Category Archives: Concert Hall


available at VPLI didn’t really know what to expect when I clicked on a friend’s twitter link that gushed about an artist I’d never heard of and her upcoming concert taking place in Toronto, but I am SO GLAD I did! (On second thought, I should really never have doubted her taste in music. What was I thinking?)

Just a quick listen through Agnes Obel’s soundcloud had me immediately searching up in another tab the availability of her CDs here at VPL. And while I’m not one to really know what exactly to talk about when it comes to music, I’m going to bring her to your attention if nothing else. Obel’s music is an incredibly beautiful, soft, and haunting moment reminiscent of a fairytale or a daydream. She’s amazing, and she’s COMING TO TORONTO FOR A CONCERT (March 4th, in case you’re interested)!

And if you enjoy what you’re listening to, you might also enjoy these ones:

1. Lucy Rose – Like We Used To

2. Safia Nolin

3. Ludovico Einaudi

4. Patrick Watson – Wooden Arms

CHET BAKER: portraits of a tragic artist as an older man

Born to be BlueI was pleased recently, to catch Born to be Blue, the new Chet Baker bio-pic for a couple reasons: [A] I’ve since reconciled my admiration for the cinema of Ethan Hawke and, [B] I’m a big Chet Baker fan.

So first things first, let’s deal with the movie. This might be the perfect time for Hawke to step into a Chet Baker role. Perfect because Hawke’s (now) craggy and weathered look embodies nicely the lived-in-hard features that so defined Baker in his later years. Back in the day, the younger Hawke was certainly fresh and good looking enough to portray the prettier, more iconic Baker of the 1950s. Sure, one might argue that a depiction of Baker’s artistic and personal peaks – when he made the recordings he is most famous for today – would be the ideal period to present. It was only a few short years and Baker was surrounded by giants of jazz. But Born to be Blue chooses instead to give us the older, gaunt, damaged Baker whose fame had by then receded.

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this is (North) American music

A Sailor's Guide to the EarthIt’s a funny thing to me: a lot of the most widely disparaged music genres are the ones I love the most. So many times, it seems, someone might say, “I love all kinds of music except for Rap Music. Or Heavy Metal. Or Country Music.” I hear this all the time. You want to get this party started? Well fine, just don’t put on anything by The Wu-Tang. Or Celtic Frost. And definitely we don’t want to listen to any Merle Haggard [RIP].

This is such a pity. Like I said, I love rap music and heavy metal. I am just crazy for country music. And right now, there’s all kinds of quality country music. Like, my current favourite 2016 album (at least until this morning) was newcomer Margo Price’s Midwest Farmer’s Daughter. On the more traditional end of the twang spectrum, definitely listen to the new Loretta Lynn album Full Circle. Both are exceptional examples of the genre. But the best country album I might hear this year could be Sturgill Simpson‘s new record A Sailor’s Guide to Earth.

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