What You Liked Last Week (08.29.16)

What You Liked Last Week (08.29.16)

We post a lot on social media. Hopefully you follow?

In no particular order, here are the posts that stuck with our community last week!

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Five Finger Friday Points to Sheep and Forgotten Places

Five Finger Friday Points to Sheep and Forgotten Places

If your time is not divided between driving out for one last long weekend hurrah and checking out all of the Star Wars merchandise released today, you may just be looking for some good stuff to do right here in Edmonton. If so, look no further. Five Finger Friday is back!

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Five Finger Friday for July 24 Tastes So Good

Five Finger Friday for July 24 Tastes So Good

Five fingers pointing you in five directions for art, faith, hope and love ‘round these here parts in the week ahead.

We'll send you to Taste of Edmonton, The Carrot for a Von Bieker concert, and some places that have nothing to do with food.

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ArtScene13 Gets Resourceful for Us Artists

ArtScene13 Gets Resourceful for Us Artists

From  a whole lot of local inspiration to your very own hipster brand, this week we've got 13 #yegarts resources for the artists among us.

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Friday Finds: Free Songs From the Bridge Songs Vault

You know how Disney opens up their 'Vault' every once and a while to offer some goodies from the past? Well this is kind of like that. But free. We are now planning Bridge Songs, the Bleeding Heart's flagship event that takes place on June 14. But did you know this is our 8th Bridge Songs?

Here's a look back at our 7 previous outings, complete with a free track from each album. Enjoy!

Bridge Songs 1.5

Bridge Songs One

This first time out there was no theme - we were just excited to make music together. The results were a large collection of solo performances, originally released in hand-stamped paper sleeves, on disks we burned ourselves. I later updated the cover and included even more tracks for a '1.5' release that we gave away to guests of Urban Bridge Church for some time.

From that release, here is My Only Friend from Cora McLachlan.

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Download My Only Friend

Bridge Songs_ CollectiveBridge Songs Collective

Wanting to take things up a notch, we thought, 'Let's Make Music (and art) together'. Collaborative projects were the loose theme for this year, and some great work resulted. We also moved to The Ave this year. It was the start of a new direction for Bridge Songs.

From Bridge Songs Collective, here is Tiny Castles, written by Dave Mulcair.

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Download Tiny Castles

Bridge Songs_ Be Not Afraid

Bridge Songs: Be Not Afraid

Our third outing took a darker turn, bringing 'Music in the face of fear". It also took our collaboration further, bringing a full band to the tracks.

Working with the theme of fear produced some great music, and I still play "Sure" today.

From Bridge Songs: Be Not Afraid, here is Sure, written by Dave Von Bieker.

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Download Sure

Bridge-Songs-Faerie-by-Susan-Wilde-15Bridge Songs: Faerie

Of all the Bridge Songs events we've done, this one, held at Avenue Theatre, was so, so fun! Beautiful stage decorations by Jennifer Wilde accompanied a performance that involved a timpani and a spider monkey. You had to be there.

But, for those who weren't there, you can enjoy one of my favourite tracks from any Bridge Songs, by Jennifer Wilde.

From Bridge Songs: Faerie, here is Sara's Song, by Jennifer Wilde

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Download Sara's Song

Bridge Songs_ _rogress

Bridge Songs: ?rogress

We recorded this one entirely ourselves, using plenty of technology to match the '?rogress' theme. The results were mixed in the end - a product of over-ambition smacking against the walls of time and resources (and my limited production skills). But this album is my baby, and I'm still proud.

From Bridge Songs: ?rogress, here is YOUHAVETIME, by Andy Mulcair.

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a1822014565_2Bridge Songs: New Eyes

By our seventh outing, the Bridge Songs musicians were comfortable together. We'd been playing on one-another's songs for a while, and many of us wanted to push that collaboration further. We wanted to see what we could accomplish with a deeper focus and commitment to excellence.

Rather than a full album as a collective, we formalized as a band and focussed on an EP, The New Eyes Open. It included two brand new songs and our first re-working of something from the Bridge Songs back-catalogue–Cora McLachlan's There Was a Ghost.

Cora's version, from Bridge Songs: Be Not Afraid is yours for the taking.

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Download There Was a Ghost

The entire three song EP can be downloaded from Bandcamp for just $2, and previewed here.

Bridge Songs Heartbreak CoverBridge Songs: Heartbreak

Last year we rebooted the Bridge Songs process and opened it up to new songwriters again. As a rest, we received the most song submissions ever, from many new performers.

It seems Heartbreak is rich songwriting territory.

Our final song, from Bridge Songs: Heartbreak, is the wonderful The Sailor, a duet between Spencer Ford and Cynthia Hamar (this is the unmastered version).

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Download The Sailor

What's your favourite track from Bridge Songs' past?

Be sure to join us on June 14 for the performance and release of Bridge Songs: Dear Edmonton,



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Friday Finds: 5 and a Half Christmas Gifts

Tis’ The Season! In today’s Friday Finds, I reach into the internet's velvety crimson bag of gifts and pull out presents to bless your bleeding hearts! Incidentally, the bag glows and jingles every time I open it, just like in Ernest Saves Christmas. Each of these five finds have been gifts to me, and I pray they are gifts to you as well. Each one may just ‘make your spirit bright’ as you take a moment out of the hustle and bustle of holiday preparations to unwrap them in the warm glow of your screen.

Merry Christmas!

1 Gift of Vision

This week you’ve likely already heard that Apple’s new Christmas commercial was filmed right here in Edmonton. For some fanboys, this is a pretty big deal. Like me.

But beyond the ‘celebrity visitation’ story here, the Journal’s Paula Simons points out what you may, like me, have missed in this video. The fact is, Apple’s ad team found the idyllic White Christmas, right here in Edmonton. Simons’ piece elevates a simple acknowledgement or even review of the Apple ad, instead offering a gift of renewed vision to Edmonton residents, in the middle of a long hard winter.

Dear Edmonton, the world thinks you’re beautiful.

Read Simon’s wonderful bit of writing here >

3 (and a half) Gifts of Song

There are so many free Christmas EP's that come out every year, it's hard to take any of them seriously. One might wonder whether this has become a gimmicky way for artists to promote themselves. Oh heck, I'm beyond wondering.

But still, through the clutter some diamonds still shine. Here are three free Christmas albums (donations are always welcome on Noisetrade) that offer something a little different. These are three collections I have found worth downloading, and think you will too.

Merry Christmas. Good Night. Vol 3

This collection is full of songs striking the rare balance between 'modern' and 'reverent'. It actually plays as much like an indie worship album as a Christmas album. My main reason for downloading was the track Winter Wind by local artists and friends L’Ampersand. I really dig the electric piano opening and the strings later on in the song. It's not the only gem you'll find here though. Sean Carter's Glory of Men is particularly beautiful.

The Songs the Season Brings Vol 3. Beta Radio

Any album that starts out with the track The Carol of the Banjos has my attention. Again, what drew me in is not the only, or even the best, track on the album. The original song, The Songs the Season Brings is an excellent bit of indie Americana.

Hey Rosetta!, A Cup of Kindness Yet

The first song on this Christmas EP from last year, Carry Me Home, is just incredible - my favourite original Christmas song in a long while and well worth the download. Thankfully, the other three songs are beautiful, too.

OK, One More

This one is gonna cost you, but I promise it is worth it. My favourite Christmas discovery this year is by Bahamas, from a little compilation a couple of years old that I'd never heard of. Bahamas cover of Christmas Must Be Tonight, by The Band, is just heart-breakingly beautiful. Oh, that guitar!

Do yourself a favour and pay the $1.29 to download the track on iTunes. Do it now!

1 Gift of Inspiration

It seems every month or so I come across another inspiring story about Pope Francis. The latest comes from local writer and friend Stephen Berg, whose blog Grow Mercy is a constant gift itself (you really should subscribe).

Stephen writes of Pope Francis' challenge to ‘unfettered capitalism’, in favour of ‘the unfettered gospel’. Just days from celebrating Christ's breaking-through, this is a very good read and a reminder that loving your neighbour comes at a cost.

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