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#Iwanttodrawyourband @ Arts & Crafts Field Trip

June 9, 2013

I have missed more Broken Social Scene shows than I’ve actually attended. I’ve brought bad dates out to shows, who’ve insisted on leaving before the headliner took to the stage. I had my media pass revoked the day before the Olympic Island show, and not had the cash in hand to shell out at the last minute. So this time, nothing was getting between me & this reunion show to mark the 10th anniversary of indie label Arts & Crafts.

It’s really remarkable to think how much Broken Social Scene and Arts & Crafts have contributed to the Canadian music climate, and fostering a love for Canadian independent music that’s larger than its locale. Over the years, the band and the label has given us a lot to be proud of nationally- and their music brings me to a time of musical innocence.

Those of you who know me personally, have probably heard me talk at length about Broken Social Scene or Arts & Crafts. Broken Social Scene, and their musical protege Leslie Feist- are 2 of my all time favourite contemporary musical acts. I often will brag about how strong my memory is of the first time I listened to BSS- & how the music changed my life by introducing me to an independent Toronto scene that I didn’t yet know existed. (A scene I desperately yearned to be a part of). Or how I subsequently have only seen BSS in concert with that same friend, who celebrated 8 years of friendship with me at Fort York this past Saturday. This is important, because Broken Social Scene was made to be enjoyed with people you love.

In 2009, I was a university drop out- working a restaurant job at Queen & Spadina. Some of the regular faces included many of the label guys at Arts & Crafts, who I made friends with one day when I complemented the Broken Social Scene t-shirt that one of them was wearing. They got me into many a show, and were always so down to earth and encouraging- in a time I didn’t have a lot to feel encouraged about. So yea, my love for all things BSS +A&C is a little personal- But there are just so many stories like these floating around this city.

The A& C Field Trip was absolutely triumphant. A totally relaxed day and night of well loved music with friends and family. The most totally laidback & polite music festival experience I’ve ever witnessed- with picnics & hula hoops abound. Sure, maybe not everyone could agree on which supporting bands they would rather watch. But in the end, we all reunited to watch the headliners play through a set that included the entirety of You Forgot It In People and a handful of extra goodies.

Special mentions to Trust, for the much needed injection of mid afternoon energy- and Feist who was absolutely transcendent, bringing new mixes to old favourites.

It’s sad to think that this will probably be the last time that BSS will play in a long time, or that the project is over. (Although we’ve heard that before). In the crowd, one of our friends picked out Kevin Drew’s dad in the crowd- who informed us that the most members BSS have ever had on stage at once is 22. And that the night’s performance would see 22 members brought back together, the way the music kept pulling us together again. Alas, even good things come to an end, as the mainstream spotlight has shifted away from the indie rock scene to the rave scene.

Happy birthday Arts & Crafts, & thank you for the music. Keep on creeping on.


*I decided the Field Trip would be a great way to get in some practice doing live drawing in a cramped, festival setting- before NXNE actually started. Here are the results of a day of drawing- with some touch ups & colour added at home. (The BSS drawing was actually drawn in the photo pit, beside all the cameras. Basically, an artistic wet dream of mine come true).

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