Archive for the ‘Benefits’ Category

Focus on Canada South Presents: Remembering Paul

Posted: April 16, 2012 by Windsor Zene in Benefits, Previews
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The next Focus on Canada South (FOCS) network event will be held April 28th, 9:30 pm to 1:30 am at Maroon Bros Pub 39 Chatham St E, Windsor, hosted by, Rick Rock, FOCS’s December’s Artist of the Month, This event will remember Paul Tucker, Paul was a producer/on-air personality at CJOM FM (now 89X) He was a sound engineer at Salem Studios as well as co-owner, sound engineer at Acusound Studio in Windsor, 1975-1980. Paul left us too soon, in January due to complications during a double lung transplant.

Rick Rock will be joined on stage by many musicians that worked with Paul. Members of Wynbridge and Abel Dagger will join Bob Bone, Brenda McCurdy, Derrick Green, Al Metivier, Echo Steps, Gone Wrong, Keith Stiner, Bradley Ouellette and Russ Jenkins. All other entertainers wishing to appear should contact Joe @ joe.quinlan1@gmail.com prior to April 25th. Everyone welcome, please come out and show your support. Check out the event page @ http://www.facebook.com/events/212199452220959/

FOCS the Promotion for All the Arts. TV, Movies, Music, and the full spectrum of the Arts.

“For over 40 years I have been involved in promoting the entertainment industry in the Windsor/Essex county area. Since the seventies, I have always been impressed with the amazing amount of talent that the Windsor area has produced. Hands down, this area has more talent per capita than any market in Canada, perhaps world-wide”
“We need to create global awareness of this enormous pool of talent. For this reason I have launched Focus on Canada South” says Joe Quinlan FOCS Founder.

The FOCS Mandate is to create a looking glass portal that will focus the eyes of the entertainment world on Canada South. To bring international attention to the creative talent in the Windsor/Essex County area. To promote solidarity among area writers, entertainers, directors, producers and promoters and to work together, toward this common goal. To petition Canadian and International celebrities to lend their voice, name recognition and resources to assist us in our goals. United, we will attack this goal with intensity and passion.

Contact
Joe Quinlan
joe@focusoncanadasouth.ca
519 800-3880

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Scott SeftonThis Thursday night at The Loop (156 Chatham St. West, top level), several area musicians (Pitch Union, The Vaudevillianaires and The STiG) answered the call from friend and music scene supporter Andrew Wong, who was throwing a benefit to help friend Scott Sefton. Sefton was recently diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) and Wong wanted to help raise money to make Sefton’s home wheelchair accessible. Guest writer Jeff Stiles contacted Scott to update people on what the future holds in store for him now that his life has been so dramatically altered.

Jeff Stiles

Up until early last year, Scott Sefton was a union plumber and pipe-fitter in his mid thirties. He was a strong, hard-working young man with a wife and a family. In the spring of 2010, he felt a stiffness in his neck and was sure it was a pinched nerve. He was accustomed to heavy lifting in his work and it ‘just made sense’ that this was a work injury. His doctors even felt it was a pinched nerve. But it didnt get better. Tingling in his left hand led to weakness. He went for an MRI to diagnose the problem further. Suspicions grew and Scott was sent to a neurological specialist in London where, test after test, it would reveal the unfortunate scenario. Scott had ALS.

ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease as it has come to be known in North America, is a motro-neuron disease that is caused by the degeneration of nerons in the spinal cortex – the brain center that sends messages to body parts. People afflicted with it lose muscle and speech control, become weak, and develop breathing and respiratory problems. As the muscles begin to atrophy, other problems then set in such as pneumonia. Patients have trouble getting out of bed, walking or swallowing. Physicist Stephen Hawking is a living example of this disease and how it affects the body. Although medications can slow the symptoms, the downward spiral gradually continues and the result is almost always death.

Scott talked to me by phone in a voice that sounds like an old sailor who has seen everything and drank from every bottle in his travels, but it’s the disease talking. In his voice, it’s clear the disease has a grip on him.  Tragedy, itself, begets emotion but its hard not to be emotional when you see someone trying to rise above their own suffering. It is quite sobering. It’s a story of love. A one-day-at-a-time committment to get the most out of each day.

Here is my interview:

Jeff Stiles: How did you react to the news?

Scott Sefton: It was pretty shitty at first. I was in a funk for about month or so but one day i woke up and said “If you have 5 days to live, how would you live it? Do you want to cry on the couch or do you want to enjoy every minute that you have?” I’ve got two little kids – a 4 year-old and a 2 year-old. So I stopped feeling sorry for myself and started enjoying every minute. I felt I was allowing the disease to take over quicker if I was depressed.

Jeff: What does a bad day involve?

Scott: I don’t wake up feeling bad, neccessarily. I have a hard time walking, so i fall quite a bit. And little things like holding a bottle of water – I get down a bit if I drop it. Or if I trip and smack my head off the tile. It’s frustrating. I used to be a pretty strong guy. People take things for granted – like I have hard time holding a fork in my right hand. My left hand is pretty much shot. I get frustrated as the day goes on but I sit down. Relax. Get my bearings.

Jeff: Do you have days where you feel great?

Scott: I do. When you talk about the disease they call those plateaus. Where everything levels off. I’ve had a couple of those days but not many. You just pray that they come.

Jeff: Has this made you religious?

Scott: My wife was brought up Catholic but I didnt really have a background as a kid. I believe in God but i just think there something out there that can help me, I guess. I pray for a cure and to be normal again.

Jeff: What kind of adjustments have you had to make around the house?

Scott: We’re putting an addition on the house for me that’s wheelchair accessible. The wheelchair is a definite possiblity in the future and we’ll need a speacial tub or shower ’cause today it took me 20 minutes to get in the shower ’cause I couldn’t get my leg over the ledge. That was frustrating. Pissed me off quite a bit. But we’ve been making the house more wide open for the day when that (wheelchair) comes. My outlook is to plan for the worst and hope for the best.

Jeff: Those sound like words for everyone to live by.

Scott: When you see the shit on the ALS website, its pretty grim but I’m not gonna read up on the disease and base my life on what its done to others. I don’t really want to know what its done to other people and other families. I just want to live my live and deal with each day as it comes. The shit on the website is depressing and I dont want that in my head.

Jeff: What do you feel you’ve gained from this struggle so far?

Scott: I was the guy who would hold a door for someone in a wheelchair or someone in need. But now I just feel so  much more for them because I’m in the same spot. Y’know?

Jeff: Has this opened your eyes?

Scott: One minute you’re fine. The next you’re not. Enjoy what you’ve got today ’cause you never know.

Jeff: Is there physical pain?

Scott: My back and legs have a lot of pain. The doctors say its because the disease is attacking part of my body and the pain comes from the fight that results from my body trying to ward it off. the disease is trying to get at it.

Jeff: How invloved are you with doctors?

Scott: I am part of a study that tries to answer a lot of questions about environmental factors, like exposure to stuff like asbestos. There is also something else called familial ALS that tries to see if it is in a gene but that’s not what happened to me. I’m just an unlucky guy who happened to develop it somehow.

Jeff: How has your family adjusted to the disease?

Scott: My kids don’t really know. They just see that dad needs a cane. My wife has been fantastic. Right from the beginning, she took the positive role. Even when I got down, she was positive right from the beginning. She has been my rock. She has her bad days but we keep our appearances up, put on a good face. We take a step back when things dont go well but we try to stay positive. Like i said, “we hope for the best but expect the worst.”

you can read more about the disease here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amyotrophic_lateral_sclerosis

A benefit for Scott will be held at The Loop on Thursday July 28th. Door open at 9:30pm. a donation of $5 will go towards the renovation of Scott’s home in order to make it wheelchair accessible.

Jamie Reaume is a busy guy. Apart from playing several nights a week at various bars, taverns, pubs and clubs around town (including his own full on band jam night, Tuesday Night Music Club, at The Manchester Pub every Tuesday night), he’s also been a member of some of Windsor’s most popular and successful rock outfits. From the sonic melodicum of the under-rated Foreign Film Star to the power trio QOTSA-esque riffery of The Golden Eagles, from taking a step back from the spotlight to play guitar with Dave Russell & The Precious Stones, or putting together a new alt. rock supergroup called Awkward Sex (featuring members of One Man’s Opinion), Reaume eats, breathes and sleeps music. And for someone with a powerful set of lungs, he also has a heart equally as big.

Years ago, Reaume launched Winter Rose, a series of compilation albums put out to assist local Windsor charities. Consisting of donated tracks from various friend musicians, these were principally funded by Reaume himself in an effort to give back to the community who took him in from the mean streets of Chatham many years ago. While the Winter Rose compilations did really well, Reaume always wanted to do better.This Thursday, Reaume launches his latest CD, entitled City of Roses, with all monies raised going towards The Hospice of Windsor-Essex. Featuring new or unreleased tracks from local bands like Inoke Errati, One Man’s Opinion, The Hung Jury, Dave Russell, Vultures!, Tara Watts, Dusty (featuring Kelly “Mr. Chill” Hoppe), Leighton Bain and more, as well as some vintage nuggets from bands like Blasternaut and Reaume’s own solo venture, Foreign Film Star.

This Thursday night, Reaume is throwing a CD release party for City of Roses at The Manchester Pub (546 Ouellette Ave.) and it’s going to be a rock and roll funfest, with live performances from two of the album’s contributors – Dave Russell (with The Precious Stones in tow) and Blasternaut – plus The Manchester’s resident Thursday night house band, Vice Aerial, a jam band supergroup featuring Daren Dobsky (Magic Hall of Mirrors, Is There A Band In The House?), Josh Zalev (Huladog, Mr. Chill & The Witnesses), Mark Calcott (Huladog, Theory of Everything) and Luke “Big Lou” Pelotte (The Crawford Yard, The Hung Jury, Theory of Everything). Tickets are $15 (which includes a copy of the CD), with all money going to the Hospice. Advance tickets are available at The Manchester or JamSpace. You can still attend without getting the CD, but there will be a $5 donation at the door.

TWZ recently spoke to Reaume about the compilation.

So tell us a bit about this latest compilation, City of Roses…

Jamie Reaume: It’s been around 6 years since I released the Winter Rose compilations, (and) I had an opportunity for corporate sponsorship with Blackburn Radio this time around and I wanted to showcase some of the talent Windsor has in it’s scene in 2011. The album is an amazing snapshot of one corner of Windsor’s scene, this easily could have been a double release. It was a pleasure to organize and I thank Blackburn Radio for their generous contributions.

You’ve done several charity compilations for Windsor before. Why do you think doing these kinds of things are worth doing?

JR: It’s a great way to get people to work together, hopefully this will be a spark for bands to play together, appreciate each other, go to more local shows, maybe even collaborate. We have so much talent in Windsor, this compilation’s mission is to expose that while at the same time bringing people together for a good cause with a local focus.

Jamie Reaume: "True colours burn the brightest and widest."

How did you go about with the line-up for this year’s CD?

JR: I really wanted to hand pick songs that I love from artists around Windsor and some cool friends from Sarnia and Toronto. If people had unreleased music I was all for that as well, we actually had some songs recorded or remixed for City Of Roses specifically, huge honour. When I received everyone’s track I stitched together a lovely ride for the listener starting at one end of the genre spectrum and calmly flowing through to the other end. Windsor is rich with songwriter’s and soundscapers, this compilation is proof of that.

What tracks stick out to you?

JR: Here are my Top 5: “American Primate” by Meters To Miles, because it has a brilliant catchy attitude. “Lolita” by The Hung Jury, because it crushes your chest, gigantic. “The Wander” by Between Blinks, because it’s about zombies, listen close. “The Ballad Of Ronnie Joe” by Dusty, because Dusty is epic and the song features Mr Chill on harp and he’s a bad, bad man. “The Hardest Part”, by Leighton Bain. a really great performance, beautiful voice.

What is it about Windsor that creates such musical diversity do you think?

JR: The musicians I know are really passionate and honest, often working on many projects at the same time. True colours burn the brightest and widest.

What have you got planned for the CD release party?

Dave Russell & the Precious Stones will be opening the night, Blasternaut follows, Vice Aerial finishes. Great bands, Great food, great drink at The Manchester with a bunch of friends. Sounds like a party.

City of Roses CD Release Party, featuring Dave Russell & The Precious Stones, Blasternaut and Vice Aerial, Thursday May 5, The Manchester Pub (546 Ouellette Ave.), 8pm, Tickets $15 (includes CD)

Lauren Hedges

This Saturday, April 30th, the heart of Windsor will become a stage for those looking to combat poverty in the region.

14 bands and three venues are donating their time and space to help Sangha Human Services Inc. raise money to help relieve poverty in Windsor-Essex. This registered charity is looking to establish and maintain homeless shelters and provide counseling to those in need. All of their efforts will be concentrated locally and look to aid those living with life threatening conditions such as HIV/AIDS, Hep C, and substance abuse. They see this fight as a social responsibility, and have no religious affiliation. Events such as the one happening this weekend are looking to get the entire community involved in the relief efforts for those in need.

The three venues involved are The Blind Dog (671 Ouellette Ave), Phog Lounge (157 University Ave. W.), and Milk Coffee Bar (68 University Ave. W.). There is no set cover for any of these shows, but a $5 donation is suggested at the door. There will also be a raffle at each location, with tickets available for $5 each or 3 for $10.

At The Blind Dog the show starts at 10 pm with the punk-metal fusion of Found Unconscious. This group has been through many name and lineup changes in the six years since it’s inception, but what you’ll hear this weekend is rough and raw, marching along to a steady beat with catchy guitar riffs and scratchy vocals.

Devilz by Definition will be up next, with the usual heavy brutality we’ve come to expect. Traditional metal that inspires head banging and fist waving, they are a crowd pleaser in Windsor and are certain to deliver a great show.

The Fubar-est band in Windsor, The Heatseeking Moisture Missiles,are up at 11:30, bringing 80’s inspired metal into the mix. Fast and pumped-up, their shows are always entertaining, to say the least. Be prepared for wild riffs, wild hair, and a wild time.

Heavyweights Gypsy Cheif Goliath take things over after that. This group is characterized by a blending of blues, metal, and mental impairment. A heavy and sluggish stoner sound that nonetheless encourages you to hair whip the guy next to you, GCG are making waves in and outside of Windsor.

Closing the night will be Pitch Union, a local group who have shared stages with the likes of Queens of the Stone Age and Sloan. They are an example of alternative rock at it’s finest, with huge guitars, soaring vocals, and slamming drums.

A couple blocks north at the only all-ages venue of the evening, Milk Coffee Bar will be serving up an eclectic assortment of talent.

Judas O’Meara is a teenage songster from the area who will be opening the show here at 9:45. Be here in time for him to catch some acoustic melodies.

The indie rock acoustic stylings of Where The Good Goes will take over next. Previously playing under the name Run Penelope Run, this band features David John Zelko, who you might recognize from the pop-punk outfit Beijing Bike Club.

Garage punkers Weirdonia will showcase their style of eclectic indie-punk-grunge-dance-rock when they come on stage at 11:15. With these guys, be prepared for anything. A two-piece who have played under the monikers of SOAP and The Sagas of Why Guy in the past, they like to have fun and their music and performances reflect this. They’re also just really nice guys, so don’t be afraid to high-five the, after their set; they’ll love it.

Awake to a Dream have been playing a fair bit of late, but on Saturday they’re doing something a little different. Rumour has it that their set will be a special acoustic one; something they haven’t tried before. Sitting somewhere between modern alternative and 90’s grunge, moving in an acoustic direction will be an interesting thing to hear from them. My hopes are that bassist Pierre will bring out the ukulele again and serenade us. This is likely to be the last show from these guys for a while as they take some time off to focus on writing and completing an upcoming EP, so you won’t want to miss this.

Originally a duo from northern Alberta, Luna Borealis is now a quartet in Windsor who play acoustic folk rock. Mellow and ambient, these guys are something more than traditional folk, experimenting with different vocal effects and layers. Their Myspace describes their sound as “the type of music a mermaid would play to put you under her spell” and that encapsulates the band perfectly.

Down the street at Phog Lounge things are sure to get crazy. The event happens to fall on the same day as Phogoween, the 6-month celebration of Halloween. Guests are encouraged to arrive in costume, and it’s likely the bands playing will as well.

The Nefidovs will kick it off at 10pm with their rockin’ ska. One of the most entertaining bands happening in the city right now, they sound way unlike anything else around, and always turn the crowd into one big dancing throng. Band and audience members alike will jump and skank their way through a powerful set of bluesy, jazzy, punk rock.

Stoner metal monsters Anonymous Bosch are sure to tear it up playing tracks from their 2010 self-titled release. Heavy and huge, these guys are blues, prog, and metal, folded seamlessly into a a great sound with a great stage presence. You’ll find yourself simultaneously swaying and headbanging the entire time they have the stage.

Surdaster have been playing shows for a while with no releases other than a rarely found collection of live recordings from 2006. Their music itself is almost impossible to describe, being rock, metal, psychedelic, and blues, depending on the song and how far into it you go. Sometimes they’re a raging tempest of fury and others a soothing breeze on a moderately hot day. Quite often both in the same song. Track lengths vary but tend to be on the longer side, however the music never becomes tedious as it fails to become over repetitious and frequently takes very unexpected turns at unexpected times.

After around five months without a show, The Vaudevillianaires will reclaim the stage on Saturday. Featuring past members of other notable Windsor groups such as The Golden Hands Before God and Big Daddy A & The Merves, these guys have been playing to critical acclaim for two years now. Their music is explosion of metal and rock that will leave you cheering.

With so much diversity to this event, there is something for everyone, whether you choose one venue at which to remain for the entire night or hop from one to the next. Remember, while enjoying yourself this night you’re also helping a great cause – to relieve poverty in Windsor and Essex County by assisting Sangha Human Services Inc.

Songs for Sangha takes place Saturday, April 30th in downtown Windsor. The Blind Dog, located at 671 Ouellette Ave will host Found Unconscious, Devilz by Definition, The Heatseeking Moisture Missiles, Gypsy Chief Goliath, and Pitch Union. Milk Coffee Bar hosts Judas O’Meara, Where The Good Goes, Weirdonia, Awake to a Dream, and Luna Borealis. Phog Lounge hosts The Nefidovs, Anonymous Bosch, Surdaster, and The Vaudevillanaires. The shows are 19+ and start at 10pm, with the exception of Milk which is all ages and starts at 9:45pm. Admission is free, but a $5 donation is suggested.

Cash for Kit

Posted: January 31, 2011 by Windsor Zene in Benefits, Previews
Tags: , , ,

Over the years, many a lonely soul has wandered into a bar with hopes that the man or woman behind the bar will have more to offer than just a quick pour. They may not realize it walking in, but sometimes a bad day at the office or a particularly glum moment can be rescued by the wit of a bartender and the twinkle in their welcoming eyes.

For the better part of the last decade, one man who has made more frowns return back to smiles has been Kit McEvoy, the lovable Scot with a cheeky smile and more anecdotes than the day is long. His charm and wit has won over more hearts than most people have friends on Facebook. To some he is known as “that guy from Tartan Army“, one of Windsor’s longest standing Celtic folk-rock bands. To others, he is perhaps the kindest, funniest bartender this city has had the extreme pleasure of getting a pint from, from his long standing stay behind the wood of the original Kildare House, to his current stints with both The Manchester Pub downtown or at The Mill Tavern on the city’s West side.

Recently, Kit slipped while leaving work. As he was getting into his car one night after work, he slipped on some ice and injured a previously wounded back. He suffered for a day or two before going to the hospital, only to be sent home because the only specialist authorized for a certain kind of shot was not available. When he finally got the shot days later, they injected it into a nerve rather than the muscle, which has caused further pain and suffering to poor Kit. For the past few weeks, he has been unable to work.

In an effort to raise funds for this remarkable gentleman, Bill Sarafianos, owner of The Mill Tavern and longtime friend of Kit’s, has been maintaining a “Cash For Kit” jar on the bar at The Mill. It’s set up with the hope that all the people who have been touched by Kit’s kindness over the years can throw an extra buck or two into the jar to help Kit recover monies lost from his inability to work due to injury.

If you’d like to help out, spin down to The Mill for a pint (or one of their famous Mill Melts!) and while you’re there, throw a Toonie or a $5 in the jar. It would be helping out a man who is probably too humble a man to ask for this but would do twice as much for you if the table was turned.

Cheers.

The Mill is located at 3199 Sandwich St. on the corner of Mill St. and Sandwich St. in Old Sandwich Towne on the west side.