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  • Unexpected Diversion Ahead

    11 Oct 2014, 06:39 by Adrian22

    Stephen Fry, the wonderful English comedian, actor, writer, presenter, and activist, has open-sourced his newest memoir, “More Fool Me”.

    Fry and his publisher, Penguin Random House, cordially invite us all to “reinterpret it in any language or form, including text, data visualisation, app, audio and 3D modelling. Samples of text, metadata, imagery and audio from the new book and Fry’s previous memoir The Fry Chronicles, are available for download via a special WeTransfer Plus page. And Penguin Books is challenging people to turn them into their own innovative takes on Fry’s memoirs.”



    Allison Crowe’s mash-up brings together Stephen’s narration, with her music, and the filmic essence of Buster Keaton, from his silent era classic, “The General” – on the selected text’s theme of mental health.

    http://yourfry.com/interpretations/unexpected-diversion-ahead-4

    Learn more about the “YourFry” project @ http://yourfry.com/ and hear it explained by Stephen Fry himself



    And follow via Twitter hashtags #yourfry & #yourfry20mfm
  • “16 Songs” Video Album from Allison Crowe = Music + Movie Magic

    24 Sep 2014, 01:49 by Adrian22

    "Soulful. Alive. Joyous. Grievous. Real, true, music is what I want to make."

    That’s how Allison Crowe framed things near the start of this century before launching Rubenesque Records Ltd., one of the world’s truly independent music labels.

    Through legendary live performances, broadcasts, and a dynamic oeuvre of recordings, globally-acclaimed and loved, Crowe’s distinguished herself among today’s finest songwriters, recording and concert acts, and as a supreme interpreter of popular song.

    Combining versatility and virtuosity, the amazing Canadian musician transmits emotion into a visceral joy – sharing heart and soul with audiences.

    Timeless artistic expression has its own tradition in Canada, a land plentifully represented by: wordsmiths & tunesmiths, Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Gordon Lightfoot and Neil Young; by jazz pianist/composer Oscar Peterson; classical composer Marjan Mozetich; in theatre and opera – beautiful voices of Teresa Stratas, Richard Verreau, Léopold Simoneau; and other sublime standard-bearers.

    Allison Crowe’s singularity carries her across the globe and into such company as the Master of the Queen’s Music, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Britain’s Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy, and dates with Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet. Thrilling, fun, and moving, the Nanaimo, BC-born musician traverses Europe and North America from home-base in Corner Brook, Newfoundland earning hoorays even from Hollywood where appreciative movie Director Zack Snyder invited her to cameo in the latest Superman blockbuster.

    This month Allison Crowe releases “16 Songs” a video album reimagining century-spanning film, three decades of songwriting, and a dozen albums of modern music. Renowned for gorgeous, often ground-breaking, interpretations of Mitchell, Cohen, The Beatles, Pearl Jam +, Crowe’s set-list here is radiantly international, mixing original tunes (Disease, Circular Reasoning, Double-Edged Swords +) with covers of: Annie Lennox & Eurythmics, Radiohead, Tori Amos, Elton John & Bernie Taupin, Matthew Good, Hunters and Collectors.



    We’ve recently witnessed novel approaches to twinning of music and video releases in the American mainstream. In December 2013, pop superstar Beyoncé paired a video with each of her album’s 14 new song tracks adding three bonus music videos all as part of the “Beyoncé” album physical release. Partial clips of the vids were posted online upon the album’s surprise launch.

    This Summer “Weird Al” Yankovic built upon the model of his 2011 “Alpocalypse” album. For his July 2014 release, “Mandatory Fun”, pop music’s über-parodist-satirist-accordionist amped awareness by production-partnering with an array of web portals to release eight videos online the same week his album’s 12 music tracks became available.

    Allison Crowe’s music videos for most of this millennium comprise, either, documentary, live-in-performance, films (eg. the hugely popular “Tidings” series from director Alex Postowoi’s cinéma vérité crew), or, audio recordings with ‘still’ images. The exceptions – a pair of music videos in narrative style - were both made in 2003: “Midnight” (also directed by Steadiman’s Postowoi), and “Scared” (from the transmission2media duo of Angela Kendall and Brian Dutkewich – known for their later work with the musical twins Tegan and Sara).

    Starting with 2011’s luminous “Arthur” – a song exploring love, memory and aging – Crowe’s videos also marry her song recordings with vintage footage from home-movies, silent films and classics of Georges Méliès, Dimitri Kirsanoff, Nadia Sibirskaia, Salvador Dali, Dominique Monfréy, Josef von Sternberg, D.W. Griffith plus other pioneers and visionaries of cinema (impressionists, surrealists, Dadaists, avant gardists, pop-artists+).

    “The strange thing about cinema, and this would go for television film, is that no one really knows why music is needed. I would say after a lifetime in it I could not tell you why. But it is not complete without it… As a matter-of-fact, I may be bold enough to say that with very few exceptions, a piece of film, or a film cannot come to life without the help of music of some kind,” reflected composer Bernard Herrmann, a frequent collaborator with film director Alfred Hitchcock.

    The “Master of Suspense”, Hitch himself, observed: “Art is emotion.”

    “16 Songs” is an artful collection of Allison Crowe musical works with visuals from great creators and innovators - film-makers, animators, painters, photographers: Fernand Léger, Jean Vigo, Buster Keaton, Dave Fleischer & Max Fleischer, Edwin S. Porter, Man Ray, Hans Richter, Marcel Duchamp, Alexander Calder, Winsor McCay, Augusto Genina, René Clair & Georg W. Pabst. Iconic images and figures - Louise Brooks, Lois Lane and Clark Kent/Superman, Michel Simon, Dita Parlo, Jean Dasté, and Kiki de Montparnasse - populate the video album playlist.

    “Oh, this is wonderful, it really is,” says Slovenia’s Milka of an advance screening, “I love it.” The art-aficionado from Izola comments: “It is marvelous amalgamation of Allison's voice and movie's poetry. Both benefit from each other and give a viewer another dimension for song's interpretation. While the movie, not known to me, suddenly takes me to place where one never ages. Love it.”

    Curtains rise on Allison Crowe’s “16 Songs” video album daily from the New Moon of September 23 to the Full Moon of October 8, 2014. Visit your favourite online video portal to know how it feels.
  • 20 Down: "Everyone is attached to singer Crowe (7)"

    16 Aug 2014, 05:05 by Adrian22



    20 Down: “Everyone is attached to singer Crowe (7)”

    We’ve an head-start on The National Post’s Saturday Cryptic Crossword (August 9, 2014 edition) - the newest creation of a legendary partnership, one that’s central to these puzzles-within-a-puzzle becoming so loved in North America. (Cryptic crosswords originated in the United Kingdom where they’ve long been favourites.)

    “Hex” is the nom-de-plume of puzzle constructors Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon, explains aficionado Barry Haldiman, “though one might think it is the effect of their cryptics on solvers' minds. They are the quintessential, or as they would clue ‘Ideal crazy quilt seats nine (14)’, ambassadors of wordplay puzzledom.” http://home.everestkc.net/nytxword/hexplex.htm

    “Cryptic Royalty” they’ve been crowned by The Nation. Of Cox & Rathvon’s decades-long artistry in such publications as The Atlantic Monthly, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe and Canada’s National Post, it’s said: “Their impact cannot be overestimated.” http://www.thenation.com/blog/176152/cryptic-royalty

    For a printable version of this sing-ular fun in pdf format – visit https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B4apux86ICY4OHBSRTNwc3BYMDg/edit - answers to this NP Cryptic Crossword will be published across this land in the newspaper on Saturday, August 16.

    Often in this puzzling world, it can seem we just don’t have a clue. Not this time!

    Enjoy :)


    p.s. We guessed it... Answers to the Saturday (August 9) National Post Cryptic Crossword are now revealed – see them in the bottom left of this image. The clue 20 Down: “Everyone is attached to singer Crowe (7)” answer is... Allison Crowe :)
  • Song of the Summer! "Circular Reasoning" + "Prix de beauté"

    16 Aug 2014, 04:39 by Adrian22

    Song of the Summer - dive in!

    In advance of the upcoming full Allison Crowe video show – here’s “sneak peek” fun in the form of her song “Circular Reasoning” with visuals from a 1930s French silent film that also became a talkie.

    "Prix de beauté” (“Beauty Prize” aka “Miss Europe”) is directed by Augusto Genina, written by René Clair & Georg W. Pabst and stars a radiant Louise Brooks.

    Enjoy :)



    Allison Crowe has a 16-song-video-series that launches September 2, 2014. Pairing a spectrum of recordings from the Canadian musician with visuals from great artists and innovators of the 20th and 21st centuries - film-makers, animators, painters, photographers and more… - it’s a multi-media expression of Crowe’s mission to make "Soulful. Alive. Joyous. Grievous. Real, true, music." ( http://allisoncrowe.com/bio.html )

    And, this collection confirms the diagnosis of Dr. H Guy aka Allan Showalter, the world’s inimitable blogger “On Life, Love, Lust, & Leonard Cohen” – who notes: “Once you’ve heard one Allison Crowe song, You’ve heard one Allison Crowe song." ( http://1heckofaguy.com/2009/01/27/wedding-song-allison-crowes-small-masterwork )

    Much more on this all, naturally, to come – once we’ve celebrated Summer in this part of the world. Right now, it’s time for bathing suits, ice-cream, fresh berries, bicycle bells… any and all other of life’s simple joys and pleasures.

    Sláinte!
  • Allison Crowe Drives to New Lands: “Heavy Graces” Tour on Deck

    24 Apr 2014, 23:29 by Adrian22

    She comes from a land of ice and snow. Some years more-so than others. And, like such phenomena, Allison Crowe’s preternatural talent, and her peerless body of music, is marked by a pure, crystalline, uniqueness.

    "How can someone so small and young have such a big voice and write such heavy duty songs?,” legendary West-coast Canada musician and publisher Barry Newman found himself wondering upon discovering a teen-aged Crowe on a Vancouver Island stage in the year 2000. For a cover feature in Cosmic Debris, (the magazine he founded), Newman observed: “The inflections in her piano stylings were so mature too... there was a blues edge in there."

    "The first thing you notice about Allison Crowe is her voice. Rich and dark, it seems to come from a place most singers can only dream of accessing. Then there are the songs. Filled with raw passion and accompanied by eloquent piano playing," notes Clodagh O'Connell, (The Courier, Rolling Stone+), in a maiden review of Crowe’s voyage to new lands.

    Cultural critic for The Times Colonist newspaper in Victoria, BC, Adrian Chamberlain, also caught the artist in her early concert rounds: “(Listening to) Crowe is akin to sipping the richest of brandies.” The writer, himself a funk soul musician, explained: “Crowe's singing is tremendously powerful; almost operatic. When she digs into a sustained note, as she so often does, the voice is huge, rounded, with a dark timbre.”

    The amazing sound crossed the main. Before long UK music maven Dave Henderson, (MOJO, Q and Kerrang!+), was tipping MOJO mag’s audience to this siren from o’er the sea: "Once famously described as possessing a style akin to 'Elton John meets Edith Piaf', the Canadian singer-songwriter Allison Crowe is renowned for her ability to blend control and melodrama."

    Moving deeper into this century, the musician’s voice is ever more complex – striking on its own and, most frequently, accompanied by 88 hammers of the gods in the hands of a virtuoso. "You really have to see Allison Crowe live. The way she splits those notes, it's like light through a prism - all the colours of a song," says Canadian radio and television veteran Rick Dennis.

    Eight years back, Crowe migrated from her island birth-place of Nanaimo, BC, on the Pacific Ocean, to Corner Brook, nestled on another lovely isle, Newfoundland – near the Viking Trail on Atlantic shores. Acoustic guitar, fiddle and tin-whistle now figure alongside voice and piano in her musical palette – creating rock, folk, jazz, roots, country, Celtic and more thrills. Her newest recording, (released globally April 28), is an addictive variant of a centuries-old song of the seacoast, “Tarry Trousers”.

    “Weirdly typical” is how BC dean of Canuck rock writers, Tom Harrison, describes a new album from Allison Crowe – and that legend is key to any map of her course. She presents bi-coastal “Tidings” concerts each Christmas season in her homeland. These past two years Crowe’s focused on: recording (four acclaimed albums – “Tidings Concert”, “Newfoundland Vinyl”, “Heavy Graces”, and “Songbook”); dance (performing songs of Leonard Cohen on-stage with Canada’s brilliant Royal Winnipeg Ballet); theatre (musically directing Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador’s rollicking hit show, “Newfoundland Vinyl”); and film projects - one recording riveting in the trailer for a major indie motion picture (“The Pardon”), and cameoing, pretty much as herself, in “Man of Steel”- a #1 box-office Superman movie among the decade’s biggest Hollywood blockbusters.

    Steering well clear of the corporate record industry’s shallows, Crowe’s integrity is as steadfast as her sound is remarkable – a double-helix of traits akin to the DNA of previous generations’ mavericks. “I’m a big Johnny Cash fan. And I’m a big Allison Crowe fan. So the combination to me seemed like an awesome opportunity if we could make it happen,” explains “Man of Steel” Director Zack Snyder. “Allison and I had talked about trying to get some of her music in one of my movies whenever we could – and I thought, well, if I just put her in the film then there’s no way that it won’t work. So, that’s where you get Allison from.”


    Allison Crowe's "Heavy Graces" Tour reaches Europe this May

    For her next act, Allison Crowe returns to the international concert stage this May – with eight concerts upcoming in Europe: Bernau (03.05); Frankfurt (07.05); Freiburg (11.05); Neunkirchen (13.05); Inning (15.05); Florence (17.05); Münster (20.05); and Potsdam (22.05). The opening concert on this “Heavy Graces” tour quickly sold out – Ausverkaft! Full event calendar @ http://allisoncrowe.com/tour.html

    For most of these dates, Crowe’s joined by special guest artist, and super-simpatico tour partner, Billie Woods https://www.facebook.com/billiewoodsmusic Woods’ distinctive vocal and nylon-string guitar style is rooted in Canada's Pacific Northwest and infused with the warmth and vitality of cultural rhythms of Brazil. From home-base on Salt Spring Island, BC, in “Canada’s banana belt”, she’s blended a life of passions - principally music and photography.

    Crowe’s Road/Stage manager, Axel Dollheiser, hails from Bavaria and Salt Spring. popTrip Entertainment, (currently moving headquarters from Berlin, Germany to Toronto, Canada), is booking agent.

    Toronto-based author and visual artist Lorette C. Luzajic concludes: “Not everyone can bring down the divine, not everyone can be vast and mythological or bring the gifts of the gods into a winter’s night. But Allison Crowe channels the spirit each and every time."

    Some words about Allison Crowe from around the world @ http://www.allisoncrowe.com/pressquotes.html
  • Allison Crowe Europe Tournee – Mai 2014

    24 Mar 2014, 05:49 by Adrian22

    Enriched by almost two years of focus on recording ("Newfoundland Vinyl", "Heavy Graces", and "Songbook"), film ("The Pardon", "Man of Steel"), and theatre ("Newfoundland Vinyl") productions at home in Canada, Allison Crowe and the A-team, guided by the legendary road-meister Axel Dollheiser, resume international concert touring this Spring.

    First up – May 2014 brings a return to some favourite venues in Germany and Italy, alongside wunderbar new music rooms:

    03.05 - Siebenklang Musikfestspiele - Bernau bei Berlin
    07.05 - Jazzlokal Mampf – Frankfurt
    11.05 - Jazzhaus – Freiburg im Breisgau
    13.05 - Stumm'sche Reithalle – Nuenkirchen (Saar)
    15.05 - Inninger Spectacel – Inning am Ammersee
    17.05 - Teatro del Sale - Florence
    20.05 - Hot Jazz Club – Münster
    22.05 - Lindenpark – Potsdam

    Most dates feature Allison with very special guest Billie Woods also performing a set.

    The tour-opening show is already sold out - Ausverkauft! Full details as they come together are found @ http://www.facebook.com/AllisonCroweMusic/events and http://allisoncrowe.com/tour.html





  • Lights, Cameras... Cassidy: "Man of Steel" Bonus Feature

    14 Jan 2014, 02:08 by Adrian22

    Man of Steel” director Zack Snyder discusses action of the newest Superman movie shot inside the historic Cassidy Inn pub on Vancouver Island, BC. Allison Crowe, in a role very familiar to the Canadian musician, appears in this scene with Henry Cavill (Clark Kent / Superman), Ian Tracey (Ludlow), Carmen Lavigne (Chrissy), Howard Siegel (Weaver) and other members of the cast – actors whom it was a delight to meet and an honour to work alongside. Same goes for the privilege of working with the film’s amazing crew and production team - a stellar family of professionals united in creativity.

    The Blu-Ray edition of “Man of Steel” released in late 2013, includes a feature called “Journey of Discovery”. Zack Snyder and many of the people involved walk us through the making of MoS from pretty much every angle. It’s extraordinary, and, rather than taking away from the movie magic – the explanations of how the science fiction epic comes together leave you more enthralled. It’s super – and fun:

  • Beatlemania Hits Fab 50: Allison Crowe Performs "In My Life"

    10 Jan 2014, 21:32 by Adrian22

    “Beatlemania, as it is called, affects all social classes and all levels of intelligence,” The New York Times reported in December 1963.

    We’ll hear all manner of takes on similar themes over the coming month, with this February 7 marking the 50th anniversary of The Beatles landing at JFK International (New York City’s Idlewild airport rechristened on December 24, ’63 in tribute to the recently assassinated US President). The group’s appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show – broadcast over the three succeeding Sundays - electrified a new continent.

    Plenty came before, and much has happened since, Pan Am Flight 101 delivered the Fab Four aboard a Boeing 707-331, known as the Clipper “Defiance”, to a world ready for joy and release.

    Celebrating the musical legacy of John, Paul, George and Ringo – here’s Allison Crowe performing “In My Life” – captured in real-time by film director Alex Postowoi and crew and audio engineer Larry Anschell at Turtle Recording studios by the sea in White Rock, BC, Canada.



    (This is an higher-fidelity video recording than has been previously available!)

    And, here’s another performance of the song by Allison – recorded, audio-only, at Turtle a couple of years earlier: http://music.allisoncrowe.com/track/in-my-life
  • "Something to Crowe About" Sings Telegram

    5 Jan 2014, 03:34 by Adrian22



    "Something to Crowe about" sings The Telegram - sharing word of the discerning culture blog, Muruch , naming two of Allison Crowe's albums among the best of 2013 and one of her new original songs its top pick for the year.

    The newspaper notes:

    "The West Virginia-based Muruch placed Crowe’s album “Heavy Graces” at No. 10 and “Newfoundland Vinyl” at No. 2, second only to “Pure Heroine” by Lorde. The blog also selected Crowe’s “Words” from the “Heavy Graces” record as the top song of the year for its annual list of the 50 best songs of the year, which also found room for three cuts from “Newfoundland Vinyl”: “Black Velvet Band” (No. 12), “Men Who Die for a Living” (No. 18) and “Skipper Billy’s Wake” (No. 28)."

    The Telegram is Newfoundland and Labrador's major daily newspaper. Pioneering website Muruch has been sharing favourite albums, live performances, films and literature online since 1999. The full article can be enjoyed @ http://www.thetelegram.com/Living/Entertainment/2014-01-02/article-3561458/Something-to-Crowe-about/1

  • Song of the Year, Top Album Nods for Allison Crowe

    31 Dec 2013, 05:44 by Adrian22

    “The difficult I’ll do right now, the impossible’ll take a little while”. That’s pretty much always been the way of musician Allison Crowe.

    This year proves ”weirdly typical” as ever for the amazing bi-coastal Canadian artist - to quote a phrase from one of ’s fine reviews.

    In it, Crowe’s released three peerless albums (“Newfoundland Vinyl”, “Heavy Graces”, and the compilation “Songbook”), musically directed a hit theatre show (TNL’s “Newfoundland Vinyl”), saw one song recording used brilliantly in a trailer for a major independent motion picture (“Hallelujah” w. “The Pardon”), and appeared, pretty much as herself, in one of the year’s biggest blockbusters (“Man of Steel”).

    Now ‘Top Song of the Year’ nod for Allison Crowe's "Words" comes from the annual list of Muruch, the passionate and uncompromising culture blog that’s been sharing favourite albums, live performances, films and literature online since 1999.

    Words”, from the album “Heavy Graces”, features, for the first time, Allison playing her Great-Grandfather’s fiddle (along with her singing, playing guitar, arranging, engineering, producing and all those things she regularly does!). A trio of songs from her "Newfoundland Vinyl" album, also released this year, are found in the Top 50: "Black Velvet Band" (12); "Men Who Die for a Living" (18); and "Skipper Billy's Wake" (28).

    Artists joining Allison Crowe in the top ten picks are: Alice Boman; Trent Dabbs; Lorde; Vienna Teng; Foxygen; Imagine Dragons; MS MR; & Janelle Monae (feat. Erykah Badu). Enjoy videos and music – of “Words” and all of Muruch’s ‘Top 50 Songs’ @ http://www.muruch.com/2013/12/muruch-2013-top-songs.html

    The West Virginia-based blog follows the song list with its Top 25 Albums – and Allison Crowe’s two new albums this year both land in the top ten. Remarking: “The top three are really interchangeable, they are far too brilliant and too different from each other to truly rank”, Muruch slots Crowe’s “Newfoundland Vinyl” second, book-ended by Lorde’s “Pure Heroine” (#1) and Foxygen’s “We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic” (#3).

    Crowe’s tribute to songs of her Atlantic home region contains traditional tunes, such as “Black Velvet Band” as well as interpretations of such modern classics as “The Mobile Goat Song”, (a Tom Cahill-penned hit for Joan Morrissey), Gary O’Driscoll’s elegiac “Men Who Die for a Living” and Ron Hynes’ anthemic “Sonny’s Dream”. This set, released on vinyl, “plays like a lovely, vintage collection of traditional Irish and Canadian folk ballads, lively sea chanteys and drinking songs, parlour songs and country tunes with surprising retro, girl-pop harmonies woven throughout…full of dazzling melody and such a unique charm…Allison’s voice is so strong and spectacular,” says Muruch. “It has the timeless beauty of a classic folk album.”

    Heavy Graces” combines Allison Crowe’s newest original song recordings with singular covers of Leonard Cohen (“Famous Blue Raincoat”) and Pearl Jam (“Better Man”) – and this album occupies the tenth spot on the albums of the year list, as described by Muruch: “what a lush piece of work…a touch of in the instrumentation, haunting backing vocals and a slow building, seething tension until Allison unleashes her wail”. The complete list of top album picks – which also includes this year’s releases from Elton John, Molly Drake, Hem, Steve Martin & Edie Brickell, Janelle Monae and more – is available @ http://www.muruch.com/2013/12/muruch-2013-top-albums.html

    Here’s to a very happy, healthy, New Year – one and all!