Paper Covers Rock

The ECMAs will not be televised
The Newfoundland Herald’s Kevin Kelly is angry, and like many people (in an age where dudes dress up as both Facebook and MySpace for Mardi Gras) he started a Facebook group to voice his concern.

The group draws attention to the current plight of the East Coast Music Awards (ECMAs). A recent press release from the ECMAs announced that the 20th anniversary of the important awards event (happening this year at Fredericton, NB) would not be broadcasted on national television, but would instead be replaced by a one-hour special presentation “anticipated to air within a few days of the (Awards weekend).”

In an e-mail conversation, Kelly described the impact this decision, one based solely on ratings, would have for the province, and East Coast music:

“The ECMA awards broadcast gave national attention to East Coast music artists, and especially our own Newfoundland artists who were given a boost nationally by the fact they performed, or won awards, on the awards show,” he says. “Ron Hynes, The Novaks, Mark Bragg, Great Big Sea, Crush, and Shaye and countless others have all been part of this awards show broadcast, earning national exposure for our music. Now, that awards show is cut to a “best-of” broadcast that won’t even air during the awards weekend. How does that better promote East Coast Music?”

Kelly also raised the issue of the 2009 ECMAs, to be hosted in our city: “Would this decision mean that the awards show from [St. John’s] would not be broadcast to the nation?”

People across Facebook have joined Kelly—the group has now surpassed the1,000th membermark. “I have received no replies as of yet from CBC’s public relations rep, or representatives of the ECMA as of yet regarding this issue, but it seems that people from across the country want the awards show broadcast saved.”

Curious? Pissed? Check out Kelly’s petition on Facebook.

The Idlers wrap up tour, prep new album
Local Dub/Reggae stars The Idlers have just finished their whirlwind tour through Ontario and the Maritimes, which gives them significant prep time for the release of their new album, Idlers Corner (December 14th, The Rock House).

The trip seems to have done the fine ska lads some cathartic good. Compare and contrast the band’s take on all this travel business, first pre-tour: “…We’re [so] stoked that when any of us thinks about the tour, it feels like a Koala bear crapped a rainbow in our brain,” and then post-tour: “It was exactly what we wanted… Contrary to popular belief, we actually made Ontarians dance… The crowds gave us as much love as we gave them.”

If waiting for the album release doesn’t cock your porkpie hat just right, fear not! The Idlers are also sending off one of their own—percussionist Curtis Andrews. He aims to weather out the fast-approaching winter in India, but before he goes he’ll be the center of the universe for a “big going away party” at the Dock on November 30. Expect The Discounts, and Mopaya (‘natch) to show up for the goodbyes as well.

Hayden coming to St. John’s (!)
Somewhere, local orgcore dudes and indie lumberjacks are high-fiving vigorously. Gravely-voiced troubadour Hayden (aka Paul Hayden Desser) is coming to St. John’s on February 2 to promote his fifth full-length record Field & Town out on Hardwood Records.

Things just aren’t as bad as they seem (ho, ho) for Hayden, who was asked to tour Europe along with stellar indie rockers The National (be sure to check out their rad fourth album Boxer).

Hayden will perform at the LSPU Hall, on February 2. Tickets are already on sale at the LSPU box office and are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Doors to the all-ages show will open at 7:30. Check out for more info.

Zone to St. John’s: Women are rad

The Zone 216 is throwing a “Thank God I’m Female” night, the first event of its kind in the Zone’s history, to attract more women to everyone’s favourite alt-dance club.

The event, the first in what organizer and Zone 216 DJ Fabian Fitzpatrick hopes to be a series of women-oriented TGIF nights, goes down on November 30.

Fitzpatrick is optimistic. After all, the Zone has been a rad dance spot for both the queer and straight crowds for years (minus that one creepy dude who wears the same Dog Shirt and dances too close to everyone). The challenge, he says, will come in trying to program music that will please the diverse audience.

“But my motto has always been ‘If you don’t like the music, wait 10 minutes.’”

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