Who Says Montreal Girls are not Stylish?

Written by Sabine Demosthenes

MONTREAL- I woke up this morning in a pissy mood. It didn’t last long, but I kept thinking of a comment I read somewhere (I’m ashamed, but it was on The DailyMail). It was criticizing one of our fashionista Godmamma‘s, Jessica Mulroney‘s, fashion style and her status as a stylist.

First of all, for us, the golden children of this beautiful city, Jessica was a well-known stylist in Montreal – the city of a thousand bells. I’m not speaking as a fan but as a journalist. I am writing a fact. The beauty in the fashion scene of Montreal is that we have this New Yorker edge, with a touch of European class. We celebrate diversity and audacity. Sometimes I wish I was as daring as Jessica, but I’m forever a minimalist CBK girl (Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy). I writing a quick shoutout to Maestro Matt Berman!

Ok, back to the story…..

For me and probably others, when we attack in a mean-spirited way, one of us (and us for me is a woman, a human being, a hard worker and in this case, a fellow Montrealer), we get protective, our mamma bear coat and the Rocky Balboa (I know, he is my ultimate hero) gloves go on and we fight back.

I won’t do a Kanye of myself because I’m a very proud woman. I don’t believe in fighting fire with fire and being a total ass. But, I do get it. We don’t share the same taste in fashion. That’s the beauty of it though. A good stylist is someone who understands this. They see the different tastes of someone and can be creative without changing their style. We do have fun with fashion.

Why so serious?

Using writing to bully someone and posting mean posts; that I am against it.

I do respect constructive comments. You may not be a fan of a particular fashion house, stylists, fashion magazine or designer, but let’s not go into the judgmental territory.

Fashion is a big playground, for everybody.

Stylists, fashion houses and designers like Jessica, Zoë Bedos-Trudeau, Catherine Malandrino, Di Carlo Couture, Marie Saint-Pierre, Eve Gravel, Denis Gagnon, DUY, Mackage, Philippe Dubuc, Valerie Dumaine and many more are making their marks and they all bring something special in this big playground that will call fashion.

Montreal fashion, for me, is like Micheal Jackson‘s first solo album, Of The Wall (my favorite!). It is the template for the storm that will come.

And Canadian designers, Canadian stylists and (Hell ya!) us Canadian lovers, are starting to show the world, you may or may not like it, but let’s conquer the world by storm.

https://www.mackage.com/ca/en

http://www.valeriedumaine.com/en/

https://evegravel.com

https://www.dicarlocouture.com

http://catherinemalandrinousa.com

https://www.mariesaintpierre.com/ca_en/

http://duycollection.com/Duy/duy.html

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The best band in the world! Why?

Written by Sabine Demosthenes

MONTREAL – It took me a few days to write about the best damn show of the year, which I saw at the Bell Centre last Thursday, September 20th, 2018.

You may have heard of a certain Paul McCartney, Rusty Anderson, Brian Ray, Abe Laboriel Jr and Paul ‘Wiz’ Wickens. If not (and that would be a major surprise!), I strongly recommend going on YouTube to watch some videos, see one of their concerts live (or on iTunes) or buy their latest album: Egyptian Station. It is actually the number one album in Canada.

It was my second time seeing them live and you know what, it felt like it was my first time.

Why?

Simply because they have the ability to give the best concert you will ever saw and make you feel part of it. Even if it’s been more than 15 years of being together as a band and they have played in the biggest arena in the world, you feel this special feeling watching a fun band in a small club.

Where do I begin my review?

First of all, the sound quality was perfect. The sound crew are probably the best there is. You could hear each instrument and each lyric with such clarity. I’m sending my shoutout to Paul McCartney’s sound crew!

Second, I was happily surprised to see some new members such as….. (I am waiting on Macca’s team to give me the names of the horn players)

The best part was seeing a band having fun and being happy doing what they love. I still get chills with just the thought of it.

I won’t write all the songs they played, but I will be all nostalgic and say it was a beautiful marriage between nostalgia and the future.

How?

They played the Fab Four classics. They jammed with the sound of Wings, but they played some of the new stuff on their brand new album. They played with such ease considering it was 3 hours non-stop. Paul spoke in French on top of it all! He was very good.

Ok, I’m must admit, I cried like a baby during the rendition of Something. Like big time! But I am not ashamed.

Rusty and Brian were giving us some serious guitar riffs and the band did a little shoutout to Jimy Hendrix.

Wix was, as always, the ethereal keyboardist. I was pretty close to the stage and could see Abe and Wix exchanging some funny faces between them, having the biggest smiles on their faces.

Oh oh! Speaking of Abe. One sentence: The best drummer of the 21st century. I rest my case.

For me, there are probably two bands in the world that seem to be so alive and so happy on stage. Bruce Springsteen and The East Side Band and Paul McCartney and his boys. I saw some Bruce Springsteen shows on DVD, but I haven’t gotten the chance to see him and his band live. So for me, if I have to choose between the two of them, I’m team Macca.

For 3 hours, I didn’t think of what a certain person by the number 45 is tweeting or the current state of our beautiful planet and mankind. I was in a beautiful bubble with thousands of fans and my valentine being happy.

Being the music lover that I am, I imagined that I was jamming with them (It’s on my bucket list – jamming with Rusty, with Godin’s electric guitar).

As we left after the concert to go back to our little world, I was wondering if we would ever feel this beautiful, happy feeling of love again as that was what the concert was all about.

I guess we still can as Paul and his boys showed us.

Belle entrevue avec​ Audrée Michaud

Rédigé par Sabine Démosthènes

Quand tu es une amoureuse de bijoux comme moi et que tu as la chance de passer un après-midi en buvant des bulles (bon, c’était de l’eau Perrier mais je mets ça dans la catégorie des bulles) et d’essayer pleins de bijoux avec une équipe du tonnerre dans leur fabuleux bureau situé au coeur du centre-ville, tu jubiles et tu rayonnes de joie.

Ce fut mon cas lors de ma visite à la charmante bijouterie Flamme en Rose. Dès que vous mettez les pieds dans leur boutique, vous vous sentez comme Audrey Hepburn dans Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

J’ai eu la chance de discuter avec l’une des fondatrices de Flamme en Rose qui est d’un charme fou. Audrée Michaud a eu un rêve et avec sa co-fondatrice, Michèle Côté de fonder leur entreprise il y a de ça, 10 ans. Je vais arrêter d’écrire et je vais vous laisser le soin de découvrir cette belle entreprise de chez nous.

Merci à toute l’équipe chez Flamme en Rose (Michèle, Audrée et Angie).

J’ai adoré ma première transformation avec mes vieux bijoux. Je suis maintenant une adepte et je porterai fièrement leur création.

Pour les amoureuses de bijoux de luxe, allez-y jeter un coup d’oeil…

Vous n’allez pas le regretter.

https://flammeenrose.com

The heat is on!

Written by Sabine Demosthenes

The heat is on…

The heat is on, on…

I’m trying to sing one of Glenn Frey’s classic songs. I was always singing this song when I was younger. My dear Mamma’s poor ears, singing was never my greatest attribute.

It’s so hot in Montreal and yes, we are complaining, like little babies. Let’s all remember our state of mind from November to April.

I was the first one to chant like a gospel singer that I cannot take this cold weather anymore. Even if I’m a very proud child born in the NorthSide, the North Pole.

I’m being a little bit too melodramatic. But damn, it’s so hot outside.

Even Raymonde’s plant (in memory of my father-in-law) in my living room is all saggy.

But the heat was worse Sunday night. While I was watching the highlights of the World Cup match between Haiti hmm I mean Brazil vs Mexico (what a game!), I went to check my Twitter account.

And boom! I thought I was passing out because of the heat (ok ok, I have AC at home but still), I saw a tweet that King Lebron is going to the City of Angels.

Holy macaroni!

For two days, I had to contain myself. But with the first official episode of The NorthSide, I will let our Educated Fool analyze this historic trade. I wonder if the Educated Fool will talk about Kobe Bryant not being the golden child of the Lakers anymore.

The heat is really on…

I got Toronto on my mind

Written by Sabine Demosthenes

I’ve still got Toronto on my mind, even after a few days back to the city of a thousand church bells, Montreal.

It wasn’t my first time in the Tdot, but it was my first time alone as an adult in the city. A few days disconnecting with my usual non-orthodox routine, that is – my crazy life, and without speaking the Molière language was interesting.

Montreal does have a special European charm and a certain je ne sais quoi, but Toronto is more a cosmopolitan city, with hidden treasures to be found every few streets.

I was in Toronto especially to listen to a nice conversation.

This conversation was insightful, funny, charming and so authentic. I’m really happy to have been part of it as a listener. Especially since part of this dynamic duo is my ultimate favorite journalist and person I try to emulate the most in this kind of journalism.

He is one of the most respected men in this field.

Nick Clooney is the journalist I am talking about. I won’t deny, listening to him gave me chills. Listening to him talk about Hazim “Haz’ Avdal, a young Yazidi Iraki refugee who is like a second son to him, I saw the pride of a father whose son gave him hope to believe in goodness in people again.

Both Amal and Nick were proud family members when they spoke about Az, as well as with Nadia Murad. Nadia is a young Yazidi woman that was captured by Isis. She escaped with some scars, but that hasn’t stopped her from being the sister, the mother and the ultimate superwoman to all the Yazidis.

She is proudly fighting the good fight with her secret weapon, Amal Clooney.

Amal is more than the woman who married one of the biggest movie stars in the world and one heck of a director (come on, Good Night and Good Luck was a masterpiece).

Yes, the media talks about her latest look. I do have to admit, she mixes fun and sassiness in her look like the majority of us women in this world aim to do.

There is even a blog dedicated to her fashion sense, but my point is that even the blog dedicated to her fashion sense talks about the cause that she cherishes. I definitely have more respect for a blog like the one I’m talking about over the TMZs of the world.

Why she is more than a celebrity?

It’s because, like Audrey Hepburn, her main focus is to shine light on causes that may not been known or talked about much. It’s not be easy to have this growth in attention when only 6 years ago, she could go to eat at her favorite Italian restaurant in Notting Hill without being mobbed by a hundred photographers.

But she has a good co-pilot in George and a good family unit that will continue to be her fortress.

I came back to Montreal with a refreshing perspective on life and the act of compassion.

I didn’t think that the city of Toronto would be the type to remind me to continue being compassionate and to keep up the good fight.

Speaking of keeping up the good fight, the best boxing trainer is in Toronto! Go check him out, Jorge Blanco. If you are in Montreal, you are not forgotten. You can train here in Montreal as well.

I’m so overdue that I will give my coach a call.

In the end, Toronto and Montreal are the perfect couple (except in the NHL). They are complementary to each other.

Can we take this as an example and be more complementary to each other as human beings, especially with regard to compassion and human decency?

I did see it last weekend in the Tdot!

http://spaniard.ca

Clooney Foundation For Justice official website

Collision 2018 week – A conversation with Beatie Wolfe

This is a special week in the tech world. New Orleans is the place, not only for its festive atmosphere but also for the 2018 edition of The Collision Conference.

Collision 2018

How to start this special week with Beatie Wolfe? She is a very special singer-songwriter that is not afraid to be curious. She is an innovator and sound creator. The perfect musical scientist in my book!

I couldn’t be there in person for this year conference, but Beatie and I managed to squeeze in a really fun interview.

Let’s enjoy the ride.

Beatie Wolfe - Raw Space - London - photo by Stu Nicholls (20)_preview

SD: What are you looking for this year at the Collision 2018 Conference? 

BW: Meaningful connections and conversations with like-minded people who wish to inspire and uplift.

SD: Every time I listened to your album, Raw Space, I feel like I’m in a bubble. It’s a very pleasant sound environment. 

Beatie Wolfe - Raw Space - Bell Labs Anechoic Chamber by Theo Watson (14)_preview

Can you explain to us how you created this special atmosphere? 

BW: That’s very kind. I honestly don’t know. I think that I give an intense amount of focus to the songwriting, arranging and production process and I really do believe that God is in the detail. 

Beatie Wolfe - Raw Space - Bell Labs Anechoic Chamber by Veanne Cao (1)_preview

I was also aware that the stage for the album would be the Bell Labs Anechoic Chamber (the ultimate raw space!), which absolutely makes you feel like you’re in a bubble, so I think that influenced the recording/producing process too.

SD: You are the co-founder of a research project that is looking at the influence of music on people that are living with dementia. What inspired you to take part in this amazing project? 

BW: I was inspired by neurologist Oliver Sacks and his incredible work looking at the power of music to heal and move us, even when nothing else can. 

Oliver Sacks

While reading Musicophilia, I felt that there was no greater application of music than that: pulling people back from the most extreme neurological states, and when I heard that some of my family members had developed dementia, I felt compelled to start applying what I had been reading about. 

The amazing thing about the ‘Power of Music & Dementia’ study is that it was the first study to prove the power of music, outside of memory, (new music) for people living with dementia and this was something that Sacks had theorised but not yet tested, stating that “…music does not have to be familiar to exert its emotional pull…” and “…music is a necessity for those with dementia.”

SD: As a very proud Montrealer, I can see some of Leonard Cohen’s inspiration in your lyrics. Other journalists and bloggers can see it too. Are Leonard Cohen’s poetic lyrics what inspired you to be a songwriter?

Leonard Cohen Montreal Mural

BW: It is a funny story because Cohen did become a big influence on me, but only after I had played a number of shows and people in the audience would come up and say: “Are you a Leonard Cohen fan? Your music reminds me so much of his.” And back then I had no idea who he was (this was when I was about 16/17). 

Then, one guy from a show in Portugal gave me a CD mix of his favorite Cohen songs and from the first time I listened, I was hooked!

I realized that there was someone else who cared as much about the words as I did, someone who was so true to the story, that the music had to serve it. 

Cohen was such an incredible wordsmith, poet, and writer in his own right, that I ended up doing my dissertation on him for my English Literature degree, even though the University advised against it, thinking he could not be classed as a writer. 

Writing that paper, even against the advice of my professors, was what ended up opening a dialogue with Cohen and his team and at one point, just before he passed away, there was a conversation about him adopting one of my musical formats (the intelligent deck of cards) for “I Want It Darker.”

SD: When you see the words “Musical Innovator”, what kind of emotion does that bring to you?

BW: I think it’s definitely something different to just being a musician or singer-songwriter. For me, the music is always at the core, it is the reason I do everything. 

But I love creating worlds for each of my albums and allowing people to feel some of the old school magic that I felt for records at a kid, by creating new formats that combine the best of the old and the best of the new.

Beatie Wolfe - Raw Space - London - photo by Stu Nicholls (16)_preview

So in that way, I am happy to be a musical innovator!

Beatie Wolfe - Raw Space - Bell Labs by Veanne Cao_preview

SD: Can we expect a show in the near future in Montreal?

BW: Yes… 110%!! It is a place I have been meaning to visit and play in for so long.

Leonard Cohen’s city welcomes you, Beatie, with open arms!

Beatie Wolfe - Montagu Square - Montagu Square album cover - by Stu Nicholls (1)_preview

 

Written by Sabine Démosthènes

Photography credited to Beatie Wolfe

Thank you Collision 2018

https://collisionconf.com

https://www.beatiewolfe.com

Hoops

Monday, March 26th, 2018; I got back into elementary school mode. I grabbed my backpack and instead of textbooks, I filled it up with camera gear. As I walked down the elementary school hallway, I realized how small the locker seemed compared to 26 years earlier. I was all excited like I was 5 years old again.

March 26th 2018 Westmount Park Elementary School

When I opened the gym door, I saw the 15th woman to become a player on one of the oldest basketball team of all time shooting hoops.

As I sat on the bench preparing my stuff, Brianna “Hoops” Green gave me a quick “Wassup!” as we exchange some funny comments on Instagram.

Hoops and The Chronicle

She is, no doubt, an influencer with 90.7 K followers on Instagram alone!

In Westmount Park Elementary School, she was greeted like a rock star. I saw the stars in some of the students’ eyes. I remember that reaction perfectly as a long time ago, I was one of those kids.

Hoops Green and the Westmount Park kids

“Hoops”, as we call her, is a Harlem Globetrotters player. She is living her dream, doing the thing she liked the most since she was four years old. On top of that, she is an inspiration, putting smiles on those sweet little faces from all around the world.

Briana ''Hoops'' Green

Since I am becoming older and not necessarily wiser, I have a preconception that young men and women in their late teens and early twenties all have this “Kardashian” attitude and selfishness.

 

Yes, I may encounter an of few of them, but I’m realizing that there is an army of inspiring young men and women that have the desire to give back to society by being a good person. Some are hoping for and working toward a better future.

One that is not about the best selfie and how many likes they get on social media, but about compassion, kindness, and hard work.

Hope Green is certainly one of them!

Westmount Park Elementary School with Brianna Green
Written by Sabine Demosthenes

Briana Green on Instagram

http://www.harlemglobetrotters.com/hoops