Archive for the ‘The Count’ Category

The Freedom of Music: Long Lost Song

March 10th, 2013
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One likes to believe in the freedom of music.
Rush – Spirit of Radio.

Bob Segarini is a California born musician, who made a nem for himself mostly in aCanada, He known for his songwriting as much as performance.sidebar-2 With a number of albums and a couple of charting singes, Segarini had a nice career in the 70’s Canadian music scene. And when April Wine, a band with a number of original songs under it’s belt by 1977, opened for the Rolling Stones at the El Mocambo in that year, the subsequent live album had 2 Segarini penned tunes: Teenage Love and Juvenile Delinquent.

In the early 80’s, Segarini took a gig as a night time radio host Toronto’s newest rock radio station, Q107. He worked under the nom de plume The Iceman, and with his distinctive deep – very deep – voice he was unique in the Toronto radio landscape. His rant against Iron Maiden and their song Number of the Beast, at a time when rock music was under pressure for supposed links to Satinism, is one of the most memorable half minutes on radio.

By the mid-1980’s he was in the coveted afternoon drive slot on Q107, after a few years hiatus from the radio business. At the same time, I was working at my local IGA, spending afternoons in the basement trimming lettuce, bagging oranges and doing all the various and sundry duties that your local green grocer spends his afternoons doing. Naturally, I listened to the radio: The Iceman on Q107.

In 1984 he began playing a cool song at the same time every day. For what seemed longer, but can only have been a couple of weeks, this song would come on and there would be a few of us around the radio. Then, after a few weeks, he stopped playing it, just as suddenly as he started. The song just went away. Life’s busy and some song by a one hit wonder gets lost in the mix. I never went out and bought the single or the album, so the song faded from memory.

Over the years I thought of the song, wondered why I never heard it again? Occasional internet searches produced nothing, and seeing as I couldn’t remember what it was called or who sang it, that’s hardly surprising. It was possible the singer was a Kershaw, and as it bore a similarity to Nik Kershaw’s Wouldn’t it be Good, that seemed possible, but searches of his discography, as well as Sammy and Doug Kershaw’s respective discography’s produced nothing. That seems hardly surprising considering all I remembered was it was the early 80’s, and he sang something about Uncle Sonny coming home from prison. Not much to go on.

A few weeks ago on an message board, a thread about songs that you can’t find popped up. I posted more or less the above description of the song: played in the early 80’s on Iceman’s radio show on Q107; About an uncle coming home from prison. It seemed unlikely that anyone would be able to pin down my song from that, and alas, it was… for 4-minutes anyway. On minute five, someone responded:

I’m thinking that this song could be Tony Carey’s, “A Fine Fine Day”, which was a huge hit from Canada.

With included YouTube video (no wonder it took so long to reply, having to find the video first and all), I could confirm in a matter of one verse and chorus that this was, in fact, the song I wondered what the hell it was called for twenty-plus years.

Say what you want about how the internet has ruined the music business, but I have wondered what this song is called for years, and within ten minutes of asking on a website I was on iTunes, spending 69c for a song that would have cost me 99c in 1984, if I had bought the single. After all these years, Tony Carey is finally getting the few pennies I feel I owe him, for the mystery he has added to my life if nothing else.

It’s in truth just a pretty good 80’s song. The writing is good, and comes with an actual storyline, and the chorus has a solid pop hook. The verse, however, is dragged down by cheesy 80’s synth sound where an overdriven guitar would improve it immensely. None the less, I’ve listened to it more in the last couple of weeks than I probably ever heard it in 1984, and doubt I will ever forget the chorus again.

What a treat it has been, a long lost gem, returned to me to enjoy again and again. It is, indeed, a fine, fine day.

The Count, The Freedom of Music, This Week on my I-Pod, Tibet , , , , ,

Go Count Go!

March 26th, 2011
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The scene unfolds easily in front of you. The Government has fallen, a minority Parliament ends in a vote of non-confidence. The governing party is reeling from scandal, yet the polls say the election will end much as it began, with the current Prime Minister returning to Ottawa with a minority mandate. Radio shows ask the question: why would the opposition force an election they can’t win? Why waste this money on a vote that will end in the same Parliament as it began?

The leader of the opposition was on the defensive. Canadians don’t want this election, don’t need this election. His patriotism had already been called into question and he was gaffe prone. On day one of the campaign he makes, the media assert, another gaffe. Without prompting, without a clue, he says there will be a free vote on gay marriage in the house under his government.

Why, why would Stephen Harper give such a gift to Paul Martin? Why would he make it about his scary agenda instead of Paul Martin’s corrupt, bag of money under the table, Liberals?

In reality, what that statement did was take the question of gay rights out of the debate. It took from the Liberals the, “those scary Conservatives and their hidden agenda want to take away your human rights,” attack. It saw what was coming, and neutered it. It was a well thought out strategy, and served warning that the Conservatives were ready and serious about the 2005/06 campaign.

They ran a brilliant campaign focusing on five core policies and announcing one new policy initiative every day. They were lean, they were direct, and they spoke to voters with simple policies that resonated. And when the going got tough, when the very nasty Liberals personally attacked, they ignored it and stayed on message. It worked, and the Conservatives won.

Now the roles are reversed, the Conservatives have the dirt of governance on their hands, the attack ads, the scandals involving accounting tricks with their own money. Things are so bad in Ottawa, even Jack Layton is indignant. Yet the polls say the Conservatives will be back, probably with a minority. Why would the opposition risk so much?

Like Stephen Harper, Michael Ignatieff is going to answer to charges he has a scary hidden agenda. In Harper’s case it was a social conservative agenda. In Ignatieff’s, it is the question of forming a coalition that includes the Bloc. It is there, it will be in the ads, and Ignatieff had better answer the question directly and honestly right off the bat.

Day 1:

  • blue serge suit dry cleaned – check
  • non-confidence voted – check
  • have answer to sticky question ready…

There is a blue door, there is a red door. We’re gonna elect a Liberal Government.

Here’s a hint Mr. Ignatieff. The answer to every single question you ever get asked in politics is not a quote from Go Dog Go!

Day 2:

Someone please, get on the phone and explain to the Count that it is a yes or no question: If the Conservatives get a plurality, but not a majority, will you enter into a coalition with the NDP and Bloc? Yes/No.

And here’s a tip, the right answer is no. The worst answer is, “The light is green now, Go Dogs Go!”

Coalition of the Treasonous, Pompous Igghead, The Count , , ,

I served Jean Cretien, I knew Jean Cretien, Jean Cretien Was A Friend of Mine…

August 31st, 2010

Remember when Liberals bragged about “the toughest and most ruthless machine in Canadian politics,” not whined about it.the-count_bmp

Frankly, I’m still trying to get my head around Jean Cretien publicly using the words NDP and leadership together, thus giving them credibility they really don’t have.

The more I watch of The Count, the more I believe that, regardless of what this or that poll says, when an election is on and everything counts, Harper is going to wipe the floor with this guy.

Michael Ignatieff, Silly Liberals, The Count

“Fiscal Balance is Achievable”

February 4th, 2010

…As long as spending is kept under control.

That’s according to Glen Hodgeson, chief economist as the Conference Board of Canada. Despite what opposition leaders and opposition media will tell you, this makes sense. I was never a fan of the stimulus spending. Became less of a fan as I spent hours this summer in stimulus jams on the 401 as they scraped up perfectly good pavement and lay down other, just as good pavement. In fact, my first post at Gerry Nicholls’ LibertyPost was about the economic porn of stimulus spending.

That said, stimulus spending is by it’s nature, temporary spending. The government created a big deficit by spending on re-facing the 401 and other such useful-alities. Once the stimulus spending stops, the budget should return to normal. the-count_bmpThat is, assuming spending is not increased by, say, introducing a vastly expensive new social program.

The federal Liberals are promising to put a national child-care program at the forefront of the next election campaign and any future government, with leader Michael Ignatieff describing it as a “legacy” item for his party.

“Mr. Ignatieff is making grand promises that he absolutely refuses to cost out, or say how he’ll pay for them,” (Human Resources Minister Diane ) Finley said.

Where will Michael Ignatieff find the money for his new popcorn-and-beer-care? Actually he’s already said where. He has indicated it will take tax hikes to bring the deficit back in line. This is not true, as the economists who met with Jim Flaherty have noted, unless you take the expanded stimulus included budget and consider it the new normal. If your spending doesn’t decrease when the stimulus ends, you need new revenue to pay for all that extra spending.

What we now have is a clear look at Michael Ignatieffs plan. He is going to spend like it’s 2009 by adding daycare to the public budget, and he will blame Stephen Harper for the tax hikes he needs to pay for it.

Silly Liberals, The Count , , ,