Laurier establishes Indigenous Curriculum Specialist

The new position at WLU is one of few across the province, to connect culture and academic studies

CBC News Posted: Aug 24, 2017

Wilfrid Laurier University established an Indigenous Curriculum Specialist position this year, to help support the indigenization of the campus. (GatorEG/Wikipedia)

Wilfrid Laurier University has hired an Indigenous Curriculum Specialist, to help staff and faculty progress with the continued work of reconciliation in the post-secondary environment.

Erin Hodson, is one of only a handful of other ICS across Canada, and as a result the role is very much in development.

“It’s sort of being created as we go,” she said.


Continue reading “Laurier establishes Indigenous Curriculum Specialist”

[VIDEO] Canadian entertainer Gordie Tapp dead at 94

Host of Country Hoedown, cast member of Hee Haw, Tapp was iconic Canadian performer

CBC News Posted: Dec 19, 2016 11:28 AM ET

Gordie Tapp (CBC Archives)

Continue reading “[VIDEO] Canadian entertainer Gordie Tapp dead at 94”

The Story of Studio 212

An unpublished longer-form mini-drama, about the last radio drama dedicated space in North America, which happened to be CBC’s Studio 212 in Toronto, Ontario.

Written, performed and produced by Clare Bonnyman, 2016.

Sound F/X from
Music from BenSound and Podington Bear

Hippos, horses and hockey sticks for sale in Thunder Bay, Ont.

Kelsey’s Restaurant in Thunder Bay is renovating, and getting rid of everything in a silent auction on May 5, 6 and 7. Collectors and bargain hunters alike are finding the auction a unique place to shop for essentials and mementos, including a giant hippo head, carousel horse, and vintage neon Miller Lite sign.

The restaurant, which has been on Memorial Avenue for 19 years, is doing a complete overhaul to adopt new brand standards, said owner Claudio Foresta.

The auction has more than 500 items listed, including countless pieces of memorabilia that have lined the walls of the restaurant.

“It’s all got to go,” said Monique Crago, who has worked at Kelsey’s for 13 years and is organizing the auction.

Rob Cain, Pastor at Slate River Baptist Church, said the auction was a unique opportunity to shop with his four-year old daughter Ellie.

Cain is opening up a coffee shop at the church and was on the market for some chairs, tables and bar stools, almost 100 of which are being auctioned off by Kelsey’s. Ellie, on the other hand, was drawn to the carousel horse.

“There’s a lot of good stuff here on offer,” he said, but the variety of items is tempting.

“Once you start  looking around at things you kind of want things you didn’t think you wanted when you first came in. It’s difficult to control yourself.”

Canadian Folk Music Awards 2014

Originally Published on Centretown News online.

Folk music fans filled the Bronson Centre on Nov. 29 to celebrate the country’s best performers in the genre. The 10th annual Canadian Folk Music Awards showcased traditional and innovative Canadian folk musicians.

The Centretown venue was packed to the rafters in a ceremony that was live streamed and broadcast across Canada.

Gerri Trimble, program officer for the music section of the Canada Council for the Arts, has watched the development of the diverse community and says how unique the Canadian folk music scene really is.

“It’s a huge field,” she says. “I think (folk is) a broad word, which is of course is blessing. It’s the greatness of it, the bounty of the whole thing.”

The Canada Council supports musicians financially to help them broaden their reach and develop their craft and was a sponsor of this year’s CFMAs.

“Little grants here and there, whether it’s a travel grant or a grant to compose music, make a difference and it makes a contribution to the vitality of the folk scene,” says Trimble.

In recent years, the Canadian folk music scene has expanded, with new festivals appearing every year.

“I think it wandered in the wilderness for a while,” says Ottawa-born David Newland, Canadian folk musician and poet.

Newland was working behind the scenes at this year’s awards, running the live stream and interviewing winners.

“There has always been a weird dance between folk music and technology,” he says. “People didn’t know what to do.”

In 2009, Newland co-founded Roots Music Canada, a multimedia blog following Canadian folk musicians. It’s an example of how technology is enabling modern artists to share their music more effectively than ever.

Various online platforms give musicians the means to control their own careers. They can record and produce independently, sharing and spreading their work online, he says.

The ability for musicians to control their own career and be their own label is a serious help for emerging folk artists, but not the only option.

True North Records, Canada’s oldest independent record label, has championed folk music since 1969. The Juno Award-winning label works with industry greats Bruce Cockburn and Gordon Lightfoot and newcomers such as East Coast artist Matt Andersen and Winnipeg’s Del Barber.
“All of us came up for the awards,” says David MacMillan, marketing director at True North. “We were the ones making all the noise.”

True North Records had 15 artist nominations at this year’s CFMAs. Group The High Bar Gang won vocal group of the year, while Matt Anderson took home contemporary singer of the year.

The company helps bring Canadian folk music to national and international audiences. Though the industry can be difficult to break into, MacMillan doesn’t think this should discourage artists from trying.

“From booking gigs to a car breaking down on you, there’s a million kinds of challenges,“ he says. “If you can get out there and promote it, then play it.”

Lynn Miles, an Ottawa-based musician, is signed to True North Records. A performer at the show this year, Miles enjoys the awards for the community aspect.

“Everybody’s always on the road, so when you cross paths with people, its always fun to talk and just laugh about how ridiculous it all is,” she says.

Miles’ career has spanned 40 years and about a dozen albums.

“Because of things like these awards and CBC and other radio stations that actually play our music, (the industry is) supported a little bit more now,” she says.

But she’s full of advice for young Canadian folk musicians hoping for a big break.

“I always say follow your heart, follow the art — the money will either arrive or it won’t,” she says.

Beyond that, her message is one of dental wisdom.

“If you’re a musician, you don’t have a dental plan,” Miles says, “so start flossing now.”

A Day in the Life of a Newsatarian.

An experiment in scheduling; I want to block out (mostly for myself) a day in the life of a Newsatarian/Journalism student. So much of my preperation for my journalism career comes from how I take in the news everyday, and how I digest it. Immersion in the culture is a must. To really look at how often I take in news and how I consume my news is to look at how I can increase my intake or improve the content I’m already taking in. Also, it might prove just how big of a NewsJunkie slash RadioJunkie I am. (Hint, HUGE).

So this summer, as I work as a marketing assistant in downtown Toronto, here’s how I’m engaging in the news even when I don’t have time to practice my reporting (or do anything else).

6:00 AM

My first alarm goes off. I reach over and struggle to turn off the alarm on my phone, while simultaneously turning on my CBC Radio One app. I tune it to whichever local CBC Radio stattion I’m nearest. During the school year it’s Ottawa Morning with Hallie Cotnam. When I’m back home, I’m all over Metro Morning with Matt Galloway. Now THAT is a solid voice to wake up to everyday.

6:10 AM

My second alarm goes off. In an attempt to actually wake up, I open up my phone and flip onto Twitter. I flip right to my News List and start scrolling through the headlines, seeing what’s up for the day, anything new, etcetera. At this point too I check my phone for CP (Canadian Press), CBC, Globe and Mail, National Post and Ottawa Citizen news updates that may have come through on my apps while I was asleep.

6:20 AM

I actually get out of this point… Usually.
I take my phone around the house with me as I get ready, listening to the news updates as they come in, and listening to people who are far more awake than I am. I like to think of it as inspiration.

7:00 AM

I leave the house to catch a train, and say goodbye to my wifi. At this point theSkimm has arrived in my inbox on my phone. Probably one of my favourite sources of news at any time of day (but especially the morning), they summarize news and conflicts in a way that is understandable, fresh, often tongue-in-cheek and just in general awesome. This also gives me -as a Canadian- a great rundown on U.S. politics and U.S. National news in a way that I can actually wrap my head around. I read this on the train on my way downtown, which usually takes about 45 minutes.

8:00 AM

At this point I’m usually in the office if not far off. Back with internet (PRAISE) I log on, check my email and set up my screen for the day; newsmap in one tab, CBC Radio One open in another, and everything else I need for work.


I tune in and out of the Radio, trying to catch as much of shows like The Current with Anna Maria Tremonti or Q with Jian Ghomeshi. As a hopeful radio producer/journalist I try to soak up as much of CBC Radio as I can. The national news service offers a wide vareity of programming that covers so many topics, and each show is produced in a unique way. If you like marketing/business or just want to hear something really cool, I highly recommend Under the Influence with Terry O’Reilly. Like technology? Spark with Nora Young features some incredible stories about science and technology. White Coat Black Art with Dr. Brian Goldman is great for the health conscious etcetera, etcetera. I highly recommend looking into CBC Radio programming, you won’t regret it.

I get daily updates on my phone from different apps and keep myself up to date on events as they unfold. Through my job and my company’s twitter account, I get  a great insight into Canadian News and Canadian Military News, particularly news releases from the Department of National Defense and the Canadian Armed Forces.

Facebook gives me plenty of updates on news as well. For lighter fare I’m a fan of Refinery29, a unique lifestyle and fashion website that I have fallen in love with. They post a ‘Things you Need to Know This Morning’ everyday which is a great roundup for a collection of news. On any given day you’ll find entertainment stories, international news events, business and commerce news, and some celebrity gossip to boot (the Snickers bar of the Newsatarian diet).

5:00 PM

By this time, I’m usually on the train home, or at least headed to it. If I haven’t used up my data for the month I flip through the news on twitter, but more often than not I just zone out and sleep. No shame.

6:00 PM

Back at home, radio is back on, and I’ll generally settle in to do some work, edit some writing, scope for scoops etcetera. I’ll generally tune into the TV news if I’m at home and have cable. Generally CBC or CTV fits the bill.

A couple of times a week I listen to a Radiolab podcast in the evening, by far one of my favourite radio shows and experiments to come out of the U.S. (which I have to admit, is far more experimental and diverse than Canadian radio). It’s a great show to listen to, to really experience what incredible radio production can do. Radio becomes a visual art if used the right way, and Radiolab uses editing and tools to the fullest.

Again, back on twitter, news, etcetera until I fall asleep. Luckily, even if I’m doing something else, breaking news will pop right up on the front of my phone and I can quickly tune in to the latest developing stories as soon as they happen. Timeliness is everything in the modern journalism and communications world, so as a student I’m working to acclimate myself to news around the clock.

And that’s a very general -and rough- day in the life of a Newsatarian slash Radio Junkie.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some work to do.