Alright, it’s been nearly three months since I’ve posted anything here (how you been, in a nutshell?) so I’m just gonna dive in. I’ve got a lot of catching up to do, which I’ll be doing a little bit at a time over the next month. And then, the way things are going, I’m gonna be catching up on the catching up… here’s what happened this past week, in no particular order:
Last Thursday, I hit a new plateau. There was a full page about me and my caper in The Toronto Star and I had no idea. Not a clue– not until someone handed me the paper, and then I had another new experience: I learned some things about myself (I wax romantic, is what I’m taking away from that one), and about my own caper, that I didn’t even know. My favourite was regarding The Done Right Inn, which is where I was originally planning to spend all the loot:
“We take in about $100 a month these days,” she says, of the play dough that has been accepted at par here since the place opened in 1999. That is double the bar’s customary take: it enjoyed a spike since the Star put Toronto singer-songwriter Corin Raymond’s Canadian Tire fundraising drive quest on the cover of the newspaper in January.
“C’mon, this is an old-school bar, with a row of elbows propped along it. There is nothing we don’t chew over, and that moment of fame played big here. We’re a local, and this made us a destination.”
We’re still gonna have a party there, you know. I’m still buying the entire bar a round with Tire Money. And you will be invited. The album comes out in November, so sometime before that.
But back to The Star, the headline on Thursday read ‘Toronto Musician Raises Enough Canadian Tire Money To Record Live Album‘– which is not true– or rather it could give the wrong idea. The Star makes it sound as though the caper was finished, like we were sweeping up the confetti– but we aren’t. I suppose the headline is factually accurate, since I have raised enough of the cute little Scotsmen to record the album (which happened over two nights in January at The Tranzac), but now there’s the slow, exciting, and much-more-involved work of editing, mixing, and mastering– all of which can also be covered by Sandy McTyre, if your glovebox is willing.
The album will be called Paper Nickels, and as I say, it’ll be out in November of this year. It’s a collection of the greatest songs I’ve discovered in the last ten years of travelling– most of them from across this country. It’s a secret history of the Canadian folk music scene as it exists right now and it couldn’t be more appropriate that the studio time is being covered with Tire Money. Having just broken $3,650.00, we’re moving into folkloric territory, friends. If you wanna be part of this ludicrousness , and turn your small paper change into beauty we can all enjoy, it’s certainly not too late to do that.
If you’d like to add your twenty cents, I’ll be collecting our unofficial second currency until the end of 2012. Send it to 39 OXFORD ST. TORONTO, ON M5T 1N8. This caper will not happen again.
On Friday, three more articles came out (you’ve gotta understand that this time around I was just minding my own business) and I was a phone-in guest on Seattle’s CBS News Station, KIRO, on the show ‘Ross and Burbank’. It’s worth listening just to hear Dave and Luke chatting about Sandy McTyre from a U.S. perspective– and their parting dialogue about me, Barack Obama, and Canada– you wanna laugh, right now? You wanna feel better than you already do? Take a listen. It takes this caper to yet another level.
Okay, it’s still Friday: I love when articles get written off other articles, but it’s especially fun when I don’t know about any of ’em– and again, to update on what Exclaim! is repeating here, there’s a brand new total in town: I cracked $3,650.00 Thursday night at The Cameron House (it was the $14.15 from the Ferraros that put me over), but I’m still a ways away from my Everest-like, Don-Quixote-Impossible-Star goal of ten thousand Canadian Tire dollars.
And then there was this piece from Spinner Canada, same day again. It’s not Spinner’s fault the total is off by a thousand bucks. I haven’t updated this site in months. And once again, the banner line on the article makes it sound as if the party’s over– my bad again. But my favourite part of this one is the last paragraph:
The singer still has some work to do in comparison to Amanda Palmer‘s recent Kickstarter campaign. Originally hoping for around $100,000 to go towards a new album, Palmer recently eclipsed more than $700,000 U.S. in pledges.
There’s a wee detail missing here, as Sandy McTyre might say, and that’s that to accrue the amount of Tire Money I now have ($3,650.00) by shopping at Canadian Tire, a person would have to spend well over $800,000 in real cash. I hate to be nit-picky, but nearly a million dollars has already been spent in the making of my record. When Paper Nickels comes out in November, it’ll be the only million dollar Canadian folk record you’ve ever had in your hands.
Same day, Friday, I also caught wind of a great piece by David McPherson in Canadian Musician about the uses of social media in the ever-changing music world. I share space with Jadea Kelly and Walk Off The Earth, among others, and I think this is the first time this caper has been so glossy. The nerd in me also loves that I’m on page 42, which is the meaning, of course, to Life, The Universe, and Everything. This was the same day I noticed that somebody online called me ‘the Trump of Canadian Tire Money‘.
But it gets better. A week ago Friday me and James Paul (of The Rogue Studios) made the front cover of The Wall Street Journal. I know, I know. It was inevitable. Ever since I first picked up a guitar and struck a G chord, we knew it was gonna happen. Two funny moments: days before going to print, the reporter emailed me for my latest total, which I didn’t have. Just as I’ve been absent from this page, it’d been weeks since I’d totted up my tally. So I got to work, sitting in my kitchen in my housecoat. Took me about an hour. And when I finally had the figure in front of me I proclaimed, almost accidentally: ‘I’ve got the newest total– I must inform The Wall Street Journal immediately!!!’. Which I did. And I knew that I had just said something I’d likely have use for only once in this lifetime. The other moment was when I dropped by Presse Internationale to buy a copy for my dad. I pointed the article out to the clerk and said, ‘Hey, I’m in there. Front page, would you believe it?’. The clerk looked at the crisp and powerful financial newspaper before us and then at me, looking very much like The Dude from The Big Lebowski, and you know, I felt a bit like The Dude, when he first meets… The Big Lebowski. Except the bums haven’t lost, brothers and sisters!! They’re on the front cover of The Wall Street Journal!! God bless this new underground economy.
That my caper is now a part of the Canadian Tire $$$ story– being told here to financial readers who’ve never seen Sandy McTyre— is a coup. That I scored a photo at all is ridiculous. That every picture accompanying the piece are of my own bundles is somehow… appropriate (you’ll see the same stick-it notes on my bills in the WSJ piece that I put on them in Sunnybrae– in the photo below). That James Paul gets mentioned is beautiful. That the comments are entertaining as well as educational is refreshing, and separates them from the comments under every other online post this adventure’s enjoyed. The best part is, I made the Wall Street Journal for having an inordinate amount of crazy fun– without any real money– and even better, we did it together.
Oh, and incidentally, that illustrated bill up top was sent to me with some CT bucks from a great BC duo called– are you ready for this?– A Million Dollars In Pennies! And they’re killer. They opened for The Sundowners in Sunnybrae, BC and it made me very excited to hear they were working on a record. Look for it. You won’t be disappointed.
I’m back folks, and you heard it through the intervine. See you here soon, CR.
ps. Something else that happened this week (I’m not bragging here, I’m just telling the truth!!)– not related to Canadian Tire Money– is that Shelagh Rogers came across a piece I wrote for Beams and Struts about the music of Ariana Gillis (Pulse, Power, and Universe: The Lake Monsters Of Ariana Gillis) and Shelagh liked it enough that she invited me and Ariana to be guests on her CBC program, The Next Chapter, at the beginning of June. That’s the first time, during this caper, that I’ll be on national radio talking about something other than Tire Money. My life is utterly charmed. CR.