Sunday, December 31, 2017

Advent Jukebox...The Final Tally.



It's absolutely astounds and amazes me that anyone would even bother to click through at all.

Happy almost New Year!

(audio-ish annual bloggorific round-up coming...Maybe)


Friday, December 29, 2017

When A 'Democracy Centre' Becomes Monty Hall.



Because it's all 'Dealine' all the time where these very, very fine folks are concerned.

Imagine that!

Tip O' The Toque to Mark Shaw on the Twittmachine.
The Keef says that the LINO's have doubled their membership...Hmmmm...Wonder if the Klout Klub has been killin' it with the kitty kat set this time around.
Subheader?....Ol' Monty was from....Winnipeg.


An Ounce Of Prevention Is Worth Tons.


Another one of those important progressive policy moves from the BC NDP government...

Charlie Smith had the story in the GStraight. Here is his lede:

...Health Minister Adrian Dix has responded to concerns in the LGBT community that his government isn't doing enough to prevent HIV infections.

Today, Dix announced that people at high risk of contracting the retrovirus can receive a daily oral medication for free, starting on January 1.

Pre-exposure prophylaxis, a.k.a. PrEP, has been recommended by the World Health Organization and theB.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS as a means to reduce transmission of HIV...

And here is an important kicker from the government news release:

...In August 2016, the Common Drug Review recommended PrEP for coverage, contingent in part on a lower price for the drug Truvada being secured. This condition has been met through the availability of generic Truvada...

Things being done properly for the common good...


What a concept.


Thursday, December 28, 2017

Hey!...I'm Entitled To My Entitlements.


For a variety of reasons, including the fact that littler e. had to work this afternoon, we decided to get the ferry back to Lotusland from Vancouver Isle this morning.

And, despite the fact that it was not a heavy traffic time, we paid the reservation ransom purely for the sure thing.


Because we were travelling in a super-stuffed, puff'n-fluffed car that included all the Christmas goodies, a bunch of musical instruments, a mountain of knitting materials, and both the Whackadoodle and the Kitty Kat (Not) Fat.

Which meant that waiting even an extra hour at the terminal would have been joyless in the extreme.

Anyway, imagine my deck four-aged rage when, regardless our reservation, we were shunted to the far outside lane when we drove onto the ferry.

And, in case you didn't know it, that means you get off the boat pretty much dead last.

Which means that, invariably, you are doomed to crawl through the back end of post-trip traffic pretty much all the way to the tunnel.

Boy, was I steamed.


Of course, as is so often the case with things like this that get blown out of proportion in my own head, everything turned out just fine in the end, mostly because we were on the good old-fashioned Queen of New Westminister which is a small boat that carries considerably fewer cars than either the Spirits or the Kraut-Rock ferries.

And the added bonus...

The KK(N)K didn't even retch until I picked him up to take him in the house when we got home.

Escaped another one.

Photo at the top of the post from a BC Ferries aficionado named Scott who also runs a BCF-centric discussion board.


Klout Klub Revisited...The Slytherin.

What's it all about this time, Alfie?

Well, Bob Mackin had the inside scoop a few weeks ago...

...(Michael) Lee is the only rookie MLA (in the BC Liberal leadership race), but his backroom includes Clark Clique bigwigs such as Clark’s ex-husband Mark Marissen and Clark’s brother Bruce Clark...

And here you thought these fine folks would bow out of the picture gracefully.

Header reference?...Note the complete lack of traction on the tweet itself.


A Perfectly Plausible Explanation...


First, the lede from Simona Chiose's report in the Globe:

Political strategist Nick Kouvalis and (Sarah Warry-Poljanski) a defeated candidate for the provincial Conservative nomination of Hamilton Mountain are facing charges of breaking and entering after they allegedly broke into a Kelseys restaurant after hours and helped themselves to drinks...

And now, the kicker:

...No plea has been entered in the case, said Dirk Derstine, a criminal lawyer who is representing the political strategist. Mr. Derstine said Mr. Kouvalis has been involved in Ms. Warry-Poljanski's nomination bid. "Mr. Kouvalis denies having had any criminal intent on that night and wants to make it absolutely clear that nothing he did was with any criminal intention," Mr. Derstine said...


That explains it.


Why That Stats-Can Report On Foreign Ownership Isn't Worth The Pixels It Was Printed On.


From James Cohen and Peter Dent's recent Op-Ed in the Globe:

...Anyone who estimates the amount of foreign ownership of real estate in Canada will be wrong. Everyone will be wrong because in Canada, a foreign investor can pour money into Canadian real estate through a Canadian company they set up either federally, provincially or territorially, using a Canadian as a nominee director/shareholder/beneficiary, without disclosing the true beneficial owner.

How much real estate is owned through privately held corporations registered in Canada? How many of these privately held corporations are owned or controlled by foreigners? Our fractured system does not allow the tracking of foreign ownership of privately held companies so how can Statscan create a measurement of foreign ownership? It can't...

But this is just the way everybody does things, right?


...Canada is one of the few G20 countries where real estate agents and developers are not required to identify the beneficial owners of clients buying and selling property. In addition, the real estate sector has been criticized by the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FinTRAC) for major deficiencies in money laundering controls...


Who benefits from such opacity?


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Money Laundering...In Colwood?


First, this post has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the casino around the corner and down the busy street from my Dad's house that is located in one of Victoria's western communities.

Second, the beach walk from Esquimalt Lagoon to Albert Head is a darned fine stand-in for the North-Arm-of-the-Fraser-meets-the-Salish-Sea walk that the Whackadoodle and I usually take.

Anyway, moving on...

Tonight, as we were starting to pack up for the trip home, littler e. was very relieved to find that the twenty dollar bill tucked away in of the pockets of her jeans was still intact after it went through the wash.

'Money laundering!' her Grandpops exclaimed.

Call Sam Cooper.



Monday, December 25, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 25... Thank-you Mr. Cohen.



But it's still a great tune and, if you ask me, not a bad choice for this particular day...

Merry Christmas Everyone!


The Advent Jukebox, Day 24....It Was Christmas Eve, Babe.


Our version of the best Christmas Eve song ever...


Saturday, December 23, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 23....Christmas Eve Eve.


.....And the Big Man is on his way!

Image at the top and sub-header?....This.


Friday, December 22, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 22... Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree.


No matter what anyone says jingle bell time really is the swell time...

Rockin' Around was written by a carol generating machine named Johnny Marks who also penned Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,  Run Rudolph Run,  Holly Jolly Christmas and Silver and Gold...Ms. Lee first recorded 'Rockin' when she was still in junior high.
You can find some bonus (linear type) tracks as well as all the Advent tunes, compiled...Here.


Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 21....I'll Be Home For Christmas.

Here's hoping everyone gets there, be it a physical place or a state of mind.


Another interesting story about this tune's authorship also...

...Controversy has surrounded "I'll Be Home for Christmas," since it was first published. The label on Bing Crosby's recording of "I'll Be Home for Christmas" credits it to Kent, Gannon, and Ram. Later recordings usually credit only Kent and Gannon. The discrepancy arose from the fact that on December 21, 1942 Buck Ram copyrighted a song titled "I'll Be Home for Christmas (Tho' Just in Memory)" although that version bore little or no resemblance, other than its title, to the Crosby recording. A song titled "I'll Be Home for Christmas" was also copyrighted on August 24, 1943, by Walter Kent (music) and James "Kim" Gannon (words). Kent and Gannon revised and re-copyrighted their song on September 27, 1943, and it was this version that Bing Crosby made famous.[4]

According to (legendary Platters producer and songwriter 'Buck') Ram and newspaper articles from the era, Ram wrote the lyrics to "I'll Be Home For Christmas" as a gift for his mother when he was a sixteen-year-old college student. In 1942, Ram's publisher chose to hold the song for release because they were going to release Irving Berlin's "White Christmas" first. Not completely satisfied with the song, Ram discussed his concerns with casual acquaintances Kent and Gannon in a bar. He left a copy of the song with them but never discussed it with them again. Both Ram and his publisher were shocked when the song was released. Ram's publisher sued and won...

Imagine that!

As per usual, you can catch up with all the Advent Juke tunes, and more stories behind the various songs....Here....Have now topped 13,000  listens this year.


Wednesday, December 20, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 20...Rudolph's Red Fluorescent Nose.


I finally started my Christmas shopping in earnest this evening down in the lower Cambie triangle of the Big Boxical stores, the Book Warehouse, and that really big Dollar Store in the City Square Mall.

About half-way through, as my arms started to weigh down, a chunk of lyric about a kid wanting a meccano set from Chuck Berry's "Run, Run Rudolph" popped into my head...


The last time I actually laid eyes on an old fashioned meccano set was during a Christmas holiday at my Grandparents in the mid-60's. The set had belonged to my Mom's brother Gary and it held no sway over little kid me because at that time all I wanted for Christmas was a Can-con version of GI Joe (i.e. a  mountie) sitting astride a golden palomino.

It was a present set I did receive and I remember playing with it all the way to Kamloops on the train later that winter.

The mid-sixties was also the time that the Burl Ives-narrated stop motion version of Rudolph's story first started appearing on the the Tee Vee.

Gosh, if only some smart elves could have thought to isolate the protein that made Rudie's nose glow so bright they just might have beat Osumu Shimomura (located center, back, in the image above) to the punch in isolating green fluorescent protein from the jelly fish that he, his family, and his lab went fishing for every summer back in the day.

Who cares you may ask?

Well, the Nobel Committee, and just about every cell biologist under the sun, including me, sure did some 40 years later.


Ya, I know that the real lyric is 'sabre jet', but for some reason an alternative version with meccano set, either real or imagined is stuck in my head.
About that lower Cambie triangle...Sure was sad to see 'Three Vets' all closed up for the duration...Where the heck am I going to get my brothers and my matching goofy toques now?
As always, you can catch up on all this year's Jukebox tunes...Here.


Tuesday, December 19, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 19....Hear The Snow Crunch.

Well, for tonight at least, it's more like hearing the slush glug here in Lotusland's near Eastern townships.


If the temperatures drop overnight as forecast everything just might be crunchy as heckfire by tomorrow morning.

As always, you can catch up on all this year's Jukebox tunes...Here.


Monday, December 18, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 18....White Christmas

After last week's October and yesterday's rain it looks like we might get a little bit of snow this week in Lotusland.

Personally, I wouldn't mind if it started tonight seeing as we're going to Stanley Park to ride the train with one of the wee ones in our extended family.

But if it doesn't snow at all over the holidays I won't really mind because, unlike Irving Berlin in 1937 (when he wrote the first draft of White Christmas while staying at the Beverly Hills Hotel), I won't be alone this time next week.

Which isn't to say that I'll be doing anything crazy like, say, playing touch football with a side of cream 'em on Boxing Day with my Dad and my brothers at Windsor Park in Victoria.


Because those days are over.

Instead, I'll probably take a break from the festivities and haul my turkey-laden belly, my dog, and the beach guitar down to the water for a walk and a strum.


Here's hoping that you all are getting ready for, and looking forward to, all that is on its way over the next week or so.

And here's my version of Mr. Berlin's classic, sans the first verse that nobody ever sings....

What's that missing first verse all about?...Well, you can find out here (scroll down past the player).
Image at the top of the post is Mr. Berlin at his piano in 1938.


Sunday, December 17, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 17....Christmastime is Danko Time!

After Robbie Robertson and his own private Yoko Ono, Martin Scorsese, blew up the Band in 1976 Rick Danko quickly put together his own troupe and headed back out on the road.

One of the Robertson tunes Danko took with him was 'Christmas Must Be Tonight' which he turned into a stomping rag as only he can (see above).

Here's my take on the original, more subdued, version...

Interestingly, in the '80's Robertson tried to reclaim the tune by re-recording it, twice...Personally, I don't think a drum machine adequately replaced Levon Helm.
Want a little more expositional ramallamadingdongage on the tunes on offer? You can find it...Here (scroll down past the player).


Saturday, December 16, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 16...Lights In The Sky Everywhere.


Moving on from 'Starry Starry Night' it's time for an particle/wave-based oracle story from that guy with the holey guitar that I blame for pretty much everything, at least as far as standing on street corners strumming goes.

Anyway, here's my version...

Image at the top of the post...The bright star 'Vega' captured at the Drew Observatory in Rhode Island by astronomer Scott MacNeill...More star tunes to follow, including one from those Big Pink fellas.
Looking for a little bit more digressive meandering about this, and a bunch of the other Advent Juke tunes too?...You can find it all...Here (scroll down past the player for the song stories).


Friday, December 15, 2017

Advent Jukebox, Day 15... Christmastime In The Mountains.


This is a Will Oldham/Palace Songs(ish) arrangement of a tune that may or may not have been written by bandmate Roy Black.

I first heard the thing buried in a Hansard/Irglova/Frames live version of another Advent Jukebox favourite, 'Star-Star', awhile back, sung by Joe Doyle...Then, more recently, I came across it as a home recording from Miss Shevaughn and Yuma Wray...They are a musical duo who once hooked me with...this. They have since changed their name, added a full band and moved on to slightly harder stuff which I still very much dig.

Anyway, here is my stripped way down version of the song under consideration...

You can reprise all of this year's Advent Juke tunes, and read a bit more of the back story of (or, at the very least a digression or seven about) many of them....Here.


Solar Panel Fueled Protesting In....Berkeley.


I've lived in Berkeley.

I know Berkeley.


The image above is, most definitely, the pictorial definition of the place...

Tip O' The Toque to Elliott Smith an almost, but not quite, Canuckistanian ex-pat guessed it.


Thursday, December 14, 2017

Advent Jukebox, Day 14....A Festival Of Night Sky Lights.

"...One of the biggest points of interest about this painting is that it came entirely from Van Gogh’s imagination. None of the scenery matches the area surrounding (the) Saint-Paul (asylum) or the view from his window. As a man who religiously paints what he sees, it’s a remarkable break from Van Gogh’s normal work..."

Here's my take, capo'd up, on the songwriting imagination of Mr. McLean...

As per usual, you can catch-up on all of this year's Advent Jukebox tunes...Here.


I Know It's Not Really Bedford Falls, But...


....Every once in a while time, distance and reports like the following sure do make me wonder if the place where I grew up did, indeed, have a Bert the cop and an Ernie the taxi driver roaming its streets keeping me out of real trouble back when I was a teen-aged dumb boy:

Once, in that weird time between college and gradual school, one of those Berts, who, of course, knew my Dad, called him up in the middle of the night to come take the not-so prodigal son home from the drunk tank...Never, ever happened again (not even close, in fact, except for one ice-cold vodka-fueled Polish family Christmas party that took place some years later a stone's throw from that little cottage on Milvia in Berkeley California where Ti Jean wrote the Dharma book in days of yore)
And, just in case you click through to the actual story linked to in the tweet...I know that the story was actually written about Sidney...I actually spent lots of time out there too...Except there I was the one working to keep kids out of trouble...For the most part great cops, almost alway with kids best interest at heart, there also.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 13....A Christmas Card Like No Other.


A long, long time ago I met this guy at the track....errr...ballpark.

And it was he who got me into this writing-for-free business.

Which, some of you regulars may have surmised, has morphed and mutated into a somewhat bizarre, not to mention somewhat obsessive, habit I just can't shake.

Anyway, this guy also forced me, very much against my will, into road trips to places like Las Vegas to hunt down Chocolate Roy as well as Peoria Arizona where we hit fungoes in the desert and watched Mario Mendoza do his thing as a minor league hitting instructor for the California Angels.

Just think about that for a moment.

Mario Mendoza... "hitting instructor".


Who knew that, twenty-five years later, we would both be living respectable lives and each have two pretty much grown-up kids.

Charlie, it's crazy...

Especially when you realize that only one of us has even been to Minneapolis:

You want a wee bit of the real thing
from Mr. Waits?....You can find it...Here.

As always, you can catch up on all of this year's Advent Jukebox tunes and bonus linear type content...Here.


Site C, The Aftermath (ctd)....Three Point Seven.


It's not just the upfront billions and billions that we will pay for.

It will also be the cost of operating the thing that we will pay for.

And it looks like we could very well end up paying something on the order of double-plus-ungood compared to the price paid by those that actually buy the produced power.



Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 12... Mashapalooza

Never thought I'd end up doing a Dolly Parton/Porter Wagoner tune for the old jukebox,

But this one is brought to you pretty much entirely by Bigger E who mashed a song of theirs called 'Making Plans' with theElvis holiday standard.

This one's for Danneau...

Another version of 'Making Plans' has Ms. Parton teaming up with Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt...It's wonderful.
Also, on a recent comment thread Danneau mentioned an old video version of us doing a pop-up version of Blue Christmas in Vancouver Airport....It's still available for your viewing/listening enjoyment here.
As always, you can catch up on all of this year's Advent Jukebox tunes and bonus linear type content...Here.


Site C, The Aftermath (ctd)... The Mikening.


As you might expect, there are all kinds of codswallopanarianisms in Mikey Mike's latest, but why not go straight to the kicker:

"...I’d say there are few people who look more foolish in this entire affair than (Green Party leader Andrew) Weaver.

Weaver could have demanded Horgan kill the Site C dam as his price for supporting the NDP in their power-sharing agreement. I asked him why he didn’t and his answer was amazing.

“What would our trump card be if they said No?” he asked.

The “trump card” would have been refusing to prop up the NDP government, of course. If Weaver had done that, Horgan would have folded like a cheap lawn chair..."


And if Horgan had not done so?

Where would Mr. Weaver and the Greens be now?


More to the point, where would we be?


Sometimes I really do wonder if Mr. Smyth does think that this is all just a game of three card monty that mysteriously starts up whenever he, himself, walks into the James Bay Inn and the distractatorial tongues automatically get to wagging.



Site C Aftermath... The Gloating (ctd).


How do we know the former premier likely actually wrote this Book of Faces missive herself?


Check out the spelling of our fine province.

Tip O' The Toque to Bob Mackin for the catch.


Monday, December 11, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 11.... Carol Writing By The Pool.


It's the  'Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire' tune penned by a then barely 20 year-old Mel Torme and his writing partner Bob Wells during a sweltering mid-summer day in Los Angeles, circa 1945.

And then, of course, there was that first interpretation, released the following year and never to be bested, by Nat King Cole.

I reckon the following version comes in #3,452,847th...

You can catch up on all this year's Advent Juke tunes....Here


Site C Aftermath...The Gloating.


As for the 'accountable' bit.... As Grant G has pointed out numerous times....When the further cost overruns inevitably mount as the weeks and months and years pass it will not be the Golden Era-ists and Clarklandians who will have this thing hung around their necks.
On the flip side....The coast has now been fully cleared so that the Dean and his minions can finally start reporting the historical flat demand for electricity in our fine province.


Site C....Now That The Deed Is Done, Which Voting Block Will Be The Happiest?


From Angus Reid's polling earlier this fall:

Thing is, we Dipper supporters could always be counted on to fall in line in the past because we had nowhere else to go.

As for now....


And, at times like these (and/or at times like yesterday, literally), it might be best for the braintrust to think like Rick Barnes.


Sunday, December 10, 2017

Advent Jukebox, Day 10....Bigger Than Christmas.

'Happy XMas (War Is Over)', recorded in 1971, was a holiday audio amplification of John and Yoko's protests against the Vietnam war that really got going in 1969 when they put up a whole bunch of billboards like the one above in 12 major American cities.

When Lennon was asked how much the billboard campaign he answered thusly:

"I don't know, but it's cheaper than somebody's life."


I've started and stopped trying to do this tune a number of times over the Advent Jukebox years.


I think it is because Lennon's voice is one of the few I'm truly intimidated by - even for tiny little fun in the winter sun projects like this.

Not really sure how I got the gumption up this year, but here goes...



Saturday, December 09, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 9... Christmas In America, 1952.

In America, Christmas 1952 was the time of Eisenhower rising.

It was also the time of Nelson Algren:

...So accustomed have we become to the testimony of the photo-weeklies, backed by witnesses from radio and TV, establishing US as the happiest, healthiest, sanest, wealthiest, most inventive, funloving, and tolerant folk yet to grace the earth of man that we tend to forget that these are bought-and-paid-for witnesses and that all their testimony is perjured...

Of course, Mr. Algren wrote about a very different America.

I realize now that...

When I listen to the story songs from Iantown the ghost of Algren is there too, hovering, wordsmithing, and character sketching in the wings.

Here is my version of young Ian's (he of the Felice Brothers who will cover absolutely anything brilliantly), only Christmas tune (I think):

Image at the top of the post is of Nelson Algren at the Chicago YMCA, located at the corner of Division Street and Milwaukee Avenue in 1956...For those who have read 'The Man With The Golden Arm' it is not an unfamiliar locale...
As always, you can peruse the entire Advent Jukebox oeuvre, and read a bit more tune/theme-related tidbits...Here.


Friday, December 08, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 8.....Wish I Had A River.

When I was a kid my mom's mom lived on the edge a farmer's hayfield above Saanich road in Victoria.

Across the road and down the hill was Swan Lake before it became a bird sanctuary.

Back then nobody controlled the flooding of the lake across the lower hayfield.

Which meant once or twice a winter when it got cold and crisp for a week or that flooded field, where the water was only a few inches would freeze.

And we would go crazy skating and skating and skating long into the night, especially if there was a big moon and some snow around to reflect it.

Given the foggy wet nights we're having at the moment, plus the passage of time and place it sure takes a lot of imagination to conjure up the exhilarating feeling of it all.

Here's my version of that Miss Mitchell tune where she's pining for just such a feeling....

Somewhere there's a picture of my Mom out skating on that frozen field when she was a kid, gliding on one foot...Gotta find that one.
Ms. Mitchell's 'River' has been covered more than 600 times so far...Makes sense to me.


The Keef Report....Cherry Picking.


Last night the good Mr. Baldrey told Global watchers and readers that, when it comes to Site C, he figures the provincial Dippers are finally acting like folks who are governing rather than activisting.

In addition, after noting, without actually coming out and saying it, that he has lost his insider access card because no one in the legislative corridors will tell him anything concrete (a good thing!), Mr. Baldrey threw out his 'Points to Ponder'.

Here is point #1.

  • If cancellation causes BC Hydro rates to increase by more than 10 per cent (something that the power authority said would happen), what would that do to the NDP’s mission to make life more affordable for people?


Do you see what is missing from the good Mr. Baldrey's pearly point re: the cost to ratepayers if the darned thing is actually completed (not to mention how BC Hydro costs have already been blown up big time - see Norm Farrell's point in the comments)?


Previous Keef Reports can be found...Here.
And, for more Advent Jukebox tidbits...Including a little digressive research of a superfluous kind into many of the tunes and/or the folks that have sung them go....Here.


Thursday, December 07, 2017

Advent Jukebox, Day 7....The Rolling Hills Of Oregon.

The title to this edition of the Advent Juke comes from a line in from an Ian Felice song called the 'Mating Of The Doves' which has absolutely nothing to do with the holiday season, at least in a conventional sense.


Here is the broadest definition of 'advent':

"The arrival of a notable person or thing"

Which, taken in either very broad or very specific seasonal terms, pretty much fits Mr. Felice's tune, to a 'T I reckon'.

Here's my version....

Image at the top....The two E's, in earlier times, rambling across some rolling, if sandy hills of coastal Oregon.
As always....If you'd like to peruse the various tunes and tales in this year's Jukebox, they're all collected (with a few bonus bits of linear type).....Here.


Wednesday, December 06, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 6.... The Little Drummer Weird.



That's right.

'Twas Bing and Bowie, together, in the year punk broke...

One of the most successful duets in Christmas music history -- and surely the weirdest -- might never have happened if it weren't for some last-minute musical surgery. David Bowie thought "The Little Drummer Boy" was all wrong for him. So when the producers of Bing Crosby's Christmas TV special asked Bowie to sing it in 1977, he refused.

Just hours before he was supposed to go before the cameras, though, a team of composers and writers frantically retooled the song. They added another melody and new lyrics as a counterpoint to all those pah-rumpa-pum-pums and called it "Peace on Earth." Bowie liked it. More important, Bowie sang it.

The result was an epic, and epically bizarre, recording in which David Bowie, the androgynous Ziggy Stardust, joined in song with none other than Mr. "White Christmas" himself, Bing Crosby...

The show was taped in September for broadcast during 1977's Christmas season.

Unfortunately, Mr. Crosby never saw it because he died in October of that year.

Mr. Bowie, of course, kept on keepin' on for another 40 years.

Here's my version of the tune in question...

You can see and hear the dynamic duo do LDB, after a bit of bizarre pre-amble....Here....The whole show is...Here.
As for the sub-header....Well....This.
You can peruse and/or listen to all this year's Advent Juke tunes, and find a few more odds and ends...Here. 


Tuesday, December 05, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 5.....The Ultimate B-Side.

'The Christmas Waltz' was written in Los Angeles during a heat wave in 1954 by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne for Sinatra because 'Frank wants a Christmas song'.

In the end it became the B-side to the Chairman of the Board's version of Irving Berlin's 'White Christmas'.

Me, I'm partial to the 3,847th cover of the tune by M. Ward and Z. Deschanel.

Here's E's version...

Image at the top of the post is from the good folks at ASCAP with Sammy Cahn (left), Sinatra and Jimmy van Husen.
You can peruse all this year's Advent Jukebox tunes so far over at our 'mirror plus a little more' site....Here.


The Keef Report....He Now Needs A Weatherman To Know Which Way The Wind Blows.



It would appear that the good Mr. Baldrey has somehow gone and lost his insider access pass.

I imagine the Dean will not be amused.


Anyway, on a more serious note (kinda/sorta)...

While I was riding my bike in to work this morning, and doing my darndest not to slide into traffic, a thought popped into my head pretty much out of nowhere.

Which, and I know this might get me into some hot water with some readers, is the possibility that the Site C decision just might be John Horgan's 'Sister Souljah' moment.

Stay with me, at least for just a moment, on this one...



I support collective bargaining.

And I fully support the de-Hochsteining of our trades.

And I truly know all the good that unions have done for British Columbians over the years and decades.

And I have no issues whatsoever with the BC NDP's historical allegiance to labour.

In fact, when it comes right down to it, as Billy Bragg says, you're likely much better off trusting an upstanding labour union than any political party.


I see no reason that our future fiscal health and well-being should be held hostage to a small number of made-up jobs, union or otherwise.

Especially when we could take the savings in cash and treasure and create oodles of good union jobs to build and do things we really need.


With all that said, in addition to the fact that killing Site C is the right thing to do, let's consider things from a purely pragmatic, real-politik, triangulating point of view.

And then lets put that triangulation together with the Dipper/Green levelling of the fundraising field.

Taking all those things together it seems to me that, if he can see his way through the short term pain, Horgan can't lose politically in the longterm if he's willing to say no to the labour groups involved this one time and do the right thing for everyone in British Columbia.


(and feel free to fire away Beer - I'm pretty certain you don't agree)

Meanwhile, Norm Farrell, in his efforts to operationalize his plan to publicize why kiboshing Site C is the right thing to do for purely pragmatic, real world (i.e. non-political reasons), has zoomed past his original fundraising goal of $2,500....Thanks Everyone!....You can still contribute (and do so entirely anonymously and easily if you like)....Here.
Update: Late Tuesday afternoon...Beer disagrees...But, in a surprise to me at least, for reasons of real politick....Hmmmmm....Going to have to go searching for hard polling numbers...


Monday, December 04, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 4....Blue Christmas


My Mom sure did love that Elvis Christmas album...

All of this year's jukebox tunes are available for your listening pleasure....Here.


High Wattage BC Liberal Leadership Candidate Fights Back Against The Obviousness Of Ron.


Well, well, well....

The campaign of one Ms. Diane Watts has started leaking internal polling for wurlitzering and, surprise!, their highly adulterated tea leaves say she's way out in front.

Or some such codswallop.

Bob Mackin has the story. Here's a chunk out of his lede:

Dianne Watts’ pollster, Innovative Research Group, surveyed BC Liberal members on the final weekend of November, and claims 30% prefer the former Surrey Mayor on the first ballot.

The one-page summary leaked to theBreaker contains no details about the polling methodology. Internal polls are not always the most-reliable barometer, because they are not independent and sometimes used strategically to rally volunteers and donors.

Innovative claims Watts’ closest challenger is Mike de Jong, with 14% first ballot preference, followed by Todd Stone (11%), Andrew Wilkinson (9%), Michael Lee (5%) and ex-Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan (4%)...

What's it all about this time Alfie?

For answers (or not), see...This.

Another interesting tidbit in Mr. Mackin's piece?....
Well, in addition to Marky Mark, clean slate candidate Michael Lee, a very fine fellow whom Ron Obvious recently described as 'young, smart, articulate, telegenic and highly likeable', is also being run by a  local Liberal pary rainmaker  who, according to the Horsemen at least, partook in a most interesting conversation with Mr. David Basi back in the days of yore.
Hey!....If you are even remotely thinking of helping Norm Farrell save BC Hydro from financial ruin, head on over to his 'Go Fund Me' page right now...He's only $75 from his goal (in less than one day!).


Sunday, December 03, 2017

The Advent Jukebox, Day 3....It's Christmas Time.


I remember first hearing this Sufjan Stevens tune from one of those ukulele kids doing their DYI covers a few years ago on the YouTube, back when the amateurs were still just that.


The song itself is simple and unadorned at its core.

Not to mention incredible catchy and fun and, somehow, melancholy all at the same time.

Bigger E takes the lead on this one...



The Future Is Now For BC Hydro.



Update Sunday Night: Norm says he has been informed that  his 'Go Fund Me' page is trending....Help him save BC Hydro!

Norm Farrell is on a mission.

A mission to explain, clearly and succinctly, that, in the wake of the many fiscally foolhardy moves by the previous BCLiberal government,  Site C will ruin BC Hydro financially.

Norm's post on this is....Here.



What to do, given that we no longer have the worst people in British Columbia running our government?


It turns out that the new government, a government that is mostly doing the right things to give our province back to all British Columbians, is vacillating on this one.

So Norm has developed a plan to educate the citizenry and the new government about the true gravity of the situation.

And all it will take is a little money to operationalize said plan.


What are you waiting for...

Head on over to Norm's 'Go Fund Me' page and help make it happen.


If you haven't done this kind of thing before
it's very easy, and, if that kind of thing is important to you....You can do it completely anonymously...So if you have any inclination to help out whatsoever...Do it!

Regarding the sub-header....Ya, that's right...William Orland 'One Bar' Kilmer!