A little while ago on the blog, I said I would make custom mixes for anyone who wanted one. The lovely Meg responded that she was a Canadian stranded out in the wilds of America and would love to hear some sounds of home.
Since various life craziness got in the way of my pulling together the mix, I am making it up to her by sending not one but two Canadian mixes.
My strategy was this – The first disc would be old school Can Con and the second disc would be more modern stuff. Here’s a look at what I put on.
Mix Number One: Maple Syrup Flavoured Homesickness
American Woman – The Guess Who: What else is suitable for a Canadian ex-pat?
The Beat Goes On/Switch Into Glide – The Kings: My dad used to play me this song on vinyl when I saw a kid. I still love the line “Nothing matters but the weekend from a Tuesday point of view.”
Black Cars – Gino Vannelli: Even growing up I thought Gino Vannelli was kind of a cheesemeister, which is why I had to add it to my mix.
Don’t Forget Me (When I’m Gone) – Glass Tiger: Who could forget the celtic sounds of Glass Tiger? When I was a kid, this was one of the three tapes my mom owned. The other two were Rick Astley and the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. Do not ask me why.
Echo Beach – Martha & The Muffins: Apparently, Martha & The Muffins released their first disc of new music in 18 years back in February. I haven’t heard it, but to me, they will always be this song.
Eyes Of A Stranger – The Payolas: A little splash of Vancouver new wave, this band was on hiatus from 1989-2003 and then reformed to produce more music, however I cannot name another song they did.
Hasn’t Hit Me Yet – Blue Rodeo: I mulled including this song or “Lost Together” which was actually my brother and sister in-law’s wedding song. I went with this one because it referenced Lake Ontario.
High School Confidential – Rough Trade: A sultry song by androgynous bitch goddess Carol Pope. Her voice is so deep on it, when I was little, I thought it was a man singing.
Hot Child In The City – Nick Gilder: This song had a major comeback when it was featured in an episode of Sex and the City. Carrie and her comic store boyfriend get stoned and eat chicken wings to it – Nick Gilder should be proud!
I Wear My Sunglasses At Night – Corey Hart: A cousin of mine used to live in the same building as Corey Hart. He said he would pass the guy every so often on his way to the garbage chute and it was all he could do to stop himself from going “Don’t mess around with a guy in shades oh no!” I would have had the same reaction.
Kiss Me You Fool – The Northern Pikes: The Northern Pikes are from Saskatchewan so I felt like I should throw something of theirs on here to represent the praries.
Life Is A Highway – Tom Cochrane: I once knew a dude in high school whose family sold Tom Cochrane their old plane and then he crashed it.
Moonlight Desires – Gowan: If you ever watch an episode of old school Degrassi, pretty much without fail, if there is a dance in the episode, a Gowan song will play!
Run To You – Bryan Adams: People are all about “Summer of ’69” but for my money, this song is better.
Safety Dance – Men Without Hats: I love that this video has a maypole and midgets in it. It’s just so random and ridiculous.
Takin’ Care Of Business – Bachman Turner Overdrive: This was one of those songs that got really overplayed in the ’80s but now is kind of listenable again.
Too Bad – Doug and the Slugs: Norm MacDonald used this song as the theme song for his short lived show Norm. It just goes to show you that the CanCon is hammered in there.
We’re Here For A Good Time (Not A Long Time ) – Trooper: This song played at my wedding. No joke.
What A Day For A Day Dream – The Loving Spoonful: Did you know that one of the dudes from The Loving Spoonful was married to Jackie Burroughs, the woman who played Aunt Hetty on Road to Avonlea? Canada!
Mix Number Two: Paying With Funny Coloured Money
Neighbourhood #1 (Tunnels) – Arcade Fire: One of my favourite Arcade Fire songs.
What A Drag! – The Kim Band: This band is fronted by Kim Bingham who has done a lot of work with David Usher. True to Canadian form, the album that this song is on also has a version of it in French.
Fly Paper – K-Os: I would not be cool enough to hang out with K-Os in real life, but I love his stuff. Smart hiphop.
That Girl – Esthero: I loved this album my senior year of high school. At the time, I think it was the closest thing in my CD collection to rap.
Almost – Sarah Harmer: Sarah Harmer lives in Toronto and her parents used to run an awesome chocolate shop in the Beach.
Idiot Heart – Sunset Rubdown: This band is actually the side project of one of the guys in Wolf Parade. This song feels like it has a sort of David Bryne sensibility to it.
Every Page You Turn – Boy: They haven’t released anything since 2007 and I’m not sure they’re still together, but some of the cuts off this album are great. Their song “Stars” is one of my all-time favourites.
Ghost Pressure – Wolf Parade: This album is being released at the end of the month but I already enjoy this song.
No Sissies – Hawksley Workman: I remember back in 2001 when Hawksley came into my life with (Last Night We Were) The Delicious Wolves and I loved him. I’m not as into his work now, but his old stuff has a bunch of good memories associated with it. His stuff has kind of a theatrical bent to it, but I’ve always appreciated the lyrics.
Elevator Love Letter – Stars: This song always peps me up and I have been known to dance to it in actual elevators when no one else is around.
Home – King Cobb Steelie: A lot of King Cobb Steelie’s stuff doesn’t have words to it, but this track does and it pretty much encapsulates the summer after my first year of college.
Them Kids – Sam Roberts: I remember my cousin Tassy telling me once that she knew Sam and she would introduce us, but that never happened because I was too shy. The whole album is pretty good, but this song is the most poppy.
Mass Romantic – The New Pornographers: The New Pornographers have a place in my heart for putting on the best concert I have ever been to, so I had to throw something of theirs on.
Sweet Ones – Sarah Slean: I got this off of one of Boy’s albums which is funny because we normally don’t like the same music. Go figure!
Restoration – The Acorn: The Acorn is a band from Ottawa that hasn’t quite broken here yet but have been getting some decent indie play.
Hummingbird – Born Ruffians: I have a thing about hummingbirds so I like the title, plus these dudes played on Skins which is a great British show.
The Lifestyle – Metric: Metric have kind of broken in the States, so I picked something from an EP of theirs from 1998.
Canada – Treasure: Okay, this song is not by a Canadian band, but I figured the song title gave it a bit of a pass.
Curious – Sandbox: When this band dissolved, the guitarist went on to play Bubbles on Trailer Park Boys. Weirdly enough, I once went to a party where the cast was in attendance and they stayed in character pretty much the whole time.
Anyway, that’s my Canuck mix. I still have another mix to pull together for the awesome Nadine, and then later in the week, they’ll both be shipped off to hopefully reach their intendeds before Canada Day. Awesome!
*I didn’t include listenable mixes this time because the website I use is messed up. Sorry!