I’ve been up to some interesting things outside of music, lately, that are semi-related to what I do in Sister Says. Those things include assisting in marketing and fundraising for an Aboriginal performing arts festival and also recently attending the First Peoples’ Cultural Council – Cultural Protocols & the Arts Forum at the En’owkin Centre. As I juggle life and the many things that happen day to day I’ve realized that music is what grounds me and keeps me from drifting off somewhere. I feel very privileged to be part of so many communities of artists and to hear their stories. It was good for me to pack my little guitar with me to the forum, in Penticton, because, as much as conversation about art and political issues feed the soul, at the same time, I start to get itchy and find it difficult to function without physically making music. I actually kind of lose my mind after a while!! I think most musical people can attest to how this feels. At the forum I kept thinking about the contradiction of life and balance. Maybe there is no perfect balance but what you can do is keep creating and making holistic spaces for yourself and others.
Rob and I are excited to be attending Aboriginal Music Performers Camp (AMP Camp) from Sunday February 9th to Friday February 14th, in Manitoba at the Falcon Trails Resort, as Sister Says. We’re prepping some final things this week before we leave…. The week-long residency will include more than 50 hours of professional and artistic development sessions geared to mid-career and emerging Aboriginal musicians. We can’t wait!
It’s us! AMP Camp 2014 participants announced
We can scratch a few more items off our second album todo list. L to R (Geoff Hicks, Gillian, Lonny Eagleton, Robert)
Last week we spoke with Jett Pace of music project Old Man Canyon, about creativity and life, on Meet the Collective Podcast. In my living room over coffee and cookies Jett, born and raised in BC in the beautiful mountains of Lynn Valley, described Old Man Canyon as “basically a collaboration between all the different sounds I’ve loved from my past merged into one.” Jett’s first musical endeavours started in Hip Hop and classical training on the cello. His album Phantoms and Friends, recorded with producer Dave Meszaros, over a six month period in 2012, has been circulating rapidly and getting the attention of many. Music on the album has been featured on both Showtime’s Shameless, as well as MTV’s Awkward, and USA Network’s Suits. We had a good time talking to him.
Jett and Gillian
Rob and I recorded demos in our home studio last weekend…we worked on “You can’t go back” and some more on another song we had previously recorded a demo of. We use the demos as a way to map out parts of our songs and for the rest of our bandmates to do the same. It’s always fun breaking apart songs and putting them back together. Taking out parts, replacing parts, adding new sounds, adding new rhythms….
We go back to Watershed Studio this weekend.
At the home studio
We’ve been working on finishing the recording of (or most of the recording of) “Suspect Number One,” a song that will be on our second album. We’re so happy with the results so far. Yesterday Rob and I spent some time listening and watching our producer Dave mix. I added some more harmonies. This Sunday there is more mixing to be had + Rob adding final bass tracks.
Wanted to share with you a little moment I had the other day where I remembered where my diva roots came from. It was this VH1 (see below) cassette. Yes I listened to cassettes. I actually still own some cassettes. I’m not sure why. All the main divas are on this cassette: Whitney Houston, Tina Turner, Cher, Chaka Chan, Mary J. Blige, Elton John….the list goes on. These divas taught me a little bit of why it’s so great to be a singer and that sometimes having a little attitude is a good thing!
We hope everyone had an amazing Christmas and New Years! The band took some time to rest and get ready to be back in the studio. This weekend Rob and I will be recording a demo track for “Moving Miles” and another new song to be recorded at Watershed Studio. 2014 is looking good….we can’t wait to play more gigs (especially in the summer) and record more podcasts with local musicians and artists.
Gillian of Sister Says