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Monday, December 18, 2006

The Hockey Sweater - from

Here's a classic Christmas story that I just love, 'The Hockey Sweater" as read in the 1980's by the author, Roch Carrier.

"It's Christmastime. On CBC Radio's Morningside, that means a visit by Roch Carrier, author of the beloved children's story "The Hockey Sweater." In Quebec in the 1940s, hockey was a religion and the Montreal Canadiens star Maurice (Rocket) Richard was a god. "The devil," to little boys in Roch's village, lived in Toronto and wore the blue and white of the Toronto Maple Leafs. In this clip, Carrier gives a delightful reading of his tale of hockey heartbreak.

"His Canadiens sweater — bearing Richard's No. 9, like all the other boys — has worn out. But when a new one arrives in the mail from Eaton's, he is horrified to see instead a Maple Leafs jersey. Roch tearfully swears to his uncomprehending mother: "I'll never wear that uniform!" But wear it he does. After the story, listeners get an extra treat. Gzowski reads his own boyhood hockey sweater story. Carrier then declares: "This is a great moment."

Thursday, December 14, 2006

If only in my dreams...

I'll be home for Christmas;
You can count on me.
Please have snow and mistletoe
And presents on the tree.
Christmas Eve will find me
Where the love-light gleams.
I'll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

More YouTube Canadian music videos

I used to love New Years in Toronto with my love (yes I'm still calling her that) and one of the reasons was to watch Ed the Sock's "Fromage" show on Much Music. Now, while Ed's show hurls it at the year's worst, my videos are simply songs I love and have discovered and I want you to as well. While I know at least one of my prior picks has made Ed's list, I hope that's the last one!

So here's some more of my Canadian pop and whatever (it's all pop to me) favorites I found on YouTube and other places...

Jarvis Church - Shake it off
Summer 2002...this was the sound of Toronto. Jarvis Church is also known as Gerald Eaton of the Philosopher Kings, who are next on my list...

The Philosopher Kings - Cry
This is a great remake of the godley and Creme (10cc) hit from the 70's. PK are funky and jazzy too.

Kathleen Edwards - Hockey Skates
what a lovely sad love song. I'm probably drawn to these because of my romantic history. I'd rather play the game and lose than not play at all!

The Tragically Hip - Blow at high dough

Like many, I probably first became aware of this tune as the closing credits theme from Rick Mercer's "Made in Canada" series. The Hip simply rock and you become aware of it almost instantly.

Remy Shand - Rocksteady
Remy is a funky white Canadian dude who was signed to Motown. Check out the first single from his album. I do believe he plays all the instruments. Sweet.

Sam Roberts - Hard Road
I think I first saw Sam Roberts as the halftime show at the Grey Cup football game. I remember really liking the straightforward approach to the music, as well as the "Rubber Soul"/"Revolver" period influences his music evoked. So I got the disc. And yes - it rocked.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

More fun with YouTube - Some Candian music videos

Here's a few of my favorite videos by Canadian artists (not necessarily current cuts, just under the category of "stuff I like") as we wind out the old year and welcome in the new. If I can remember anything about them, I'll be sure and make a note...

Barenaked Ladies - "Call and Answer"
This is my favorite BnL song. It's just so perfectly sad, and in this case, that's a very good thing. Steve Page does this thing in his songwriting where you ask, "is he angry? Is he sad? If he's sad, why does he sound so angry?" Listen to the lyrics and you'll get what I mean.

Barenaked Ladies - Pinch Me
When I first remember the band, it's not from the late exposure they got via a Mitsubishi ad, but instead through this silly video with this great low-key groove. Try and see the world beyond your front door once and awhile too...

Nelly Furtado - I'm Like A Bird
Nelly's first single and a lovely one at that - well before the club-grind of "Loose," here's a dancy, poppy Nelly, produced by Toronto's Track and Field (aka Philosopher Kings' Gerald Eaton and Brian West). Great little pop tune.

Len - Steal My Sunshine
This brother and sister act are one-hit wonders, but they did leave us one wonderful hit. I just love this tune.

Sum 41 - In Too Deep
From the band that brought you, "Does this look infected?" comes this "smart-punk" rocker. Listen to how a great band can take a simple melody and work the most out of it.

(more to come...)

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Favorite Toronto scenes from YouTube

It's the holidays, so I thought I'd back off on the commentary and do something fun.

A little while back I was bemoaning the fact that the webcam at had gone offline, and that after a time, I had thought to look for video of Toronto on YouTube.

So for your enjoyment, here are a few of my favorites - I'll give a one-liner description, but mainly let the videos speak for themselves. Happy Holidays and God bless you!

Eaton Centre at Christmas, 2004

Younge Street at Gould - just north of Eaton Centre

Skaters in Downtown Toronto - no ice

Barry and Avi explore downtown Toronto

More to come...