A Wayward Word's Worth

August 31, 2011

Wild and crazy banjo

Filed under: Uncategorized — kylelawrence @ 1:34 am

Steve Martin gets serious about his music career in collaboration  with established bluegrass act, Steep Canyon Rangers. By Kyle Mullin for Albuquerque’s Local IQ Magazine, Aug. 18 2011.

Steve Martin’s current onstage antics, unlike the rehearsed routines of his comedy career, are often accidental.
“I’ve had strings pop out, or slide off the fret board,” the veteran performer said during a recent media conference call with Local iQ of the occasional surprise slapstick that has startled him and his bandmates during their current bluegrass tour, which arrives in Albuquerque Aug. 22.
“Sometimes you start to play and then the lighting guy will suddenly change to a very hot light. And you can feel the heat change the tension on the strings. You can just sit there and listen to the banjo go out of tune in the middle of the song,” he said.
“Anytime something musically happens that’s a mishap, (it’s) rarely funny to me,” added Martin.






How The Sheepdogs almost broke up

Filed under: Uncategorized — kylelawrence @ 1:31 am

The Saskatoon shag-rockers are poised to break out thanks to their Rolling Stone cover story, but frontman Ewan Currie reveals that as recently as last year, the band were close to calling it quits. By Kyle Mullin for Toronto’s THE GRID, Aug. 7 2011. 

A broken dream isn’t the same as a broken promise, but neither is easy to admit to.

Less than a year ago, Ewan Currie gripped the wheel and listened to the engine of his 1993 Plymouth Acclaim die with a sputter that signified the start of his daily routine. That mechanical hiccupping rhythm might as well have been the soundtrack to his band’s career—a series of constant starts and stops. It was enough to make even the mellowest guitarist neurotic. He thought about all the sacrifices he and his fellow Saskatoon shaggy-headed rockers made to become an obscure indie act called The Sheepdogs, and wondered what they could possibly be giving up by calling it quits.

“It meant just getting used to living like a bum,” the 26-year-old frontman says of life as a Sheepdog for the past half decade, right up until November of last year, before the band even realized they’d been enrolled in the Choose The Cover ofRolling Stone contest. “Never having any money, having a crappy car that I can’t afford to register, driving long hours across Canada for shows when we might break down at a moment’s notice… One time I drove it to Winnipeg to record with a pal and got stuck in Brandon. When you start to feel like you’re plateauing and not gaining any kind of momentum, then you start to think about throwing it in and sort of breaking up.”





Hip hop introspection

Filed under: Uncategorized — kylelawrence @ 1:28 am

A rough and rustic upbringing still haunts the Canadian rapper. By Kyle Mullin for Albuquerque’s Local IQ Magazine, Aug. 4 2011

(Reporter’s note: I did not agree with the edited version of the story that was published in Local IQ. I have also includedis an uncut version of the story below. It contains course language and graphic details that are not suitable for younger readers).  

The boy who would be Buck 65 tried not to choke up on the bat, even though he was clutching onto it for dear life.

As the pitch sailed closer, scouts watched the future rapper’s swinging technique. The Major League talent seekers (one of them formerly employed by the New York Yankees after discovering a future hall of famer), had journeyed to the tiny Canadian town of Mt. Uniacke Nova Scotia to witness the sixteen year old shortstop’s heavy hits.

“That was probably the most exciting week of my life,” Buck, who then went by his given name Rich Terfry, says of that early peak. He adds that all the critical acclaim for his latter twisted, rustically husky raps about centaurs and zombies can’t compare to being scouted then by the MLB or simply playing ball in his hometown as a boy.

“I (still) need baseball, this thing that I can turn to that is really simple and good, (especially) when things aren’t going as well with (my) music. I can get that simple satisfaction even just out of playing catch, there’s something so Zen about it… it just feels fluid and rhythmic, like all is right with the world.”


Uncut: https://kylelawrence.wordpress.com/hip-hop-introspection/

Published version: http://www.local-iq.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2079&Itemid=54

Hutong Robberies on the Rise

Filed under: Uncategorized — kylelawrence @ 12:31 am

The city’s ancient alleyways are under threat by thieves that may be more sophisticated then they seem. By Kyle Mullin for Beijing’s City Weekend, Aug. 3 2011

Keiko Wong assumed she was safe nestled near the slender alleys of Daju Hutong. For the past two years she and her New York-born husband, Oliver Rockwell, often took their infant son for leisurely strolls down the serpentine streets preserved from China‘s dynastic eras, swapping gardening tips with neighbors they met along the way. The young family never felt the need to hide their bikes inside at night, instead leaving them outside, padlocked to a weathered old wall.

So Wong’s shock was numbing on the evening of Friday, July 15, when she and her 16 month-old son returned home to find their belongings torn from the shelves and scattered everywhere.





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