(if you have trouble viewing the video, try watching it here.)
Winnipeg songwriter John K. Samson has been steadily gathering support to get the great First Nations NHL star from Riverton, Manitoba, Reggie “The Riverton Rifle” Leach into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
His song, www.ipeititions.com/petition/rivertonrifle/ written in the form of an online petition, has collected thousands of signatures from people around the world.
On Saturday, February 23rd, 2013, Samson and a choir of his comrades climbed the steps of the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto to perform the song for the last time.
They sang and marched en masse into the Hall, and as the final refrain reverberated Samson delivered a bona-fide submission putting forth Reggie Joseph Leach as a candidate eligible for election into honoured membership in the Hockey Hall of Fame.
We, The Undersigned, a short film by Tim Thompson, documents the extraordinary day.
(My profound thanks to everyone who signed the song/petition, the authors of the letters of support, Epitaph Records Canada, Reggie Leach, and my amazing volunteer choir. And I’m enormously grateful for the countless hours of labour donated by Derek Hogue of Amphibian, Phil Russell of Dozen Able Men, and Tim Thompson of Boundless Productions.)
Pleased to be heading back to Vancouver for a couple weeks with Christine Fellows as Writers in Residence at UBC. We’ll be playing a show with the poet Rhea Tregebov and the novelist Steven Galloway on Friday, February 8th.
I’m really happy that the poet Randall Maggs (his Night Work: The Sawchuck Poems may be my favourite hockey book of all time) has invited me to Newfoundland for The March Hare Poetry Festival at the beginning of March. See shows page for more details.
Developments with regard to the next phase of my song/petition to get the great Reggie Leach inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame will be coming soon. In the meantime, please sign, and encourage others to do so, too.
Winter is finally here, and my curling team won their first game. The world is pebbled with potential.
I have a handful of solo shows up on the shows page, with more to be announced sometime in the next while, and many other activities planned.
Christine Fellows and I are the Writers in Residence for 2012/2013 at the University of British Columbia Creative Writing Program, so I am looking forward to spending a few weeks out there in November and February. C and I are also each composing new work with our comrades The Correction Line Ensemble for the remarkable and innovative Winnipeg-based choir Camerata Nova, which will premiere in May of 2012.
I’ve left all social media, doctor’s orders, but will still be updating here. So, a reminder that although I have a facebook page, I do not administer or look at it, and I am no longer on twitter. I miss the twitter a little bit, I admit. You can always write to me at PO Box 83, 971 Corydon Avenue, Winnipeg, MB., R3M 3S3, Canada.
Here’s a video for a song I made two summers ago with Christine Fellows and Sandro Perri in the Bruce Peninsula.
The Provincial Band and I will be in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland for the last leg of our tour for Provincial. We start Tuesday at the Wiesbaden Schlacthof, one of the first venues I played in Europe in 1992.
We are all especially excited about Zurich, where it has been agreed that all us ex-smokers will partake in one Parisienne Jaune cigarette each.
Our bass player Professor Doug Friesen has asked us each to learn a Shakespearian soliloquy to recite during autobahn traffic jams. I’m going with All I Need, from The Jerk, by modern master Steve Martin.
In very important news for Winnipeggers, I have a stickybun in the heated Jonnies Stickybun competition next week. Mine is called “The Lefty,” and is a vegan lavender/poppyseed creation. Winnipeggers, please help The Lefty win by purchasing as many as you can at Jonnies or Parlour Coffee.
If you haven’t yet, please sign the song/petition to get the great Reggie Leach into the Hockey Hall of Fame. This week is the 36th anniversary of his incredible Conn Smythe Trophy winning Stanley Cup series.