Revolution in the air

Digging 50 years of Beatlemania in North America helps to unearth a Canadian cultural treasure in Allison Crowe’s home province on the Atlantic. The Beatles landing at New York City’s JFK International in February 1964 was emblematic of the new – the “jet set” – a revolution in air travel that made it possible for jet planes to cross the Atlantic in record times. In the era of propeller planes and the refuelling stop-overs needed to make the trip between Europe and the USA, the key North American terminal – GIA – was located in Gander, Newfoundland.

Gander International’s VIP Lounge played host to Albert Einstein, Marlene Dietrich, Fidel Castro, Frank Sinatra, Winston Churchill and Jackie O., among countless others, during those years GIA was popularly known as the “Crossroads of the World”.

Then a thriving global hub, in 1959 a new terminal opened and its construction and furniture featured creativity of leading designers – including chairs by Charles and Ray Eames -http://eamesoffice.com/charles-and-ray , “Primasteel” seating by Robin Bush, and a six-foot mural painted by Kenneth Lochhead – http://www.kennethlochhead.com

Gander International Airport – departure lounge photographed by Zach Bonnell

The advent of jet travel, however, soon redirected the flow of international air travel. With Gander facilities no longer bustling, it’s uniquely preserved a “time capsule” quality. Today, GIA is viewed as a marvel by art historians, architects and design aficionados – ”It’s still one of the most beautiful, most important Modernist rooms in the country, if not the most important,” says Alan C. Elder, Curator, Canadian Crafts and Design, at the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, Quebec. (Recently renamed, the Canadian Museum of History is this nation’s most-visited museum).

Gander, and such nearby communities as Lewisporte, Twillingate and more, earned international renown in 2001 as GIA became haven for dozens of international aircraft grounded when airspace was shut-down in the wake of the 9/11 NYC attacks. The character of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians opening their hearts and homes to thousands of people – flight passengers and crew – during the crisis is legend – http://www.snopes.com/rumors/gander.asp#smvFTOCIkq43PMEj.99

Less-known, across even its home and native land, is how Gander long-served as “Crossroads of the World”. Awareness of GIA’s style is enjoying a renaissance in our internet age – with features in The New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/2005/03/20/travel/tmagazine/20TGANDER.html , Institute http://www.instituteartist.com/feature-Gander-Airport-Simon-Norfolk , “dwell” magazine – http://www.dwell.com/rewind/article/aviation-preservation – and more – http://itraveltree.com/virgin-atlantic-welcome-to-um-gander-canada

Most recently, Bloomberg’s high-end “Pursuits”, (a publication “for the world’s richest people”) put Gander International on its cover, with a fashion shoot – http://ca.zinio.com/reader.jsp?issue=416276333&WT.mc_id=PUB_COM_DISC_GLOBAL_082813_Pursuits_Fall13 – calling it “the world’s coolest airport”.

GIA image – showing mural – from series by Zach Bonnell on flickr

In a fab, 18-photo, flickr gallery, Zach Bonnell of St. John’s, NL is our guide on a magical mystery tour of GIA @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/zachbonnell/sets/72157623762605690

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“Imagine” peace again – and again

Among her interpretations of songs by the Beatles, during the group’s collective and solo years, chanting the mantra – peace and love – here’s “Imagine” performed “Live at Wood Hall” by Canadian musician Allison Crowe.
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Gerry Deiter, assigned by ‘Life‘ magazine, was the only photographer present for the entire eight-day Bed-In staged by John Lennon and Yoko Ono at Montreal’s Queen Elizabeth Hotel in 1969. His collection of images from that happening come together in the book “Give Peace a Chance: John & Yoko’s Bed-In for Peace” – compiled by Joan Athey and edited by Paul McGrath.
And Joan Athey’s graciously allowed Gerry Deiter’s photographs to accompany the music to make this video.
Since it’s Groundhog Day leading us into the week celebrating 50 years of Beatlemania in North America+ – here’s an encore version of “Imagine” recorded by Allison at home – with peace signs courtesy of Top Pun.
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“Let It Be” – Allison Crowe performs The Beatles

In My Life” – Allison Crowe performing a “John song” was our first video commemorating the 50th anniversary of Beatlemania in North America. With her take on a “Paul song” – here’s Allison now with “Let It Be”, again captured in real-time by film director Alex Postowoi and crew and audio engineer Larry “Turtle” Anschell (and in higher fidelity than previously available online).

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The ‘Tidings’ album version of the song – http://music.allisoncrowe.com/track/let-it-be – was recorded a year or two earlier, as was Allison’s version of “Let It Be” that’s part of the NYC-produced “It Was 40 Years Ago Today” tribute album – a compilation also featuring Dee Dee Ramone, Sylvain Sylvain and other DIY, indie, alternative and punk rock musicians (released on February 9, 2004).

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Beatlemania Hits Fab 50: Allison Crowe Performs “In My Life”

“Beatlemania, as it is called, affects all social classes and all levels of intelligence,” The New York Times reported in December 1963.
We’ll hear all manner of takes on similar themes over the coming month, with this February 7 marking the 50th anniversary of The Beatles landing at JFK International (New York City’s Idlewild airport rechristened on December 24, ’63 in tribute to the recently assassinated US President). The group’s appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show – broadcast over the three succeeding Sundays – electrified a new continent.
Plenty came before, and much has happened since, Pan Am Flight 101 delivered the Fab Four aboard a Boeing 707-331, known as the Clipper “Defiance”, to a world ready for joy and release.
Celebrating the musical legacy of John, Paul, George and Ringo – here’s Allison Crowe performing “In My Life” – captured in real-time by film director Alex Postowoi and crew and audio engineer Larry Anschell at Turtle Recording studios by the sea in White Rock, BC, Canada.
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(This is an higher-fidelity video recording than has been previously available!)
And, here’s another performance of the song by Allison – recorded, audio-only, at Turtle a couple of years earlier: http://music.allisoncrowe.com/track/in-my-life

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Joy!

Rockin’ around the Christmas tree has deep roots – as we hear in this carol first shared in the 1800s. Here’s a joyous performance from Allison captured by Alex Postowoi and crew at the merry and bright Turtle Recording studios in White Rock, Canada:

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Snow on Snow

Fun Facts: Musician Allison Crowe lives in one of the snowiest parts of Canada – Corner Brook – second only to Gander, NL as the snowiest city of them all. Her music label, Rubenesque Records, lives in the least snowiest region of Canada – on Salt Spring Island – between Victoria (#1) and Vancouver, BC (#3):http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Science/2013/11/28/snow1280.jpg
When there’s snow sighted, the best thing, of course, is to sing. Here’s Allison Crowe performing “In the Bleak Midwinter”, a traditional song of the season: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nNo5U3C0cB4 This recording was made ten years ago this week – for “Tidings”, a national television special. Warmest thanks to Doug Slack and the production elves at the New VI/A Channel.
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Like snow-flakes, no two musical performances are the same. Here’s the “In the Bleak Midwinter” recording of Allison Crowe made live-in-the-studio at Turtle Recording, White Rock, BC Canada – by the teams of Alex Postowoi (film) and Larry Anschell (audio):http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gI00JhQpiaA

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Midnight Memories Ever-Fresh

When Allison Crowe and her then-trio, Dave Baird on bass and Kevin Clevette on drums, were starting to roll internationally – film director and Hollywood+ steadi-cam veteran Alex Postowoi offered to shoot a band video. The song chosen for Allison’s first, and only, “story” video was “Midnight”. Tami Mancey and Josh Dahling were the lead actors. Full credits and this charming video itself can be found @ Allison Crowe and the Midnight Video

Alex Postowoi - film-maker behind Allison's DVD + vids
To add to the aural fun, at White Rock, BC’s Turtle studios Allison’s trio was joined on mandolin by Robert Ford, of Canuck Celtic rock legends, The Stoaters, as well as Hammond wizard Darryl Havers (Ferron, Alan Doyle, Brickhouse, Raffi+). With some additional support from “One-take Eddie” Johnson, percussion, and Larry “Turtle” Anschell handling guitar and production – Midnight “The Single” was born. This (2002) was no longer the heyday of “music television”, but, it still was a place many bands and fans looked to connect. Canada’s counterpart to MTV passed on playing “Midnight” – deeming it “too country”.

With Allison about to join Karen Sparkes and Gerri Lynn Mackey, personable hosts of CFCB 570AM Radio, home to new and classic country music, for an on-air chat, the memory brings forth a chuckle :)

Grab a sarsaparilla and kick back – here’s “Midnight”, as performed by Allison Crowe and friends, sounding as fresh and invigorating as the day they all came together.

Seems some browsers and operating systems respond differently to things and, so, should you have any problem watching the “Midnight” video directly on the site of film-maker, Alex Postowoi, we’ve made this page on Allison Crowe’s home-site which may provide additional viewing options.

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Midnight (secrets version)

Musician Allison Crowe’s recorded several versions of her song “Midnight“.

Here’s the recording heard on Crowe’s “secrets” album/CD.

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Allison Crowe – vocals, percussion, and electric guitar; Del Crowe – acoustic guitar.

A rollicking “Midnightmusic video made by Alex Postowoi and team was deemed “country” music by Canada’s counterpart to MTV! The country was Canada, and now, the world :)

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