Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Jimmy Fallon – Wrong Piano

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

Here’s our performance of “Wrong Piano” on Jimmy Fallon last night, just in case you missed us and here’s a link to our performance of “Don’t Let It Bring You Down” which we played after the credits rolled.

And here’s a link to the show in its entirety. Enjoy.

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NPR – All Songs Considered

Wednesday, January 26th, 2011

We got a very nice mention on NPR’s All Songs Considered yesterday and they played “I’ll See You Around” off of Demons. Take a listen to the discussion if you’ve got the time.

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Demons, volume 2 – Old Hotel

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

There is no doubt about it, Vic was a nomad….a nomad of the spirit and soul and a nomad of the road. He never stopped searching for meaning. His songs, right up to the end, were filled with internal wanderings and a determination to never settle down, to never be complacent, to never be satisfied with whatever meager offerings his journey unearthed. His wanderings in the real world were also well documented in his songs. One of the most common settings in his work are hotel rooms, unfamiliar spaces which he finds himself trapped in and screaming to escape. For anyone who has spent a lot of time on the road his settings are all too recognizable. The brilliance of Vic’s writing is the way he takes these external spaces and uses them to reflect the inner turmoil and sense of alienation that he was forever kicking against.

Here is our version of “Old Hotel” (which will appear on the Bonus Track EP), having just returned from Europe the sentiments expressed in the song strike close to the bone:

There are only a couple of more weeks left for the pre-order bundles….jump on in if you’ve got a bit of Festivus money burning a hole in your pocket.

To view the previous Demons blogs and to listen to some of the music, click away:

Introduction – Wrong Piano

West Of Rome

Marathon

Sad Peter Pan

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Tour Diary – Copenhagen, (Nov 12, 2010)

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

Copenhagen backstage 2

I’ve always felt that Copenhagen had a slightly seamy, dark vibe to it. There is an underbelly that isn’t always apparent to the tourists gawking at the Little Mermaid or strolling through the Tivoli Gardens. Today we spent our day deep within its bowels, in Christiania: a very surreal day.

Christiania is a community that grew up around an abandoned army base, a few minutes walking distance from the center of Copenhagen. When the army moved out in the 1970’s the squatters and self-labelled anarchists moved in. It’s gone through many changes over the past few decades and the community has fallen in and out of favour with the local governments and the “straight” citizenry, but today it is a thriving community (it seems to be run much like a housing co-op) with its own restaurants and schools and hardware store and all the mod-cons that your average anarchist comes to crave as he or she grows older. It also has its very own thriving hashish market…and this is where the sleazy underbelly begins to expose itself. When I say “hashish market” I don’t mean that there are a bunch of guys standing around with their hands in their pockets whispering surreptitiously to passersby. This is a full blown market with stalls set up so that the consumer can see the various bricks of hashish for sale, as well as jars of various strains of marijuana and all of the necessary accoutrements for your smoking pleasure. The market has a heavy atmosphere with lots of tough young punks looking on with lots of ill tempered dogs in hand. Large signs everywhere scream of a “no photography” policy. There are oil drum fires every dozen feet or so, so that the goods can be quickly disposed of when the police make one of their fairly regular raids on the compound. We were told by the locals that this area is run by the Hells Angels and it certainly has that feel to it. It seems that drugs have always been the Achilles heel for this community. Back in the late 70’s when the police would pick up a junkie they would simply dump him or her in Christiania because the heroin problem was so rampant in the community that they figured it was easiest to corral them all in one location. Today they have been able to establish a “THC only” policy within the community, but it’s the market that gives this place a bit of a freak show vibe. The general aesthetic is also a bit Mad Max-ish. It kind of has that post-apocalyptic vibe with lots of open fires, strung lights, large iron works, odd-ish sculptures created from found materials, graffiti on every possible surface and lots of facial hair and dreadlocks.

copenhagen from tower

We played in one of the communities’ venues, a low ceiling, narrow, pit of a club. The promoter never showed up and there was a general who-gives-a-fuck vibe to the day. Despite that, the people who worked at the venue were very nice and as helpful as they could be and the show was sold-out. It was a standing gig, with people crammed up against our foot high stage. So we tried to crank it up a bit and blow through the bodies. We had fun and I think most of the audience did too.

copenhagen 2

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Demons, volume 2 – Synchronicity part 2 (Marathon)

Friday, November 5th, 2010

A few weeks after my synchronistic moment in the book store (see previous blog), I had another one in the Toronto airport. We were flying home from one of our many tours of this past year when a man came up to me while I was standing in the immigration line. He recognised me, which is a rare thing unto itself, and he wanted to tell me that he was returning from the West coast where he had spent the past few weeks with his brother, who had several months earlier been diagnosed with ALS. He told me that the disease had ravaged his brothers body at a stunning rate and that his brother did not have long to live. One of the things that he had brought along on his trip was the Trinity Revisited DVD. And that he and his brother had watched Vic’s performance of Dreaming My Dreams over and over and they had cried together, a lot. The power of Vic.

For some of the Demons recording sessions Margo wasn’t available so we invited our good friend Andy Maize to join us and lay down “ghost” vocals as we worked on the bedtracks. Some of Andy’s vocals were so powerful and on-the-mark that we decided to keep some of them and Margo ended up working with them, creating a duet using the “ghost” vocals as her singing partner. One such song was “Marathon”, a touchingly beautiful lament set at the end of the line. Here is a rough mix of the bedtrack with Andy singing the lead:

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Renmin Park, volume 1 – Cicadas

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

On June 4th 1989 we were touring the west coast of the United States, when word escaped from China about the massacre in Tiananmen Square. The world had been watching, there had been this sparkle of hope shining from a country that had been dark to us for so many years. And then it ended in such a brutal and final fashion. For the rest of that tour we dedicated Powderfinger to those who had been out on the square: ultimately, a futile gesture. Despite the futility, we performed the song each night because it felt right to try and mark this moment in history, it felt right to take pause.

The history of The June 4th Movement has all but been officially wiped out from China’s collective memory. It’s not a subject that is lightly raised among the older generation and yet in certain company mentioning it would draw honest blank expressions: for most people under the age of thirty it is like it never took place. Tiananmen Square is a massive public square in the heart of Beijing. The only thing rising from its stone is Mao’s mausoleum: when you stand in the middle of the square it’s hard not to imagine that night and the thousands of people gathered and the coming of the tanks and the panic and the fear and the terror. This was the last lyric that I wrote for the album.

Hear them buzzing in the trees

A lot like us a dying breed.

One voice now is all we need.

Hear them buzzing in the trees.

Nothing left but empty shells.

No memory now of where we fell.

No one left to truely tell

the tale of how we truley fell.

Once again the simple truth

is crushed beneath the leather boot.

A lot like us a dying breed.

No trees here to hide behind

those big red wheels they slowly grind.

Hear them buzzing in the trees.

Tiananmen Square and The Forbiden City



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Tour Diary (July 21 – 22, 2010)

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

abortion ralley

Day 4  - Charlotte, NC: It was as hot as Megan Fox in Transformers 1. I barely left the bus: once in the morning to find coffee, and a second time to check out a very disturbing anti-abortion rally on a downtown corner, complete with raging preacher and photos of butchered babies. This is a strange town. But why wouldn’t it be. Lots of money floating around, lots of poverty too and then there’s that Southern thang adrift in the humidity. This venue (the McGlohan Theater) is a beauty. It looks good, it feels good and it sounds great. It’s always a treat to play here because the audiences are always enthusiastic. What comes first, the venue or the audience? I think that each feeds the other. I had a tough show tonight and could never really find the handle. It wasn’t a bad show, it just didn’t take off. But the audience cheered and egged us on throughout, which is always much appreciated.

IN DOOR

Day 5 – Knoxville, TN: I woke up in a Wal-Mart parking lot. The best thing about it was that I didn’t have to change out of my PJs to go shopping. A great way to start the day. We then moved on to a very good record store called the Disc Exchange where Margo, Jeff and I played a very fun acoustic set to a very appreciative gathering. Jeff and I watched Ed Harris and Vigo M play a couple of real cool cats in Appaloosa. After soundcheck some of us had a crappy dinner at a big brew hall down the street. Tonight, another very fine music venue, The Bijou, and a small, but excellent audience: enthusiastic and appreciative. I had a lot of fun. Our late night movie was 44 Inch Chest: a nasty and very twisted English gangster film, which doesn’t quite hit the mark.  Not too hot today, but steamy as a lobster pot in a Maine kitchen.

Father and Son

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NPR- All Songs Considered

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

NPR to the rescue again. They ran a nice piece today on the program All Songs Considered and have a posted a piece on their blog. Please check it out if you have the time.

Blog Post: http://www.npr.org/blogs/allsongs/2010/07/13/128485702/new-album-from-cowboy-junkies-rich-with-tales

The Show:  http://www.npr.org/templates/player/mediaPlayer.html?action=1&t=1&islist=false&id=128469300&m=128469299

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Amazon release special

Monday, June 14th, 2010

We are very pleased to announce that Amazon has made Renmin Park its MP3 Daily Deal which means that the album will be available  today only, (Monday, June 14th), as a download for only $3.99. The album will be officially released tomorrow (June 15th) and will be available at all your favourite retail outlets (we kind of hope that we are one of your favourite retail outlets).

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new Lee Harvey Osmond video

Saturday, June 12th, 2010

For those of you who don’t watch the Top 40 video countdown hour every Sunday morning, while eating your krispies…here’s the  new LHO vid…..

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