Posts tagged with "audio book"

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Gord Downie – Coke Machine Glow 20th Anniversary

GORD DOWNIE’S COKE MACHINE GLOW SEES EXPANDED 20th ANNIVERSARY RELEASE

Downie’s First Solo Project Revisited With Triple Album

Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters’ Cabal (Arts & Crafts) And Poetry Audiobook (Penguin Random House)

Out August 27, 2021 – Preorder Now

Bonus Listen: ‘I Stand Before The Songwriters’ Cabal‘ Music Edit With Spoken Word By Rob Baker

Gord Downie’s Coke Machine Glow was released in 2001, in between Music @ Work (2000) and In Violet Light (2002), the ninth and tenth albums by his mighty band of brothers in The Tragically Hip. The first solo project by one of the world’s great wordsmiths, Coke Machine Glow’s sixteen painterly songs were released with an accompanying book of poetry, collectively emanating Downie’s heartrending stories, from the road as from home, in his signature quirk and complex, approachable wit. Twenty years since its release, Coke Machine Glow remains a teetering, charming body of work, never static, shot across its canvas in brilliant glowing embers and warm honey tones.

Now, to mark its 20th anniversary, Arts & Crafts announces a special expanded reissue that posthumously revisits the songs and poetry of this prolific period of Downie’s career. Entitled Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters’ Cabal, the triple-album features the original two-disc set plus a bonus record of twelve unreleased demos, alternate versions, and never-before-heard outtakes, carefully curated by Gord’s oldest Toronto friend Josh Finlayson and brothe Patrick Downie with Arts & Crafts’ Jonathan Shedletzky, including the ominous I Stand Before The Songwriters’ Cabal and two opposing versions of the mysterious Contact.

The in-all 28-song collection presents a portrait of Downie with a rarely before heard intimacy, unrefined and dripping in the wildness of the moment. Elegant alternate studio takes of classics like Vancouver Divorce and Lofty Pines express the fluidity of the family band that comprised the Gas Station recording sessions in Toronto, that May of 2000; while home recordings dated November 1999, Carlaw Avenue, of SF Song, Trick Rider, and Chancellor, and more, spotlight Gord in close communion with his tape recorder and coffee machine. Produced by GD, Josh Finlayson, and Steven Drake, featuring Dale Morningstar, Julie Doiron, Kevin Hearn, Atom Egoyan, Dave Clark, Don Kerr, and more, Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters’ Cabal is a document of Gord at the precipice of his illustrious solo career.

Concurrently, Penguin Random House announces the Coke Machine Glow Audiobook, a complete reading of Downie’s original book of poetry by family members, band members, and friends, like Sarah Harmer, Dan Aykroyd, Ron MacLean, Bruce McCulloch, Don Kerr, and many more, produced by Patrick Downie. (See here for the full list of readers). Ultimately a book Gord wrote about the distances that bridge and separate us, Coke Machine Glow is bound by the dedication of those he loved and was loved by a rich, haunting collection that reveals both the public and private selves of Gordon Edgar Downie. In poetry that is urban, gritty and political, romantic and nocturnal, nostalgic and whimsical, Downie allows us a glimpse inside his world, with loved ones carrying the gift of his words onwards.

Available via digital audiobook retailers, the Coke Machine Glow poetry collection will also be included on CD with A&C’s physical music editions. The Songwriters’ Cabal 3LP vinyl is presented in a beautiful embossed triple-gatefold package, limited to a one-time pressing of 2000 hand-numbered copies. In addition to the 3CD set, A&C is for the first time offering a Coke Machine Glow songbook for voice, guitar, and piano. The album, audiobook, and songbook are out on August 27, 2021. The Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters’ Cabal limited edition vinyl is expected to ship November 15, 2021.

PREORDER COKE MACHINE GLOW 20th ANNIVERSARY ITEMS

That Coke Machine Glow did not sound like a record by The Tragically Hip was both not a surprise, and is still in every way a surprising work: Downie’s oblique yet vicarious poetry undressed of its electricity, redressed in a glorious other voltage. A snapshot of spontaneity, recorded but barely rehearsed, its arc of clandestine art pop clashing with the hum of collective stream-of-consciousness, Gord Downie’s Coke Machine Glow feels like a wild passage through listless places, burrowing in the magic of whatever delicate moment. Maybe Downie was the genius orchestrator of this Goddamned Band, or perhaps he was just always prepared with the right thing to say. You might have listened to this record for the last twenty years, and still not heard some of its finest details, that is the happenstance when onesome poetry is rightly crossed with collective improvisation. On Songwriters’ Cabal, the curtain is pulled back, as Downie rose from his kitchen table/hotel room desk, notebook in hand, and stepped to the mic and sang, voice tinkling like a chandelier, until god or a reasonable facsimile appears.

NOT included on either the music album or the spoken word audiobook is a bonus music edit of Rob Baker of The Tragically Hip’s reading of the poem I Stand Before the Songwriters’ Cabal, set to an instrumental snippet of the same titled song. Shared today, listen here:

BONUS LISTEN: ‘I STAND BEFORE THE SONGWRITERS’ CABAL’ MUSIC EDIT WITH SPOKEN WORD BY ROB BAKER

Josh Finlayson on the Coke Machine Glow sessions (from the liner notes):

Having lived in Toronto for over 10 years, Gord wanted to make his first solo record in his adopted city, co-producer and musician Josh Finlayson recalls. He had met and befriended many artists in different disciplines and was keen to collaborate with that community. The Gas Station recording studio was located in an old warehouse district of Toronto close to the exhibition grounds near King and Dufferin. Located on the fourth floor, it was an open spaced room with 10 foot windows that had spectacular views looking south to Lake Ontario and east towards downtown. Owned and operated by Dale Morningstar and Don Kerr who after 10 years of operation were being evicted from this location. Coke Machine Glow ended up being the last session at the Gas Station from April 29-May 10, 2000.

The one concrete idea we had going into the recording was that Gord would sing these songs quietly, as they had been written. The recording room was large (50’X25′) with high ceilings. The musicians were spread throughout this room facing the centre where Gord was sitting. Don Kerr (drums) and Kevin Hearn (piano) were only available for the first day of recording which was also our set up day. By late afternoon we were ready to start and their time constraints led to the decision that we were going to make a live off the floor record using an 8 track machine. In hindsight, this was a fortuitous decision as it created a structure that forced us to work within certain parameters. All the songs ended up being cut live, including Gord’s vocals. The only overdubs were done by guests who weren’t available at the time and had to add their parts later. For the remainder of the session Dave Clark took over on drums and Dale Morningstar who was assistant engineering, played several different instruments throughout the recording. There was little rehearsal time for anyone so in most cases the songs were run through once or twice and then recorded.

The Coke Machine Glow 20th anniversary collection, including exclusive merchandise commemorating this landmark release in Downie’s career, is available for PREORDER NOW via Gordieland, Arts & Crafts and Penguin Random House.

PREORDER COKE MACHINE GLOW 20th ANNIVERSARY ITEMS

GORD DOWNIE COKE MACHINE GLOW: SONGWRITERS’ CABAL TRACKLIST

Coke Machine Glow

  1. Starpainters
  2. Vancouver Divorce
  3. SF Song
  4. Trick Rider
  5. Canada Geese
  6. Chancellor
  7. The Never-Ending Present
  8. Nothing But Heartache in Your Social Life
  9. Blackflies
  10. Lofty Pines
  11. Boy Bruised By Butterfly Chase
  12. Mystery
  13. Elaborate
  14. Yer Possessed
  15. Every Irrelevance
  16. Insomniacs of the World, Good Night

Songwriters’ Cabal:

  1. Vancouver Divorce – Alternate Take
  2. Trick Rider – Demo
  3. SF Song – Demo
  4. Contact – Demo
  5. Down Down Down – Demo
  6. Putting Down – Demo
  7. Chancellor – Demo
  8. The Never-Ending Present – Demo
  9. I Stand Before the Songwriters’ Cabal – Outtake
  10. Contact – Outtake
  11. Mystery – Alternate Take
  12. Lofty Pines – Alternate Take

Audiobook Readers
Dan Aykroyd, Rob Baker, Andrew Cash, Dave Clark, Julie Doiron, Charlyn Downie, Clare Downie, Clemens Downie, Lou Downie, Mike Downie, Patrick Downie, Paula Downie, Willo Downie, Johnny Fay, Josh Finlayson, Sarah Harmer, Kevin Hearn, Dave Billy Ray Koster, Paul Langlois, Ron MacLean, Andy Maize, Bruce McCulloch, Dale Morningstar, Larry Murphy, Andrea Nann, Dr. Pee, Gillian Reiss, Damian Rogers, Gord Sinclair, Kaya Usher.

Vaughn Lowery illustration by Allison Christensen for his book Move Like Water x Be Fluid produced by 360 MAGAZINE

Move Like Water × Be Fluid

By Katrina Tiktinsky

Vaughn Lowery, founder and publisher of 360 MAGAZINE, is set to release his first book this month. Move Like Water × Be Fluid is a stunning memoir documenting the author’s journey from a childhood in the Detroit’s subsidized, section 8 housing to a successful career in fashion and media. The arc of this remarkable passage twists and turns in surprising ways, ensuring readers will believe in the concept that this life truly is what you make it. The text will debut as an exclusive multi-volume installation within 360 MAGAZINE and marks the inception of the brand’s foray into publishing.

This provocative coming-of-age story explores the power of branding strategy, a technique the writer developed at an early age and carried with him throughout his lifetime. Lowery, from the time he was a young child, is able to comprehend that one’s innate, individual self is their greatest commodity in life. Through the highs and lows that inform his experience, he stays true to that ideal. Lowery puts forward a raw and compelling narrative of a child, and later a man, who repeatedly picks himself up, reimagines his life, and finds innovative ways to move forward. The self-empowerment so emblematic in Lowery’s character and story promotes readers to adopt the author’s tactics in their own lives.

The influence of prominent civil rights leader Joseph Lowery, the writer’s grandfather, is prevalent in this work. A beacon for both hope and progress during the Civil Rights Movement, the legacy of Joseph Lowery weighs heavily on the narrator. This, along with his upbringing and existence as a black man in America, make Lowery both introspective and contextually aware when it comes to race. Moreover, draws parallels between the movement his grandfather championed and led, and the Black Lives Matter movement of today, exposing the failures of our system and calling for meaningful, systemic change. Both Joseph and Vaughn Lowery are members of the first intercollegiate historically African American organization Alpha Phi Alpha. Lowery simultaneously considers the work he can do, as a singular human being, to forward social justice causes in his day-to-day life and interactions with others. 

In 1920, his grandmother, Agnes Christine Moore Lowery (the little girl in the blue dress, also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha), came with her grandmother to become the first black to vote in Tennessee. The kids’ book, The Big Day, depicts their journey the day she voted, now available on Amazon here.

Photo of LaJUNE by Armon Hayes for 360 Magazine

Photo: Armon Hayes, Talent: LaJUNE

360 Magazine is also now selling one of a kind home goods via Chairish, a curated marketplace for the best in vintage and contemporary furniture, decor and art. Check out this piece designed by 360’s founder Vaughn Lowery.

In the year 2020, which has been afflicted with an overwhelming amount of change, there has never been a timelier moment for insight from a man like Lowery. As mentioned, Lowery’s deep ties and connections to racial justice in America feels incredibly relevant, as do his thoughts on digital media, something Lowery pioneered years before COVID-19 forced the world hurriedly online. Constantly at the forefront of social change, Move Like Water × Be Fluid offers an understanding of the current moment, yet looks forward to the possibility of an evolved, cosmopolitan world. One that Lowery aspires to through all his works, including this installation and 360 MAGAZINE.

As we follow the author through grade school, high school and on through Cornell University, we collect advice from a myriad of powerful secondary characters. From all walks of life, these secondary support systems offer Lowery the push he needs to continue on striving towards something better. We watch Lowery model the work ethic of his admired older sister, gain confidence from an encouraging teacher, change the trajectory of his life due to a neighborhood mentor, and learn from the critique of a Residential Advisor. This self-help-book stands apart for never failing to appreciate the importance of an individual’s support system. Fittingly, while the book catalogues Lowery’s journey to success, it inspires and encourages readers in the same way Lowery’s community uplifted him – to take action towards a meaningful life.

Comparable titles to Move Like Water × Be Fluid include other stories of individuals who later turned to publishing their experiences in self-help books. Numerous celebrity examples include Becoming by Michelle Obama, Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, or The Path Made Clear by Oprah Winfrey. These titles, as well as Lowery’s first book, all feature introspection and explanations regarding the course of the authors’ lives. 

The following descriptions outlines the chapter-by-chapter journey within Move Like Water × Be Fluid.

Chapter 1: The beginning of Lowery’s journey is marked by his complicated childhood in Detroit, distinctly connected to his sense of place and community. Financial struggles and surroundings reminiscent of the song “Gangsta’s Paradise,” as well as the author’s early experience with assault contextualize the course of Lowery’s life.

Chapter 2: A childhood mood, coupled with the realization of his intelligence, swiftly changed the direction of Lowery’s life. Following a move to New Jersey to live with his older sister, Lowery’s early experiences of racism shine a light on his passion for racial justice today. The opportunity to participate in an honored education program again changes the trajectory Lowery follows.

Chapter 3: This chapter offers insight into the ups and downs of high school, a narrative many are familiar with. Yet, Lowery’s poised observations throughout the chapter reflect his early understanding of the world.

Chapter 4: After a remarkable yet complex journey through high school, Lowery achieves the first of many dreams by gaining the chance to attend Cornell University in New York. At Cornell, he is able to expand his understanding of self and what he hopes to accomplish.

Chapter 5: Saks Fifth Avenue recruits Lowery to work in their corporate office, marking Lowery’s first foray into the world of economics and fashion. The advice he gains from mentors in the field prompts him to shift towards a career in acting and modeling, supplemented by working in the Medicare Department of U.S. Healthcare.

Chapter 6: New York, in all its hectic nature, pointed Lowery west towards California where he could further capitalize on his talents in the entertainment industry.

Chapter 7: This chapter details one of the events in Lowery’s life for which he is best known: his commercials as “Joe Boxer Guy” that overwhelmed the nation. Following ups and downs in Los Angeles, this success cemented Lowery’s understanding of his own talents as well as his ties to L.A.

Chapter 8: Following an offensive home invasion, Lowery pivots to continue embracing what life throws at him with appearances on NBC’s “Scrubs” and “America’s Next Top Model.”

Chapter 9: With plenty of capital and the space to complement his next steps, Lowery founded 360 MAGAZINE in 2008, powering through the tidal wave that was the recession all due to his own brains and the belief in his product and brand.

Chapter 10: After another painful reminder of the inadequacies of the justice system in America due to an unjust prison stay, Lowery’s comprehension of what is truly important is once again realigned. Despite his negative experiences, his magazine is able to be on the cutting edge of the Los Angeles scene.

Chapter 11: The number 360 is ubiquitous to Lowery – one embodies the other. His appreciation for both his own capabilities and expertise, as well as the ones of others, assures his magazine and brand are constantly evolving. 

Chapter 12: Thinking on the future following the tragic death of a friend, Lowery is nowhere near finished and is more than ready to continue is many metamorphoses. He now exists in a space where he strives to empower others, all around the world. 360.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid, by Vaughn Lowery, is available this month exclusively on the 360 MAGAZINE’s website. 360 MAGAZINE has received numerous accolades, and has recently been featured on Dancing with the Stars. Stay in touch by following both Lowery (@vaughnlowery) and 360 (@360magazine)

Additionally Vaughn has an audio book titled, “Say Uncle: The Story of Vaughn Lowery” which loosely based on his childhood. It is available for here on Amazon Music. For additional info on Vaughn Lowery visit Wikipedia and IMDb.

Now available in all formats at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Books, Blurb and Audible.

Signed copies of Vaughn’s memoir, Move Like Water × Be Fluid, are available in our shop.