Tuesday, April 8, 2014

‘I DIG ROCK AND ROLL MUSIC”



This week is the induction ceremony for the 2014 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Artists become eligible for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25 years after the release of their first record and need to be nominated by members of the voting committee.
No Canadians will be honoured this time.  In fact, there are only a handful of Canadian performers who have been inducted into the hallowed halls of rock and rolldom.      
Montreal native Leonard Cohen was inducted in 2008, but he was by no means the first. This quiz is about those lucky Canucks who ARE in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Should be a snap, so give it your best shot.  

QUESTIONS

1.  Although he was actually born in Toronto, Winnipeg is the Canadian city most people associate with this singer/songwriter.  His father was a nationally known sports writer, who later wrote a book about his famous son.  In the 1960’s, this performer decided to head to Los Angeles to try to make it.  He and a couple of pals drove out in a big black hearse and he did make it big.  In fact, he’s been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame TWICE.  Who is this “Harvest Moon” singer?            
      
2.  For many years, fans of this rock trio wrote petition after petition to have them inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, all to no avail…until last year when it finally happened.  The group is legendary in Canada as well as major parts of the U.S. where they toured extensively.  Their chart hits include “Tom Sawyer”, “Closer To The Heart” and “New World Man”.  Who is this group?  (Take your time to think about it now, don’t rush).                         
                
3.  This singer/songwriter/painter started her folk singing career in Saskatchewan (although she was born in Alberta) before moving to Toronto and later, Los Angeles where she really made her mark in the music world.  She’s known for her unique style in songwriting, singing and guitar playing.  Her songs have been covered by artists such as Judy Collins, Amy Grant, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, James Taylor, Mandy Moore, Sarah McLachlan and Ian Matthews among many others.  She experimented with a jazz album and worked with jazz legend Charles Mingus.  She’s won eight Grammy Awards  and in 2000, received a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame.  Who is this extremely talented Canadian?             

4.  This group formed in New York City.  It featured lead singer and primary songwriter John Sebastian¸ with Steve Boone on bass, Joe Butler on drums and this Toronto born guitar player.  He was known for jumping around on stage and keeping the excitement and energy flowing.  If you remember The Mamas and Papas song “Creeque Alley”, his first name is mentioned in the lyric, “__ and Denny workin’ for a penny, tryin’ to get a fish on the line.”  He left the group in 1967 for a solo career and later moved to Kingston, Ontario where he opened a successful restaurant.  What is his name?                    
    
5.  This singer was born and raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia.  He started out in a folk group, called The Halifax Three, then moved to New York where he formed a trio with a fellow Canadian and a female singer named Cass Elliot.  Then he and Cass joined with a singer/songwriter and his girlfriend (and later wife) to create a group that went on to have six Top Ten songs and were known for their haunting harmonies.  They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.  Can you name the group and the Canadian singer who was one of its members?   

ANSWERS

1.  Neil Young was the first Canadian artist inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995.  Neil received his second induction two years later (1997) when Buffalo Springfield went into the Hall.  Driving around Los Angeles in the hearse, he ran into Stephen Stills on Sunset Boulevard.  They subsequently formed Buffalo Springfield.  Later, when Stills became one third of Crosby, Stills & Nash, Neil Young was occasionally added to the line- up, but never became a full time member.  Neil’s biggest hit single was “Heart of Gold”, which went to # 1 for one week in March of 1972 and featured Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor on backing vocals.         

2.  Yes, it’s Rush and 2013 was the year the Toronto based trio was finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart are Rush.  The group was inducted along with Heart, Albert King, Randy Newman, Public Enemy and the late Donna Summer.  The band was formed by Lifeson in 1968 in the Toronto suburb of Willowdale.  Geddy Lee quickly replaced original singer Jeff Jones.  Neil Peart replaced original drummer John Rutsey in July ’75. Rush has released 19 albums  featuring this classic Rush line-up, including “Fly By Night” (1975); “Caress of Steel“ (1975); “2012” (1976); “A Farewell To Kings” (1977); “Hemispheres” (1978); “Permanent Waves” (1980); “Roll The Bones” (1991) and their latest, Clockwork Angels” (2012).  Rush tours often make the Top Ten list of highest grossing events and they’re loved and revered by fans on both sides of the Canada/U.S. border.                     
    
3.  In 1997, Joni Mitchell was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame alongside  Joni’s first album was 1968’s “Song To A Seagull” and her last one, 2007’s “Shine” was her 19th release.   Janet Jackson used a sample from Joni’s “Big Yellow Taxi” in her 1997 song, “Got ‘Til It’s Gone”.  In 2002, Joni was appointed a Companion of the Order of Canada.  Time Magazine listed Joni’s album “Blue” as among the ‘All Time 100 Albums’ in November of 2006.  Canada Post issued a Joni Mitchell stamp in June 2007.                 

4.  John Sebastian, Steve Boone, Joe Butler and Canadian Zal Yanovsky of The Lovin’ Spoonful were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000, along with Earth, Wind and Fire, Eric Clapton, The Moonglows, Bonnie Raitt and James Taylor.  The first seven singles The Lovin’ Spoonful release all made Billboards’ Top Ten.  They were (in chronological order) “Do You Believe In Magic” (# 9); “You Didn’t Have To Be So Nice”       (# 10); “Daydream” (# 2); “Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind?” (# 2); “Summer In The City” (# 1); “Rain On The Roof” (# 10) and “Nashville Cats” (# 8).  Zal left the group in 1967.  In 1979 he opened the restaurant, Chez Piggy in Kingston, then in ’94, launched the  Pan Chancho Bakery.  Zal Yanovsky died of a heart attack in Kingston on December 13, 2002.       
    
5.  Halifax native Denny Doherty was the lead singer on several of The Mamas and The Papas hits, including “California Dreamin’” and “Monday, Monday”.  The Mamas and Papas were one of the 1998 inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, along with early rocker Gene Vincent, Santana, Lloyd Price, the Eagles and Fleetwood Mac.  Denny left Canada for New York and quickly formed a trio called The Mugwumps with Cass Elliot and fellow Canadian Zal Yanovsky, who later co-founded The Lovin’ Spoonful.  He subsequently met John Phillips and with John’s girlfriend (later wife) Michelle and Cass, The Mamas and The Papas was born.  Denny staged a delightful play called “Dream A Little Dream” that he performed all over North America.  Denny was also an actor and starred in the CBC television show “Theodore Tugboat”.  Denny Doherty passed away on January 19th, 2007 at the age of 66.      

Monday, March 31, 2014

JUNO WHO WON AWARDS THIS YEAR?



All of the JUNO awards have been handed out.  Congrats to big winners Arcade Fire, Serena Ryder plus Tegan and Sara.  It’s a good thing Justin Bieber wasn’t in Winnipeg to personally accept his JUNO Fan Choice Award or he would have heard that loud chorus of ‘boos’ coming from the prairie crowd. 
If you were watching the telecast, you saw Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield introduce Bachman-Turner Overdrive into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame this year.  So, in honour of BTO’s honour, this week’s quiz is all about the Winnipeg band.  Pretty simple really, so let’s start ‘takin’ care of business’. 

QUESTIONS

1.  Prior to Bachman-Turner Overdrive but after The Guess Who, Randy Bachman formed another band that eventually morphed into BTO.  What was the name of this band?  Was it:  a. Brown Belt  b. Brave Belt  c. Black Belt  d. Belt Up        
      
2.  Randy Bachman sang lead vocals on BTO’s 1974 # 1 hit, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet”.  On one of his early takes, Randy stuttered during the choruses.  He’d planned to send a copy of this version to his brother who stuttered and later re-record the vocals without stuttering.  What is the name of Randy’s brother who stuttered?  a. Robbie  b. Joe  c. Gary  d. Tim                    
                
3.  During the late night recording session in Seattle for “Takin’ Care of Business”, there was a delivery person who brought in food for a session in another studio.  He popped into Randy’s session and heard “Takin’ Care of Business”.  The delivery guy said the song needed a piano.  Randy said ‘OK, go ahead and play it.’  The guy wrote the chord changes down, walked into the studio, played his piano part in ONE take, then left and that became the hit version.  What fast food was the piano playing delivery man delivering?  Was it:  a. Chinese food  b. Chicken Wings  c. Hamburgers  d. Pizza           

4.  Before BTO, there was The Guess Who.  And before The Guess Who, they went by several names.  Which of the following names did they use? a. Al and the Silvertones   b. Chad Allan and the Reflections  c. Chad Allan and the Expressions  d. all of them                   
    
5.  In the world of rock management, this man is a bona-fide legend.  His company is based in Vancouver and besides BTO, he’s also managed Bryan Adams, Anne Murray and Michael Buble.  Randy Bachman thanked him during his JUNO Hall of Fame acceptance speech and he was shown on camera sitting in the audience.  So who is he?  Is he:  a. Sam Feldman         b. Red Robinson  c. Bruce Allen  d. Dan Plouffe

ANSWERS

1.  The answer is b. Brave Belt, which initially featured Randy’s brother Robbie as well as former Guess Who lead singer Chad Allan.  Chad stayed for the debut album, “Brave Belt I” but left soon after.  Fred Turner had been brought in to play bass on tour and took over vocals for the “Brave Belt II” album and Randy’s brother Tim Bachman was added as a second guitarist.  Manager Bruce Allen convinced Randy to change the name of the band and they settled on Bachman-Turner Overdrive (the Overdrive came from the title of a trucker’s magazine).  I think you can guess where the Bachman and Turner part came from.       

2.  c. Gary is the correct answer.  When Randy later tried to re-do the vocal for “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” without stuttering, it didn’t work at all, so he left it alone.  A Mercury Records executive heard the original stuttering version and told the band that they had to include it on their album “Not Fragile” as it was definitely a hit.  Randy reluctantly agreed.  Later, when the executive wanted to release the song as a single, Bachman initially refused, but eventually agreed.  The song went to # 1 on Billboards’ Hot 100 chart in November of 1974.  Ironically, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” knocked off Stevie Wonders # 1, “You Haven’t Done Nothin’”.  The BTO song also went to # 1 in Canada, New Zealand, Germany, Denmark and South Africa.       
    
3.  It was d. pizza.  The delivery guy was actually a trained musician moonlighting as a pizza delivery guy to make money.  His name is Norman Durkee and he went on to become musical director for Bette Midler and Barry Manilow.  In order to pay him for the session, Randy had to call around to various pizza places until he found the guy who delivered the pizza that night.  In 2011, “Takin’ Care of Business” was the most licensed song in Sony Music’s catalogue.  It was used as a theme song for several years in commercials for Office Depot, OfficeMax and K-Mart.  The title came from Vancouver radio DJ Daryl B. who regularly used to say “‘We’re takin’ care of business.”  Randy Bachman was listening one night and thought that would make a great title for a song.      

4.  The correct answer is d. all of them.  The band started out as Al and the Silvertones, then became Chad Allan and The Reflections by 1962.  By the time they recorded “Shakin’ All Over” in 1965, they’d become Chad Allan and The Expressions, because there was an American group called The Reflections who had a hit called “(Just Like) Romeo and Julier”.  Chad Allan and The Expressions record company, Quality Records, thought the group sounded British on “Shakin’ All Over” (It had previously been a hit in England for Johnny Kidd and the Pirates), so they sent out white labeled 45 singles with the name ‘Guess Who?” on them.  That name stuck.          
    
5.  c. Bruce Allen is the name we were looking for.  Bruce has had (and continues to have) an illustrious career, managing major Canadian performers.  In 1985, he co-ordinated (and wrangled) many Canadian stars into recording “Tears Are Not Enough” for African famine relief.  That same year, industry magazines The Record and Billboard (in the U.S.) named Bruce ‘Manager of the Year’.  In 2008, he was only the second Canadian manager to receive the ‘Honour Role’ award from the Music Managers Forum in Canada.  His client list includes veteran singer/songwriter Jann Arden as well as Bryan Adams, Anne Murray, Michael Buble and producer Bob Rock.  Bruce has a reputation for ‘telling it like it is’ and ‘shooting from the lip’ and for over 16 years, Bruce has made his opinions known on various radio stations in Vancouver.  Currently he can be heard on News/Talk AM980, CKNW.    

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

JUNO THE ANSWERS TO THESE HALL OF FAME QUESTIONS?



JUNO trivia time again.  The 43rd annual awards are on CTV at 8pm Sunday March 30th.  Tune in and watch some of the biggest names in Canadian music perform their hit songs and collect their hip awards. 
This year, Bachman-Turner Overdrive is being inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame.  It all works out quite neatly since the JUNO ceremony is in Winnipeg this year and the band members are all from the Manitoba capital.

For this week’s quiz, we have 5 questions about previous Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductees.  The first two inductees into the Hall of Fame in 1978 were jazz pianist Oscar Peterson and big band leader Guy Lombardo.  In 1979, it was country legend Hank Snow (originally from Nova Scotia).  That’s all the facts we’re giving you, you’re on your own from here on in.  Oh!  Canada, eh!

QUESTIONS

1.  k. d. lang, Shania Twain and Anne Murray are all in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame.  k.d went in last year, Shania in 2011 and Anne was honoured in 1993.  But who was the first female inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame?  She was born in Alberta, raised in Saskatchewan and made her reputation as an incredible singer/songwriter in the Los Angeles music scene of the late ‘60’s, early 70’s.  She’s written and recorded many influential albums such as “Blue”, “Ladies of the Canyon” and “Chalk Mark In A Rain Storm”.  She wrote the hit “Woodstock” (hit versions include Crosby, Stills & Nash and Ian Matthews aka Matthews Southern Comfort) about the legendary 1969 three day concert in upstate New York, although she didn’t actually attend the event.  She’s been a role model for female singer/ songwriters around the world for decades.  Who is she?
      
2.  This home grown inductee is a world renowned producer who’s worked with artists such as U2, Peter Gabriel, Willie Nelson, Robbie Robertson, Neil Young, Emmylou Harris and Bob Dylan, among many others.  He’s also recorded several albums as a solo artist.  His JUNO collection includes 5 awards for “Producer of the Year’, one for 1990’s ‘Most promising Male Vocalist of the Year’, another for 2006’s ‘Instrumental Album of the Year’ plus his Hall of Fame.  Can you name this highly respected producer?                
                
3.  She was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1995.  She’s had her songs, such as “Until It’s Time For You To Go” and “Universal Soldier” recorded by such performers as Elvis Presley, Barbra Streisand, Neil Diamond, Donovan and Cher.  She regularly appeared on “Sesame Street” from 1976 until 1981.  With her then husband Jack Nitzsche, she co-wrote “Up Where We Belong” from the movie “An Officer And A Gentleman”, a 1982 # 1 hit for Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes, which won her a Golden Globe as well as an Academy Award.  She was born on the Piapot Cree First Nations Reserve in Saskatchewan.  She also has a PhD in Fine Arts and has taught Digital Music at several colleges.  Do you know the name of this amazingly talented Canadian performer?

4.  In 1980, this singer/songwriter/performer was the 4th inductee in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame.  His first # 1 hit came in 1957 with a song he wrote about his babysitter.  As a solo artist, he charted 53 songs on Billboards’ Hot 100 chart, which includes 12 Top Ten hits and 3 # 1’s.  As well as his own chart successes, he’s also written hits recorded by Frank Sinatra, Tom Jones and Elvis Presley.  There’s a street named after him in his hometown of Ottawa.  He wrote the theme song for Johnny Carson’s “Tonight Show” and the title song for the 1962 World War II film, “The Longest Day”.  In 1974, he got into a bit of trouble with women’s groups in the U.S. for his # 1 hit, “(You’re) Having My Baby”.  Who is this Hall of Famer?          
    
5.  He was born in Kingston, Ontario, but his family moved to British Columbia when he was quite young.  In the mid 1970’s, he replaced Nick Gilder as lead singer in the group Sweeny Todd, but it was as a solo performer that he had his biggest successes.  He’s had four # 1 hits on Billboards’ Hot 100 chart – his first was in 1985, his last in 1995.  He’s sold tens of millions of albums and has nominated for JUNO awards over 50 times (he’s won 20).  He’s been nominated for an Academy Award 15 times and won once.  He has the Order of Canada plus the Order of British Columbia.  Three out of his four #1 single hits were songs that were written for Hollywood motion pictures.  He shares a last name with two early Presidents of the United States.  Who is this guy?

ANSWERS

1.  When Joni Mitchell went into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1981, she was inducted by none other than the current Prime Minister of Canada, Pierre Trudeau.  In addition to her Hall of Fame honour, Joni won a JUNO for ‘Female Vocalist of the Year’ in 1976, ‘Best Vocal Jazz Album’ in 2001 for “Both Sides Now” and the ‘Jack Richardson Producer of the year’ JUNO in 2008.  Joni’s first album, “Song To A Seagull”, was released in 1968 on the Reprise label (co-founded by Frank Sinatra).  Joni’s most successful album, 1971’s “Blue” went Platinum in the U.S. and Canada and two times Platinum in Great Britain.  Although Joni’s sold tens of millions of albums, her only Top Ten singles hit was 1974’s “Help Me”, which climbed to # 7 on Billboards’ Hot 100 chart.  Previously, Judy Collins had had a # 8 hit with Joni’s song “Both Sides Now” in 1968.

2.  Daniel Lanois won his first ‘Producer of the Year’ JUNO award in 1987 for his work on both Peter Gabriel’s album, “So” as well as U2’s “The Joshua Tree”.  In 1989, he won again for producing Robbie Robertson’s self-titled solo album.   Then he took home the re-named ‘Jack Richardson Producer of the Year’ JUNO statue three more times – in 2002, 2009 and 2011.  His solo albums include 1989’s “Acadie”, “For The Beauty of Wynona” (1993) and 2005’s “Belladonna”.  Rolling Stone Magazine called Lanois, the “most important record producer to emerge in the Eighties”.  Long before Miley Cyrus ‘borrowed’ the title “Wrecking Ball”, it was the album title of Daniel’s 1995 collaboration with Emmylou Harris.  The album won a Grammy Award in 1996.  Daniel Lanois also has a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame in Toronto.  He was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 2002.                                         
    
3.  That would be Saskatchewan’s own Buffy Sainte-Marie.  She’s a pioneer, an activist and philanthropist.  In the early 1980’s, Buffy began composing her music and her visual art on Apple computers.  She’s an extremely accomplished and successful visual artist today with art exhibitions in Calgary, Winnipeg, Vancouver and Santa Fe, New Mexico. 
In 2010, Buffy received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award.   She’s an Officer in the Order of Canada, has a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame and has received Honourary Doctorates from a dozen Canadian universities.  Buffy was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1995

4.  Paul Anka is the name we were looking for.  You know you’re famous when your hometown names a street after you.  In 1972, the city of Ottawa named Paul Anka Drive in honour of the man who wrote and recorded “Diana” in 1957.  Since then, Paul’s had a dozen Top Ten hits which includes three # 1’s – “Diana” being his first; “Lonely Boy” (1959) was Paul’s second chart topper with 1974’s “(You’re) Having My Baby” as his third and last (so far anyway).  Songs Paul wrote that became hits for other performers include “My Way”, recorded by Frank Sinatra as well as Elvis Presley; 1971’s “She’s A Lady” for Tom Jones and the 1959 Buddy Holly hit, “It Doesn’t Matter Anymore” (After Holly’s death in February of ‘59, Anka donated his composer royalties to Buddy’s widow).  Paul was the 4th inductee in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1980. 
    
5.  Bryan Adams has been hugely successful on the record charts.  “Heaven” was his  first # 1 on Billboards’ Hot 100 in 1985.  He next hit the top singles spot again in ’91 with “(Everything I Do) I Do It For You”, a song written for the Kevin Costner film, “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves”.  That song was # 1 for 7 weeks.  Three years later, “All For Love” which also featured Rod Stewart and Sting went to # 1.  It had been written for “The Three Musketeers” movie starring Kiefer Sutherland and Charlie Sheen.  Johnny Depp’s 1995 film, “Don Juan DeMarco”, scored Adams his fourth # 1 with “Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman”.  Bryan received his star on Canada’s Walk of Fame in 1998 and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2011.  Although Adams still continues to write, record and perform music, he’s also a highly respected photographer, often taking the cover photo for Canada’s Zoomer Magazine.  Bryan Adams was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 2006.