QCWDD #2

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The second edition of the Queen City Walking Distance Distro was delivered throughout Regina’s downtown neighbourhoods in August and September and featured work by Ian Campbell, A. Cabrera, Rebecca Caines, Erika Folovnic, Jennifer Matotek, Aidan Morgan, Chris Morin and Gerda Ostenek. Read all about it here!

QC WDD #1!

Photo by pulsewidth_

Photo by pulsewidth_

The first round of the Queen City Walking Distance Distro was delivered this past Sunday, March 9, 2014! There were 33 homes on the delivery route and each package included a multiple from twelve different artists.

More about the first edition right here.

Long weekends are for colouring in, no need to keep within the lines.

I have the reins of my day job firmly in hand and have come back to you, sweet blog, offering some spare time to you once more. How about a post with my suggestions for what to do with the long weekend ahead? PS: Please update your bookmarks, etc from ambergoodwyn.com (alas) to ambergoodwyn.worpress.com, thnx.

Tonight, Friday – Might I suggest the Ollie North + Maica Mia Oshow happening over at the gorgeously curated shop Citizen Vintage (5330 St. Laurent). Only $4 to check out two excellent bands: Maica Mia has been holding a place on the CKUT charts for a couple of months now with their album Sparcity Blues and Ollie North was just featured on the Free Music Archive, a repository of excellent, freefreefree music. So there! It’s gonna be rad. Show by brand new tape label Amiable Hundred, doors at 6pm, performances at 7. FB event here.

Saturday!

Update: If yer in the Mile End area: check out the St-Jean Black Flag Dreamy Pirate Party going on under the Van Horne bridge on St. Laurent. Music will be spun by Dirtyboots, Julie D, Aaron Maiden, Back Door, Otherpeoplesmusic and more! 3pm. Free of course.

UPDATE: (a little embarrassing, this is actually happening July 21st, jeez):::Check out THE PSYCHEDELIC CLASSROOM event happening as part of Pop Montreal’s Bike-In movie series. This edition will be a fundraiser for Film Pop in the fall and will feature unintentionally psychotropic educational/instructional/instituTional films from the 70s. Presented by A/V Geeks (special guest SKIP ELSHEIMER will be in attendance) and Le Cineclub/The Film Society, class will be in session on the McAuslan patio (located in St. Henri along the canal and  bike path) and could easily take you from 2pm to 11pm, except…

That Cool Fest XII.II is this weekend! This is Saturday + Sunday, so do check out the full line-up on the FB event page for the lists of bands (lots of out-of-towners and locals like ManyMental Mistakes and Jef Barbara), details about tarot readings and delicious food and all the rest of it.

via Studio XX

Monday – nothing for it, one must check out Andrea-Jane Cornell playing a solo set in support of Susan Alcorn (pedal steel composer/musician) at Casa del Popolo.

Sprinkled freely throughout the days: sipping minted water, summer time styling, grieving the loss of the Montreal Mirror, watering plants, citrus-y beer. Some songwriting, maybe even with the piano. Bike rides in the park, reading. Visits with friends and family. Housework. Not in that order.

Stay cool in the heat!

Amber

Ta-DA!

Feels a little silly to post these, but I’m pumped about them. They required little effort other than sitting still and trying to make sure my blouse didn’t get all screwy. For all of the Pop portraits, go check ’em out at the festival or visit Richmond’s site. Thanks to Allison (another rad photog) for tipping me off!

Happy Pop Montreal!

By Richmond Lam

By Richmond Lam

Pop Portraits

Martin Caesar by Richmond Lam

A few weeks ago I visited Richmond Lam‘s studio and hung with him and his partner Coey Kerr while they took my portrait for the Pop Portraits series. I have no idea what the results look like but I will tomorrow when Pop Montreal starts up. The portraits will be projected at the Pop Quarters/registration house (3450 St-Urbain) and the SAT and will eventually find their way on to Richmond’s site and the Pop Montreal site. I’ll be sure to share it here- hope I cleaned up nice!

Gratuitous Kittie-ness, or, It’s my blog and I’ll post what I want to.

Having animals in your home is kinda like having kids on a way smaller scale in that you accumulate objects that don’t jive aesthetically with the rest of one’s place, you know? Take the scratching post below. The blonde cat, Ash a.k.a. Prince had a long day last week (vaccuum cleaner woes, men with heavy boots walking around,etc) and so pushed the scratching post into my studio and stuck with it, kinda like a capsized fisherman washed up onto the comforting side of a lighthouse. What a baby.

…And here is me with the two furry babes early in the morning taking a portrait for Mike’s birthday:

…And a video we shot for K$’s birthday last year, should anyone have missed the glory:

[vimeo vimeo.com/17406142]

..And while we’re reviewing:

[vimeo vimeo.com/17563888]

AG

NYC, part 2.

(Part 1 is right here, y’all.)

We woke up to the hum of the city and blue skies.

The place we had planned to grab some coffee and breakfast had moved so we did some quick Googling and found Cafe Grumpy just down the street from us and the brew was excellent. On par with Cafe Myriade here in Montreal, for sure. I liked the crocheted portraits on the walls by artist Jo Hamilton.

Mike unceremoniously plopped a spoon into my cafe au lait just as I was taking this photo. Le sigh.

Yummy!

Mike had the wonderful idea to drop by the famous (and kinda wacky) photo store, B & H Photo, first thing in the morning to pick up us up each a holga camera with which to document our trip. Our plan is to create a grid/tableau from the best shots as a sorta keepsake- we haven’t gotten the pictures back yet, so I’ll post ’em here when they’re printed. We sipped our coffees and nibbled banana bread on the walk over. I’ve never been in a store quite like B & H- it’s run by Hasidic jews and is three stories high with an eleborate track system to deliver items from the stock room to the sales floor and then to the cash register (here’s a short video to give you an idea).

Water towers!

We hopped onto the subway (my first time of course!) and headed over to the madness of Canal Street to check out Chinatown and Little Italy. We wondered around, found some refreshing iced tea to sip on and slowly trawled the deals, fish mongers and a park where throngs of Chinese men played dominoes. We also found a good hat for the fair-skinned Mike and bargained it down to pocket change: rad!

We're pretty sure this place we walked by is where Ghostbusters was shot.

Domino games in the park

Mike with new hat + map!

We stopped for lunch at Bánh Mì Saigon Bakery for Vietnamese sandwiches (thanks to AEB for the recommendation) and root beer. The sandwiches were served on sliced baguette bread and filled with a lot of spicy, porky deliciousness!

We tucked in amid the shop’s jewelry counters and then wandered up some narrow streets with strong Scorcese-esque Italian overtones and clothing stores. On one of the side streets the passage was decorated with tinsel covered wire overhead and down below carny types were setting up fairground style games and concession stands for a street festival that was going to start the following day. We turned a corner and happened upon a fashion photo shoot and, well, it was a little silly.

We wanted to check out the Williamsburg neighborhood in Brooklyn and thought it might be fun to get there by walking over the bridge, so that’s what we did. It was a long hot walk, but the views from the bridge were pretty awesome and we hot footed it hoping to stop in at the famed Saltie as well as Glasslands, a venue a few different friends had recommended to us.

Once we touched down on the other side of the river, we found that we were pretty thirsty and stopped for some locally brewed beer at Luckydog before heading down to the water by way of a small, busy place called Grand Ferry Park not far from Glasslands and a few other venues we wanted to hit up later on.

We accidentally missed Saltie’s opening hours after all and, perhaps unsurprisingly, after an early wake-up + a day walking around the city under a hot sun + late afternoon beers, we were pretty exhausted and decided to forgo checking out any shows that night. We decided instead to close the day with more beer so we stopped by BarBerry’s happy hour and chilled out for a long while on their sidewalk terrace to people watch/ogle the generally awesome street style before more walking around the neighborhood and grabbing some pizza before heading ‘home’ to Chelsea.

Part three real soon with some lomo photos, hopefully!

AG

Cosmic Alignment

Nicolas Cage in Moonstruck (1987)

My well-documented love of Nicolas Cage has found deeper levels of meaning this week after having read my horoscope in the Montreal Mirror. Here it is for you in full (from the Free Will Astrology site), the reading for our sign, that of Capricorn:

Nicolas Cage is a Capricorn. While performing his film roles, he often loses his composure. Of course the crazy things he does as an actor aren’t real and don’t lead to dire consequences in his actual life. But they afford him a great deal of emotional release. Let’s hypothesize that, like Cage, you could benefit from expressing the hell out of yourself without causing any mayhem. Is there a cork-lined sanctuary where you could go and safely unveil explosions of extreme emotions? Or some equivalent? For inspiration, check this Youtube compendium of Cage uncaged

NYC, Part 1.

So, we went to NYC this past week to celebrate eight years of togetherness and it was fun, illuminating and sore-feet inducing. It was also my very first time in New York and since we only had two full days in town, it will not be my last- still so much to see and do! We had lots of places to check out on our list and we got through a bunch of them, though definitely not all. We forewent attending any events in favour of investigating neighbourhoods and parks with our precious few hours, so we nixed museum visits or movie screenings this go-around…though it was pretty difficult to convince Mike to wait a few more weeks to watch Tree of Life rather than see it in a beautiful NYC movie house. I reminded him that if we didn’t watch it, we’d have one more thing to look forward to back in Montreal. It was a tough sell.

The morning of our departure we woke up early and I danced around Mike singing my NYC-trip happy song which started off with what I knew of that Alicia Keys/Jay-Z song and quickly deteriorated into my version of Amy Poehler’s Kaitlin character from SNL, sing-talking ‘New Yoooork!’. Anyway, we chose cheap over fast and took the train- we love riding the rails to boot.

We packed food/movies/books and weathered the 12 hour trip. It looked something like this:

Laptop movies, Just Kids by Patti Smith and chicken salad sandwiches.

Action flicks, eye strain from too much reading, soda and bad coffee.

The delay at the border was long but at least we had some views like this:

Not bad at all.


I’d always expected to fall in love with New York and when I was a teen I imagined that when I got there that I’d never want to leave. Years passed, school + bands + magazine publishing and their demands on my schedule and finances always seemed to bump travel from the top of my list of priorities. It’s back up near the top now. Important to how this whole trip ended up  resonating with me was reading Patti Smith’s Just Kids on the train to and from NYC (thanks to Erin for lending it to me!). Similar to that big city, Patti Smith had captured my young imagination early on, indelibly influencing me as a performer, musician and female artist. Reading her book on a train to NYC felt portentous since my band is now in full record-making mode, as well as meaningful since Patti’s book is about deep friendship, this trip being taken with my partner and a book given to me by a close friend.

Just around the corner from where we slept.

Just Kids also framed the Chelsea neighbourhood for me, the neighborhood we were staying in, and we stayed just a block over from the Chelsea Hotel where Patti and many other artists have lived. Of course, New York is a cinematic city so most of it needed no further introduction and Mike and I wondered through its neighborhoods, name-checking a slew of film references (Bringing Out the Dead, Escape From New York, etc).

After we dropped off our bags, we decided to hit up Times Square, a hectic hub of advertising and artificial light that I don’t think we’ll ever have to visit again.

Our fave moment in Times Square was this guy in his PJs who wandered up a side street with two leashed teacup dogs. He clearly lived around the corner and was shameless about his leisurely attire and tiny charges…Mike got this photo by having me stand next to the guy, pretending to pose in front of the neon madness.

Eventually we wandered home, slept fitfully in a new bed (I dreamed about my band and Patti’s Chelsea-era pals) and woke up early again the next day.

Part 2 of our NYC trip tomorrow.

AG