Archive for June, 2011
D R E A M
Death and taxes.
I had a very real dream early this a.m…. I was on my way to a dentist appointment (which I have today) and had dropped by Kate’s place to change my clothes. I had taken the train in. When I got to Querbes I was surprised to see a lot of people I didn’t know, mostly friends of Jorn’s. Ruf and Martha were out at a TV taping for the St Jean. The place was in a state of renovation, an old wood farm sink had replaced the metal one in her previously modern kitchen, a chopping block was sitting in the middle of a room waiting to be appointed. I was walking around with my clothing looking for a place to change and had put them down on a toilet which also now had no door. They fell into the bowl. (what does this mean?) I was fishing these out feeling very self-conscious all the while chitchatting with a very dapper friend of Jorn’s. I went outside. There in an unfinished garage structure with an open front was Kate setting up mic stands for people to perform at the party she was having later when Ruf and Martha showed up. We stared into each other’s eyes. She said Come by after the dentist and I said I can’t, I have to go home to see the accountant about finishing up my taxes for 2010 (which I am in fact doing today). She said Oh. I guess I should do mine too. I said We didn’t earn very much this past year, remembering that she had died, but here she was standing before me very much alive and setting up a stage. So characteristic of Kate. We looked deep into each other’s eyes again, as if to acknowledge we had a secret, that she hadn’t really died after all. I told her The 2009 taxes got done and I’m sure if you’re a little late Revenue Canada won’t mind. She said, I’ll get on them after everyone leaves. Again, so characteristic. At this point an agitated Janie came in with the news that the TV show was cutting a song Rufus had sung with an older local opera singer. They didn’t think it would appeal to the younger audience they were going after…This sure felt like real life to me.
He was one of the great ones. In 1959, Claude L. moved to Paris to write songs with and for Edith Piaf, (Martha did a rocking cover of his ‘Non, la vie n’est pas triste’ on her 2009 Piaf oeuvre.) On his return in 1962, our high-school friend Michèle Forest (and 3rd member of the Trio Canadien) and I went to hear him at l’Estérel in Ste Marguerite where he performed with André Gagnon. They played back-to-back grand pianos and I think maybe Yvon Deschamps was on snare and hi-hat. We were hooked for life. ‘ Je me fous du monde entier quand Frédéric me rappelle les beaux jours de nos vingt-ans’….’Sur un cheval blanc, je t’enmènerai..’ ‘Les vieux pianos’ These songs were played over and over in our house in St Sauveur. Our mother Gaby could never get enough of him, especially after a couple of gins. Au revoir Claude et merci.
Claude L. sings Frederic I think this was our favorite.
Another link to his song ‘Mon pays’ (not Vigneault’s) from 1965. This one made me cry last night. Oh boy.
Rufus and Martha Wainwright sing for la Fête de la St Jean, Parc Maisonneuve, Montréal, le 24 juin 2011
The line-up looks great. Read more about it (in French) FETE NATIONALE – LE 24 JUIN MONTREAL, QC Rufus and Martha are doing a couple of McGarrigle-Tatartcheff tunes and I hear Ruf will duet with Robert Charlebois. We’ll all be there to cheer them on. St John the Baptist has long been the patron saint of nationalist Quebec and his feast day falls June 24 around the time of the Summer Solstice. Lately I’ve discovered the fabulously shocking Richard Strauss opera Salome based on Oscar Wilde’s play and I’ve become more than a little obsessed with John the Baptist, sex-object..I will kiss thy mouth Jokanaan.
Very sad news about Andrew Gold. Only 59. Aside from all his high-profile accomplishments Andrew along with Greg Prestopino played that wild duelling guitars thing on Complainte pour Ste Catherine which I always felt put the ‘pop’ in that cut that made it a hit in Northern Europe. Thanks guys. Read about Andrew Gold.