Skip navigation

Monthly Archives: January 2008


This time we were able to make it to sing/play at the Delta Firehall open mike on January 25, 08.  This time a full audience compared to other times. Fun night out among people in the neighborhood whom we don’t know very well. The man who runs the audio control board is a very nice man.  Most of the crowd were Caucasian people.  Many Sikhs live in Surrey, but not many Sikhs attended.  I was one of few Indigenous people in my age group who performed at the open mike.  


I do not think I’m a harsh, nasty judge about what’s good and not good—who sings/plays descent or bad, but basically I can assess who is good as a singer/player. Everyone was good.  Most everyone played an instrument, played/sang or only played instrumentals with the exception of two 15 year old girls who sang songs with a cd.  One of the girls sang/played with a guitar afterwards.  Also, I videotaped our performance to document our performance at a given period of time. I knew it would be hard to perform two things at the same time.  As a performer, I felt nerve wrecked about the performance: will I forget the words and everything else?  The items a videographer has to remember: prepare – shoot for an event has to be prepared.  I managed to do it, but a person really has to focus and not lose track about what is going on.  In the chaos and midst of it, I get so caught up emotionally and mentally. Videography and sound recording is very technical. Have to be on top of it, if the videographer/sound recordist wants descent picture and sound.  


The next day I watched the play back of Mark and myself.  I actually I thought I didn’t do very well, but I was okay. Glad of that.  Mark is always good. I don’t usually shoot performances like this all the time, so this was different.  It was a good experience to get practice to shoot a singer, singers and guitar player with a digital video camera and sound.  Even though I did not want to do it because it’s a lot of trouble to go through, I was glad I did it.  Every time I shoot something different as that, a person learns.  The next time I do it, I will get better at it.  


This evening we will perform an open mic at the Delta Arts Firehall a couple of blocks away.  Getting a little nervous about it now.  I have practiced the song I will sing, California Dreamin and the harmonica I will use when I sing the Hoochie Coochie Man. I sing woman instead of man. Will only sing two songs and that’s it.  The rest Mark shall perform, his songs he wrote and I will videotape singing/playing.  So I made an appointment with the guy who runs the audio control board to arrive earlier to set up the sound system, check to see if the camera can connect to the audio control board.  It starts around 7 p.m.


I really like rock and roll music, reggae, blues, rhythm and blues and discoteque.  Been reading bios about people: all of the Marvin Gaye books I could find about him, all of the books about The Doors and Jim Morrison as well, Iggy Pop/Jim Osterberg, The Buffalo Springfield, and the Delta blues music.  I can relate very well to that period in time, late 60’s, early 70’s and mid-70’s because I grew up during that period in Phoenix, Az., San Francisco and Seattle, Wa. I was apart of the counter culture as it was tagged.  I’ve always luved black music when it became prominent through the Motown artists.  

Rhythm and blues is very danceable.  Marvin Gaye and the people who helped produce “What’s Goin On,” created a genius album.  A song in particular when I hear it, makes me cry because it expresses the despair a person feels, when things are down like being unemployed and when the troubles of world are heavyweights.  That album had real relevant, strong messages, plus danceable melodies. The messages still apply to today’s world problems and issues. I liked it at the time when it was released, but I appreciated it more as I became older.   

Last night couldn’t finish changing the oil in my 71 VW bus because I had a tough time to get that metal oil filter out from underneath the car.  People who work on VW bugs, Karman Ghias and buses know what I mean.  Plus, it was too cold to sit and lie underneath the car.  Things have frozen around the last 2 days, but it’s a break from the rain.  At least the sun came out yesterday and today.  I feel a little heat from the sun on my skin when I stand in it.  I never had such a tough time before to change the oil.  Usually it’s the easiest job on the VW to repair. So I called it quits by 4:00 p.m.; also, the light was going. 

This morning returned to finish the job around 11:30 or 12:00 noon.  I cleaned the parts of the car related to the oil last night and had to reinsert them in place today. The metal filter was difficult to put back.  I think it took a half hour to put it back after a lot of swearing.  Some mechanic who changed the oil on my VW bus glued a cardboard from the oil change kit onto the metal.  Frustrated I pulled myself out from underneath the car and looked straight up.  There was Mark my partner who came out to see what I was doing. What else do I immediately view overhead,  over my bus and Mark?! A huge eagle soared and circled large circles in the sky.  It was a mature eagle with a wide wing span, a white head and tail. At that moment, I made a prayer. As I looked nearby in another part of the sky, I saw another one circling, but after awhile that second eagle took off to head east just as eagles do.  The eagle flew fast.  The eagle overhead stayed a while with us. Looked around in other parts of the sky to view anymore eagles and viewed one more in the eastern distant sky. The second eagle joined the third eagle in the eastern sky. Total we viewed four eagles.  Couldn’t believe it? After that I felt good.  

I have learned about the traditional culture of my First Nations people late in my life.  Since I was real young, I always knew Indian people in the U.S. revered the eagle in their cultures.  Hopi have an eagle dance.  Since living in Canada, now I know all North American Indian people revere the eagle in a sacred way.  There are a lot of eagles and red tail hawks up here.  

I finished the whole process of changing the oil, but I shall see about it, though. If it leaks a lot after two weeks, I’ll have to buy a second hand metal oil filter.  It was bent in certain areas of it because I had to pry with a screw driver the metal  holder to get it out.  It kind of bent it.  I’ll monitor it.  So far it does not leak.  Take it one step at time.