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Kate Amp Anna Mcgarrigle

  • Its officially out. The first 2 Kamp;A recordings on Warner: Kate amp; Anna McGarrigle 1976, Dancer with Bruised Knees 1977, plus a 3rd disc of previously unreleased song demos from the time Kate was a solo act in 1971 augmented by some of the 2 of us from 1974 including a couple of tracks with Roma Baran with whom she first went to NYC in 1969 to suss out the folk scene. How I wish Kate could be here to see all the great press this is getting. She was beautiful and brilliant and now shes come alive once more in her songs and shes brought me back to life. Together again.

  • Two months after the release of our first Warner recording in early 1976 we were asked to send a visual of a song that was getting some attention in Holland. Kate was 8 months pregnant (doesnt look it) with Martha and because she had some edema the big East coast tour that had been planned got cancelled and we were at home twiddling our thumbs convinced our short-lived music careers were over. Now it turns out somebody somewhere liked something. Timing was everything. I remember it was a weekend and the Quebec WEA company rep arranged for us to lyp-synch before a camera at a TV station in Sherbrooke, QC, 1.5 hrs drive E. of Montreal, the only place that could make the video on short notice. In spite of the sorry-looking tulips, the song became a hit in Holland and Northern Europe. This is the first time Ive ever seen this clip. It was uploaded to youtube and last.fm by fans. The irony here is that in the Spring of 2009 Kate and I were to fly to Holland to do this same song on a TV show with the Dutch group Alderliefste but because of post-surgery complications Kate had to spend a month in hospital and we never made it over. Complainte pour Ste Catherine indeed. Be careful how you title your songs. Stick to Love Me Do. The song appears on our first Warner record and on French Record (where Ive written it phonetically Kumpleint por St Kathryn)

  • Just got the sad and unexpected news that longtime friend and fan Robert Bower died suddenly in NYC yesterday. He was only 62. His beloved mother Ida died a month ago on July 8th and he was heartbroken but bearing up. He had a health problem he was being treated for and seems to have died as a consequence. Here is a pic of Robert and his mum (from a while back) that he sent me in July.

  • Kate and I first met Robert in 1976 shortly after our first record was released. We were touring in the NYC area and he presented himself backstage after a gig. If memory serves me well, he was with Ron Gomes. Thereafter he would call regularly and send us newspaper clippings of KA reviews from around the World and he never missed a KA concert in the NYC area and often travelled further afield to attend if his work schedule permitted. He was a longtime employee of Hotalings News in Times Sq. More recently he worked in Bob Dylans office. Robert was probably Leonard Cohens biggest fan and many people will remember him from LCs concerts and ours. He was always taking in stray cats and at one point had what he thought were 2 female kittens which he named Kate and Anna. Kate turned out to be a male (my Kate was supposed to be one..) so he renamed the kitten Kit which was also my fathers nickname for Kate. They are also long gone. Heres hoping Robert finds all his loved ones on the other side. Adieu old friend.

  • Last Tuesday I drove up to Québec City to see Martha perform at the annual sprawling Festival dété. There are many stages throughout the City and she was playing Le pigeonnier, a stage Kate and I had played in the mid 90s. I dont have to tell you, Martha was Magnificent. The audience was in her thrall throughout. At one point she kindly asked me to join her on stage so I could massacre Entre Lajeunesse et la sagesse on the piano while she sang it like an angel. In all the years Ive sung and sometimes played the bass on that song I had never actually played it on piano. Its tough! as Barbie would say. I think Ive got it now. Then Marianne Faithfull took the stage and did a very charming and heartfelt set with her band led by Kate St John.

  • This week Rufus, Martha, Loudon, Lucy, Brad, Thomas, Calum, Lily, and the Arc of the Covent, are all over in London doing Rufus week at Covent Garden. It sounds like its going to be wonderful. Check out Rufuss site for details of this coming weeks presentations:

  • Wish Kate could be here to see this. The stamp had been in the works for some time so she knew about it and was quite jazzed by the idea. Many thanks to all who made this happen. Coincidentally in the late 80s we did the music for Mike Rubbos fantastical kids film Tommy Tricker and the Stamp Traveller. If I remember correctly you just had to get yourself onto the stamp and away you went travelling back and forth in time. Wonder if the magic still works?

  • P.S. Joel Z just wrote better than being on a Pinky stamp. Throughout the 60s when we lived in TMR, my mother shopped religiously at the Dominion store and collected those stamps you wet with a sponge and stuck in booklets (the premise for Michel Tremblays Les belles-soeurs.) When she redeemed what seemed like a huge stack of these she still only had enough for half a set of the Canadian Encyclopedia, a source of great frustration to her daughters when writing term papers. The only other reference books we had was a set (complete) of the American Encyclopedia 1904 edition, still at Gardencourt.

  • 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 Kates 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 didnt know, mostly friends of Jorns. 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 Jorns. 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 others eyes. She said Come by after the dentist and I said I cant, 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 didnt 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 others eyes again, as if to acknowledge we had a secret, that she hadnt really died after all. I told her The 2009 taxes got done and Im sure if youre a little late Revenue Canada wont mind. She said, Ill 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 didnt think it would appeal to the younger audience they were going afterThis 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 nest 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 lEstérel 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 tenmènerai.. 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.

  • Rufus and Martha are doing a couple of McGarrigle-Tatartcheff tunes and I hear Ruf will duet with Robert Charlebois. Well 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 Ive discovered the fabulously shocking Richard Strauss opera Salome based on Oscar Wildes play and Ive become more than a little obsessed with John the Baptist, sex-object..I will kiss thy mouth Jokanaan.



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