UPCOMING GIGS

  • Sept.29,'18 12:30-3:30pm; Glass Eagle Studio, Haliburton
  • Sept.19, 2018 Private Function, Toronto
  • July 27&28, Haliburton Arts&Crafts2-4pm
  • June 6, 2018 The Nice Bistro, Whitby, ON
  • Feb.23,2018 San Pancho Music Festival, Mexico
  • Jan.20,2018 The Old Mill Toronto, Home Smith Bar
  • Sept.30,2017 All That Jazz & More, at the Minden Legion
  • Aug. 5, 2017 Private Party, Carnarvon, ON
  • Aug. 4, 2017 Music by the Gull, Minden, ON
  • Aug. 2, 2017 The Nice Bistro, Whitby ON
  • May 17, 2017 The Nice Bistro, Whitby, ON
  • April 29, 2017 Minden Cultural Centre, Minden, ON
  • March 24,2017 The Old Mill Toronto, Home Smith Bar
  • Feb.26,2017 San Pancho Music Fest. Mexico
  • Nov.5, 2016 Radio Hall, CanoeFM, Haliburton, ON
  • Nov. 2, 2016 le Nice Bistro, Whitby, ON
  • Sept. 4, 2016 The Red Umbrella Inn, Minden, ON
  • July 26, 2016, Head Lake Park, Haliburton, ON
  • Jan. 29, 2016, The Home Smith Bar at the Old Mill, Toronto
  • Oct.23, 2015 Gate 403
  • Sept. 9 The Nice Bistro, Whitby, ON
  • August 22, Gate 403, Toronto
  • August 14, Music by the Gull, Minden, ON
  • July 29 Hugh's Room, Toronto
  • June 13, Gate 403,Toronto

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

SUMMER DAZE

Just a little slow these days, - could be the heat, could be the lack of it....

I'm singing in Haliburton at the Arts and Crafts show this weekend, performing for the love of music, because I love music, you know, really I do, and it doesn't matter if I make money or not, because strangely enough, I don't eat, or have to pay rent, or gas, or taxes, or anything.  I'm just a singin' fool who somehow keeps singin' and bein' a fool, and livin' on love. Of music, of course.
As for the other kind of love, I've decided to burn cards sent to me in the foolish past,  proclaiming love for me, which wasn't love at all. Found a whole pile recently, and I need the space.
Burn, baby, burn.
Here's a recent picture of me surrounded by all by thoughts:



Wednesday, July 18, 2018

AS YEARS GO PASSING BY...

A song by Albert King....


And what do I find with the passing years?  Well, the usual mix of depression with the state of affairs politcally and chaos and disaster throughout the world, along with some faint hope that things will work out, that people will actually start to use their brains and their good hearts, and also, there is some rejoicing for the ones who already are acting out the best interests of the common good, and who inspire all of us.


Personally, not much happening in my wee life.  I am trying to organize a benefit for a women's organization here in Toronto - for next year.  Also trying to get my volumes of writings into some kind of order, just in case I, you know, die, or something.  I want to have my legacy clear, such as it is, with me blathering about my ups and downs and observations I have made. Also working on a new CD, the most current 'last' one.
Sometimes I'm nasty too, and I want that as part of what I bequeath.  No sugar-sweetness all the time here, because after all, there are some things one ought to reject or respond to with anger.  I seem to favour a vitriolic tongue on occasion. Doesn't hurt to let the idiots know what they are.


Speaking of idiots: I face-posted this the other day, in response to the never-ending idiocy of the man they call president, in spite of the besmirchment he brings to the office.  
    He can't say anything because he has no vocabulary, or ability to articulate, or education, or understanding. Oh yes, and no manners, no sensitivity, no compassion, no experience in politics, no control over his emotions, no honesty...... He has no brains - however, he is very rich, and according to him, no one is better at anything than him. He has no grasp of what he is and how utterly pathetic he is to anyone who is capable of being a real human. Just my opinion.
I stand by that assessment.


And speaking of - actually no one is speaking about sex, but I will now.  It's almost one full year since I had my last love-tryst, and I have to say, now that the time has passed by so quickly, that the state of celibacy is something I would now call celebracy, since for me, it has been a gradual uncovering of a freedom to simply enjoy myself. One I would celebrate.  In youth, one is sort of driven by sex, and by the genes that want to live forever, and driven, not least of all, by the needs of the opposite sex too, who seize upon one's youth, inexperience, vulnerability, and energy.  
No complaints, I lived with a verve for it all, heartaches notwithstanding, but now, I really want to enjoy still being beautiful, in a more mature (and sometimes only inner) way. I want to relax and laugh at myself and the jokes I make while talking to myself. I want to feel the love, as I did the other night down by Lake Ontario, of just walking, or watching lovers, young and old, or children and dogs, or the waves, or trees, or feeling the cool breeze.
Ya, sometimes I feel sorry for myself, but mostly, as years go passing by, I'm growing into a calmer, I'm-still-sexy, don't-interrupt-my-daydreams-or-plans kind of person, just thankful for my health and the friends I still have.  


I found this picture recently, from not that long ago, but which I hardly recognize, what with the changes the passing years have wreaked on my poor, maturing visage. (both pics taken by my son).




Wednesday, June 27, 2018

SINGIN' IN THE RAIN

I'll post more later; no time now, but here's a shot from our fabulous weekend of dancing in Toronto's City Hall Square. It rained throughout our last performance, and I did my own little rain dance after we finished:
Check out Luminato Grand Continental, Toronto for lots of pics. I'll have ones with me in the crowd on the next post.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

HEALING AND GROWING

It's always so difficult to be patient - for me, at least. And these days, I seem to be needing to be patient.  I seem to be needing to heal and change and grow, and this is indeed frustrating, i.e. to be satisfied to simply wait for inspiration or movement; creativity, plans.  Don't like to sit around. But in fact I have been sitting around quite a lot.

Changing tack here: my mother would have been 98 years old today, had she lived, and one of my best friends, who died too young, also shares that birthday.  Now, even as I type, a dear daughter of another friend is about to give birth to her daughter, Stella.  A triple hit.  So hurrah for life.

And prayers for all the people who were slaughtered Monday by the moron in a van. News reporters wonder about his motive, and I wonder why. He was effing INSANE!!!, that was his reason for murder.
But we must be patient and wait for the world to stop propagating hate. Maybe it will happen, but with the sales of guns, and the profits of war, and the egos of "leaders", I despair sometimes.

OK, getting back to life, here's me in my relatively innocent days - not so long ago, but besides looking so much younger, I was playing guitar, and I think I still had more faith in love and kindness then. More prayers, please. We will continue to hope....





Friday, April 6, 2018

I SEE MY LIGHT COME SHINING


from the west down to the east;

Any day now, any day now,

I shall be released.

 

Well we live in hope. And for me, my succour is always music; sitting down at my piano and bellowing my woes, along with the happy tunes too. I wrote this little song a while back after the following incident, which happened a few years ago:

I was visiting up north with a friend and we went to the local gallery where I bought a picture of a lovely bird.

Back at her place, I opened an email from a family member that I had cared about for many years, who was excoriating me in a very nasty way, and sharing her erroneous thoughts with other siblings. She had never been able to express her feelings honestly, and lost control of her avalanche of anger. The attack was horrible, and caused a rift that has never healed. I see the bird and I remember. So I sing:

 



 

I don't expect apologies; lucky thing, since few people do it. That's OK, as far as OK, and it's just how life is, goes. I grew up feeling alone; I'll continue that way. And it's friends who carry me through. And of course, the piano and the singing.
I say thank you.
Some pics:

the boid on the wall

singing about the boid and the - you know - pain

singing back in early August when I bothered to get dressed.
Note difference in winter layering.
Any day now....


Monday, March 26, 2018

THE GRAND, BIG, LOVELY DREAM


and its fade into the ether....

Last night I decided to go to the Italian restaurant that I used to frequent with a gentleman from my past. I was going to go alone, but then decided on the spur, etc., to call my friendly neighbourhood neighbour, because she's always up for a dinner out.
We went, and I ate a grand, big, lovely meal, and had a little wine too, enjoying it all immensely.

When I got home, I did some home stuff, and then went to bed very satisfied, drifting off into the land of nod, and only waking when the sun nudged me from a rather grand, big, lovely dream I was having about the gentleman from my past.  I guess memories got nudged at our Italian eatery, and there we were, in the dream, he with his arms around me, myself crushing my face into his chest and saying, "You know, I will love you all my life". Then we looked at each other and broke the embrace.  I thought it was a lovely respite from all the other daily crap, even if it was just a moment in the larger scheme, and even if there were some things that were not so grand and lovely when we were together, and even if I was reminded of the negativity when I went for my swim later in the morning and a woman there was complaining about everything, as I thought he often did.

Still, I stubbornly kept the grand, big, and lovely parts, letting the dream drift away only after putting it in my mental file of "good stuff", for later access, if necessary.
Ya gotta - accen-choo-ate the positive....right?



I'm thinking deeply here, about dreams and all that jazz


And I continue on, in my efforts to bring things positive into the world, with my plans for a concert about a year from now, - with some well-known and fabulous vocalists performing songs I have written, and the whole show a benefit for a worthy women's group. A long process....but fun.
Another grand, big, lovely dream that I hope to make actually happen, depending on many factors. You will read more in the near future....
Music hath charms, as someone once said.

Hmmmm....will it happen, or fall to the ground?


Monday, March 12, 2018

EMPTY OF LOVE

OK,
this is posted specifically so that someone famous and successful can hear my latest composition, and hopefully that person will record the song and make me famous and successful too.
it's a very simple home-made recording from my camera, and i was a little croaky that day (actually I was in Mexico, just fooling around), so don't expect the polished version...The song is called "Empty of Love".


Tuesday, February 27, 2018

RINGS ON HER FINGERS,

AND BELLS ON HER TOES;
SHE SHALL HAVE MUSIC WHEREVER SHE GOES.

Remember that little ditty? I do, we used to recite it many years ago, and now, I'm taking it for my own, although I don't have bells on my toes. That would hurt with shoes on. 






Getting to the end of my sunny days, and not looking forward to the cold, but I will have this reminder of the festival. It's the last half of the song "Gracias a la Vida" in San Pancho.









and some pics:







Sunday, February 25, 2018

GRACIAS A LA VIDA

I sang the song on Friday night, and meant it - saying thank you to life for all the things that are there for me; I am grateful, even if I also complain regularly. One can't become too holy, can one?

So then the wonderful music festival of San Pancho, Mexico, carried on for the whole weekend with an extraordinary lineup of great and varied musicians. There was a wonderful sense everywhere of a real fiesta, with food and families and dancing and fun, all with the music and the summer evenings in the park, and the fabulous ocean around the corner from us.

Music is such a gift - to listen to, and to perform.  I hope that I can sing until I die.
Here are some pics of my performance with the wonderful guitarist, Steve O'Connor.
Sadly, my days in the sun here are numbered, and I will return to the bloody cold next week.







Wednesday, February 21, 2018

TEN MINUTES OF BEAUTY

The other day I rhapsodized about being at the beach, wanting to be there all the time, and then today I ran, but I just felt tired afterwards, and not the energized person I was hoping to be. Can't win 'em all, I guess, but perhaps I was just hungry. Nothing feels good to me when I'm hungry, and I hadn't had breakfast.
When I made it back to my casita, I thought 'what I need is some good music'. So while my porridge was cooking on the stove, I put on Zoot Sims' ten-minute version of "Emily", a lovely song, but indescribably beautiful in Zoot's version, which also included great bass, piano and vibes.
I sat there for those ten minutes of beauty and let myself be restored, even more than the beach usually restores me. And then I decided to make it twenty minutes and listened again.
I listened, I ate, I conquered, to improvise on Caesar's words, and felt human again and ready to plunge into the daily work of trying to create beauty too. Sometimes you need a little help.

I'm singing this Friday night at the local music festival here in San Pancho, Mexico.  So happy to be part of it, and lucky to be accompanied by an accomplished guitarist, Steve O'Connor. The festival goes for the whole weekend, and you can see more here:


https://sanpanchomusicfestival.com/2018-schedule-mobile/

Meanwhile, I had mentioned my sickness a couple of weeks ago and the ensuing songwriting that came out of being emptied so thoroughly, resulting in my song "Empty of Love".  Well then, wouldn't you know it, because life is just that perverse, the next week I wrote a song called "A Feelin' About Love", in which the singer senses love coming her way again & gets all jumpity-happy about it. 

Whatever, it's a good song - they both are, - just representing the two extremes of that great illusion that we call love.  I always loved that song "The Bright Elusive Butterfly of Love".

Back home, after the beach, and the food, and the music. Mucho mejor.


Sunday, February 18, 2018

UN DIA TRANQUILLO


Outside in the late afternoon in a sleepy Mexican town, I sit in my plastic chair, and listen to the quiet. Unlike other years, there is no blaring traditional music destroying any chance of thought or solitude. There are the leaves, rustling slightly in the wind. There is a bird repeating its whiny call over and over and over. Every once in a while, a nut of some kind drops from one of the trees, or I hear a dog in the distance. Mostly there's only the tap tap tap of the computer keyboard as I attempt to record the day's activities.
There is nothing active, only stillness.
This is a world removed, as dry as the hollowed out earth across from the front door of my small casita, where roots hang down in tangled disarray, the only sign of life occurring when a bigger gust of wind blows through the little lane way.
There are rocks and a bit of old rain or hose water sitting in a small dip of the ground's dirt. In fact, every part of the small street is dipping and uneven with waves of lumpy dirt and loose stones of every size, perfect for tripping you up, breaking bones or gashing skin. No one ever thinks, from year to year, of leveling the ground, or raking the rubble to the side, of planting flowers or creating some kind of delineating edge. A dry, dusty cliff of scrappy dirt lines the path, facing the cement houses on the other side. At the end of the road, garbage bins are knocked over and spilled by roving animals, their contents flattened into the dust.
The houses are painted here, cheery and bright, unlike on some streets, where the concrete blocks just remain, looking like an abandoned pile of unfinished construction, until you notice a light burning within, or a clothesline full of garments, or a child wandering outside. Here on the little dry lane, the homes present varied and colourful fronts, although the sense of artistry does not extend to outside the front door, where grey cement rises and falls like the topography of a very bad case of acne on the faces of several entrances. The lumps swell and slope in random patterns, as if bricklayers simply dropped clods of their mixtures like bread dough on a bent cooking sheet, turning their back on the preparatory work of smoothing the ground first, and then just walking away, forgetting their concoctions as they baked to solid forms in the hot sun. They are traps as well, defying you to walk without attention, to assume any amount of confidence in an even surface.
Walls with iron gratings in window openings rather than glass; inside and outside life that will erupt in a few hours and converge together in the intimacy of a gigantic, town-sized family gathering. Aromas from the several kitchens wafting through the air, and the occasional break-out of that really loud music as people relax to their personal form of therapy. All for one, one for all. Tables and chairs set out on streets under poles that support a thin tarp - pop-up restaurants of tacos and burritos, tradition of many years. Dogs and children everywhere as families make their after-dinner trek to the ocean for the wild and breathtaking canvas of the sunset, putting to rest another day.

This one has been quiet.





Wednesday, February 14, 2018

LOCO FOR COCO

Yes, I have been going crazy trying to find a vendor of coconut water. Usually I see them on the street here in the tiny pueblo in Mexico, but of course, since I was sick, and still (pity me) not the hearty girl I usually am, I have not been able to catch him. And it's so health-producing.
So today I went down the cursed huge hill to the main street, and wandered there in the heat until I did in fact locate the stall. Got the coco water, got the coconut meat, and started back in the noonday sun, where only mad dogs and Englishmen go, up that goddamn cursed hill again to return home.

At that time of day, the shade is disappearing, but there was a patch half-way up, and a good thing too, because I had to stop for a rest, and get my breath back. I stood there, put my packages down, and it was there that I felt it - the breeze that was high today; the summer wind - and that put me in mind of the song, and that in turn put me in mind of dancing to that song with someone many years ago. Oh, it seems so far back now that it's like a dream, but I did dance then, and it was oh, so romantic. Remembering the romance put me in mind that it is St. Valentine's Day today, the day for romance, and there I was, alone on a dusty road, with only memories.

I guess memories are worth something. At least they're better than having no memories, better than never having lived, or loved, blah blah, blah blah. I have certainly lived, and I will certainly keep on living, and maybe, if the timing is right, loving. For the present, though, the summer wind felt good, there on the cursed hill and the dust that covers everything. I was right beside an over-sized mausoleum of the graveyard, which put me in mind of the poppies I planted once at my (then) new house in the countryside of Ontario. I called the little garden "The Graveyard of Broken Dreams", and waited for the poppies to bloom, as I wait now for new love, and for my breath to return.

Meanwhile, after being sick, and after I had emptied my body, via some kind of bug, of everything inside me, I was inspired to create a quite lovely tune, with lyrics, which I named, "Empty of Love". Like Edith Piaf, "je repars à zero" - I am starting again at zero. It's a very good song, one I think Diana Krall should record, and one of these days, I might write her and suggest it. Just gotta get my strength, and nerve, up. Here I am, silhouetted as I am moved by the muse the day I wrote it, and then again today, and here as well, is a pretty little Valentine's heart, with wishes for love for this loco world.






Monday, January 29, 2018

IN HIS MIRROR

On the 25th anniversary of my mother's death, some recent thoughts, and me saying 'don't give up the fight':




 It's a funny thing, perception, so wildly varied, opposing even, depending on the person perceiving, his or her mood, or the people, experience, or stress in one's life. All those factors change what we think we see.
Take me, for example - please! Ha ha. Little joke there, based on that tired old humour that says a wife is a pain in the ass. Not humourous at all. I mean, if you don't like your wife, buddy, then get the f--- out of her life, and give her some peace, not to mention the opportunity to be with someone who appreciates her. What's that? It's just a joke? Yah, you guys are so funny, as you screw around, and dribble around the toilet. As you slaver over degrading porn.
Whoops! Got distracted by rampant attitudes, which are so hard to ignore, because they lessen the quality of the mind, heart, and soul of us all, affecting, and infecting us with spiritual pollution, just as chemical plants, car exhaust, and cigarette smokers pollute the air we have no choice but to breathe. Unthinking men, but greed and unkindness of the many weakens us too; I'll try to stay on track.
It's strange I should sound anti-male; I'm not at all. Why, some of my best friends.....
In fact I know a lot of wonderful men: intelligent, kind, and thoughtful, and able to make me laugh in a good way. But I get angry at the garbage that comes out of the ones who are not like that. So many of them are in positions of power. I'm veering again. It's strange I should sound anti-male because the whole purpose of this little essay was to talk about perception, and how knocked a-kilter my own has become since no longer having a 'significant-other' male in my life.
It ain't easy, I'll give myself that. A relationship of a decade and more, - now, that is significant, and can account for a good deal of your time, energy, and the need to have and express love and affection. I find that lately, and this is aggravated by having dropped out of two professions that would put me in contact with others, and am now working in very solitary fashion with music and writing, that, living singly, I talk to myself a lot. Recently, I have taken to doing it outside too, cursing bad weather or drivers on the streets, or simply having a nice conversation with moi. I figure everybody else is blathering details of their lives, unaware of the whole world, so I'll just look like one of them, headphones hidden. I can even laugh out loud at my own jokes as I go.
In general, however, I'm alone too much, and without the particular companionship that I had, and the common kind that most others have in their daily lives. So I wander in my house, keeping myself busy, talking, and working, but occasionally stopped by a glance at myself in the mirror. I have to say, I'm not inspired by me. Oh, I know I "clean up real good", as they say, but it's the general offering I make to myself that is less than stellar. And one day I realized that I needed to be looking at myself in his mirror, as I did in the past, which is to say, the pull-down mirror on the sun visor of his car, as we went somewhere, and I was in the passenger seat. For some reason, I was always surprised at my image in that mirror. I always seemed to look great; not only attractive, but young too; and happy. It was such an unexpected treat every time.
I guess what I'm saying is that somehow his feelings for me created an environment in which I liked myself, that someone loving you really does affect how you feel and therefore how you perceive. Love actually works. Duh. It helps and improves. Double duh. Maybe I'm double-"o" stoopid when it comes to love. Maybe that's why I am alone, even want to be alone, and ugly. Maybe I absorbed a lot of the misogyny as I grew up; the insistence that women were less and not deserving of being equal. I have always angrily rejected that lie intellectually, but emotionally, maybe it stuck somewhere.

What a dilemma. Where do I buy a mirror that works like the one in his car? Should I just make a vroom vroom sound every time I look in my own mirrors? How do I keep reminding myself that even though we had some lovely times, love seldom lasts forever; even though I wanted to move on, and am content and busy and have friends, and even though I consider my life to be privileged and good... I am simply missing him, and love. How do I remember that love is still there? Love that makes the world go 'round - that creates the world I want - that drives me somewhere instead of just into crazyland - that can surround me even when I'm rambling and echoing back my own drivel. 
You know?

Here's to friends....

Monday, January 8, 2018

EASING INTO THE NEW YEAR

It's been so bloody cold, although don't say it, I know we're better off than a lot of places, but it really has been brutal, and you know how everything slows in the cold. Like molasses in January, that's been me. So, a little catch-up...
Christmas with the fambly. my back window ice crystals, New Years at the good ol' blues bar. Rehearsal last weekend for the upcoming gig at the Old Mill (Jan.20), and just working at home on my novella, re-writing and improving, and to get me through the winter - skating.
Also a pic of me before I knew the world could be so cold, silly girl. I've hardly changed at all. haha
Come out on January 20 - 7:30-10:30pm at the Old Mill Toronto:

https://www.oldmilltoronto.com/event/zoe-chilco-quartet/

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!