shadow

Bid Now for Best Seats at Jackson-Triggs Sold Out show

War Child  Jackson-Triggs

Bruce’s show in Niagara On The Lake is sold-out but here’s a chance to get tickets plus a special “meet & greet”. You also can support one of Bruce’s favorite causes War Child. Take a look and maybe you can get the last remaining tickets.

BID HERE NOW for the Best Seats in the House tickets and a Meet and Greet for Bruce Cockburn’s August 19th show at Jackson-Triggs.
Auction closes Sunday, August 7th! All proceeds support War Child.


The dam over Almonte’s troubled waters by Linda Manzer

Citizens of a picturesque town outside of Ottawa lament the expansion of a hydro dam they claim will ruin a pice of paradise

Picture a lovely, quiet town surrounded by old stone mills that have scarcely changed in a hundred years. The main street is full of charming shops selling local crafts and restaurants that attract interesting visitors — including recently Justin Trudeau and family.

Right through the heart of town runs a magical river with cascading waterfalls. It’s a special, loved place where people fish, kids swim and wildlife abounds. This is Almonte, a town of 5,000 people about 50 km southwest of Ottawa, recently voted one of the 10 most charming towns in Canada by Expedia travel site.

Linda Manzer - Almonte photo:Emma Jackson

Alongside turtles and herons, this section of the Mississippi River (no connection to the famous U.S. river) is also home to the endangered Rapid’s clubtail dragonfly. You can sense the river running through Almonte is magical, but the dragonfly’s presence here highlights how truly rare this setting is.

Yet right in the centre of this enchanted river, a company called Enerdu Power Systems wants to add a massive new powerhouse to a small existing generating station, blasting the riverbed to increase water flow and installing a dam over top of the cascades.

Although the town of Almonte has fought this dam tooth and nail for years, its construction is due to start this week.

Along with several dozen other Almonte residents, I protested this dam last week by wading into the river. We stretched across it in a line, holding hands, desperately hoping for publicity to attract the attention of someone with power to stop the company at the final hour. We started a petition to Catherine McKenna, federal minister of the environment, which includes signatures from singers Bruce Cockburn and Paul Simon, as well as cartoonist Gary Larson.

This is truly a David versus Goliath story. The town of Almonte has never wanted this project and has been fighting for more than four years to stop it. Despite the strong local opposition, including from Mayor Shaun McLaughlin, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) has approved the project. Jeff Cavanagh, owner of Enerdu, is determined and has ample resources.

Yes, his dam will generate electricity. But, actually, no new energy will be added to the overall grid because the Appleton dam just upstream will lose whatever power it gains due to changing water levels, according to a report by the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists.

Cavanagh also says his project will create jobs, which is true. But they’re just temporary jobs. Once the project is done, there will be, at most, a few employees.

Unlike another power plant downstream, which is owned and operated by the town, Cavanagh’s privately owned plant will add no new revenue to Almonte.

Something is wrong here.

There is an endangered dragonfly making its habitat at the exact location Cavanagh wants to dynamite to build his power plant.

The MNR is mandated to facilitate renewable energy but it is also tasked with implementing the Endangered Species Act. So where do the MNR’s priority lie? Given that there is another power plant upstream that can easily handle increased capacity, the answer should be clear.

The MNR insists the dragonfly does not make its habitat here, even though there have been documented sightings of the dragonfly in areas impacted by this project.

We believe the entire Environmental Assessment conducted by provincial authorities on this Enerdu project was based on insufficient and outdated facts.

The report by the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalist documents how the high­water levels caused by Enerdu water control devices already in place are drowning 600 hectares of protected wetlands.

Now Cavanagh wants to expand further down the river and add a dam that will control even more of the river’s flow. Does the government of Ontario serve the people of Ontario or Jeff Cavanagh?

There is so much wrong with this project, which will forever mar the beauty of Almonte with unsightly fences, safety notices, warning systems and restricting buoys. The part of the river where children now swim will be off­limits.

A river that was once teeming with life and the jewel of our town will be harnessed like a wild animal in a cage.

I stood beside the river last week with a native elder and asked him if this would have been a sacred place. “Most definitely,” he said.

Sometimes you do know what you’ve got before it’s gone.

Linda Manzer is a guitar maker living in Almonte.

Photo: Emma Jackson



Remembering Bill Hawkins: The poet who became a songwriter

July 6, 2016 – Poet, songwriter and erstwhile cab driver, Bill Hawkins died of cancer on July 4, 2016.

A poet is deeply conflicted and it’s in his work that he reconciles those deep conflicts.’
— Irving Layton

It’s traditional to begin these types of obituaries with an anecdote that best sums up the subject as a whole person.

Bill Hawkins - poet songwriter
Bill Hawkins – poet songwriter (photo – Wayne Hiebert/Postmedia)

But Bill Hawkins defies the one anecdote rule.

Bill Hawkins defied many of the rules, often to his personal and professional detriment.

And as with most people who communed with many, and lived the younger portion of life to excess, it’s occasionally difficult to determine where the truth ends and exaggeration begins.


Rob Wasserman, Masterful Upright Bassist, Dies After Brief Hospitalization

~from Bruce’s Facebook page, by Bernie Finkelstein:

Some sad news to report. Acclaimed bassist Rob Wasserman has passed away (June 29). Here’s what Jambase reported last night.

“Just hours after Bob Weir shared the news bassist Rob Wasserman was battling serious health issues, comes word Wasserman has died. RatDog guitarist Mark Karan first revealed Rob had passed on with Weir confirming the news shortly thereafter.

Rob Wasserman
Rob Wasserman

Rob Wasserman is best known for his long tenure alongside Weir as a founding member of RatDog as well as the pair’s Bob Weir & Rob Wasserman project. Wasserman was a member of RatDog from the group’s mid ’90s formation through 2002 and then again from 2010 to their most recent performances.”

Rob played on what many people consider to be one of Bruce’s finest albums “The Charity Of Night“, recorded in 1996. Before that Bruce and Rob had played together in the early 90’s at Sony studios in New York where they along with Lou Reed and Rosanne Cash performed together on one of Bruce’s “Christmas With Cockburn” radio shows.


The Long-Lost ’06 Bruce Cockburn “God Factor” Interview (with Audio)

by Cathleen Falsani
Updated on May 26, 2016. Original post published in March 2011.

In the spring of 2006, Farrar, Straus & Giroux published my first book, The God Factor: Inside the Spiritual Lives of Public People, which was a collection of 32 “spiritual profiles” of well-known people (I won’t say “celebrities” as that label applies awkwardly to many folks in the book) who I had spent time with face-to-face talking about their spiritual lives. I then set out, as you do, promoting the book at various literary festivals and other public appearances. As part of that tour, we decided I should conduct a few of these “God Factor” interviews live before an audience. We invited Bruce Cockburn, long a favorite of mine and one of the first “celebrity” interviews I ever conducted way back when I was writing for my college newspaper. Bruce agreed to join me onstage at the Ann Arbor Book Festival in May 2006. I figured he’d fly in with his manager, do my little dog-and-pony show and fly back to Ontario. Instead, incredibly gracious and generous soul that he is, Bruce drove his van down from his home in Kingston, Ontario alone and spent a couple of days hanging out with me in the rain in Ann Arbor. Our conversation onstage was only a small part of the amazing conversations we had those few days in Michigan, but the only one for which I have an audio recording. (Our dinner at this fabulous Indian restaurant in downtown Ann Arbor — I’ve never before or since had curried okra quite as good — not far from the theater where I’d interviewed him backstage 15 years earlier, will remain one of my favorite experiences of all time.)

As for our public “interview,” it too remains one of my favorite of all time. For years I’ve meant to take a couple of hours to transcribe it and post it so all of you could read (and hear) Bruce’s thoughtful responses to my questions about his faith. I’ve sat down many times to do so, never finishing until tonite. So with my apologies for taking many years to share it with you in its fullness, I give you the Bruce Cockburn “God Factor” interview in its entirety.

Transcript of my Bruce Cockburn “God Factor” interview at the Ann Arbor Book Festival, May 13, 2006


KALW’s 75th Anniversary Concert featuring Kronos Quartet and Bruce Cockburn

KALW's 75th Anniversary Concert

KALW.org is the oldest non-commercial station in California and west of the Mississippi. It’s highly unusual for a radio station to be around as long as we have. But thanks to listener support, KALW has hung on for 75 years. To celebrate, we’re hosting a special concert on August 4th at the Nourse Theatre in San Francisco. Headlining the concert will be Bruce Cockburn and the Kronos Quartet.

We have a limited number of VIP tickets [scroll down] to a post-concert reception with the musicians and the best seats in the house.
A single VIP ticket for a $150 contribution
A pair of VIP tickets for a $240 contribution

1 August 2016 – UPDATE:
$35 Tickets are available for this show!

30 June 2016 – UPDATE:
Regular admission tickets are now on sale.


WEFT – Radio Interview

May 11, 2016 – A two hour radio interview that took place in April 2016, has been uploaded to WEFT.org.

Niecey interviews well known and respected Canadian singer/songwriter Bruce Cockburn.

Play TheMidwatch.Niecey.interview.w.Bruce.Cockburn_2016-04-27.mp3
 
 

Bill Usher recalls radio production from tour with Bruce Cockburn

Bill Usher, Bruce Cockburn, Jenny Scheinman, Gary Craig - 2013 - Golden, CO
Bill Usher (left) poses with renowned Canadian musician Bruce Cockburn (centre, left) and members of Cockburn’s backing band, Jenny Scheinman and Gary Craig, following Cockburn’s 2013 show in Golden

Mar 24, 2016 – Long before he arrived in Golden, Colorado and began to have an impact on what is now a bustling arts and culture scene, Bill Usher was a radio documentary producer and musician, with one of his proudest works coming in the form of a two-hour documentary titled On Tour with Bruce Cockburn.

Usher had worked with the Canadian folk icon on his 1976 release In the Falling Dark and toured across Canada with him on the subsequent tour. The idea to document the cross country tour with Cockburn seemed like a winner, and Usher took his idea to CBC, having produced documentaries for them previously.

“As soon as I knew that I had the gig…I basically went into one of the producers (at CBC) and said ‘I’m going out on the road with Cockburn for 12 weeks. I have this idea that I could do an on the road back stage documentary, are you interested?’,” he remembered.

The producer was interested, and Usher proceeded to round up all of the five inch reels of tape that he could before hitting the road for the tour.

Film and radio was a different animal back then. The days of digital recording were but a pipe dream, making production a lengthy, time-intensive process compared to contemporary standards.


Circles In The Stream – On Tour With Bruce Cockburn in 1977

February 2016 – Daniel Keebler, over at the Gavin’s Woodpile, has put together a wonderful article, including a 2 hour audio documentary which was made in 1977.

Special Occasion presents – ON TOUR WITH BRUCE COCKBURN

A two-hour program produced for the CBC in 1977. Bill Usher documents aspects of the Circles In The Stream tour of which he was a part. Included are intimate conversations with Bruce Cockburn about himself, his music and those who listen to it.

Related Posts:


Scroll Up