5 Oct 4PM / Sun 6 Oct 4PM

“The Last Black Man in San Francisco is an indelibly beautiful story of love, family, and loss in America from two childhood friends turned filmmakers. “ - Manohla Dargis, The NYTimes

SOUND+VISION. We were like, wow, we’ve got a really bad case of being the new originals here, we need to change that up.

One of the key aspects of SONIC GLOW is that it offers a diverse and adventurous lineup that tries to appeal to many different demographics. What sort of planning goes into curating / organizing a festival like this? Were you forcing yourself to avoid ‘easy line-up solutions’? Can you tell us about how you came to choose these acts for this festival? Should audiences expect any surprises? NAC is fortunate in

Jennifer Castle highlights the list of artists performing at The SONIC GLOW.


Stemming from their popular Sound + Vision concert series, the Niagara Artists Centre (NAC) have revamped their progamming, offering a weekend of Sound + Vision events, titled The SONIC GLOW. From September 1922, over 25 performers — inlcuding the likes of Jennifer Castle, Fly Pan Am, Laurie Brown, The Gallery Players of Niagara, Wild Side & Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet — will be presented at four venues on the East end of St. Paul St. in St. Catharines, where they will be accompianied by moving images from a variety of artists. We caught up with Steve Remus, the Minister of Energy, Minds and Resources at the NAC to get the lowdown on The SONIC GLOW.

For those unfamiliar with The SONIC GLOW, can you explain the concept behind it? Pretty straightforward, really. We’re

putting musicians and sound artists together with visual artists and VJs to create single experiences for audiences. We’re exploring sound and the moving image. On first take this probably doesn’t seem that fresh, and we know that the merger’s nothing new. I mean Isaac Newton was making equations that linked music scales to colour back forever ago, so no secret that there’s a rich relationship there to explore. The history is deep, but things have been happening fast, especially with technology. When motion pictures come along, live music’s an integral part of that. Think 1920s, a guy at a piano with an arm garter and a cigarette looking up at a flickering image of Buster Keaton and pounding something out bringing that scene to life. When sound eventually becomes fully-embedded in movies, and then TV, strings, orchestras, Danny Elfman, ugh — a whole system of codes audiences can get cues from for suspense,

18 | September 2019

intimacy has been established — followed by the huge but brief music video phenomena, MJ’s Thriller, MTV, Much Music, that whole thing. The tech we have today continues to build on merging sound and visuals. I mean the DJ and VJ tools are now combined into the same devices. It just keeps going. SONIC GLOW hits on a bunch of different points in this space where artists making things to hear and artists making things to see get presented together. So we have a film from the silent era — Hitchcock’s The Lodger — with an improvised, contemporary score provided by members of the Gallery Players and we have VJs using digital technology to manipulate moving images in real time to bands of all kinds playing their stuff. We have this sound poet Kaie Kellough who needs to be experienced to be believed, backed with his own visuals, and there’s also some unusual bottom-feeder technologies in play – 35mm slides, 16mm films, things you don’t see anymore. The SONIC GLOW is about creating a small space where we can think about the relationship between sound and sight a little more attentively, a way to slow it down and soak it up. We also know that when you put great artists together, dynamic things happen, it’s a type of alchemy. We guarantee moments when things click in mysterious and epiphanic ways. None of this is packaged or polished, whatever magic happens, it’ll happen once and that’s that. You’re there to see it or maybe you’re not. It’ll never happen again.

a lot to do with changes in the way people are living their lives – that thing where you hole-up in your digs with your computer or phone or Netflix or whatever and pop out every once in a while for a jar of Nutella. That’s bad style. Getting out and being social is what makes the place you’re living in good. People have to talk to each other and they have to talk to people they don’t know or they just get weird and locked into crazy ways of thinking. Anyway, there’s that. It might also have something to do with a shift away from the idea of the festival itself. We experience a lot of ‘spectacle,’ even in our day-to-day. I think people are turning off that. It seems like a strange time to get messed up, lose your mind, and bounce a giant beach ball around with thousands of other freaks. I don’t know if you can know what’s in the news and be in that mood. We’re also not thinking of The SONIC GLOW as a festival. It’s just a concentrated program exploring this idea of sound and moving image together. Everything is on a small and intimate tip. And we’re trying to find new ways to bring joy — and things to think on — to audiences outside of the party chant atmosphere, a little clearing in the woods where our senses of hearing and sight can be pleased in the company of others. A beer, a glass of wine, a toke, sure, but slowed down and smartened up a bit.

With so many niche festivals disappearing, why did you decide to forego regularly scheduled programming for a more festival-type event? Whatever’s

discover after running with SOUND+VISION for a couple years — which we thought was a really tidy title — that there was another SOUND+VISION in Norwich, England. We probably would’ve let it ride but then we saw that it was presented by the Norwich Arts Council — so it was, NAC presents

going on in the festival marketplace is outside of NAC’s world, really. Though I’d guess it may have

Is there a story behind The SONIC GLOW name? Not really. I mean we did

that we’ve been around a longtime, put on some very bizarre shows like STRUTT and the Voix de Ville Extravagonzo, and we got to know a lot of great artists working in all kinds of disciplines. Our network is big but the artists who are in it are all down with what we do and where we’re coming from, so there’s a crew that’s ready to try things out and mess with expectations. As for ‘curating’ we try to leave that to people ordering sandwiches at Subway. NAC’s an Artist-run Centre so we’re always trying to put the artists in the lead. NAC created the platform, and then I’d say about half the line-up was determined by NAC member artists saying, "I’d like to do this", or "could we get this band or artist". It’s just about pulling it together. So Vicki Fagan connected us to Laurie Brown, who was part of a great conversational series that Henry of Pelham put on last winter. Laurie’s the former host of CBC’s The Signal, a cool-tipped coast-to-coast radio wind-down that was on for years. She’s got a brand new deal called, Pondercast. NAC’s roofdeck will host a live recording of an episode accompanied by music by Joe Lapinski and Alex Ring — on a theremin — and visuals by Adam CK Vollick who works with Neil Young and Daniel Lanois. We’ve also lined up Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet who’ve somehow come to have a soft spot for St. Catharines. It could be because they like cats and we’ve got some. For whatever reason, they’re kicking the thing off with the Co-Efficient of Drag, a local VJ collective. Suitcase in Point threw in some ideas too as they’re a big part of making it. Honestly, it’s probably a little harder to do it the way it’s happening, cobbling it all together, but it makes certain that there are more voices, more ideas, and lots of angles. As for surprises, I think that’s a given. Every performance is a mix of artists so the performers themselves aren’t exactly sure what’s going to happen. Surprises for everyone! The old Bits and Bites thing, every handful is a whole new ballgame.

Was there anybody that you wanted to book that you couldn’t? Oh yeh, of course.

Dion, Neal Peart would’ve been cool, Fontaines DC, Solange probably would have drawn. Thing is, NAC’s a tree-fort with a budget so money’s tigher than two sticks. Thankfully, the Ontario Arts Council invested in this, the PAC chipped in, and the Downtown Association did too so we can pay the artists guaranteed fees. We’ve made a very little go a long way. We’re pretty chuffed to have Jennifer Castle playing. If you missed her at Massey Hall, guess what? You get a chance to see her on NAC’s roofdeck with about sixty other people. It’ll be like she’s playing a show in your backyard.

Spaces are integral to the things that happen within them, how will the artists presented at the festival change the spaces that we’re normally accustomed to? The venues are all on the east end of St. Paul, from the PAC Film House down to Silver Spire. It’s the end of St. Paul that tends to see a little less action. The venues themselves are unusual. We have performances in the sanctuary in the Silver Spire Church, on NAC’s Thomas Craig Oliver Terrace, and at the Kwong Chow – a great old school Chinese-Canadian Restaurant. All of the venues have pretty extraordinary acoustics and the images that we’ll be projecting around the spaces will make some of them unrecognizable. I’m looking forward to shows at The Film House on Sunday, we think that whole space could be opened up for future performance events.

Co-creation and participation are always widely welcomed by audiences, will attendees of SONIC GLOW have the opportunity to create alongside the featured artists? There might be some of that, it’s really up to the

artists. I agree that these experiences are great, I’m thinking specifically of what Suitcase in Point does with its Rhizomes program at In the Soil. That’s an amazing thing, all interactive. SONIC GLOW is clearly angled differently. I wouldn’t say we’re pitching passive experiences but audiences will be able to enjoy the ride.

How would you describe the music scene here in St. Catharines / Niagara and how much of it gets featured in the programming? NAC has seen a lot of changes in the

music scene. And NAC’s been around for so long, fifty years when we roll into 2020, so there’s stuff you could fairly describe as history. The Evil, Ron Sexsmith, Kurt Swinghammer, Alexisonfire, Christine Bougie, those are just some of the bands and artists connected at one time or another to the scene at NAC. The larger scene ebbs and flows, for sure. I think the new venues in downtown the last few years have been really positive. The Performing Arts Centre, of course, and the Warehouse. Even Mahtay


Born out of a winter recording project in 2004, St. Catharines’ instrumental ‘collective’ The Northern Arm released a handful of field recordings in the 2000s before going on hiatus for a few years. “Around 2010, we kind of took a break as some members started having children and becoming busy with other things in life. But, basically, prior to this iteration of the band or group, we would just go and look for a quiet winter spots in Ontario, invite a bunch of freinds, bring some acoustic instruments and song ideas and just jam and build songs on the fly,” explained guitarist Anthony Perri. “We would take the recordings home, find the good tracks and just overdub things on top of those recordings, whether it was a fuzzed out guitar, a cello or some steel drums.”

Café, which is small but doing all kinds of stuff has a music program that contributes in real ways to the scene. You can get nostalgic about Jerry’s Alley, and I think we still need a place like that, but overall things have definitely improved. SONIC GLOW’s strong on the local, almost all the visual artists are Niagara based. Northern Arm is playing and I think almost every musician in St. Catharines is in that band — for sure every drummer — Wild Side, TZT, Miniscule and The Gallery Players are in it and they’re all real local. And, then there’s lots of Niagara connections as well, members of bands who have roots here. That’s always a priority, to make these things that are ours, but you also want that balance where great artists come from outside to inspire us. You need the mix.

To finish, what have been some of your personal favourite moments from the Sound + Vision Festival?

This whole thing started pretty small so there’s only two years and about a dozen performances we have to look back on. The Ferns put on a show on NAC’s roofdeck somewhere along the line and I think the opening act was quick — kind of hit it and quit it — and then the Ferns had like two hours for their set, so when they were done with their originals — great stuff — they’re like, uh, OK, what are some other songs we can play? Then they went through this catalogue of pop-rock covers that was completely unrelated except that they were all songs they dug. It was irreverent, weird, and wonderful, like some kind of James Last party record for the moment, off the cuff. Other than that, I remember Attic Daddy playing one time — a legendary Dain City rock-a-billy outfit that’s outlasted a lot of the vinyl siding in Niagara — and things went sideways. At one point a cymbal fell off the drum kit and actually sliced a mic cable and cut out a guitar. I remember everybody thinking that was like voodoo or something, like the show was hexed. I mean it’s still a highlight, the band just furrowed their brows a bit, shook their heads a sec, and kept on. Everybody had a good time. More information about The SONIC GLOW can be found at

The Northern Arm returned in the early 2010s as participants in the In The Soil Arts & Music Festival and continued to perform on a ‘project to project’ basis. With a constant revolving door of musicians joining the fold, Perri explained that no Northern Arm song has ever been performed the same, suggesting that “every song, every time, will be different. It all depends on who shows up.” Currently, the collective is comprised of guitarists Matt McPetrie and Anthony Perri, Mike Ramey, who performs guitars, samples and drones, violinist Alex Ring who also plays a theremin, drummers Ed Walmsley and Brian Foster, and Jesse Matthews and Rob Oliveira who both play bass and the drums, but on any given performance, some musicians may not attend, while others may show up. Perri explained, "there are other people who've been in the mix from time to time, but it's kind of tough to include everyone since we operate in such a transient way." This past July saw the release of The Northern Arm’s first studio recording, Mercury, a sprawling and ethereal 50 minute, 5-track instrumental album that was recorded with Joe Lapinski at the WOW! Recording Studio. “We just wanted to continue making music, because thats what we’ve always gravitated to,” said Perri. “It just became really hard to keep the field recording project going, so we had to reconfigure how we were going to organize the group. We just started jamming again in Matt’s basement, started looking for all the cool parts and kept molding these songs together that eventually became the basis for Mercury.” The Northern Arm host their LP Release show for Mercury with Fly Pan Am at the Niagara Artists Centre on September 22 as part of SONIC GLOW.

a series of sound + vision events THURS 19 SEPT

> 8PM = TCO ROOFTOP AT NAC Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet w/ visuals by Kasia Smuga


> 7PM = THE KWONG CHOW Kaie Kellough + TZT + Lillian Allen > 9PM = TCO ROOFTOP AT NAC Jennifer Castle w/ visuals by Permanent Vacation > 11PM = THE SILVER SPIRE CHURCH Culture Reject w/ visuals by Dylin North


> 7PM = SILVER SPIRE CHURCH Minuscule w/ visuals by Tracy Van Oosten > 8PM = TCO ROOFTOP AT NAC Juini Booth + Co. w/ visuals by Co-Efficient of Drag > 9:30PM = TCO ROOFTOP AT NAC Laurie Brown’s Pondercast w/ Joe Lapinski + Alex Ring + visuals by Adam CK Vollick


> 4PM = THE FILM HOUSE Mad Max: Fury Road w/ live + improvised sound by Wild Side > 7PM = THE FILM HOUSE The Lodger w/ live + improvised soundtrack by The Gallery Players of Niagara + introduction by Joan Nicks > 8:30PM = TCO ROOFTOP AT NAC Fly Pan Am + The Northern Arm


After spending their entire summer promoting their latest record on the road through Canada and the United States, the 14 piece Niagara/ Toronto based act My Son the Hurricane are ready to head home for the fall and perform

20 | September 2019

to their hometown crowd at this year’s Cicada Music and Arts Festival on October 5. Their record, Ride the Bullet, was recorded at Jukasa Media by engineers Darren Magierowski and Jill Zimmermann and was released in April 2019.

“One of the main reasons we wanted to work there was because they recorded the last July Talk album. I wouldn’t say we have a great deal of similarities between the two bands, but they have both male and female vocalists and we knew that they clearly understood the dynamic shift between the two,” said Emcee Jacob Bergsma. The collection of nine songs are their best and most varied to date, and a fantastic follow up to their breakthrough 2017 release Is This What You Want. The record is the first to feature vocalist Sylvie Kindree in its entirety since she joined the group in 2016, and her presence is in full force. Bergsma explained that the recording process for the album was overwhelming at points, trying to schedule the proper times and dates for the 14 piece band and the additional guests who performed strings, keys and additional vocals, but “it was really nice to see how it turned out”. “We really did have to plan this record out. One of the things that we had to deal with were the extreme degrees of cost savings that we had to take because we’re such a big band. In order for us to get into the studio we really had to make sure that we were ready before we got there and actually pressed record. Everything was strategized, thought out and performed.” The album showcases a different side of the band we hadn’t seen yet. The tone is serious, and “unlike some of our previous material, there isn’t a constant positive message (except on “Better Than You Got It”,” explained Bergsma. Other tracks like brass-laden “Mr. Holland’s Locust” show a

different, more aggressive side of the band and “Casserole” shows off Bergsma’s comedic chops and allowed him to be himself behind the mic. “I’m a fun loving guy, and that track is me being me. I do hold certain things in high regard, like technical merit when it comes to rapping and ability. Yes, I’m a rapper in a band, but we’re not that similar to what you’d hear in a rap song. To me, casserole is a fucking rap song, and if I was to try and puff up my rap feathers, it would be with this song, right here," said Bergsma. "And, Sylvie did such an excellent job on that song too. In retrospect, you know whats cool? Sylvie and I didn't have many conversations about where verses were going to be, we just had the chorus and just rolled it. It's really on point, and it was a great example of us having a certain kind of synergy without really even discussing anything. It's pretty cool when you get to that point with people." My Son the Hurricane’s live show has just been getting better and better over the years, and unfortunately slightly overlooked their recorded output. With Ride the Bullet, the band now has an album that matches the energy and intensity of their fantastic live show. If you haven't listened to the record, now's the time. If you haven't seen them live yet, here's your chance. My Son the Hurricane perform at Cicada Music and Arts Festival on October 5 at Henley Island.

inspiration came from the Daniel Johnston song, “True Love Will Find You in the End” and I kind of wrote the album for my son and it’s about my experience of entering motherhood. I think it’s a really beautiful piece of work. I’m really proud of it. It was written during a time when I was kind of waiting to see if I was pregnant or not. Then I found out that I was, and I was very tired while I was writing it, as it was my first trimester, so I just wanted to get these songs done and recorded.

You’re quite prolific in that you’ve released an album almost every two years (10 in 14 years). Do you feel the need to keep creating and releasing records to keep your momentum as an artist moving along? Or does it just happen naturally? It’s a bit of both. I do


This past April, Halifax musician Jenn Grant was scheduled to appear at the Warehouse for an intimate concert, but unfortunately had to cancel her performance. Grant released her first EP, Jenn Grant and Goodbye Twentieth Century in 2005, and has followed it up with another nine LPs since. She has been shortlisted for both Junos and the Polaris Prize, and her most recent record, released in May 2019, Love, Inevitable, is a beautiful and exploratory


Professional shit-disturber Michael Moore arrives in Niagara Falls for what’s being billed as “An Interactive Evening.” The discussion will be moderated by Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy. Could be a cute night out filled with loud clapping and countless “OH MY god – he’s so right (so right)!” for liberal thinkers, and Scheer torture if you voted for Doug Ford. According to the Facebook event, “the interactive appearance will include Moore’s trademark political commentary, a moderated discussion, and audience Q&A. The highlight of the show is a monologue reflecting on the Trump administration initially featured in his Broadway show, The Terms of My Surrender.” During one segment of Moore’s Broadway show he plays host of a made-up show called “Stump the Canadian” which seeks to prove that the even the dumbest Canadian in the audience is smarter than the smartest American in the room. Not sure if that’s clever or obvious. Either way, if the last Moore film you saw was Roger & Me, you’re still probably going to want to jump on this opportunity to hear Moore speak or ask him about his favourite baseball cap. Saturday, Sept 28 at the Scotiabank Convention Centre.

look at motherhood through her lens. We had the opportunity to talk with her back in April, and while much of our discussion was time specific, we were able to salvage a few snippets from the interview.

Would you be able to explain to me the concepts and processes behind your new record, Love, Inevitable? Well, the title Extinction Rebellion Niagara (XRN) is hosting a climate justice challenge for all St. Catharines Federal election candidates. All are welcome to attend. “The climate crisis is such a massive issue that it can make us feel powerless,” said XRN member Kostyn Petrunick, one of the event’s organizers. “With this event, we hope to empower people to get involved in democracy and to challenge their representatives to take action.” At the time of writing this column, the Amazon rainforest is on fire, still. A fire that was encouraged by the far-right Brazilian administration. A fire that could lead to irreversible collapse. “This collapse would threaten millions of species, from every branch of the tree of life, each of them — its idiosyncratic splendor, its subjective animal perception of the world — irretrievable once it’s gone,” writes The Atlantic’s Peter Brannen. While the answer isn’t clear or easy, voting with your brain is. I fear a capitalist future that gives up on the environment all while making a buck. I’m not a very political person, but I know these two things to be true: 1. Climate-change deniers exist and probably want you to vote for them. 2. Money won’t fix the mess we’re in. Have your voice heard and see what the candidates have to say about Niagara’s environmental future. Wednesday, Sept 4 at 7pm at the Silver Spire Church at 366 St. Paul Street in downtown St. Catharines. The winner of the 2018 Polaris Music Prize returns to downtown St. Catharines for a solo debut at the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre. Jeremy Dutcher performed last year as part of A Tribe Called Red, and pleased the crowd with just

feel like as a human being I need to create art and release things in order to feel fulfilled as a person. So, in that sense, that’s why I’ve put out so many records. With Paradise (2017), there was some encouragement for me to make a record. With this record, there wasn’t that guidance and I was exhausted during that time and I was really worried about what I would create. In the end, this is a very special record. So, whichever way you look at it, art was created and now I just have to follow up the album with the rest of the work that comes along with releasing one. Jenn Grant performs at the Warehouse on September 19 with Ken Yates. a couple spine-chilling originals. Ever since, I’ve been anxiously awaiting an entire performance of Dutcher's originals. Dutcher is a classically trained operatic tenor who is at the forefront of an Indigenous musical renaissance in Canada. Thankfully live music doesn’t share the foibles of online review culture like restaurants, nail salons and pizza joints. If that was the case, Dutcher would probably average 4.6 stars and have reviews that said things like “<3” or “Didn’t get it – but loved it.” or ”Spectacular show, but parking was so far away, 1 star.” Dutcher’s debut Wolastoqiyik Lintuwakonawa isn’t easy to pin down. On paper the album is a postclassical rearrangement of traditional music from Tobique First Nation in New Brunswick. These early songs are over 100 years old and come from wax cylinders recordings that Dutcher spent countless hours transcribing and arranging to form brand-new songs that still sound just a tiny bit haunted. “If the younger generation doesn't start to reclaim and revitalize our language, we're going to lose it forever. When I came into a better understanding of my language, I started to understand my place in the world a little bit better and started to relate the world around me differently,” said Dutcher to CBC in 2018. Writing and re-arranging these songs weren’t just a means of creating art, but also a way for Dutcher to connect with his ancestors, his past and future. While the songs are sung in Wolastoq, a language only spoken by approximately 100 people, the music tells an overwhelmingly beautiful story and the narrative breathes through the albums’ 11 tracks. You can’t miss this show! Thursday October 3 at FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre. — Jordy Yack


These past few months saw the release of a couple stellar tracks and albums by some local artists. Make sure you hop on your phone or computer and check them out.

BLUE “ONLY ATTITUDE” Ross Miller's raw punk rock side project sees a tape release this September. Check it out on Blacktop Records.

J.R. “PAL”

Late July we were treated to the second single released by J.R., showcasing her flair for writing catchy indie tunes. Check out the video.


St. Catharines roots musician and bandleader of Fat Moth, released a 12 song LP this past August, listen to it on Spotify/Bandcamp.


The Sound's favourite kitten makes an appearance in Mel's musical acknowledgement of the passing of time.


RTR show off their versatility with their latest, straying away from the loud rock 'n' roll bangers we're all used to hearing from them.


Sinner released two brutal and intense songs in August. Haven't seen Sinner yet? This video gives you a good idea of what to expect.


Niagara's favourite bearded troubadour released the first single from his upcoming children's album. Catch him at Cicada in early October.


The first single from this band did not disappoint. We're pretty sure that they're holding on to a record that we're all excited to hear. | 21




best Blues in Niagara, the Duck Squad will return to their new home at Jo Blo’s Rock & Wok. What makes this series truly spectacular, is the stellar lineup of specials guests each week. From David Vest, Lance Anderson, Chuck Jackson, Pat Carey and Jerome Godboo to name a few—Saturday matinees with the MDBB! Sunday funday never looked better. What a way to end the weekend, than a Sunday residency from LMT Connection — The best of Funk & Soul is coming to Jo Blo’s from 4-8pm. Playing together for 30 years, over 6,500 shows all over Europe and China, and a 16-year gig at the famous Orbit Room in Toronto. True masters of their craft, LMT are sure to pack the house each Sunday. On alternate Sundays, we will welcome Old Plank Road. No stranger to the Rock & Wok’s stage, these guys always bring electric energy to their sets, and musical variety to their ensemble—showcasing the fiddle, mandolin, saxophone and harmonica. An unprecedented lineup of live entertainment is upon us at Jo Blo’s Rock & Wok. We can’t wait to share those smiles, memories, and great times together Jo’s NATIONNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!! See you soon friends!



155 St. Paul Crescent St. Catharines | 905-652-8280

Niagara’s House of Fun

The Mighty Duck Blues Band (SAT. 2:30-6:30pm)

Live Entertainment Thursday - Sunday Pub Fare | Asian Cuisine | Daily Specials

Mingle With Us On Social Media @jbsrockandwok

It’s been said that the average human being smiles roughly 7,000 times a year. The Jo Blo’s family strives each and every day to be part of as many of those smiles as possible. Since our grand reopening, it’s been our goal to transform the now Jo Blo’s Rock & Wok into the very best venue for live entertainment and amazing times. As such, we are thrilled to present an incredible fall-winter lineup.

As has been a year of firsts for Jo Blo’s, Ladies’ Night hosted by Maureen Brown will debut August 29, and will grace the stage every Thursday from 7-11pm. Maureen will be accompanied by two players, and will present an evening filled with dancing, singing and guaranteed fun. Classicallytrained in drums and percussion, a 4-time “Canadian Blues Drummer” award-recipient, join Maureen each week for an evening of musicianship, showcasing some of the best female talents. On Fridays, we continue to host a wide range of rock bands, playing originals and best hits from then and now. #FridayNightsRock is a great way to kickoff the weekend, and an easy evening out, as shows end at midnight. Our hearts filled with excitement, we are beyond stoked to welcome back our house band, The Mighty Duck Blues Band. Gary Kendall, Jim Casson, Dave Curry, and Canada Dave (Dave Torosian) return to the stage every Saturday at 2:30pm. With over a decade delivering the very

Upcoming Events: Sept. 5 – Ladies Night w/Maureen Brown feat. Silvia Di Donato & Rusty McCarthy Sept. 6 – On Tap Sept. 12 – Ladies Night w/Maureen Brown feat. Marty Allen & Riley Himmrich Sept. 13 – Clockwork Sept. 15 – LMT Connection Sept. 19 – Ladies Night w/Maureen Brown feat Rick Gratton & David Johannesson Sept. 20 – Vinyl Flux Sept. 21 – The Mighty Duck Blues Band Fall Kickoff Party w/Chuck Jackson & Pat Carey Sept. 22 – Old Plank Road Sept. 26 – Ladies Night w/Maureen Brown feat. Angie Grant & Wayne DeAdder Sept. 27 – Velvet Crush Sept. 28 – The Mighty Duck Blues Band w/Joel Johnson & Jim Gay Sept. 29 – LMT Connection


Dwayne Gretzky’s adventure to becoming one of Canada’s most celebrated party/cover bands, started in the same way most bands began their stories too – haphazardly in the basement. “We just had this jam space in the basement of the apartment that we shared with other people who lived there. We’d go watch Leafs games down there and we would just jam. Dwayne

Gretzky was formed without ever thinking that we’d play a show, we just had been jamming for three or four years learning songs. We didn’t even have a name for our first gig, until Nick [Rose] told the audience that we were called Dwayne Gretzky. I remember thinking, ‘Oh, that’s a pretty good name, I guess we’re a band now,” explained frontman Tyler Kyte.

It all started as just friends having fun in the basement, and then the professional band, Sweet Thing, that Ktye and Rose were apart of, fizzled out and broke up. The two were able to quickly shift their efforts to Dwayne Gretzky, play some gigs and start growing the band. Fast forward a couple of years, and now, with over 600 songs under their belts and 10 members in the band, Dwayne Gretzky has morphed into something much bigger than they had ever expected. They even have a freshly released debut covers album that came out this past August. “The whole point of the album to begin with was that we had gigged so much, and played so many live shows, and because we’re a cover band, we never had the opportunity to go into the studio. We had always thought of what we would do if we could go into the studio and eventually we just decided to take some of our favourite songs and try different things with them,” said Kyte. Recorded at The Bath House in Kingston, ON, and self-produced by the band, the Self Titled release was created over a span of two years, in which the band would return to the studio to work on a couple songs at each session, because “organizing all these people can be a full time job in itself.” On their record you can hear their takes on the Abba tune “S.O.S.”, Queen of the Stone Age’s “Make It Wit Chu”, or The Beach Boy’s “Don’t Worry Baby.” The album consists of a combination of both experimental reimaginings, and faithful note-for-note versions.

“I think one of the things that makes everything so much fun is that we are able to celebrate these songs and do something different with them, but we can also do interpretations where we lift each note for note too,” explained Kyte. One of the reasons Dwayne Gretzky has been able to continue to grow while establishing themselves, is due to the fact that there are no egos within the band. Well, that and a killer live show. Kyte suggested that it’s much different for their group, because they’re not trying to sell their music. They’re trying to sell a certain type of nostalgia, or an experience. “No matter how much you try and keep your ego in check in an original band, things will always come up because your ideas are coming forward and you’re constantly having to put yourself out there,” said Ktye. “We’re just learning other people’s music. I have so much respect for bands playing original music, because I know that feeling of writing a song and watching people respond to it. It’s the ultimate compliment. There’s a lot of great music out there, but sometimes people want to go for a night of entertainment. It’s become a lot about the curation and about what songs you’re playing, and we keep challenging ourselves to learn songs that are bigger and better.” Dwayne Gretzky perform at the Niagara Wine Festival in Montebello Park on Friday September 20, and at Taps Brewhouse as part of the No One Goes Hungry Benefit show on September 22.

groups to put pressure in the Brazilian government to preserve the rainforest. Or volunteer or donate locally, to The Bruce Trail Conservancy or the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, who work locally to preserve out natural reserves. These groups are doing so much for our planet, and anything you can do to help them would be much more real than a thought or a prayer On a side note, I am not knocking the power of spirituality, but simply saying we need something more tangible right now.


you plant in the ground outside will contribute to providing the earth with oxygen and pulling CO2 out of the air. Already have a garden? Go the extra mile... think about a living roof. Stop using pesticides or herbicides. Buy organic seeds to plant. Save your seeds from your plants to grow next year. Build a bee hotel. Do whatever you can to promote a greener world will encourage the longevity of our ecosystem.

VOTE FOR THE GREEN PARTY: You may think it’s a wasted vote, but imagine if Elizabeth May had any say it what happens with Canada’s environmental policy? Her plan, titled Mission: Possible, wants to ensure renewable energy can be transferred from one province to another, reuse old buildings instead of building new ones (genius), end imports of foreign oil, and prioritize adaptation to help our industries and help our industries protect our natural resources. That sounds pretty awesome if you ask me.

THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS DON'T PUT OUT FIRES BY KATE NOTWELL CNP | @holistikate WARNING: This is going to be a rant. With swearing. And ranting. Because I am uber angry about the current state of our dear planet, and our political leaders that don’t give a rats ass about it. Unless you live under a rock, or are actually dead, you by now have heard about the horrible wildfires ravaging the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, Bolivia, and Peru. There are some reports that the fires are moving as fast as three football fields per minute... per fucking minute. That’s a big problem, because the Amazon rainforest, known as the lungs of our planet, provides the earth with 20% of our oxygen. Not only that, but the diverse ecosystem that is Amazonia also absorbs around 25% of the carbon dioxide produced each year by burning fossil fuels. Now scientists report that due to the weathering of the rainforest that number is no longer quite as high, but still, the numbers are significant, and we need that shit to help with the survival of our planet. Did you know that the humans who live in Brazil are struggling to breath because of the smoke? Then there are world leaders like Jair Bolsonaro, president of Brazil and quite frankly possibly the biggest douchebag our planet has ever seen. And that’s saying a lot #becauseTrump. Bolsonaro has been accused of turning a blind eye to cattle farmers who are allegedly starting these fires to clear cut brush for them to farm. This may sound

24 | September 2019

crazy because of the proven scientific importance of the Amazon, but who doesn’t want more money, right? Well I guess wrong because the idiot turned down $22 million dollars in aid for fighting the fires pledged by the G7 group of countries. Like legit turned it down. And now Bolsonaro is saying that he’ll accept the funds if French president Emmanuel Macron apologizes for calling him a liar... after he called Macron’s wife ugly or some bullshit. Yes, this is actually happening on the political world stage. I’d love to give both these idiots soothers and wrap them in baby blankets and rock them to sleep so the rest of the mature human race can make environmental decisions without them. And speaking of Trump, the outspoken and quite obviously mentally unstable leader of our neighbours to the south... did you know that he completely missed the G7 meeting on climate change? Like didn’t even show up. He claimed he thought it was later, but really? I am pretty sure the last time the president of the United States’ schedule got screwed up by someone was, well, never. Not to mention that he doesn’t believe that climate change is real. He thinks it’s a hoax invented by China. In fact, a NY Times analysis based on research from Harvard and Columbia low has identified 83 environmental rollbacks since the Trump administration started ruining the world. Every time he speaks I can’t help but picture and hear Ralph Wiggam... or is it just me? “My cats breath smells like cat food...” am I right?

And the Amazon is not the only thing on fire. There are currently three fires burning in Algonquin park. And there are fires burning in Alberta. Alberta. The province that hates Trudeau and his carbon tax but wonders why their houses keep burning down. And yes, Trudeau’s carbon tax should hit big corporations more, that’s true, but it doesn’t mean that a higher carbon tax on us is a bad thing... it will force us to make better fuel-burning decisions. And a Nobel-prize winning economist has proved that carbon taxes work, so sorry Dougie Ford but I’ll take that over your Grade 10 education any day. Oh, and thank you Doug for trying to push for building on the Greenbelt, which is only slightly bigger than your belt but much more vital to the planet. So let’s be brutally honest; your thoughts and prayers aren’t going to do shit to help put out fires, curb climate change/global warming, improve the state of our political reality, or get me a pet unicorn that can shit rainbows. Here’s what you can do that will actually help the only home we have:

DONATE TO OR VOLUNTEER: for The Rainforest Alliance. Not only did they donate 100% of their donations in August to frontline — like actually on the ground where the actual fires actually are — groups in the Brazilian Amazon, they are also working with their partners including farmers, governments, scientists and Indigenous

GO VEGAN... JUST KIDDING!:The most ridiculous claim on the planet is that by going vegan you can help stop climate change. And while statistically speaking you can see where this argument comes from, it just doesn’t make sense. For example, up to 70% of the earth’s forests have been clear cut for cattle ranching, animal farming and their feed. So, does that mean that if I am buying beef from a small local farmer I am contributing to global warming? Actually, it’s quite the opposite; small farms, especially organic ones, are committed to taking care of the land and their animals, and actually help contribute to our natural ecosystem. Do you think your veganism is helping our earth? Well if your diet consists of a lot of soy and corn products then I assure you that you are sadly mistaken. Because monocrops like corn and soy are the most heavily herbicide and pesticide sprayed crops on earth, and are single-handedly destroying the populations of pollinators like bees and butterflies, which if extinct could be the end of all naturally existing plant life as we know it. Ah the irony. What you can do is buy local, buy organic, and stick to small farms run by farmers who care. Whether you’re vegan or carnivore, just give a shit where your food comes from. period. The real issue is buying anything that supports conventional (think mass) farming. Just don’t do it. Rant over. But seriously, the planet needs our help, and many scientists believe we are scary close to a tipping point after which we will essentially be too late to save Mother Earth. And while we all have our own causes to fight for and have our own shit going on and don’t have enough time or enough money etc etc, none of that will matter if we don’t exist.


These days the current climate towards the trans community can be hostile and dangerous; with trans folks experiencing much higher rates of violence and murders than cis-folks. Because of this difficult climate, I thought it would be informative and extremely important to speak to some of our local trans individuals and hear what they have to say. We will be using some terms in this article that you may not understand, so I want to give you some definitions: • TRANSGENDER Transgender people have a gender identity or gender expression that differs from their assigned sex at birth. • MISGENDERING Is the act of labelling others with a gender that does not match their gender identity. • NON-BINARY Is a spectrum of gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or exclusively feminine‍—‌identities that are outside the gender binary. • CISGENDER (Sometimes cissexual, often abbreviated to simply cis) is a term for people whose gender identity matches the sex that they were assigned at birth. Now that I have you up-to-date with the definitions, I look forward to sharing with you these astounding interviews. After reading these two interviews I was blown away by what these two have gone through during their journey to becoming their true selves. As they answer each question, please keep an open mind and try to let their words resonate with you. I found what they shared to be quite essential in grasping what it's like to be a trans or non binary person. I believe knowledge is power and if we can bring a better understanding to people about the trans community we can break down some barriers and stigmas that they have been burdened with. I know many of you may not know what trans people go through in this world or what is happening to them around the globe. I hope by sharing with you the lives of your neighbours, I can convince you that all humans deserve to be treated as equals.

THE INTERVIEWS What is it like to be misgendered? Does it matter if it is on accident or on purpose? How does the intent of the person who misgenders you matter, if at all? Being misgendered doesn’t ever feel GOOD, and always feels dysphoric, but there is a huge difference between being accidentally misgendered and purposely misgendered. Being misgendered feels weird and wrong – imagine if someone called you by a name that wasn’t yours and acted as if you should respond. You would probably be confused, and likely say something like, “Actually, my name is ____,” but if the person didn’t know you, then you wouldn’t be hurt or angered by their calling you the wrong name. But what if people insisted on calling you by that other name, even after you corrected them several times, and explained your feelings? You’d probably begin to feel weirded out, frustrated, and disrespected. This is what it feels like to be purposely misgendered.

Being misgendered always feels like a bit of a slap. Whether someone accidentally hits you in the face or intentionally punches you, it’s still going to hurt, right? It’s easier to move on from the moment when you can identify that the intention behind it was not malicious. Misgendering becomes abuse when you are conscious of the pronouns someone uses but still insist upon using other pronouns. When you refuse to use the pronouns someone has stated they use, you are basically telling that person that you do not respect them, or consider their validity. As a trans non-binary person, I understand that things I consider to be social norms (asking a person’s pronouns upon making their acquaintance, for example) are not practiced, nor even known about, by most people who live inside mainstream culture. I think that a common misconception amongst a lot of cishet folks is that trans people will hate you if you accidentally misgender them. This really isn’t the case. We understand that sometimes, you might slip up and use the wrong pronoun in reference to us, especially if you’ve been calling us by different pronouns for most of our lives; in fact, we expect this. If you do misgender someone, just quickly correct yourself and work to get it right next time. it starts to feel like intentional harm if you continuously refer to them by different pronouns. It takes away a person’s ability to feel safe and respected. — BRETON LALAMA Non-Binary Being misgendered hurts, no matter the intent. However the intensity of the pain and range of emotions experience, does relate to the intent of the person. Also the meaning the person holds that does the misgendering, shapes the experience. Some of my friends and family members that are supportive, went through a grieving process. The physical female they knew all those years does not exist anymore. This led them to sometimes unintentionally misgender me. I had patience and allowed the process to take place. When I am misgendered on purpose, I feel degraded and invalid. I feel misunderstood and powerless. When I am misgendered on purpose, it comes from pure bigotry or the refusal to accept who I am. I learned quickly to define people's intent, listen to their opinion and determine if it's worth addressing. I learned that a lot of people that misgender me constantly, have no value and their acceptance is not required. It is important to be aware that it is absolutely unacceptable to missgender a transgender person or use their dead name in public. It is dangerous, rude and extremely disrespectful. — BLAKE SMITH Trans male

What is it like using public washrooms or change rooms as a transperson? Myself

being non-binary means that I don’t identify with being solely male or solely female; I feel like I am somewhere in the middle of that, a third gender. The bathroom I use is definitely decided by how I feel I am presenting. If I’m not wearing a binder, I’m not going to go into the men’s bathroom – not because I don’t feel male, but because I am very conscious of making other people feel uncomfortable. Likewise, if I’m “passing” as male, I’m not going to go into

the women’s bathroom because that makes women uncomfortable. I probably split between men and women’s pretty equally, which is a good summary of how I present, too. That being said, I definitely receive a lot more judgement when I use the men’s bathroom. Even when I feel super masc and am sure I’m at least sort of passing for male, men will have something to say about me in “their” bathroom. I’ve been laughed at, jeered at, stared at... but the thing is, that when I’m presenting that masc and I go into the female bathroom, women also stare and become nervous and uneasy. It’s a tricky thing, because you end up feeling like you can’t win, so I just try to use the bathroom that it’s going to make me feel the most comfortable to use, and be conscious of others’ comfortability but not at the expense of my own safety and comfort. This is why, when there is a gender neutral bathroom, I am so excited and immediately at ease! — BRETON LALAMA When I first transitioned, I was terrified when using public washrooms. I still have some fear around using public washrooms and change rooms today. I do feel the fear and anxiety I have will not disappear. Definitely not in the near future. I have experienced some very awkward moments, in both public washrooms and change rooms. I was in three very dangerous situations in public washrooms while by myself. I do not see how I am something to fear in public washrooms. I've had men make comments in regards to how I use a stall on numerous times. I have been stared at head-to-toe when washing my hands or waiting in line. My worst bathroom experiences have been at events with high alcohol intake. Depending on where I am I avoid public washrooms as best as possible. I have been out with female friends before and they empty and block off the women's room so I could finally go. That's in the extreme events when it's unsafe or the men's stall is unusable. I have brought friends in with me to stand outside of a stall to protect me. They were absolutely needed if the stall had no lock or was too visible in a busy venue. During the first year of my transition I stuck to the wheelchair washroom at my local gym. I was welcome to use the mens room, however it was unsafe due to the set up. Some change rooms do not have a private area to change. Some do not have proper curtains on the showers. I always do a walk through of the change room first to view if it is safe for me. Since I had top surgery I am comfortable using change rooms on my own. I do my best to hide my top surgery scars to avoid conversation about them. I am not a fan of public swimming pool change rooms and avoid them. I have never had issues with change rooms at stores. — BLAKE SMITH

How does transphobia and violence in the trans community, locally and nationally, shape your experiences and politics? Oof. That’s a big question. There is so much grossness in the world. That’s the best way I can think to concisely articulate what I mean.

International trans violence is just as concerning and painful as local trans violence, and often more cause for distress and concern – here in Toronto, we’re so very lucky to have the community that we have. We have a built in support system, so that when trans violence does happen there is a whole army of love that fights it back. Something you hear a lot is that trans violence isn’t as “important” of an issue as, say, starvation, because it’s not as basic of a need. I understand what people are getting at when they say this, but I actually believe that all inequality has overlaps. First world modern corporate capitalism perpetuates a culture that tells you you must be wealthy to succeed but makes it essentially impossible to get there. This culture breeds desperation and mental isolation as people feel like competitors rather than fellow human beings. This is obviously a watered down and summarized version of a very complex and age old issue, but I think this mindset is the roots of all kinds of violence and inequality, because life is hard, and people need someone to be angry at. Trans people are an easy target, because we look visibly different, and that can feel like a huge threat to someone who is working their ass off to “succeed” within the barriers of what society tells them is desirable. One way I feel like I can help make a difference is to support and actively participate in movements that promote equality in general. Trans violence is just one of many incarnations of hate. I think that by focusing on equality and visibility of all people as a general thing, we simultaneously fight against trans violence. This is why I always opt to vote for a party whose platform is less about profit, and more about people. — BRETON LALAMA Cissexism is real and currently a major concern. Every act of violence around the world fuels the systemic prejudice of transgender identifying individuals, causing discrimination. This takes away our equality and equality our rights as a human being. Too often I am reading articles online from around the world regards transgender people being murdered. Most of the victims are trans women and POC. I read articles pertaining to transphobia in the US daily. It is never ending the extent of transphobia going on in the world. Many basic human rights are not being met. People are sheep and it does concern me here in Niagara. Pride colours and the rainbow flag seem to upset Niagara on its own. Allies are our voice when we can not get the task done alone. An ally is always a voice for the community and never against. This applies to politics as well! Because of the current political events in Canada and locally, I have the fire in be active again as an advocate. I refuse to be invisible as a transgender individual. We have worth and belong in Niagara. We belong period. We deserve to peacefully live as our true authentic self. — BLAKE SMITH I would like to thank both Breton and Blake for helping us comprehend what it's like to be a trans person and helping us to better understand things that we take for granted. Until next time readers, keep an open mind.

mental stuff. Get into your body and you will be just fine.

Aries. What would it look like to become more discerning? Your world has become too full. Usually this wouldn’t bother you because you just fly right over top of it. But for some reason you have come closer to the ground and are bumping into things. People, ideas, habits, patterns of thought. Like a game of pinball. Clear the game. Pull up your socks. Put on those penny loafers and get to work. You will find discipline you didn’t know you had. A whole reserve. It is inside of you and right now it is essential that you put it to use. It is a process of purification. Start with your daily rituals... life is just a series of moments. Make sure you are using them wisely. Taurus. Something is happening to you. Can you feel it? If not, feel a little more. Get real quiet. It is there just under the surface, waiting for your recognition. Wake up to it. It is your big audacious dream. Or at least the seed of it. It’s taking root. Little tiny fingers reaching down into the soil. It wants your care and attention. It’s pretty simple. Do what feels really good. Heart stuff. Pure joy. It is the fertilizer for your dreams. That is your only work right now. Do what feels good. Keep your heart wide open, if it’s closed all of the good stuff can’t get in. You don’t need to protect it any longer. You are strong. Gemini. Take the blinders off babe. There is something you don’t want to look at. It is not as scary as you think. You don’t need to run from it anymore. You are strong enough. Maybe you don’t even know you are running from it. It has just become a habit. Your way of moving through your world. There is anew stability taking hold. It is solid because it is yours. You made it. Take that in. It’s a big deal. But... you need to see reality in order to change it. And there are still things that need to change. You are ready for it. Cancer. You’re kind of mental right now. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, you just need to reorganize your energy a bit. It’s kind of chaotic , no? It can’t be comfortable. It’s driving you a little bananas. You have a bit of restless leg syndrome. It is just temporary, You would be wise to find an outlet for all of that. Run or gallop or skip. Whatever it takes. All of this new energy is a good thing. It is your creative fire coming to the surface. Sort out your 26 | September 2019

Leo. Ready to remove pain and obstacles? Just smash them. No time for soft nostalgia or victim scenarios. Sorry but you need a bit of a push. There is so much juicy stuff in your life. Heal. When are you going to get sick of your story? It’s over. You can write a new one. Everything you want is on the other side of this. But you have to move past it. There is a deep transformation that is taking place and you have to be willing to leave the surface. Notice how often you resist going underneath all of the day to day stuff. You are feeling alot of things. It’s all in there. Virgo. You are pretty great at everything. It’s true. It might be time to take a break from being so great and figure out what else there is for you. To allow something better to come, something full. There is more. More than analyzing, perfecting... more than being great. Turn towards yourself. Get curious. Don’t get too busy for self-discovery. If you were to stop and breathe you might cry, but that’s alright. Don’t fight the feeling any longer. I would love to see you shift your perspective... away from trying to be perfect to honouring who you truly are... away from being right to being in love, mainly with yourself. There is a different quality of life available to you, one that is luscious and slow and super yummy. Libra. It is the end of something. Something big falls off and away. Heaviness lifts. It is as though a benevolent breeze comes through your doorway. Your job is to make sure the door is open. This is more about your internal world than your relationships with the outside. How you think, how you feel, what your want. That is the adventure of the moment. Go deep. Dive into the unseen aspects of your life. You are about to become magnetic, just be careful what you magnetize. Your atmosphere is what pulls things towards you. Cultivate your energy so that you draw in things that match who you want to become. This takes time and space. Make sure you give that to yourself over the next month. It is important to pull back every one and awhile and re-prioritize. Make reprioritization your priority.

Sagittarius. Think clean slate, blank canvas. ‘I am allowed to begin again’ might be a mantra you get used to repeating. Say it until you believe it. Everyone is allowed a fresh start. Begin right where you are standing. And leave everything else behind you. But really leave it. Don’t ruminate on what was or what could have been. The truth only exist right here in this moment, it is all that is. Take your hand away from your eyes and get super clear on what surrounds you. Do you like what you see? If not, no big deal. Be efficient with your analysis, which means stop looking over your shoulder. Everything you need to know is right in front of your face but you won’t see it with your eyes closed. This is your life, after all. Get familiar with it.

Scorpio. Things will come into balance,

Capricorn. Shine on you crazy diamond.

you need to generate some major trust. While everything is changing and upside down it can feel chaotic and de-stabilizing. This is just part of the process. The way to find your equilibrium is to not leave your own center... for anyone. That is what gets you into trouble. What is true for you. The big Truth. Find it and place it underneath your feet. Find your holy ground. Everything will fall into place soon enough. Things are just getting re-organized. Release your expectations on how you think it should be and allow yourself to be surprised with what comes. It won’t be what you think. Everything belongs and everything has it’s place. You have to take your hands off the wheel, loosen your grip. Free yourself from that serious scrunchy face you are wearing. Lighten up.

If anyone knew what you actually have had to endure over the past couple of years they wouldn’t believe you. But you know what happens to a piece of coal under pressure... that is how diamonds are made. I feel like we may have had this conversation before but it is worth repeating. This is the loop that will be playing until you snap out of it and step into your power. You are so much stronger than you realize, although I think you may be getting glimpses of it lately. Think of an edge, your edge. What would it take for you to jump? Leap into your own life. Bring all of your acquired wisdom forward with you and leave the shit you don’t want behind. You can just walk away from it. It is really that easy.

Aquarius. There is this feeling of up and out. Things that were hiding under the surface start to bubble up. Try to allow it to happen without attempting to cram it back down or getting into your head to avoid feeling it. Fears, angers, upsets, disappointments. Now is the time to let it go. Catch and release. Feel it and leave it. It does take work, but not the kind of work you are thinking of. It is all about stamina and trust and staying with it until it passes. Breaking free from old behaviour patterns is where it’s at. They are chains keeping you tied down to what used to be. But what used to be doesn’t actually exist anymore. What exists is the potential to live out your life exactly as you choose. Go for it. Pisces. Keep exhaling. Focus on that part of the breath. You are changing. There is a quality of consistency that is available for you right now. Take it in and let go of your old way of doing things. Procrastination and self-sabotage have no place in your life anymore. You have buckets of skills that need to be shared with the rest of the world but it requires self-discipline to get them out there. No more of that dreamy floaty stuff, cut it out. Or at least carve out time and space for it. Give yourself an hour a day to stare at the ceiling and the rest of the time be inside of your life fully. You really do want to be an active participant, you are just afraid of failure. But who cares. Everyone fails. Get over it and get to it.


· Madhatters - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Daryl Gray - Olde Angel Inn · J.I.N. - Olee's Ale House · Gravely James - Queen Victoria Park · Abe Bergsma - Scorecard Harrys · Charles J. Hunk - Silversmith Brewing Company


· LMT Connection - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar ·Fireball & Figure Four - Olee's Ale House · Jessica Wilson - Queen Victoria Park · Michael Saracino - Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery · Kareoke w/Christie Hails - Taps Brewhouse · Perpetual Jam Night - Third Space Cafe


No events scheduled as far as we know...


· Brant Parker Band - Donnelly's Pub · Charles J Hunk - Niagara Oast House Brewers · Club 27 - Jackson Triggs · Open Mic w/Abe Bergsma - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse


· MoJo 2.0 - Cat's Kitchen · Joe Pillitteri & Friends - Jackson Triggs · Maureen Brown w/Silvia Di Donato & Rusty McCarthy - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Open Mic - Mahtay Cafe · Northern Primitive w/Strange Shakes & Blue - Niagara Artists Centre · Community Service - Olde Angel Inn · Pro-Am Night - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Will Secord - Silversmith Brewing Company · Jeff Schmor - Taps Brewhouse


· Shanya Lynn Dawson - Big Texas · 351 Cleveland - Cat's Kitchen · Vinyl Flux - Doc Magilligan's · Down the Dirt Road - FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre · Dustin Ballinger - Forty Public House · Philosopher Kings - Jackson Triggs · On Tap - Jo Blos Rock & Wok · Copper and Iron - Jordan House Tavern · Moonlight Co. - Kilt & Clover · Poetry Slam - Mahtay Cafe · Postmen - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Slider - Monty's Gastropub · The Old Winos w/Djino Lefrancois & Big Dave Tufford - The Old Winery · XPrime - Olde Angel Inn · Rusty Jacob - Olee's Ale House · The Confessions - Peter Piper's Pubhouse · Rock of 80s - Pie Guys Pizzeria · PugJugs - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse · Ronnie Edwards - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Midnight Sons - Taps Brewhouse · Vekked & The Real Musicians w/Rhyme Runners & DJ Tanner - Warehouse


· Shanya Lynn Dawson - Big Texas · Clockwork - Cat's Kitchen · The Breakfast Club - Doc Magilligan's

SATURDAY 7 (cont'd)

· Contraries: A Chamber Requiem & RADAR - Patridge Hall, FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre · Feverish Lemons - Kilt & Clover · Tennessee Jamboree - Mahtay Cafe · Jaimie G - Merchant Ale House · Street Pharmacy - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Country Junkies - Monty's Gastropub · Niagara Rhythm Section w/Chris Staig The Old Winery · Undercover - Olde Angel Inn · The Uncle Jesses - Olee's Ale House · The Whisky Rattlers - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse · Fleetwood Nicks w/Practically Petty - Seneca Queen Theatre · Ronnie Edwards - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Vox Violin - St. Catharines Farmer's Market · Ryan Lunn Variety Show - Taps Brewhouse


· Justin Rutledge - Redstone Winery · Don't Quit Your Day Job - Silversmith Brewing Company


· Kareoke w/Christie Hails - Taps Brewhouse · Perpetual Jam Night - Third Space Cafe


· Brew and Browse Market and Car Show Taps Brewhouse


· Brant Parker Band - Donnelly's Pub · Whisky Rocks - Mr. Mikes (Welland) · Nathan Warriner - Niagara Oast House Brewers · Open Mic w/Abe Bergsma - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse


· MoJo 2.0 - Cat's Kitchen · Maureen Brown w/Marty Allen & Riley Himmrich - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Open Mic - Mahtay Cafe · Rhythm Hounds - Olde Angel Inn · Pro-Am Night - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Jessica Wilson - Silversmith Brewing Company · Kyle Lamb - Taps Brewhouse

FRIDAY 13 · Gunpowder and Grace - Big Texas

· XPrime - Cat's Kitchen · 351 Cleveland - Doc Magilligan's · Clockwork - Jo Blos Rock & Wok · Broken Cadence - Jordan House Tavern · Patsy & the Muscle - Kilt & Clover · Matadors w/Road Waves - Mahtay Cafe · Gavin Comeau - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Ryan Langdon w/Brad Battle & Angela Siracusa - Monty's Gastropub · Mike Lynch - Niagara Oast House Brewers · The Old Winos w/C.J. Altmann - The Old Winery · Vinyl Flux - Olde Angel Inn · Daryl Gray - Olee's Ale House · Jessica Wilson - Peter Piper's Pubhouse · Brian Undercover - Pie Guys Pizzeria · Rhythm Hounds - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse

FRIDAY 13 (cont'd)

· The Killer Dwarfs w/Crisis Ctrl Club - Seneca Queen Theatre · Dan Mahoney - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment


· Brad James - Big Texas · Vinyl Flux - Cat's Kitchen · The Woodshed Orchestra - Mahtay Cafe · Mike Lynch - Merchant Ale House · 351 Cleveland - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Luis Molina - Niagara Falls Public Library · Niagara Rhythm Section w/Blair Packham - The Old Winery · Postmen - Olde Angel Inn · Tonight's Office - Olee's Ale House · Strings Attached - Peter Piper's Pubhouse · Slider - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse · Who Made Who: AC/DC Tribute - Seneca Queen Theatre · Barley Brae - St. Catharines Farmer's Market · Blake Halladay - Taps Brewhouse · Dan Mahoney - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Mo' Money Mo' Problems: 90s Hip Hop Dance Party - Warehouse


· LMT Connection w/Old Plank Road - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Bryn w/Cubs Refrain - Mahtay Cafe · Nicole Cerminara - Silversmith Brewing Company


· Kareoke w/Christie Hails - Taps Brewhouse · Perpetual Jam Night - Third Space Cafe


· Brew and Browse Market and Car Show Taps Brewhouse


· Brant Parker Band - Donnelly's Pub · Northland Rail Service - Niagara Oast House Brewers · Open Mic w/Abe Bergsma - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse · Moontricks w/Sparkee - Warehouse


· Gavin Degraw - Avalon Ballroom · MoJo 2.0 - Cat's Kitchen

THURSDAY 19 (cont'd)

· Maureen Brown w/Rick Gratton & David Johannesson- Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Open Mic - Mahtay Cafe · Niagara Falls Night of Art - Niagara Falls History Museum · Rusty Jacobs - Olde Angel Inn · Pro-Am Night - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Matthew Vandersluys - Silversmith Brewing Company · 4680Q Party feat: Rick Rose Band & Guests - Taps Brewhouse · Jenn Grant w/Ken Yates - Warehouse


· Thorn & Roses - Big Texas · Rock of 80s - Cat's Kitchen · Taylor Brown - Doc Magilligan's · Feverish Lemons - Forty Public House · Vinyl Flux - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Mel Monaco - Jordan House Tavern · The Uncle Jesses - The Keg Steakhouse · Patsy & the Muscle - Kilt & Clover · Madmen - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Dwayne Gretzky w/Madhatters - Montebello Park · Polyester Groove - Monty's Gastropub · Katey Gatta - Niagara Oast House Brewers · The Old Winos w/Chris Staig & Shelley Coopersmith - The Old Winery · Simon & Company - Olde Angel Inn · XPrime - Olee's Ale House · Jimmy's Juke Joint - Peter Piper's Pubhouse · Jessica Wilson - Pie Guys Pizzeria · Jill Barber - The Sanctuary · Steve Levine - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Ryan Lunn Variety Show - Taps Brewhouse · Charles J. Hunk & the Shipwreck - Willie John's Big Easy


· Razorbaxs - Cat's Kitchen · O'Deadlys - Doc Magilligan's · Mighty Duck Blues Band Kickoff Party w/ Chuck Jackson & Pat Carey - Jo Blo's Rock and Wok · Feverish Lemons - Kilt & Clover · Giancarlo & The Scarfones - Manhattan's Bar & Grill · Feverish Lemons & Patsy and the Muscle Merchant Ale House · 2 Man Group - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Five Alarm Funk w/The Postmen, Beelays & Upside of Maybe - Montebello Park · Niagara Rhythm Section w/Lance Anderson - The Old Winery

SATURDAY 21 (cont'd)

· Ear Candy - Olde Angel Inn · Chris Saylor - Olee's Ale House · Wet Knights - Peter Piper's Pubhouse · Figure Four - Romby's Tavern & Smokehouse · Jimmy Rankin - The Sanctuary · Wish You Were Here: Pink Floyd Tribute Seneca Queen Theatre · Steve Levine - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Rusty Jacob - St. Catharines Farmer's Market · Super Heros of Autism Talent Showcase Taps Brewhouse · Revive the Rose w/Jailbirds & No Service Warehouse

SUNDAY 22 (cont'd)


· Katey Gatta - Silversmith Brewing Company · Brad James - Big Texas · No One Goes Hungry Fundraiser feat: · Madmen - Cat's Kitchen Dwayne Gretzky & Figure Four - Taps Brewhouse · Slider - Doc Magilligan's · VanderHill - Forty Public House · Velvet Crush - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Kareoke w/Christie Hails - Taps Brewhouse · Carribean Club Trio - Jordan House Tavern · Perpetual Jam Night - Third Space Cafe · Improv Fallout! - Mahtay Cafe · Olivia Vacca - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar · Taps, Apps & Laughs hosted by Levi Mann · Caverners w/Mama Rae and Her Bad Decisions & Generation Train - Montebello Park - Taps Brewhouse · The Drips - Monty's Gastropub · The Old Winos w/Matt Keighan - The Old · Brant Parker Band - Donnelly's Pub Winery · Open Mic w/Abe Bergsma - Romby's Tavern · Razorbaxs - Olde Angel Inn & Smokehouse · The Black Sheep - Olee's Ale House · Niagara Symphony Orchestra presents · Barracuda Pretty - Pie Guys Pizzeria Masterworks 1 - Patridge Hall, FirstOntario · The Edge of Dylan: Bob Dylan Tribute - The Performing Arts Centre · MoJo 2.0 - Cat's Kitchen Sanctuary · Roman Clarke w/Valerie & Ola Kiermacz · Maureen Brown w/Angie Grant & Wayne · Mark Debonis - Showtime Comedy & Recital Hall, FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre DeAdder - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok Entertainment · LMT Connection w/Old Plank Road - Jo Blo's · Open Mic - Mahtay Cafe · Wilbur James Blues Band - Taps Brewhouse Rock & Wok · Butler's Backyard - Olde Angel Inn · James Blonde w/Hugo Alley & Allo · Paul & Luke - Mahtay Cafe · Pro-Am Night - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment Warehouse · Chicken Fried w/Mike Lynch & Thorn and · Mel Monaco - Silversmith Brewing Company · Kavara w/Dawn Valley - Willie John's Big Easy Roses - Montebello Park · Sophia Deluca - Taps Brewhouse





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• Art is Hell • Mel Monaco • Jordan Bryson

I write to you from Earth.

I have arrived and are settling in nicely.

Earthlings are friendly, however their interactions are often confusing. I will not fail you.


First location- The Region of Niagara. Every month I will interview and document my

‘Introduction to Earth” Video -

Log #1: 09|19

Robot Puppet Angel

Dearest Yeti

findings, reporting back the answers from questions you spent two years contemplating. Such as...

-Egyptian Pyramids - Why? -Making food and serving food- A hungry Yeti. -Who finds love- Rocks are friends too? Yes. -Possible to live inside a video game - Fun video games. This task may have been too much for one Yeti, but is perfect for one Robot Puppet Angel. Stay hydrated, the moon shows no mercy.

Sounds and Noise, R.B.A.


· Brad James - Big Texas · Slider - Cat's Caboose · MoJo 4 - Cat's Kitchen · Mighty Duck Blues Band w/Joel Johnson - Jo Blo's Rock and Wok · Feverish Lemons - Kilt & Clover · J.I.N. - Merchant Ale House · Tin Roof - Mick & Angelo's Kitchen + Bar

SATURDAY 28 (cont'd)

· Jonesy w/The Mandevilles, The Reclaimers & The Associates - Montebello Park · Niagara Rhythm Section w/Michael Schatte & Jim Gay - The Old Winery · Whisky Ratlers - Olde Angel Inn · J.I.N. - Olee's Ale House · Rhythm Hounds - Patsy and the Muscle · Open Mic w/Chris & Sarah - Peter Piper's Pubhouse · Knotslip: Slipknot Tribute - Seneca Queen Theatre · Mark Debonis - Showtime Comedy & Entertainment · Virginia to Vegas w/Valerie, Lastli & Robert Alfieri - Warehouse


· LMT Connection w/Old Plank Road - Jo Blo's Rock & Wok · Roger Wyatt - Mahtay Cafe · Pink Floyd Niagara w/Vinyl Flux, Big Rude Jake & Piped Music - Montebello Park · Molly Johnson - Redstone Winery · Matthew David Klassen - Silversmith Brewing Company


· Kareoke w/Christie Hails - Taps Brewhouse · Perpetual Jam Night - Third Space Cafe

Send your listings in to We'll print 'em!


I'm changing my DJ name from "DJ Marinko" to "Marinko the DJ" because sometimes you have to rethink your strategy. September is a new beginning for many, so it seems like an appropriate time for a rebirth. I've had a great summer, getting to play awesome music for all sorts of people but a few of the standout events are my regular Sunday Sessions at Stratus Vineyards and my ongoing work with Dispatch, making their restaurant playlists. Currently I'm working to pair songs with drinks, which is interesting because it feels like we're mixing sonic cocktails but it's also killing me because there is a ton of testing that needs to be done. In September, I'll be going to Barcelona and the south of France, but before I go, I'm really excited about one specific event, Sour Palooza 2019 hosted by The Exchange Brewery on September 7th. It's going to be awesome and tickets will sell out, so get them while you can. Finally, if you want to book me to DJ at your event, google me, "DJ MARINKO"... or wait, is it "Marinko the DJ"? I don't even know anymore, but I do know that you can listen to the mix at

Keeping tabs on the latest in independent Canadian rock’n’roll, curated by Adam White.

The gravelly, growling, endlessly intense St. Catharines hardcore/metal act Sinner has a new self-titled EP out in the wild. It features the new songs "Wraith" and "Stone Swine," with a video for the latter out on YouTube. The five-piece recorded with Nick Ginn producing at School House Studios. This is about eight rungs higher on the intensity ladder than the stuff I'm usually writing about, so be warned! Jon Schouten and Chris Swimmings of the wry Toronto punk group Teenanger recently launched their new band with Dave Nardi. You'll recognize the latter as the former bassist of Hamilton rockers The Dirty Nil. These days Nardi plays guitar with Ancient Shapes and has become an integral player among the wider-constellation of artists who cycle in and out of Daniel Romano's universe. Nardi and this half of Teenanger have a new synth-forward project wearing the geographically-deceptive name of Quasar U.K.. The group just released a twosong single featuring the tracks "Kepler 69" and "Colour Jamming" over at Bandcamp. This isn't the first intersection between Nardi and the Teenanger crowd, as the group's been collaborating on the Telephone Explosion imprint Morning Trip (Telephone Explosion's the label run by Schouten and Teenanger drummer Steve Sidoli, but you knew that). Under that banner, the group's begun to unearth and reissue rare ambient and new age records (like Celestial Realms, a 1986 set from Brian Eno-linked mouthful Laraaji & Lyghte). Given the out-there trajectory of that ongoing collaboration, the grand cosmic ambitions of Quasar U.K. make a whole lot of sense. Teenanger and Ancient Shapes recently announced an October tour in support of the latter's upcoming full-length A Flower That Wouldn't Bloom. A few weeks ago a video arrived for the title track, featuring Shapes' Roddy Rosetti and friendof-the-band (and artist in her own right) Julianna Riolino cruising the streets of Pelham. This is the only video to my knowledge that co-stars the Comfort Maple. The Daniel Romano-lead power-pop group will issue the new record, their third, on October 25 through You've Changed. The band's current lineup features Danny and his brother Ian Romano (both of Attack In Black, of course), along with the above-mentioned David Nardi, Vee Bell of TV Freaks, and the video-starring Roddy Rosetti. Since we're back on the Attack In Black beat there's fun news from Spencer Burton. The Niagara-based country/folk artist has a collection of children's songs slated for an October 4 release titled The Mountain Man. Burton described the set, in part, as “songs that your kids will listen to while you're driving that won't make you want to jump out the window.” You can judge for yourself at the Cicada Music & Arts Festival on October 5, where Burton will be playing a children’s set.

Got news from a Niagara band? E-mail or visit

30 | September 2019





JEREMY DUTCHER THURS 3 OCT Sloan | WED 9 OCT Gord's Legacy | FRI 18 OCT The music of The Tragically Hip with guests Dala, Royal Wood, Tom Wilson, Twin Flames & more.

Bruce Cockburn | MON 21 OCT Max Weinberg’s Jukebox | THUR 24 OCT Manteca | WED 6 NOV Whitehorse | THUR 7 NOV Decidedly Jazz Danceworks

Juliet & Romeo | THUR 14 NOV Sesame Street Live! | SAT 16 NOV Dan Mangan | WED 20 NOV Legendary Downchild Blues Band | THUR 21 NOV Rheostatics | WED 27 NOV Lee Rocker of Stray Cats | WED 11 DEC

The newest light in Canada’s Indigenous renaissance.” - NATIONAL PUBLIC RADIO

Profile for thesoundstc

The Sound | September 2019  

In this month's edition, we look at Justin Trudeau the Pinocchio, Celebration of Nations, Rodman Hall, Culture Days, Come to the Edge Cafe,...

The Sound | September 2019  

In this month's edition, we look at Justin Trudeau the Pinocchio, Celebration of Nations, Rodman Hall, Culture Days, Come to the Edge Cafe,...