Posts tagged ‘ojibway’

Summer Solstice

wow! i’m at home, on the range, south east Manitoulin Island, in a paradise! peace, blue and green in every direction this Sunday morning. mega wowza!

My Home on the Range: I’d drive all night to get back home.

and i did drive all night to get back home! i split O Town around 8 p.m. Friday, after all was said and done at the office. the temperature was way the flipping up around 32 C, boiling hot and brutal in the city. folks over there sitting on their pavement and concrete, sitting in their shades, fussing and seriously fuming in that urban nightmare. i looked it over, chuckling, knowing full well that i had a place of peace just 8 short hours down the open highway.

Last week’s weather forecast, O Town.

it was a smoker of a day over there and i was glad to be leaving! glad to be leaving the city heat and the nightmarish city scenes: folks in all sorts of distress.

Highway 17 between Deep River and Mattawa, around midnight.

like i said before: there is no short version to the drive from O Town to the range: it is all of 8 hours. so my thing is, lets make a night of it and pull over along the way to see the stars and to smell the landscape in the boon docks section where there is big time no light or noise pollution. the scene above though: they’re fixing a bridge out there and its down to one lane.

Nice work!

with all that alone time you can take a few moments to think about the work day, business week and the scenes along the way. this instagram post caught my attention!

Fostex plugged into MacBook: digitizing old twinravens songs!

when you’re sitting at the starting point of an 8 hour drive you almost wonder if its worth the time and effort. had i stayed in the city i’d be back to fooling around with the old Fostex plugged into the computer but i’d been working on that every night of the work week and of course i saw the forecast for saturday!

Saturday afternoon, June 20th.

a heat wave doesn’t mean a thing when you have a river running through it! and we surely do out here on the open range!

My home sweet home!

there she is! at around 130 yesterday afternoon, smoking hot, a gin and tonic, and mission accomplished: home and exactly what i imagined during the work week. definitely worth an 8 hour drive turned into about 12 hours on the road, over night.

at home with the river

she said: you have beautiful legs. (how nice of her!)

anishnabe sun worship

okay so maybe i don’t have the figure i had a short 4 years ago but one thing is for darn sure: yesterday’s round of sun worship was exactly what the doctor ordered! and exactly what i’d imagined! and this old boy is still on the mend! i hope to be back to my “old self” soon!

a summer evening at home

gosh it is hard to believe i’ve been living on the road going on 4 years… hopefully by the time i get back there will be a deck on the front of that house! when it gets there and when i get there i’m going to crack open something very tasty and sit down out there, enjoy my view, thank my lucky stars, and remember too my many nights in the city.

an artist alone in the city

but we are here today and it is NOW! it is a paradise in every direction out here: bird song in every direction and the quiet sounds of the river. yes sweet yes! it is wonderful be here at home. much love!

Love Song No. 6

as some of you may know: ages ago i was in an amazing all native rock and roll band. we grew out of the drama team at the N’Swakamok Native Friendship Centre over there in Sudbury, Ontario. ah but those were some glorious and exciting times!

on stage at the Northern Lights Folk Festival (ages ago!)

the band was called No Reservations and gosh they were a wild bunch! some day we need to write a book about that one.

and so around that time, i bought a Fostex brand 4 track recorder which used basic cassette tapes. i’d plug a cassette in there and use those 4 tracks to try and make something song wise i could take to the band. of course we had that Fostex sitting around at the party house too and some mighty weird songs were recorded on there including the infamous: What to do with Sunday Afternoon… (also on my Youtube channel, warning: coarse language and sexual content in that song!)

anyway: the Fostex and all those original tapes lay buried in a plastic bin back home on the range, for who knows how long. about 5 years ago someone who knows how to transfer these old analog tapes to digital went to work on a few of them and we ended up with some snap shots of the past, which we still need to make videos for and post them to the twinravens youtube channel. for kicks you see!

recently though i was given a gizmo that connects a guitar into a computer to record on Garage Band. this thing is an Apogee brand “jam” connector. the line in is the 1/4 inch jack and the line out is this magic whatever it is that turns your guitar into a digital. but instead of plugging the quarter inch line in jack from the guitar i plugged the far end into this Fostex and boom: we can hear all these old tapes once again but this time on computer. super fun stuff especially as some of this “insane and abstract” music hasn’t seen the light of day since 1995. like: The Shadow of You. (yikes! what a song!)

anyway. i haven’t got the details sound wise figured out: how to mix these four tracks into the digital without a lot of back ground noise, buzz, and all that crap that goes with a jangle of wires all over the table top. and i’m no ACE when it comes to using Garage Band! i’m still trying to figure that one out!

but here is Love Song Number 6 for you! fussed with last night to the tune of a half a dozen beers, a lot of wiggling and waggling of wires and yes the mix is very muddy, but this is our first run at reviving these old tapes and putting them on the youtube air.

Fostex analog to Garage Band digital, first attempt.

i think i wrote and recorded this in 1994 when the band was starting up and really getting going. we were a rock and roll band so this song definitely didn’t make the set list.

i put this cheesy video together last night after fussing for several hours with the sound and those measly 4 tracks! (gosh the business of recording sound, songs and so on is time consuming! best not to be consuming a half dozen beers along the way… (we’ll try it again on the sober straight and narrow very soon!)) the drawings in the video come from that time! those are drawings of mine from a sketch book dated 1994/1995. you’ll even see the famed Stacie from Malibu in there! gosh she was a thunderbolt!

anyway! there it is! my first attempt to revive these old songs of mine that never made the No Rez set list or album list. i had a lot of fun trying to figure this out last night and yes, those tasty German beers can become a diversion in the process but you have to remember last night it was a blistering 30 C plus! up here on the 3rd floor it was smoking hot! we were down to our bikinis!

Me and Shag going to work in No Reservations

ah but the music business was fun and how i would love to get back into it. but a fella like me needs a band and right now my band is working other irons in other fires.

the glass ain’t half empty/full, its BONE DRY!

you see in the band i was never one of the vocalists. we had 3 good singers up front and that is where they’re supposed to be! a voice like mine just couldn’t run in that race but i was mighty happy to be in there on one of the guitars.

ah for kicks here is another one of the Fostex tapes digitized by one of the lads who really knows how to make the sound proper and clean. well, as clean as it can be considering the tape is 25 years old! (this is what Love Song Number 6 is supposed to sound like, less the tasty German pilsners!)

WARNING: Coarse language and sexual content.

made up on the spot, Sunday morning, Suds, 1995

this is one of those songs made up on the spot: no lyrics written, just made up as the tape rolled. same with the guitar, i picked up Shag’s 12 string and hit the record button. you can hear Shag in the back at the beginning, he’s cooking up breakfast. that’s also Shag in the background vocal which is kooky as he is a LEAD vocal!

here is what the band really sounds like, with all the bells and whistles of a fancy studio production:

Nice work!

so i’ll go back to work on those old cassette tapes and see what we can scrounge up in the lost songs/Fostex dept. (might be best to start the project in the morning minus the German pilsners! ha!)

and that’s the story behind: Love Song Number 6. words and music by Mark Seabrook. artwork too, drawn over the fun times of 1994 and 1995. what art fun!

The Dream at the End of the World

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Opening pages of Found Poetry Book 4: The Dream at the End of the World.  I loved that title and to boot: printed way back in 1991, the paper is quality stuff that can handle the sharpie markers, highlighters and thinly spread dollar store acrylic paint.  I keep saying “thinly spread” as no matter how good the paper quality is in these old books, if you layer on gobs of acrylic, bad things are going to happen to your book project.  I’ve seen it happen with a few participants and yes it can get messy fast.  And that’s when the tears start…

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Remember: this is meant to be a long term art making project.  As you can see I started this one way back on September 4, 019.  Here we are at December 15th and I have 3 pages to go!  The opening “found poem”, is 2 pages of love…

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Found poems…  Love this stuff!  As I said to participants:  what literary surprises are waiting for us with every page?

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The End of Art School, found poem No. 3, is an 8 page beauty that goes like this:

in a dream, rising up through the tranquil sleep of a warm May evening, left in its wake a delicious sense of peace, of afternoon sunlight, the dream terrain, i felt the thrill of recognition, was offering, up to him again.  

his life was out of control, sidetracked by untidy passions, impulsive missteps, messy obsessions…

daring was in his art, and his ambition seemed limitless, he was an accomplished poet as well as a musician, still, he was beginning to feel like a hired hand, and he was weary of focusing his energy on works that were not his own.

disturbing, nihilistic, quietly bizarre…

its perpetual distraction.  as summer approached, the power of his stories, the dream had shown him the way.

flirtatious, seductive, she staged mad crushes, they had become favourites among the creative elite, they were famous among the famous.

his only refuge was his imagination, he invented his own planet, “I was always trying to get away.”

found his freedom, possessed of a diffident charm, and sensible in summer, thrillingly remote, was vital and clamorous, the ancient native, life burst through the seams, wonderfully excessive, costume balls, expeditions and martinis, cleanliness and efficiency.

steady, hot, with a moon that is like a sun when it is full, a madhouse: the piano in their isolated house was wildly out of tune…

trance dancing-all of it was part of the pageantry, Sahara, the sky had a life of its own, baptism of solitude, silent country, sensation of existing in the midst of something that is absolute: the absolute has no price.

mystical undercurrents ran deep, a man transforming, the supple nature of reality, on the other side of the looking glass, alienness intoxicating, insupportable jealousy, I shall be away. 

pursued the exotic, self indulgent, he kept up his creative momentum, he transported himself, an untamed twenty year old, the two began to spin fantasies.

a protagonist in his novel, restless souls who wanted to explore life outside, purpose and spirit, it was a mystery, She laughed: “You KNOW I don’t want you to go.”

a close friend of both, i dimly remember my own face and not yours, how psychosomatic can you get?

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Of course there is room for drawing: “Fancy Shawl Dancer, who IS Mother Earth”,  sharpie marker, thinly spread dollar store acrylic.

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And room too, for experimenting with the draw and the subject of the draw:  black ball point pen with sharpie marker on acrylic paint.  Maybe there is an opportunity to create a new series of pictures from the sketches in these pages.

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Some days are tougher than others…  Sharpie marker on acrylic paint.

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“True Love: age 22, (I knew her name)”, Found poem, a 12 page extravaganza!

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Once into it, these sketches can be pretty telling…  (life on the road…  )

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And of course there is room for fun stuff!  The end page of a wildly sexual poem, from the Road Taken!

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Ah yes: room to explore, room to create, and maybe a new series of paintings in the development stages…

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Heavy duty and ultra supra TELLING!  Wow.  This drawing is from the last of the pages in the book, 384 pages of found poems, drawings, journals, love stories, memory brambles lane, black circles under blood shot eyes, spinning out in a parking lot, from soup to nuts, insanity before xmas in the city.

Yes the found poetry book project is a work in progress and an exciting exercise for the creative soul.  On Monday I’ll be back in the goodwill on the snoop, looking for another interesting title with high quality paper.

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Power Bird, acrylic on canvas, 18×24 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Made fresh this past week and using a new brand of acrylic paint!  The last of my Stevenson Professional Acrylic, and I mean the last, we’re down to the bottom of the barrels, I’m pretty sure we only have a half dozen paintings remaining in those paint barrels.  Very sad for me as Stevenson was my brand since all the way back in art school.

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Power Birds, acrylic on canvas, 24×36 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Originally it was a black and white but with this new brand of paint in the house, it’s time to explore and see what she can do.

Just ten days before Xmas and…  yikes: another year will be in the books.

 

January 9th/2011 Winter Wonderland

aanii!  boozhoo!  and halloo there!  so this blog thing huh…  we’ll get a year or two into it and msn will change it again.  i had me a fun little community on msn several years ago and they pulled the plug on that: gone!  well that sucked cause i had tons of very cool photos on there, stories and friends and the whole shoot’n matchola is gone.

i thought that was going to happen to my space here but i see some of those old journal entries have survived and i’m thankful cause those too, are some fun stories from days long gone.

well anywho.  i’m out here on the range in the middle of winter.  thank the almighty we made it this far and that we have a big blue sky and snow covered fields with a river cutting through, and a warm house in which to view it from.  we’ve been out here since May Long Weekend and what a change in scenery its been:  from downtown Ottawa, living on Booth Street with the madness of Chinatown going on right outside the front window, to this place: boon docks central on Manitoulin Island, back home with the natives and non, Green Acres, and zero light pollution, noise pollution, zilchola in the pollution department!  its nothing but the great wide open.  yes indeed what a change in scenery.  you can see most of it on the msn photos but my facebook too has a bundle of pics of the homestead coming back from the dead and the incredible scenes from the summer of 2010.  wow what a way to start the day:  barefoot in the river with a cup of hot coffee and…  well hey.  its a big scene out there and tough to describe.  (my english has never been much of anything.)

so yesterday, once i had the fire going nicely and we’d warmed up the rooms (its minus 20 out there), i cracked open the paints and the brushes and fooled with a few new ideas in the paint department.  you see we have a show at the end of January, at the Wild Oat in Ottawa, down there in the Glebe which is a very groovy part of town.  the surviving war horses and others from the Sweetgrass Bistro show in November are already in position, so we are good to go but i want something in there with the bells and whistles jangling and blowing!

usually we show the paintings on gallery canvas with the edges painted and a tasty little glaze over those acrylics. they hang without frames.  mind you framing would be an expensive dealio in 7.5 inch heelios cause they’re big!  like 36×48 or 40×48.  so what i’m doing this time is working smaller, sketch size, 8×10, 11×14, and framing those up with matts and the whole nine yards.  that’s going to make a diff i hope come show time!  folks can take those with them, ready to hang where ever, and they’ll fit nicely right under their arms.

well whatever happens its no sweat cause somewhere down the road those paintings will sell.  maybe not at the Wild Oat, but we won’t have any of them by June 15th.  that much is for certain.  so today, once we get the place warmed up, and clear away some of the xmas decorations!!!, i’ll get back to the basics and pick up where i left off yesterday afternoon.  truth is i’m anxious to see what these little paintings will look like framed and matted.  (we could be onto something tasty!)

i’ll say this too:  once i’d put the brushes away for the day, the ladies and i walked up 20th sideroad about half mile and the sunset was fan flippin tastico!  cold to the tune of at least 15 below, but we were snuggled up nicely in our heavy duty winter gear and i was working up sweat draggin that sleigh with an 8 year old girl playing on it.  the walk and that fresh air is what we needed to make an evening of it in the town of Tehkummah proper, meeting with other artists and like minded folks.

so we’ll see what develops over the next 12 to 15 hours, perfect day for it, clear and ice cold but what a view!  the river is running fast and she’s steaming!

don’t forget i’ve got my youtube channel if you want to see the river.  just type in twinravens2000 and you’ll get my channel complete with vids of the river, the shoreline at prov. bay, and various art related and NR music thangs.

chi miigwetch!