Everything From Yacking To Yoiking

Chris McGee (left), Frode Fjellheim (top left) and Snorre Bjerck (top right), and Bill Horist (bottom) (Photos by Greg Locke)

By Gloria Hickey

Last night was another jam packed evening of talent and good camaraderie at the Sound Symposium. Even before the opening act there was a tangible good vibe that filled the LSPU Hall. To me, this is one reason that makes the Symposium so extraordinary. Not only do you get to experience astonishing talent on stage but you get to talk with the performers afterwords. I am always impressed by the feeling of community that develops in such a short time at the Symposium. It is a pressure cooker of musical and sonic talent. It seems to bring out the best in so many people.

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The Pedal Steel Guitar Became A Sentient Being

By Annie Corrigan

It’s been two days since I saw Susan Alcorn and Amy Brandon perform at D.F. Cook Recital Hall. The music was still in my bones, but I had no words to describe it. That’s not exactly right. I had a whole slew of words, but none of them did the performance justice. The music was unsettling, but that wasn’t a bad thing. It was anxiety-inducing at times, but a full-body reaction to music is usually the sign of something worth hearing. Amy Brandon played a standard guitar with, what was that, a scrub brush? And suddenly she transported us to an icy, barren, electro-alien planet.

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It Was Uncomfortable And It Was Beautiful

Clockwise, from upper right: Gayle Young, Cris Derksen, AE Bridger Deep Soul Orchestra, AE Bridger, Dawn Avery, Terri Hron (Photos by Greg Locke)

By Rebecca Nolan

I come from a world of classical music. Of Opera and musical theater. A strict, almost rigid view of the musical world. Don’t get me wrong, there was still a whole lot of passion and heart that went into my music, but it definitely strived to meet certain goals. I felt constrained to expectation. I was supposed to emulate those who came before me. To hit that high note exactly the same night after night. Anything less was failure.

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Electro-Knitting With Rokkur

Sarah Albu of Rokkur (upper left) with local knitters (clockwise from top): Christine, Theresa, Sheila, and Heather.

There were five mugs of tea and a plate with two types of cookies. Each knitter had her skein of yarn — pink for Heather, green for Sarah, khaki for Christine, and eggplant for Theresa. Sheila brought an in-progress blanket made with beautiful multicolored yarn. They grabbed their needles… and plugged them into the amplifier.

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Jordan Nobles

Jordan Nobles has won numerous awards for his work including a JUNO Award for ‘Classical Composition of the Year’, a Western Canadian Music Award, the International Composition Competition of the Unbound Flute Festival (Brisbane, Australia July 2016); the Sacra/Profana (San Diego 2013), Vancouver Bach Choir (Vancouver 2008), and Polyphonos (Seattle 2011) International Composition Competitions. In June 2017 Jordan was presented with SOCAN’s Jan V. Matejcek Award in recognition of his overall success in the New Classical Music category.

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David Lee

Double bassist David Lee spent years in the Toronto music and art scene, playing bass and cello in a variety of settings. His long tenure with the influential improvising group Bill Smith Ensemble included the LPs Rastafari with Leo Smith, and Visitation with Joe McPhee. Also the author of books on jazz and other subjects, David has just received a PhD in English & Theatre Studies from the University of Guelph, writing his dissertation on Toronto improvised music. In recent years he has played with William Parker, Eric Stach, Gary and Ryan Barwin, and the musicians of the Silence Sounds community in Guelph, as well as Canada’s new poet laureate, George Elliott Clarke. David’s books include his young adult novel “The Midnight Games;” the west coast novel “Commander Zero;” the award-winning “Chainsaws: A History;” and the jazz books “Stopping Time: Paul Bley and the Transformation of Jazz” and “The Battle of the Five Spot: Ornette Coleman and the New York Jazz Field.”

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