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Eating Our Own

November 26, 2012 @ 17:15

Justin Bieber grew up not far from Toronto in the town of Stratford and from what I can gather is a proud Canadian.

If you've taken the time to see his documentary "Never Say Never", which you should, you may have noticed that his bedroom is / was decorated with sports paraphernalia, most notably the Toronto Maple Leafs.

So I can only imagine how the phone call went when Bieber was first approached to perform live at Grey Cup half-time.

It was the 100th Anniversary of the Cup, the Argos were playing and the game was being held not far his home-town. He was probably thrilled and readily accepted, because as a Canadian he wanted to be part of it.

After all, he wasn't doing it for the money. He's arguably the most popular pop artist in the world today and there's absolutely no way Grey Cup organizers and sponsors could come up with the money necessary for him to make the trip to the Rogers Centre for two songs.

He did it for the spirit of it all. I'm convinced of that, and that's why I found it so disappointing when he was booed.

Here we had a national celebration that always involves musical artists and this Canadian kid, who's become an international superstar agreed to be there.

It should have been a highlight. It should have been appreciated. Instead it becomes a boofest by a bunch of lunkheads who really didn't grasp the magnitude of it all.

Some have argued that Beiber wasn't a good fit for the Grey Cup, but I really don't get that. There were kids in the crowd, there was hundreds of thousands of kids watching at home, and speaking from my own perspective, up until yesterday I had never seen the kid perform, so I was actually enlightened to see what its all about.

Not only that, but look at the list of performers who've been part of the Superbowl in recent years.

Beyonce, Madonna, Janet Jackson, P Diddy, N Sync, Britney Spears, Nelly, Christine Aguilara, Toni Braxton and Boyz to Men.

Were all of these artists a bad fit? Does football necessarily mean head banging rock, or does a Grey Cup or Superbowl represent a big event that calls for big acts regardless of their genre. I vote for the latter.

I thought bookending Gordon Lightfoot and Justin Beiber was a great idea. The extreme old and the refreshing new of what this country has to offer.

I know its not good practice to stereotype but I can only imagine who the culprits were yesterday. Those who fit into a group that feel they're "supposed" to boo Justin Bieber.

I found the reaction terribly disappointing. You know, for as great as we are, we sure like to eat our own.

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How Can This Happen?

February 21, 2011 @ 18:05

As part of the Patterson Family Day festivities, we decided to take in a movie. Me and my wife Delyse, my daughter Melanie, her fine husband Josh, my son Danny and his sweet girlfriend Shawna ventured over to Silver City Brampton and for what we thought was going to be a motion picture.

Instead we paid for a big steaming turd.

The movie was called "Just Go With It" and I find the title to extremely ironic, because after this crapola was completed and those guilty of producing it sat in a board room knowing full well how horrid it was, they had to adopt the same attitude.

"It's lousy and bad and embarrassing, but what are we gonna do at this point? Let's just go with it."

If this movie has any redeeming quality it's the thought process it initiates as you wonder how anybody could write this shit, who could produce this shit and how did they not shut it down halfway through when it became frighteningly apparent it was going to smell like shit.

This cinematic excrement also initiated an emotion.


As I sat there waiting for this nine hour movie to end, I thought of all the good, quality scripts that remain on desktops and in drawers and buried under others, never see the light of day because they were written by someone who didn't know the right people.

How sad that because of some contractual obligation between the movie producing elite stuff like this actually gets the OK. How sad that the movie going public has to pay for it before they find out how bad it is. How sad that Adam Sandler, Jennifer Aniston and Nicole Kidman didn't pool their money to have every frame of this clunker burned.

I'm not going to bother describing the theme or the characters because neither deserves the effort it will take for me to hit the keys on my keyboard, but I will say this. When my supplier downloads the next few movies that I can watch in the comfort of my own home for absolutely nothing, I won't feel nearly as guilty.

After today, Hollywood owes me something.

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Is John Lennon Still Alive

April 15, 2009 @ 13:34

Check this out. Some guy has found a cassette inside a video camera he bought at a lawn sale in North Ontario.

There's a brief clip of an old man who bares more than a passing resemblance to an old John Lennon. Is Lennon alive and living in Canada?

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Billy Bob Thornton Is An Asshole

April 9, 2009 @ 08:01

The video is over 13 minutes long, but take the time to give it a watch and fully appreciate how much of an asshole Billy Bob Thornton is.

He and his third rate band the Boxmasters played Massy Hall this week and yesterday they were invited into the CBC for an interview with Jian Ghomeshi.

Thornton for some inexplicable reason took offence to Ghomeshi mentioning that he was an actor, and proceeded to ruin the interview.

Full marks to Jian for holding his ground.

I can only laugh at selfish bastards like Thornton. There was a probably a time when he'd be willing to do an interview anywhere, anytime to further his career. But like so many others, once he becomes the big man he forgets those people who helped get him there.

Not only that, but if Billy Bob Thornton doesn't think the modest success of his shitty music isn't tied to his film career, then you can blame drugs for this pathetic interview.

The Boxmasters offer bar band stuff. In fact they probably couldn't get a gig at the Keltic Rock in Brampton.

Dick head.

The Irony of this interview for me, is that Jian Ghomeshi is actually a musician, and a good one at that. In fact he wrote one of my favourite songs of the 90's while he was with Moxy Fruvous.

The boys were always good to the Humble and Fred Show - and I like to think we were good to them.

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One Less Ladie

February 25, 2009 @ 08:54

It's a sad day for Canadian music. The Barenaked Ladies have broken up.

The fellas can dress it up anyway they want, but given what's happened over the past few months, and the concise message on their website, it's obvious this ain't pretty.

The official word is that Steven Page has left the band to pursue solo projects including theatrical opportunities. The remaining members of the band will continue to record and tour as the Barenaked Ladies.

It really shouldn't fool anyone. Since when did a guy have to leave a band to pursue a solo career or even become an actor? Lots of other people manage to do it; in fact I witnessed an example last week when Jim Cuddy played in Peterborough.

Without having any documented proof, I think it's safe to say the professional relationship between Page and Ed Robertson became strained after Page was arrested for cocaine possession in upstate New York last summer.

Page gave the band a huge kick in the nuts. A drug charge just didn't fit the Barenaked Ladies and it damaged their reputation as a wholesome group of Canadian guys who performed at Disney World and made children's records.

For Page to leave the band completely just doesn't make sense. What happens at the next Ladies concert when it's time for Brian Wilson, or the rest of the huge repertoire that Page is responsible for?

It just won't work.

There's more to the story.

Regardless of how you feel about the Barenaked Ladies it is a sad day. They were one of the few Canadian acts that managed to become international and they produced a lot of good music over the years.

And what about their concerts? A lot of fun times, especially in the 90s.

And what about their Humble and Fred appearances? All through the 90's and right into the new millennium the fellas always managed to make an appearance at our Christmas shows. It didn't matter how busy they were, it became a tradition for not only Humble and I, but for them as well.

The Ladies were always good to CFNY / Edge because it's where they got their initial push.

This is a picture of the Barenaked Ladies with my wife, kids and niece during the Humble and Fred Christmas Show back in 1992.

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My Pick

February 15, 2009 @ 12:18

With the Academy Awards just a week away, I thought I'd throw in my two cents worth.

I probably won't watch the awards because they're much too long, and I find these shows to be much too incestuous. Most of these stars claim that they don't care about awards and that the art comes first, but on Oscar night hypocrisy literally seeps out of my television set on to my laminated flooring.

I've seen four of the five movies nominated for best picture - Milk, Slumdog Millionaire, Benjamin Button and Frost/Nixon.

I haven't seen The Reader, but maybe I'll be able to catch it by next Sunday.

I don't think it will matter anyway, because my choice for best picture didn't get nominated in any category but that shouldn't be surprising because the subject matter still doesn't sit well with large portions of the United States, where far too many people are still in the dark ages when it comes to the church.

Bill Maher's Religulous was the best two hours I spent watching a movie in the past year.

I absolutely loved it, because Maher did a superb job of handling the absurdity of organized religion, the trouble it has caused, and the people it has sucked in and destroyed.

It also acknowledges the wholesome intent of religion, but exposes the beakdown of that message by so many evil messengers and the refusal of millions to accept the logic and proof of evolution.

This is not a documentary for atheists, it's more for agnostics or as Mahr calls us, rationalists.

Maher doesn't believe in god, but he doesn't go as far as to claim there isn't one, his premise is that nobody really knows for sure but we sure waste a lot of time and shed a lot of blood over something we're not sure about.

And he's right, nobody does know for sure.

However, as the years decades go by and science is able to explain more and more things, the idea of a man sitting in the clouds judging each and every one of us and controlling the outcome of the odd football game is totally whacked.

As time goes on the argument against a god and religion far outweighs anything that religion can come up with. All religion can come up with is the Bible and several other documents of similar fantasy but anyone who takes the time can easily poke holes in stuff like Adam and Eve, walking on water, immaculate conception, arranged marriages, making women second class citizens and my favourite, female circumcision.

The Bible was written to explain what couldn't be explained hundreds of years ago, but that has all changed with science and technology, so now the Bible has been reduced to something along the lines of Harry Potter.

Whacky reading, especially if you've smoked a joint beforehand.

Religulous is a movie that everyone should take the time to see, even if you vehemently disagree with it, and here's why.

Even though we've advanced in leaps and bounds over the past couple of decades, and much of what religion represents has been exposed as a cover for corruption, greed and much too often sexual assault, Religulous is valuable in the sense that it gives the "other side" equal time.

As Maher points out in the movie, the idea of Santa Claus visiting every house on earth in one evening is ridiculous, but the thought of one man having the capability of controlling the earth and being privy to all our thoughts is widely accepted.

How screwed is that?

Even though we know so much more and so much more can be explained, it's still not generally cool to question the existence of god or the silly little book that promotes him.

Its fine to talk about all the superhuman and supernatural things that god can do, even though he misses the odd plane falling out of the sky and he let that AIDS thing get by him, but it's still not generally acceptable to question his existence.

That's why so many theatres throughout the United States refused to run Religulous.

Because they are still so entrenched in the ridiculous fantasy that is god and the bible and preaching and collection plates that nobody should be allowed, even for two hours, to consider the other side.

That is dangerous.

If you're reading this and you believe in god and all the baggage that comes with it and you think I'm just a big asshole, that's fine. If god works for you and makes your life better and provides the answers you need, great, all the power to you.

Although I might ask, where was god on Thursday night when 12 year old Shawn Mossop and 49 others were burned alive on Flight 3407?

Oh right, I forgot, that was the devil... or is it one of those situatiions where we write it off as "god working in mysteriouos ways?" That's always convenient.

You can't prove there is a god any more than I can prove there isn't, but as each day passes the evidence against a god piles up.

There is another side.

That's what Religulous is all about - and it was released on video this week - if you haven't seen it... let's be doing it!

20 years in jail for men who translated Quran

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Jim Cuddy Band

February 12, 2009 @ 08:45

I went to see the Jim Cuddy Band at Showplace Theatre in Peterborough last night.

A 101.5 The Wolf Presents.

It was excellent. Showplace is the perfect place for a guy like Jim Cuddy. Intimate with 500 seats and good acoustics

Jim performed only three Blue Rodeo songs, and one of them wasn't "Try", but that doesn't matter with Jim Cuddy, because he's got the type of voice and style that makes his music sound great the first time you hear it.

I've always had a special place for Jim Cuddy, Greg Keelor and Blue Rodeo.

The first time I saw the band was 1985 on the deck of a farmhouse in the north part of Brampton.

We smack dap in the middle of the "Spirit of Radio " days, and music director Ivar Hamilton arranged to have this new band provide the entertainment for what he called the first annual "Ranch Party."

Ivar and my other CFNY mate Kevin O'Leary rented a house that they referred to as "the ranch" on Chincousey Rd. It was out in the middle of nowhere at the time and the large deck and generous surroundings begged for a big time bash.

And that's what we had. There had to be a couple of hundred people there.

We all got pissed and we all got stupid and we all enjoyed a fabulous summer evening that was highlighted by Blue Rodeo.

We also received a visit from the Peel Regional Police which prompted me to make a speech into the microphone about Brampton becoming the Soviet Union.

Actually it was something along the lines of, "what is this, a fuckin' communist country?"

The cops didn't like it, but all my beer filled buddies loved it.

Ah, the memories and that's why I had a smile on my face for most of the show last night.

Jimmy Cuddy still sounds great, he hasn't gained a pound and obviously loves what he does.

If you get the chance, check out the show, he'll be at Massey Hall tomorrow night and there are still tickets available.

One more point, Cuddy's fiddle player, Anne Lindsay is a cutey pie and very very talented.

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Zack And Miri Make A Stinker

February 6, 2009 @ 08:49

I was reading an article about film-maker Kevin Smith this week and it reminded me that I wanted to see his latest flick Zack and Miri Make a Porno.

I'll be honest, I'm a big fan of Kevin Smith the person, but I definitely don't count myself among his cult following who've grossly over-rated his films over the years.

Kevin Smith was a great friend of the Humble and Fred Show. No doubt about it.

Whenever he came to town he always made sure he sat in on the morning show for an hour or so. Of course I'm no naïve, I realize there was a lot of self-interest involved because the audience he was trying to reach was exactly the audience that Humble and I supplied him.

Just the same, he was a warm, compassionate and funny guy who was always welcome into the studio to share some great stories while promoting his movies and speaking engagements.

Anyway, I didn't' get the chance to see Zack and Miri at a movie theatre over the holidays, but I did get to see the DVD last night.

I got my hands on one just minutes after reading the Toronto Sun article where Smith complained about the film's lousy showing in theatres and he blamed lack of promotion.

It made about half of the 70 million dollars that was projected.

Smith claims The Weinstein Company let him down through their distribution and promotional methods and that's why the movie blew hogs at the box office.

I beg to differ.

I think the movie failed at the box office because it stinks. Like big piles of steamy shit.

I find it hard to believe that with Kevin Smith's cult overwhelming cult following, that this film would have failed if it was any good. All Smith fans have to do is hear this guy has a new piece of product and they flock like sheep to see it.

Not only that, but I would figure the so-called "naming controversey" would only make people see it even more. Having "porno" in the title didn't sit well in many parts of backwoods America.

Unfortunately in this case, the movie is so weak, so stupid, and so pointless I'm sure even his most passionate fans couldn't bring themselves to recommend it to anyone else.

I'm not going to get into a detailed film review here because I'm probably not capable of one, but I will say this.

Knowing what I do about Kevin Smith, I would suggest if anyone else made this goofy flick, he'd be the first to trash it.

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January 21, 2009 @ 20:41

I'm not a big concert guy, never have been. Being in the radio business over the years gave me access to many a show, and if I told you the shows I could have gone to, but declined, you'd probably be pissed off at me.

It takes a lot to get me out of the house, onto the road, and into a stadium to see a show so it's really got to spin my propeller.

I've left the house to see Barenaked Ladies, U2, Blue Rodeo, UB 40, The Tragically Hip, Steely Dan and the Rolling Stones to name a few, but the most worthwhile trip I've made to see a musical act was several years ago at the Skydome.

I can't even tell you what year it was, but it doesn't matter because it's going to happen again and I plan to be there.

Elton John and Billy Joel bring their Face2Face tour to the ACC on May 26th, and if you have the chance to get tickets, grab them. It's worth it.

You don't even have to be a big fan of either guy, but seeing them together, with their pianos pushed up against each other, singing each others songs is something I've never forgotten and I definitely want to see again.

I'm working my contacts which include the EZ Morning Show with Humble, Kim, Colleen, Rick, Lucas, Bart and Patricia which is giving away tickets.

Maybe Howie can give me the EZ hot line number and then pretend I'm a contestant and let me win a pair. I'd do it for him.

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Two And A Half Men

January 21, 2009 @ 20:40

Speaking of shows, sometime ago my mother recommended I watch the sitcom "Two and a Half Men." with Charlie Sheen.

I didn't think much at the time because my television viewing consists mostly of sports, numerous news shows and some of those real estate shows on HGTV.

I don't watch dramas or comedies.

Anyway, a few weeks ago while sitting all alone in my Peterborough apartment I was flipping around and happened upon an episode of "Two and a Half Men" which was just beginning.

Since then, I've become hooked. This is quality shit, I'm telling you.

I know, I know... the show's been around since 2003 so you're probably wondering what took me so long to discover the bloody thing, but what can I say.

I ignored it until my mother kept badgering me to watch it. I did and now I like it.

And this way I don't have to wait and watch it once a week. There are six years of re-runs that I've barely begun to experience.

It stars Charlie Sheen as Charlie Harper. Jon Cryer as his brother Alan and Angus T. Jones as Alan's son Jake.

They all live together and say lots of ignorant things.

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