2011: Year of the Locals

After replacing our computer in December, I soon realized that I would have to transfer all of my old iTunes songs onto the new computer. This coincided with the time that I was starting to tire of said old tunes.

So what’s a bored, lazy gal like me to do? Download new songs of course!

To find new musical goodies, I ran searches and came across some great gems. But the best thing I did was start listening to the CBC Canadian Songwriters station on my computer at work. Pure, Canadian gold streams 24/7 online. I’ve been discovering new artists and rediscovering old ones that were once featured on Much Music (Back when they actually still played music. Those were the days!)

Not all the artists on the CBC are strictly local (ie. Ottawans) but many are Canadians who are somewhat under-represented on other radio stations.

After reading this post on Laura’s blog, I’ve also been investigating local and national writers. I decided to start local with Matthew Firth’s “Suburban Pornography“, which I received from my lovely parents for Christmas:

Anyone who said Can fiction is “boring” really needs to check themselves, because this book is anything but! Firth stays away from the flowery language that can plague writers and focuses on the blue or no collar in this collection of short stories about garbage men, bums, soup kitchen workers, truck drivers, etc and their zany, gritty daily lives. One reviewer (Dan Fante) said it best

 “My kinda stuff. Matthew Firth can write. He can write like a sonofabitch. Buy this book!”

High praise indeed!  I also bought novelist and blogger Laura Best’s book “Bitter, Sweet” in the mail and can’t wait to tackle it next, followed by other talented Canadian writers.

In this day and age, we have access to so much entertainment, but oddly enough people still limit themselves to the often very mediocre movies, books and music offered up by popular media. There are tons of “little guys” out there in our own communities who are too often overlooked, which is a shame!

 Who are some cool local writers/artists/musicians you have discovered lately?

Picture: http://www.3ammagazine.com/3am/suburban-porn-by-matthew-firth/

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13 thoughts on “2011: Year of the Locals

  1. Hippie Cahier

    Your question leads to the topic of what I plan to be my next post! This part won’t be in it, though. WriterWoman61 (Wendy) suggested I try Meg Hutchinson and I’ve been enjoying listening to her. But what about you? What’s some of the new music you downloaded?

  2. Laura Best

    I’m glad to hear you have decided to support our local talent,Pauline. It’s a subject that is near and dear to me. And it’s sweet of you to have bought my book! 🙂 Here’s one author/blogger who thinks you’re awesome!

  3. neeroc

    What a great idea. I used to be much more into the Ottawa music scene. You know when I was young and could stay out past 10…I’ll have to look into some of those authors too.

    One of my favorite ‘finds’ while not strictly local is Your Favorite Enemies. I think they’re from Montreal, but they showed up at my door selling their CD door to door. That right there gets them a sale.

  4. Author

    Gooo Canada! I think it’s great whenever anyone ‘discovers’ (or ‘re-discovers’) Canadian culture. There’s a Vancouver blogger taking on an interesting Go-Canadian experiment … give it a look: http://www.OneYearOneCanadian.ca/

    Oh, I just wrote a post about John Vaillant’s The Golden Spruce … it’s more MY local than yours, but it’s a great piece of Canadiana.

  5. Melissa

    I recently nearly ended a friendship because one of my friends said that she “hates Canadian authors.” (On further drilling, it became clear she has read very few Canadian books.) I’m still annoyed with her ignorance. GTFO of Canada!! Her, not you. Obvs.

  6. Pauline Post author

    (Sorry for the unusually late reply to comments)
    Hippie Cahier-Cool, I look forward to reading your post! Some of the new (or rediscovered) music includes: 54-40, The New Pornographers, Sarah Harmer, Ben Sures, Steve Pineo, Howie Beck, Royal Wood, Elevator and previously unheard songs by Leonard Cohen.
    Jen-Word Homes! 😉
    Laura Best-Aww, thank you and I can’t wait to start your book! 🙂

  7. Pauline Post author

    Neeroc-That is some serious dedication, I will have to give Your Favorite Enemies a listen!
    Finola-No problem. I had previously listened to the Classical station of CBC but decided to give Canadian Songwriters a try and I’m glad I did!
    Quack (or ‘Author’)- Sounds interesting! I will check out that link and the book you suggested!
    Laura-Thanks to you and everyone for their comments!
    Melissa-Funny how people make ignorant comments like that, but good on you for sticking up for the great writers we have here!

  8. Kate

    Over the weekend we took my friends’ 2-year-old to see a local children’s band called the “Boogers.” They bill themselves as The Ramones meet Mother Goose. Generally I’m not a big fan of that genre of music (particularly since I don’t have children), but they were great! Kid tunes dressed up to sound like adult punk. Local to Chicago, too. 🙂

  9. Pauline

    Kate-Gross name for a band, but I do like the idea of combining punk music with children’s songs! Very cool!
    Pearl-No, I haven’t seen that blog, but I will check it out! Writers fest sounds fun too!

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