February 8, 2011

Day 145: A Little Lesson In History, In The Key of Canadiana

Just another evening around my apartment. Washing dishes from the morning, mixing vegan muffins on the counter across from my sink and, of course, tuning into CBC's Canadian Songwriters' online stream from CBC's website.

Suddenly, I was transported back to my father's shop, listening to classic "country tunes" he loved, while painting, building, or working on one of his miscellaneous projects.

BUT... this was not the tune coming from CBC's Canadian Songwriters' Channel? As fabulously as Mr. Johnny Cash was, he was no Canadian - sorry to disappoint you all (and that's supposed to be two words. :-D) And so, this was not the tune I was used to hearing. Who could be singing?

This song has quite the history! The original is, in fact, Australian - and I wouldn't recognize a single place in that song. Turns out, it was a Canadian-born Songwriter, Hank Snow, who changed the names and the opening line of Australian Geoff Mack's version to create the North American song we over here all know and love:

This was more likely the tune I would hear pumping from my father's ol' tape deck in his shop... BUT, this was still not the song I was listening to...

Luckily CBC encourages the promotion of fellow Canadian artists (with funding like that, it's kind of their "thing"). And so I was able to catch the name before the end of the song and search for the artist, Mike Ford.

Now, apparently, I'm on a theme of the younger audience this week... Completely coincidental and random, of course, 'cause that's how I roll. Turns out this artist tours the country, providing history lessons to young minds through song. And not necessarily the folky songs we've all come to expect from Canadian history songs...

Sadly, I could not find a video of Mike Ford and his lovely Canadian version of "I've Been Everywhere;" however, he was once in the same band as another gorgeous Canadian, who interviewed him this one time:

Although not entirely musical, I do reccomend watching this interview. Ford is quite eloquent in his self promotion, and I don't doubt he would be a fabulous guest to have in your classroom, if you're a teacher or student. Or, perhaps you're just a Canadian or history buff like me. Check out his website: http://www.mikeford.ca/pages/canada_song.html to order his music, have him come to your classroom or to just learn more about this educational Canadian artist!

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