Tag Archives: Canada

The Maple List – Number 164 – Sylvia Tyson

Born in 1940, Sylvia Tyson (Fricker) is an important part of Canadian music history. Best known as part of the folk due Ian and Sylvia, she continues to perform with the folk group Quartette and has since 1993.

During the Canadian Content days of radio, she and her ex-husband Ian Tyson, were staples on Canadian radio. They likely would have been even without the content rules. The were a very good folk duo from 1959 to 1974, when they split up.

In addition to the duo, they also fronted another Canadian institution, the band Great Speckled Bird. Sylvia is a true Canadian icon. She was inducted into the Order Of Canada in 1994, has 7 Juno nominations (Canada’s Grammys) as a solo artist and was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 2003. Additionally, she was included in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame as part of the Ian and Sylvia duo in 1992.

I have included 2 videos, Four Strong Winds, (you may think of this as a Neil Young song, it’s not) recorded during a reunion concert in 1986. This has been noted as one of the most influential Canadian songs of all time. The second is a solo by Sylvia, “You Were On My Mind”.

A Chat With Betty Moon

Betty Moon

Today I chat with Betty Moon.  She is an accomplished artist, originally from Toronto, now living in Los Angeles, who has been recording since the 1980’s.  The interview celebrates the arrive of her 11th studio album, “Cosmicoma”.  Her first recording, in 1986, was while with her band Bambi.  This led to a recording contract with A&M Records, where she released a debut, self titled album in 1991.

We were unable to link up via phone, so I forwarded some questions via email.  Without further adieu, here are the questions and the responses.

What brought you into a music career.  

I was raised in a family that had music in their blood, and we happened to have a recording studio on the property so the odds were definitely in my favor. I say kids either go one way or another when following what their parents were involved with, and the music bug bit me pretty early. As a teen I had a pretty successful band in Toronto and that led to a solo career with major and independent labels. Over recent years I have been releasing music on my own label, Evolver Music Inc.

Where was your first live performance?  How did it go?

My first show was in a photo/film studio on Valentines Day  in Toronto called United Studios  that is no longer around. As anyone would expect, it was terrifying yet exciting, full of glitches, good times and it set my world ablaze with passion for live music. Once you are holding the mic and you get that feedback from a crowd, you never look back.

You’ve had a very productive career, is there anything you would change?

Well, hindsight is always 20/20 but I would have got further on the streaming and vinyl trains earlier on if I knew it was going to be the driving force of today’s era. I don’t really have any regrets though, I’ve done some amazing things throughout my career and have much on the schedule for 2022. 

You have had several songs on TV and movie soundtracks.  How does that feel?

It’s a bit surreal to hear your music in a TV show or on a feature film for sure. I think just having it blended within a movie gives you an appreciation for how important music is to film, and having the marketing opportunity to have my music in these spots is amazing. Plus, sometimes these placements pay pretty well and it’s nice to make a return in different ways for the music you create. 

How would you describe your music?

I would say it’s my own unique twist on rock n’ roll. At the root of it, I am a rock artist and inject different genres and inspiration into an album and that can vary year to year. I’m not following trends, and if anything I like to carve my own path and make sure I do things my way. A lot of my music can have touches of soul, funk, electronic and even pop.

Inspirations?

Other types of music and artists are only part of my inspiration musically. It’s really about my environment, stories, nights on the town and thinking inward that gets the creative juices flowing. Sure, I have favorite artists from my youth that drive ideas indirectly, but I think it’s more about my surroundings and happenings in life that inspire each song I create.

Have you ever taught music or mentored up and coming acts?

Over the years I have worked with different emerging artists in the industry. I’ve done panels at industry events, worked in the studio with other artists, co-wrote with younger and older musicians and more. It would be fun to teach a class online or do a sort of masterclass at some point, as I have a lot of experience and insight that others may appreciate.

What’s next for Betty Moon?  Tours, collaborations?

I’m currently in the studio working on my next album, and you never know who may appear on the record. These new songs are sounding killer, and I think it’ll be my best work to date.

We at Kat Power Hit Radio strive to promote independent labels and artists, and I strongly promote the same.  Tell us about Evolver Music, it’s goals and some of the artists signed with the label?  

I started Evolver Music originally as a company to fully release and publish my own content and albums. From music videos to artwork, 99% of the magic happens in-house and it’s nice to take back the power when so many artists think of getting a ‘record deal’ as the magic bullet.

To stream her latest album, please click below.

If you would like to see more about Betty Moon, please click on the links below:

http://bettymoon.com/

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Scenes From A Hike – September 4, 2021

Went for a nice hike on a forestry road that led us to the shore of Monroe Lake in the East Kootenays of British Columbia. The trek was 3.21 miles, or 5.2 KM. A screenshot of the route is below and it is an in and out via the same route.

The scene below is indicative of the scenery along the road.

Once we reached the lake, there is a foot bridge and an old dam, now in various stages of deterioration.

It is also the mouth of a creek, pretty much dried up as we are at the end of the season. Most creeks and rivers out here are snow and rain fed, meaning they tend to dry up, or they are spring fed, which this one is not. We have seen this creek higher up in the mountain in the past, but it was late October and there was runoff.

We did continue on to the right on the map and discovered some well worn elk trails that we will explore at a later date. We turned back and took the left spur which took us to some amazing scenery. We have done this path prior to this and knew what we were in for. We have also kayaked through the meadow, a post I will put up once I finish playing with video.

We also know about how to relax. A conveniently placed bench to look at the landscape.

And of course, it is not all about the scenery, lets not forget the foliage and critters. In this case an interesting mushroom and some pretty butterflies.

Happy Birthday Jim Kale

Guess Who bassist Jim Kale turned 78 on August 11. He is an original member of the Guess Who, going way back to 1962 when they were known as Chad Allan and the Reflections. He was with the band until 1972 and even co-wrote American Woman. During a reunion tour he discovered that the band name had never been trademarked. He registered the name and began touring as the Guess Who with a string of new members, and occasionally with Gary Peterson on drums, also an original. Yes, they still exist and record, just not with the Burton Cummings and Randy Bachman. Jim is now retired from the band.

The video is from 1970, and of course, American Woman.

Top 10 Bucket List Items – Number 10 – Update

I was browsing for hiking books online and came across this gem. We now have a comprehensive guide to a wide range of falls, complete with how to get there. We are considering a loop in September and will keep you updated.

As a plug, we do not purchase books from chains, preferring local bookstores. When in Cranbrook, please patronize Huckleberry Books or use their website at https://huckleberrybooks.ca/

The Big Day

July 15, a big day for us, the day when everything changed, and we are positive it will be for the better. I feel slightly overwhelmed at being unemployed for the first time in 50 years or so, but also relieved that we can now move down the path to a more fulfilling future.

In all honesty, work, as much as I enjoyed it, was getting in the way of a multitude of projects that are in planning, in progress or are almost completed. More on those in later posts. This is about the “Big Day”.

For us, the CoVid pandemic did a few things. We both worked from home, which allowed us to move about and work on our retirement nest. For this, we are grateful to have understanding and progressive employers. It also allowed us to winter in our spot and test out those waters. We were successful on multiple fronts. Come spring, the decision was made that I would retire on July 15 and moved forward to attain that goal.

Moyie River
Lot 25 With Nothing On It

We purchased our lot in 2017 on the Moyie River in British Columbia, with mountain views on all sides. The intent was to retire here and spend a chunk of each winter in various locations, while basking in their warmth.

On the the 15th of July, I spent the day with all my work friends, doing minimal work of course. We went for lunch with all who could make it, as only 25% of employees were on site due to health restrictions. Prior to lunch, I was presented with my good bye gift, an ample supply of beer, each attached with a note from the person who contributed it. A wonderful gift on so many levels. I’m going to miss these people.

Now that I have more time (apparently, I’ve been retired 6 days and this is the first post I’ve done) I am planning on regular posts. There will definitely be a series of beer reviews added to the mix, to go along with all the regular cadre of photos, reviews and recipes. I am so looking forward to the R&R, and the more casual lifestyle.

Top 10 Bucket List Items – Number 10

Number 10 on my personal bucket list is simply, finding waterfalls. The ingredients for this are quite handy at the moment.

  1. Be in a place where there is easy access to waterfalls. Check. We live in British Columbia where there appears to be an endless supply. This leads to…
  2. Having limited ability to travel elsewhere. Check. There’s a pandemic limiting most travel. This leads to…
  3. Spending time away from other people. Check. Hiking into these places invariably means that it is just you and the bears. Which leads to….
  4. Knowing where to go. Check. There are plenty of guide books out there. We are presently using “Mountain Footsteps” by Janice Strong. An excellent source for hiking trails in the Kootenay Range of British Columbia. Which leads to…
  5. Having the equipment to pursue this goal. Check. Our winter adventures loaded us up with good footwear, walking sticks, clothing, backpacks, water bottles and, last, but most important, bear spray and insect repellent (not so needed in the winter).

There’s nothing quite like a hike in the mountains, leading to an inevitably beautiful spot, be it a lake, a river. a waterfall or simply a breathtaking view.

Let us give you some photos of a few of the falls we have visited over the past few years, and we will add many more as we go into the future. Also some related music for you as well, Hank Williams and “Singing Waterfall”.

Fletcher Falls Near Kaslo, BC
Lumberton Falls, BC

Just A Picture – March 14, 2021

This may be Rapid River, Saskatchewan, not really sure. Whatever the name, it connects Lac La Ronge with Hale Lake. We walked to Hale Lake with several people, including relatives of the airman the lake was named after. Many lakes in northern Saskatchewan are named after servicemen who died during WW2. A beautiful hike to a beautiful tribute.

Just A Picture – March 12, 2021

Moraine Lake, Alberta is the “other” lake. It is accessed off the same road as Lake Louise and is every bit as beautiful, if no more so. It’s biggest redeeming factor is that people drive right by the road to Moraine and continue on to Lake Louise. Their loss.

It is also higher in the mountain range as you can see by the snow line. I find it hard to believe, but I took this shot 10 years ago, time for a return trip.