Animal Lovers, Uncategorized

Milo’s Christmas

Milo’s Christmas  –             Paul J. Youngman                (Originally published 2013)

The little orange cat looked at the tree and thought, I can climb that tree. The tree in the cats sights, a dark green, pine Christmas tree, complete with ornaments and lights.

The tree stood in the living room of the small orange cat’s house, the tree stood three metres in height and it was centred in the living room front window. From outside it made an impressive view. But Milo the little orange kitten wouldn’t know that as he rarely ventured outside. Milo was an indoor cat; he had been rescued by the family who lived at the house. He was found outside, an abandoned litter of two kittens from a feral cat. A feral is a wild, outdoor, undomesticated cat. Milo and his sister were brought to this house temporarily while they waited to be adopted. His sister was adopted quickly, a beautiful kitten with the markings of tortoise shell, very desirable to some people.

A feral kitten is different from a normal kitten, they are skittish, not comfortable around  people and it would seem instinctually wild. I suppose most kittens seem wild but Milo, maybe because he was orange or a combination of orange and feral, he was wilder than any other kitten I had come across.

Milokitten

Milo the kitten, way back when – 2007.

 

As Milo approached the Christmas tree with stealth like caution, as if hunting for flying morsels of food that may have taken nest in the indoor fake tree. He disappeared under the ruby red blanket at the base of the tree. Milo made his way to the centre of the tree, at the very base and started making his way up the main trunk of the tree.

As I sat in my rocking chair reading the Saturday morning newspaper it became increasingly difficult to focus on the newsprint with the distraction of what appeared to be an orange tiger cub climbing within the branches of the Christmas tree. I sat up straight not quite believing what I was witnessing. I had thought Milo was behind the tree swatting at decorations and generally behaving as kittens will. The flash of orange in the midst of the trees branches made me shutter with fear for the safety of the tree, the window and even the kitten.

I called out, “Milo, what are you doing? Get down here.” Cats and especially kittens, don’t generally listen to people, Milo was no exception. At hearing my voice, curiosity got the better of him and he slithered out through the branches, almost half way up the tree his tiny orange face poked out, as if one of the hanging decorations. Milo our new Christmas ornament.

Christmaskitty

I rescued Milo from his perch and placed him gently on the floor, he scurried away in search of further adventure. I told the family about Milo’s Christmas tree climbing expedition. They all wanted to see pictures, thinking I made up the whole thing.

Christmas morning arrived and with it all the excitement, anticipation and expectations of things to come, from opening gifts to enjoying a holiday feast and giving thanks and gratitude for all that Christmas means. As the family gathered in front of the tree the window curtain was drawn back, it had snowed over night, the Christmas lights were turned on and a glorious winter wonderland was revealed.

As if on cue, Milo poked his head out from within the tree, he was perched near the top, right next to the shinning star.

Christmas tree kitty photo courtesy of: “pinimages.com”

KmYYQls3QtuRr7YD6hDzeQ_thumb_d17

 Milo, relaxing near some Christmas decorations – 2016.

Advertisements
Standard
art, Spirituality, Travel

3 Days

                             

         –        (Originally published  February 2016)      –

Should someone you care for tell you they only have 3 days to live, how would you feel? What would you say to them? This conversation recently came up while talking with a close friend. It was spurred on by the recent death of a mutual acquaintance, a friend of both of ours. Our friend had been murdered. Death all the same, just one you are totally not prepared for, nor expecting. And that is the point, life can throw some unexpected things at you. One day you are just walking down the sidewalk minding your own business. Perhaps you are thinking good thoughts or possibly dwelling on the negative in your life, when out of nowhere, a car goes out of control, an old person in their late eighties driving when they should not be has a dizzy spell, passes out or maybe even suffers a stroke. That is definitely going to stop them from ever driving again. As you notice the car careening out of control and coming at you, while your only thought:  “shit”.bird of paradise_Fld

Things like this are happening all the time and everywhere. And this isn’t even the story of what happened to our friend, he was gunned down in the street by some punk kid who wanted to commit “suicide by cop”. Yes our friend was a police officer.

 In that profession, law enforcement, there is an inherent  risk involved and the possibility of coming into harms way is likely greater than for the average citizen. Our friend had been called in to work on his day off as the department was short handed, damn budget cuts. I guess it was a chance to get in some overtime and help out the department at the same time. Our friend was a caring and considerate person. The call came into the precinct, our friend was dispatched to investigate and was killed while trying to talk to this kid who had a gun and felt like having a gun fight.

Lots of jobs that don’t include policing have a higher percentage of work related deaths, the construction industry for one. Workers around construction sites are constantly getting themselves killed. Electrocuted, squished under heavy equipment, killed by falling debris or even good stuff. Yes, I know first hand that construction is dangerous. I’ve had my share of mistakes, (nobody says accidents any more as the thinking is everything can and should be avoided), that came close to killing me. I’ve been electrocuted, I’ve fallen off ladders, come close to falling off buildings, I’ve even been blown up, on no less than two occasions. Once my friend and co-worker got a blow back that threw him back, I was crouched down behind him and directly behind me was a roof hatch with a 30 foot drop to the floor down below. He knocked me backwards through the hatch but had the presence of mind to grab for me as I was falling through the hatch. My mother always use to say I had nine lives. I’ve lost track of where I stand, math never was my strong suit.

I suppose it’s just a matter of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Some would say fate, it’s out of your hands and beyond your control. It is better to stay in your house, never go outside, never take a chance. But then what kind of life is that?

I was in Florida recently, just this winter, not hurricane season. The land of sand, sun and loads of people escaping the cold northern air. A couple of tornado warnings were put out one night, the warning came through on my cell phone. I had gotten a local phone number and data plan for my cell phone when I first arrived in Sarasota, Florida.circle of life_sarasota_fld

I didn’t see the warnings until the next morning. Too late, stupid phone that doesn’t have a loud enough warning system. My phone vibrates and has a pleasant audible tone like a little marimba playing a scale, so as not to bother anyone. Of course the warning on my phone fell on deaf ears. I noticed the warning when I awoke the next morning. Two text messages. I pressed the lock button of my phone with my right thumb print unlocking the phone, the messages disappeared as if they had never existed.

Lots of people I spoke with later in the day reported they too had received the warnings and they also ignored them. The difference being they are Florida residents and did not take it seriously, as I just slept through it. In either case, ignorance is bliss. About ten miles down the road from my little cottage one of the tornadoes touched down and roared through a trailer park making a direct hit on one trailer destroying it and killing two of the occupants and critically injuring three others. Another tornado touched down closer to the coast, an affluent place, Siesta Key. It made quite a mess, ripping up trees and flattening a few car ports and resident cars, but sparing lives.

So staying in your house may not be an option for protecting yourself from the world at large.

What do you do? I think it helps if you can examine your life and try to decide if you are living a good life. How can you determine  something as abstract as that? Everyone is going to have a different interpretation on what constitutes a good life. That being the case you can only speak for yourself. Are you considerate of others? Do you try to live life with positivity? Are you a productive member of society? Are you caring, do you share and are you loving?

Florida Koi

Marie Selby Botanical Gardens -Sarasota, Florida

Being human we all have our faults, I myself have too many to actually list here but I know what they are, or at least the ones that actually bug me. There are probably lots that bug other people but not enough to have actually caused any threats.

Back to the original question, if somebody told me they only had three days to live I would tell them to get their shit together. Don’t waste any time, don’t dwell on stupidity. There are things and people in this world that just try to drag you down and these are the things you have to let go of. You have to bring yourself to a state of peace of mind with who and what you are. Give thanks for all that you have been able to accomplish.  Throw away the regrets and the guilt. Open your heart and your soul, to take in all the goodness that surrounds you. If you are having trouble seeing any goodness, then look deeper into the shadows of your heart and try to let the light shine into your soul. When you look deeply into your heart you must find something that gives you pleasure or gave you a sense of well being. Is it a person, a place or something, or is it simply a feeling? What ever it is that gives you that sense of peace and harmony, that is where you should go. You must make sure that all your feelings of negativity are flushed out of your system, an enema tonic for your soul. 

Take the time that you have to become aware of the feelings that give you the most pleasure. Meditate and focus all of your energies on maintaining a harmonious, peaceful spirit. You will find joy within yourself, you will bring joy to those around you and you can live your 3 days as though there was no tomorrow. 

Sunset_Sarasota

Sunset – Bridge to Siesta Key Sarasota, Florida

And that’s not to say you are going to go out and party like there’s no tomorrow. It is saying, that every day is a day to give thanks.  Thanks for all that has come to you, for what you have been blessed with and for the blessings that you can share with others. We are all one in the Universal.

Paul J. Youngman

February, 2016

Standard
Animal Lovers, Uncategorized

Cats Gone Wild

milo-at-rest

Milo -Full grown now. Originally a feral kitten. One of the many rescues.

Compassion and Cats Gone Wild

Compassion, it will get you every time. The human compassion to help other living creatures. I think it is certainly stronger in some, particularly women. Take my wife for example, Nina.

 

She loves animals. She’s a supporter of many animal charitable foundations that protect and aid animals of all kinds. One group that she helps is named The Feral Cat Project and its mandate is to trap, neuter, return or release (TNR) feral cats to their colonies. Volunteers humanely trap the cats, which are spayed or neutered, vaccinated for rabies and they are ear-tipped for identification (so  people know which cats have been TNR’d). Any very ill cats are euthanized, put down and cremated. Very young kittens are adopted into homes. The feral’s are re-introduced to their same colonies to live out the remainder of their lives sans producing feral kittens. So you see it’s really returned, as they try not to just release them any old place.

Feral cats are wild cats in case you haven’t heard the term before. I was new to these miniature wild cats until my sister in-law moved into a house that was situated in what must have been a feral cat colony in downtown Toronto. These cats, or their relations from years past would have been domesticated cats, house pets. They have been abandoned, people move and decide they don’t want a cat anymore, they may think they will do well in the wild. They catch birds right? They do, but it would seem only for sport, domesticated cats don’t eat them except as a last resort. These cats have kittens in the wild, the kittens will be Feral, they grow up and have kittens and so becomes the problem. The start of a vicious circle where the Feral’s multiply and start to take over a community.

Can you picture it, a gang of cats terrorizing a community. It isn’t really about that, it is a perception problem more than anything else. People in the community sometimes feed the Feral’s and this can create more problems with neighbours who may not be fond of these wild cats. The Feral’s are timid, they don’t trust people and you cannot touch them. You could if you could get them to come close to you but that does not happen very often. The people who don’t care for them are the ones who blame them for killing birds, messing up gardens, leaving feces, a nice term for cat shit, on the ground, the grass, the driveway. And worst of all, leaving paw prints on freshly washed vehicles and the list goes on. Yes, it’s true that things can get out of hand between the Feral care givers and the Feral haters.

Nina’s Story

This story is about Nina, one persons quest to make a difference. To make peace between the opposing groups and ultimately to help Feral cats. Of course it’s from my perspective as an observer. I’m the husband, partner and co-conspirator in this plot to tame the wild cats.

fred-at-rest

Fred. Another rescue. An abandoned tom-cat. Not fixed and in rough shape when taken in for temporary residence status. We’ve had him 9 years now.

I believe our first experience with Feral cats was back in 2000. The big thing that year was the “Millennium Bug”. A potential computer problem that was going to cause a World melt down. The calendars of many computers were only good to 1999. It was any bodies guess as to what might happen after that. Worse case scenarios, companies going bankrupt, stock markets crashing and bank accounts getting lost. Such a distant memory and an idle threat to boot. This was also the year my sister-in-law, Josie moved into a new house, well a different house. It was new for her but quite old, having been built-in the 1950’s.  Once settled into her house she casually made mention to me that there were a lot of cats in the neighbourhood. I nodded, but didn’t think anything of it.

When Nina & I went to visit Josie at the new place we pulled the car  into the shared driveway. So as to still be sharing I pulled up very close to the front steps and directly in front of the stairs. I noticed many eyes from the front porch, as I got out of the car three cats quickly scurried over the side railing furthest away from us. I saw them running down the narrow alleyway between the two houses on the other side of the driveway. Nina also saw a couple of cats on the driveway side. 

Nina made a comment about how funny that was to see so many cat scurrying about. But we didn’t think too much about it. After dinnertime when my sister-in-law said I have to go feed the cats Nina & I both looked at her like she was nuts. I asked, “You have a cat?”

My sister-in-law was feeding a community of feral cats. How many? A lot of cats! At one point I think there were about 20 cats. Some of these wild cats had been around for two or three generations.

This is when Nina got involved with the cats. It was autumn when we first visited and as winter came to the city the cats  had been worn down, some of the cats get sick and in the winter they die. Others get run over by cars and still others are trapped and taken out of the community.

Nina recruited me to help her build a cat shelter. She started to study how to best make cat shelters that would help the feral cats. My sister-in-law had a shed at the back of her property, just a small two door plastic shed with a couple of shelves about 4 feet wide and standing approximately 8 feet high. Having been roped into this renovation project I set to work on getting the supplies required to build a cat apartment building as per google’s online  instructions.

Google indicated Styrofoam was required,  builders glue,  duct tape, strapping and some screws. I organized all the supplies, then Nina and  I got to work on building the cat house one weekend in the fall. This would be the following year from when Josie moved into the house.

Getting right down to work I opened up the sheds two doors, the unit was empty, all the storage paraphernalia had been removed. I measured and cut the Styrofoam,  opened up the builders adhesive and caulked the panels of Styrofoam with the heavy duty glue to the walls of the shed. Nina’s job was to hold the panels in place until they dried. One of the shelves was left in the shed to provide more space for the cats. One of the two doors needed to have a small opening at the bottom to act as the cats trap door. I made a rectangular opening in one of the doors, I got a heavy piece of plastic drop sheet and I cut a piece to fit over the opening. I drilled and bolted this light weight flap to the inside. The cats would be easily able to push through the flap to get into the shed.

The feral cats now had a cozy apartment for the upcoming winter. I sure hoped they would use this thing.  When we finished I noticed that we had an audience of feral cats watching. As Nina went to approach them they vanished. We found out later the cats weren’t using the villa as they didn’t like to push open the plastic flap, lazy cats.

Josie removed the flaps. Once she did that, the shelter became a feral cat hotel. The next step according to Google information was to obtain bales of hay. I think the hay is an insulator and moisture absorber. Nina and I went out to our local farmer and bought a couple of bales. The farm was very close to our house and we delivered it to the cats. The farm was in distant Stouffville. A rural community about 1 hour north of the city of Toronto. The farm, it was actually a ranch that took in horses for shelter. While we waited for the owner to grab the bales of hay for us we introduced ourselves to the horses . There were quite a few horses. Nina gathered a big handful of dried grass and was feeding one of the friendlier  horses. While we were giving the horses attention a big old tom cat came wandering over and started rubbing against our legs as if to say, heh look at me too. We gave the cat some attention, the horse got jealous and tried to kick the cat. A little more grass for the horse and then we had to go with our fresh bales of hay.

During the week we delivered the hay to Josie’s cat hotel. The bales were opened up and spread out on the floor, the bench and the remainder we left in the shelter to use as another bench. After all of this construction it was time for us to take a break. Josie brought out a tray of snacks and a bottle of red wine. We sat down at the picnic table and I poured a glass of wine for us and cut some bread and cheese, we were enjoying a light snack.

I felt as though we were being watched. Small marble like eyes we’re peering out at me from over the fence from on top of the garage and on the branch of a tree, we were surrounded. I noticed a bucket close to the garage your standard plastic bucket perhaps taller or larger than normal. It may have once held paint. But it was nice and clean now. I grabbed it and made my way back to the bench. I placed the bucket upside down between my knees and proceeded to drum on it as if it were a conga drum. I figured this would scare the cats away. It only scared Nina and Josie away, they left with the empty tray the glasses and the wine. “Excuse me”! I grabbed my glass and motioned for a refill before the bottle departed.

With a fresh glass of wine ready to sample I launched into my soulful bucket banging. The cats started to meow, the strangest of sounds, a mix between a crying baby and a blues harmonica. I continued to drum, reaching down into my soul for some of my African roots. My family is originally from the south of Italy somewhat close to north Africa. The rhythms came out naturally, the cats joined in and a cacophony of sounds was produced. I ended on a grand crescendo, to applause. The neighbour who rented the basement apartment was clapping, obviously having been forced to listen through her little window that led to her small abode. I toasted the cats, gave my thanks and finished my wine.

Nina and I packed up, done for the day.

Paul J. Youngman

(An excerpt from my book Cat’s Gone Wild, soon to be released.)

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Youngman’s Airwaves and/or Paul J. Youngman  with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Standard
art, Jazz, music, Travel, Uncategorized

Valentines Day in Taormina, Sicily

Our Trip To Taormina, Sicily

Taormina is the playground of the Italian wealthy. An ancient town carved

from the side of a mountain. Views that are breathtaking looking down to

the sea or up into the mountains it’s all very pleasing. At any given time of

the year the town is full of tourists.

The weather in the winter is moderate, typical of the southern Mediterranean

with temperatures in the range of 10C to 18C and even warmer when the sun decides to come out from hiding.

From our home base in Reggio Calabria it is easy to get to Taormina, a

short ferry ride to Messina one of the major ports of Sicily and then a bus to

Taormina. The people only ferry, a hovercraft run by Ustica lines, departs

directly from Reggio and arrives at the port of Messina about 20 minutes

later. The price for the boat ride, one way, $3.50 euro each person. The

bus terminal is a short walk from the port, Piazza Republica, just to the left

of the port when looking towards the city. The bus route takes you through

the city of Messina and along the scenic coastal road stopping in numerous

towns along the way. For about $4.80 euros, a one hour and forty minute

drive, this is the way to travel.

Last time we visited Taormina we had gotten off our cruise ship and hired

 a private car for one hundred euros.

We arrived at the bus terminal in Taormina and hired a taxi to take us to

our hotel, we were aware that the hotel was about 30 minute walk from the

bus terminal. Without knowing exactly where the hotel was and not

wanting to waste time, I thought a taxi would be best. I did get a firm price

though before we began, 10 euros. I knew that our return to the terminal

would be on foot so I figured I was saving money, somewhat twisted logic

but I was tired and hungry.

Our hotel for our four night stay, the Hotel Continental was a very good 3

star hotel, it was actually one of the only large hotels I could get as this was

Valentines Weekend and I believe lots of folks were making a romantic

weekend of it.

Once checked in and freshened up we ventured out to find

our evening reservation such that we could be relaxed when the time came

to actually depart for the Hotel Excelsior Palace. I had timed our trip to

Taormina to coincide with a jazz concert and valentines dinner. I had made

the reservations a week ahead of time which is a good thing as it was sold

out and only side view seating was available. No problem as long as I can

hear the music I am good to go.

As Google Maps indicated the Excelsior Palace was indeed 4 minutes away

by foot. Of course I went the wrong way on our reconnoitring visit but got

sorted out after not finding it at first try, however we did find a great pizza

place. We had lunch of pizza and beer and ventured of in the opposite

direction, sure enough a few steps away from our hotel we found the biggest

hotel in Taormina the 5 star Excelsior Palace.

At the appointed hour we ventured off to the Valentines Dinner at

Excelsior Palace. Valentine’s Jazz Night with Giovanni Mazzarino & Daniela

Spalletta Quartet. Giovanni Mazzarino, piano – Daniela Spalleta, Voce –

Alberto Fidone, Bass – Giuseppe Tringali, Drums.

The show got under way first some instrumental compositions from the trio

to warm the room up and then the vocalist Daniela Spalletta joined the

group. The singer reminded me of Norma Winstone a great English jazz

singer who accompanies Kenny Wheeler on many dates. I found Daniela’s

phrasing and cadence similar, perhaps an influence of hers. The group

would run through some original tunes, some Latin jazz and some

standards. A wonderful concert led by pianist and composer Giovanni

Mazzarino, an adept pianist with a refined touch.

After the concert we were guided to another large ballroom where dinner

was served. A candlelight feast with a four course dinner, white and red

wine, a great ambiance, music in the background, the band enjoying dinner

next to our table.

What a great start to our Taormina adventure.

Standard
Uncategorized

World Music Report

As I mentioned in an earlier post I seldom venture outside my comfort zone of jazz and blues musical preferences. Earlier in the summer I had the chance to catch Laura Pausini, the World famous Italian pop diva whom I only became aware of in February of this year while visiting Costa Rica. I actually lived there for two months.

tamarindo-costa-rica

Tamarindo – Costa Rica

Small world that it is, one of Ms Pausini’s management people happens to be of Italian origin and lives in Costa Rica. We became friends and he assured me that he would touch base with me when visiting Toronto as part of the Laura Pausini World Tour 2016.

Sure enough when the Pausini tour rolled into Canada my friend contacted me. He arranged for me to get four VIP passes and off I went with family and friends to witness Latin pop stardom.

photo by Walter V.

Laura Pausini – Barclays Arena – NY

My review of the show was published in World Music Report. A webzine that is close to my heart. The editor and chief Danilo has always been receptive to publishing articles on Latin Jazz and World music. Many of my articles have been published on either the World Music Report or the sister webzine Latin Jazz Review.

A link to my review of Laura Pausini is below, please check it out and feel free to view the many fine articles and related webzines:

http://worldmusicreport.com/featured/laura-pausini-world-tour-2016/

Standard
art, music, pop bands

Boyce Avenue

Boyce Avenue – Phoenix Concert Theatre – Toronto, Canada – October 4, 2016

Be Somebody World Tour  

This has been a year of firsts for me. Not to go into too much detail but rarely do I venture outside of my musical tastes which lie heavily on the side of Jazz and Blues. My most recent foray into mainstream music had me catching a couple of acts at the Phoenix in Toronto.

Some friends visiting from Florida for the weekend mentioned their friends were in town at the same time and they wanted to get together. We arranged to get together with their friends at the Distillery District as they also wanted to sample some micro brewery beers. 

Mill Street may no longer qualify as a micro brewery but they serve good beer and I thought we would have dinner around there as well.

boyceavenue1

Their friend met us in front of the restaurant / bar and explained his two brothers had made other plans and passed along sincere apologies. My wife and I were introduced to Fabian Manzano of the Boyce Avenue band. One of my Florida friends had been Fabian’s teacher in his younger days. 

We had a pleasant time sampling the Mill Street selections and the Florida friends got re-acquainted after not seeing each other since the Boyce Avenue tour kicked off this summer. After browsing the menu we decided dinner in Little Italy would be a nice treat. One of my favourites, Bella Vista on College Street indicated they would reserve a table for us and off we went.

We spoke about all things, music, food, wine, travel and otherwise. Fabian offered my wife and family free passes to check out the band and contact information was shared. 

Boyce Avenue is a band of brothers, Alejandro, lead vocalist and guitarist. Daniel the bassist, backing vocalist and percussionist. Fabian the lead guitarist and backing vocalist – plus one other, the drummer, Jason Burrows. The band has taken the YouTube World by storm. As pop bands go, this band has a huge following, many of whom were at the Phoenix for the show. The theatre was sold out and the people were standing shoulder to shoulder. Boyce Avenue took to the stage about 9pm.

There were three opening acts for this show, Leroy Sanchez, Nick Howard and Sam James. The rest of the tour having the two opening acts of Leroy Sanchez and Nick Howard. We caught a few songs by Leroy Sanchez, he is a good entertainer with a smooth as honey voice.boyceave3

When Boyce Avenue took to the stage the crowd put up a thunderous roar. The band smoothly played a mix of their original tunes from the newly released CD Road Less Travelled, an independent release for 2016.

The songs that most impressed, “Hello” the Adele cover, Alejandro played this one in tribute to the artist who happened to be playing down the road at AirCanada Centre. Another tune that I really enjoyed and seemingly the rest of the audience as well, judging by the applause, Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car”.

When I spoke with Fabian Manzano he indicated to me that the band was pushing their original songs hoping they could get some of their music to film. The new album Road Less Travelled is all original and I believe all three brothers have written material for the album. With their massive following some two million views on YouTube I think it’s just a matter of time until one of their songs starts to get major radio airplay.

The crowd appeared to be enjoying themselves, swaying as best they could to the music, or simply jumping up and down to the beat. A solid and driving backbeat provided by heavy metal drummer Jason Burrows who drove every tune straight and true. His accomplice in the heavy rhythm section – Daniel Manzano who was with him in complete simpatico. Other tunes the band played included Boyce Avenue renditions of covers “I’ll Be The One”, “Love Me” and “Thinking Out Loud”  the band played a few more electric tunes before settling down to the intimate acoustic numbers, “Stitches” and “Find Me”.

Original songs from the new CD Road Less Travelled that were given to the audience to sample included, “Cinderella”, “Imperfect Me” and  “Be Somebody” any one of these songs could be just what the band needs to take them to hit city with middle of the road airplay. The brothers are all accomplished musicians. Fabiano has an elaborate set up of foot pedals and switches. He creates wonderful ambiance with his minimalist playing. Never overplaying he is always providing the fill that makes for an encompassing wall of sound.

Alejandro has a pleasing voice that compliments many styles of songs.  He has an infectious energy that seems to flow through every tune. His vocal renderings, interpretations and originality in approach make every song he sings, as his own.  There are times I am reminded of the Crowded House sound and another great band of brothers.

Fabian Manzano took the mic at one point in the show to announce that this was an extra special performance as both his brothers were celebrating a birthday today. They share the day October 4th but seven years separate them. Daniel Manzano is the youngest of the brothers. A cake with candles glowing was brought out to centre stage.. After the audience helped sing happy birthday to Alejandro and Daniel the candles were blown out successfully. Fabian also mentioned he hoped they would remember to celebrate his birthday – July 1st. The Canadian audience didn’t pick up on the shared birthday with our country.boyceave2

The show ended with a  spectacular encore, another three songs, including “When The Lights Go Down”. Many in the audience were sticking around for a meet and greet. Photos and autographs with the boys in the band. 

My guests had lots of fun and thought the show was wonderful. I agree, a professional show with great sound and lights and a team that puts the fans first, these guys have a winning formula and I’m  quite sure they will have continued success.

The tour rolls into the United States and finishes late October in Nashville. A short break and the band hits the road flying, off to Australia and down under in December. Official Site For Boyce Avenue

Paul J. Youngman – Oct. 2016 

Standard