Tuesday, 25 November 2014

HOW JANIS JOPLIN (ACCIDENTALLY) LAUNCHED CAREER OF IMPRESARIO DONALD K. DONALD

Janis Joplin (Wikipedia)
With news this week that the long-awaited Janis Joplin biopic Get It While You Can will begin shooting in Los Angeles and San Francisco in 2015 starring Amy Adams as Joplin and with Dallas Buyers Club director and Montreal native Jean-Marc Vallée at the helm, I thought this was a good time to remember Joplin by some of those who knew her best, from many entertaining all-star interviews I've done over the years.

Donald K. Donald

For instance, legendary Montreal impresario Donald K Donald – a.k.a Donald Tarlton – got into the rock promotion business by accident backstage at the old Montreal Forum one night in 1968 when rock legend Joplin puked all over the shoes of Tarlton’s mentor, renowned local promoter Sam Gesser.

“It was the beginning of the rock’n’roll era and Sam had a hard time relating with the culture,” Tarlton, then 25, told me some years ago. “He hired me as the stage manager. Janis was drunk and threw up all over his shoes. Sam was horrified, looked at me and said, ‘Donald, you can take over all the rock stuff.’ And that was it. I became the rock promoter of Montreal.”

Tarlton’s memory of Janis backstage is one of many Joplin anecdotes I’ve collected over the years. So, 44 years after Joplin’s death (from an accidental heroin overdose, on October 4, 1970), I’ve dug up a few.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

MONTREAL'S McCORD MUSEUM ACQUIRES KENT MONKMAN MASTERPIECE


The 24-foot long painting Welcome to the Studio: An Allegory for Artistic Reflection and Transformation by Kent Monkman


Montreal’s McCord Museum this week acquired Welcome to the Studio: An Allegory for Artistic Reflection and Transformation by Kent Monkman, an internationally renowned out-and-proud Canadian artist of Cree ancestry.

The work was created in 2013 as part of the Museum’s Artist-in-Residence program and was exhibited from January 30 to June 1, 2014.

Monkman’s massive 24-foot-long painting focuses on the relationship between photography and painting and was inspired by the work of William Notman, one of Montreal’s premier 19th-century photographers, and French painter Gustave Courbet, leader of the realist movement.

Welcome to the Studio also comprises more than 30 portraits by Notman, chosen from the McCord Museum’s Notman Photographic Archives of some 600,000 photos.

“The project started [in 2013] when we started looking at photographs, which I began to study six months later,” Monkman told me earlier this year. “It took about two months to do the painting.”