Music Notes – July 2017

Indonesian women’s choir Dialita In Indonesia talking honestly about a crime against humanity committed in the mid-sixties has long been a taboo topic. In 1965, President Sukarno, a leading figure in the non-aligned movement, was overthrown in a military coup. The new regime, headed by General Suharto, banned the Communist Party of Indonesia (PKI). Over […]

Music Notes – June 2017

Packingtown scores at Hogtown Mayworks Toronto’s 32nd Mayworks Festival of Working People and the Arts concluded on an artistic high note on May 7th with a performance of the video ballad Packingtown, a multi-media people’s history of the struggles of Edmonton meatpacking workers from 1908, through the epic 1986 Gainers strike, and beyond, to the […]

Music Notes – May 2017

Bill & Joel Plaskett: ‘Solidarity’ Joel Plaskett, the popular singer-songwriter and guitarist from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, has built a substantial Canada-wide following over the past 20 years. This year he’s sharing the spotlight with his father, the guitarist and singer-songwriter Bill Plaskett, co-founder of the Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival. The two have released “Solidarity”, a […]

Music Notes – April 2017

Bragg fires up folk music convention British singer-songwriter Billy Bragg delivered a rousing keynote address on February 16 to several thousand folk musicians at the 29th annual Folk Alliance International conference in Kansas City. Bragg’s plea for “compassion” and “solidarity” matched the conference theme, “to celebrate activism in art by exploring the past and present […]

Music Notes – March 2017

Honouring Buffy Sainte-Marie Renowned singer and activist, Buffy Sainte-Marie,¬†will be honoured with a special tribute at the JUNO Awards this year. She’ll receive the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award in recognition of her dedication to protecting indigenous communities and indigenous intellectual property, causes which have been at the epicenter of her lifelong activism. The award will […]

Music Notes – February 2017

Talib Kweli’s solidarity with Palestine Hip-hop star Talib Kweli is a consistent political activist. In 2000, in the aftermath of the New York police department’s brutal killing of Amadou Diallo, he co-founded Hip Hop For Respect with rapper-actor Mos Mef. In 2005 he called upon the Bush Administration to remove former Black Panther Assata Shakur […]

Music Notes – January 2017

Segato joins homeless T.O. musicians Toronto singer Lorraine Segato, who rose to fame in the 1980’s as lead singer of the pop band Parachute Club (‘Rise Up’), has again joined forces with homeless Toronto street musicians. A Cd documenting their continuing collaboration has just been released. The story begins in 2007 when Segato, responding to […]