News Archive 2011
Holland Tour Coming Up Next Year Dec. 29, 2011
Five dates are confirmed for the Holland tour in May. Have a look at my "shows" page for details. Getting ready to record some new songs. A co-write with Karina Morin called "Come Into The Light" is one of the tracks. Also "The Way You Say Goodbye", co-written with Pam Searle. And "I Would Buy You Anything", co-written with Lucy LeBlanc. All three will be shopped to music supervisors for tv/film licensing deals.
Getting Airplay Dec. 3, 2011
Tracks from "Wrapped Up In the Blues" are getting airplay all over the world. Last night, for example, a jazz station in Portland Oregon, KMHD played the album's lead off track, "When My Baby Loves Me". A couple of days ago a station in Arlsberg, Denmark played three tracks. This coming Tuesday, two stations in Germany are both playing tracks. And that's just a sample. For a guy who grew up in an era when radio was king (and it still is in lots of ways), this is more success than I ever could have imagined earlier on.
Thursday Report Dec. 1, 2011
Up at 8AM, breakfast, newspaper, and gym. Turn on the computer... My Dutch friend, Pim Bouwens, has two more gigs confirmed for the Holland tour in May.... More blues DJs in various places in the world telling me they're playing cuts from "Wrapped Up In The Blues"....Time to line up rehearsals for the December gigs. And that's how the morning is going so far.
Got a Sec? Looking For Your Vote! Nov. 22, 2011
I've got myself in a pissing match over at American Blues Scene, a very fine website dedicated to the blues. Long story short, click on this link if you will, and lend a hand by voting (daily!) for my album, "Wrapped Up In The Blues". Much obliged.
"House Of Cards" Debuts on Cairns 97.1FM Nov. 17, 2011
Irene Barrett hosts "Driving Home With The Blues" on Cairns 97.1FM. This is a radio show that broadcasts in Cairns, in the state of Queensland in Australia. We started corresponding after she downloaded a few tracks from "Wrapped Up In The Blues" and I MP3'd her a new one inspired by the Occupy Movement. Kinda nice to have a world debut on the other side of the world. This is the four minute clip from her show setting up the song and the song itself.
"Those Five Days" Nov. 14, 2011
These Songs Are Posted at IACMUSIC.COM, Nov. 12, 2011
|Station at KIAC and IACmusic.com|
Wrap Up of Critical Response to "Wrapped Up In The Blues", Nov. 5, 2011
"If John Pippus' Wrapped Up in the Blues does one thing brilliantly, it's to fully live up to its name. The Vancouver bluesman lives and breathes his musical muse and..." read more - Francois Marchand, The Vancouver Sun, Sept. 16/11
"[The album is]... blues based but he takes liberties, occasionally, as in "Walk Away," sounding like Led Zeppelin rather than a blues purist. Good for Pippus. Like any genre, boundaries have to be pushed otherwise it can choke on its idealism...." read more - Tom Harrison, The Vancouver Province, Sept. 16/11
"Pippus is a songwriter and a story teller. This time out his story is the blues. He bends words as easily as he bends notes on his harmonica and he plays his guitar like he stole it. The album has some grit and you can't be entirely certain that Pippus didn't gargle with Jack Daniels before he recorded the songs..." read more - Shelley Gummeson, Earshot, Sept. 22/11
"[An]... innovative recording bringing to mind all sorts of imagery from John Cale and Lou Reed to Brian Wilson..." read more - Bman's Blues Report, Oct. 4/11
You can download or order the CD on my music page. Check out my previous albums too.
"Coming Home Blues" on Urban Rush TV, Nov. 1st, 2011
"Airplane Woman" is Song of the Week, Oct. 27th, 2011
There's a college station in Danbury, Connecticut with the call letters WXCI. They've been playing tracks from my new blues album. Right now, one of the songs from the album, "Airplane Woman" is one of three "Songs of the Week".
Also on that short list is a song by Peter Case. I saw him play in Nashville at The Bluebird Cafe a few years ago. I didn't know who he was before that. Subsequently, I looked him up on YouTube and figured out he uses a very weird guitar tuning (CGCGCGE) on a lot of his songs. And it was in THAT tuning that I wrote "Airplane Woman".
"Those Five Days" On Television, Oct. 10th, 2011
Me and the boys taped three songs on Saturday at the Shaw TV studio. The first song we did was this one, "Those Five Days". It's a simple riff, repeated in both the verse and chorus, so it depends more on the dynamics than the usual verse/pre-chorus/chorus/bridge progression. A good "groove song" that we like playing. And we never do it the same way twice.
Busy Time, Oct. 7th, 2011
Last week Mike Weterings and I did five shows in the Okanagan. Good memories, particularly from the friends you connect with, new and familiar, along the way. Next Thursday we do four shows on Vancouver Island. On Wednesday, The JP Band played a last minute show at The Backstage Lounge. It was a good rehearsal for tomorrow when we tape a half hour's worth of songs at The Shaw TV studios downtown. This will be our first TV experience. I'm hoping we get some good live performance video out of it that we can post on our band site.
"Wrapped Up" Reviewed in Earshot! and The Province, Sept 23, 2011
Another review for the album. This one by Shelley Gummeson. She's reviewed my first two albums too. She likes a lot of the new one, but a couple of things rub her the wrong way. C'est la vie. And this review is by Tom Harrison of The Province newspaper. He likes the whole thing.
Out of Town Show This Weekend
"Wrapped" Gets Reviewed in The Sun, Sept. 16, 2011
Francois Marchand, the Vancouver Sun's music critic has written up the new album. You never know how these things will go, but I'm really pleased with his take on the whole thing. You can read it here. More reviews are coming in The Winnipeg Free Press, The Vancouver Province, and Earshot Magazine. I'll keep you posted.
Also lots of airplay happening with tracks from the album. "One World" was played on a show that originates in Glasgow, Scotland. A blues show in Fresno, California picked up a few tracks. And "Airplane Woman" is getting played on a nationally-syndicated show in Australia. And that's just in the last few days. Feeling grateful.
A New Song, Sept. 11, 2011
Here's a co-write I did with Lucy LeBlanc called "Why Did I Ever Believe". Lucy brought the words to the co-write and said she heard it with a 3/4 beat. The words suggested a mood and I quickly came up with a simple folk chord pattern and melody. We just tweaked a few words here and there to make it fit the music. When we recorded it (at Adam Bailie's studio) we kept it real basic. Just acoustic guitar, vocal, and a plaintive harmonica break.
We recorded another version with Nat Jay singing it. It's in a different key and has an electric guitar solo but otherwise it's the same arrangement.
The New Album is Launched, Sept. 3, 2011
Rather than repeating myself, you can read the current issue of the "Pippus Newsletter" for the latest on the new, all-blues album, "Wrapped Up In The Blues".
After the CD Release Party on Sept. 7th, I've got a couple of band shows in September (see the "Shows" page for details), and then I'm going on tour with MIke Weterings to The Okanagan and Vancouver Island.
"Walk Away" Featured in The Province Newspaper. August 10, 2011
The preview track from my new blues album, "Wrapped Up In The Blues", is featured in Tuesday's Province newspaper. Click on this link to get a free download.
Also, The CD Release Party is happening at The Railway Club on Wednesday, Sept. 7th. Sharing the night with me and the boys will be EV and The Taylor Harp Band.
Preview Of Kamloops Show. July 25, 2011
Here is a link that profiles Andrea Remolo and me. Along with a couple of videos. We're double billed at The Art We Are Cafe in Kamloops, BC. A stop on the way up to the ArtsWells Music Fest on the weekend. My bass player, Rob Fillo, is riding shotgun (and sharing the driving).
Calm Before The Storm of Shows. July 22, 2011
Enjoying the relative quiet this week. No shows on the schedule. But starting next Tuesday it's going to be non-stop action for awhile. Check out my "Shows" page to see what I mean.
Looking forward to getting out of the city and playing at The ArtsWells Festival next weekend. It's rated in the TOP 10 Festivals in Canada by CBC Radio 3.
Preview Track Now Posted. July 17, 2011
OK. Here's "Walk Away", a preview track from my soon-to-be-released, boundary-pushing blues album, "Wrapped Up In The Blues".
Your highly-coveted pre-orders can be made right here. Official release date is Aug. 31/11.
JoyFest Tonight. July 16, 2011
I really enjoyed playing tonight at JoyFest. Ev and I rocked it pretty hard. We were the last act, on at 11PM, following a day-long event of many fine Vancouver singer/songwriters. It was at a coffee shop called Cuppa Joy and it's across the street from the Vancouver Folk Fest that is on this weekend. So there was quite a few people stopping by to check out the action.
Thanks to Glenn Chatton and the crew of volunteers who made it all happen.
Summer Solstice. June 21, 2011
I dropped off my external hard drive at Brock MacFarlane's place last evening. On it is the ten tracks for the new blues album. Brock is the guy who does the mastering. I'm proud of this latest collection of songs. All originals, except the last track which is an amped-up, contemporary version of Eddie "Son" House's "Preachin' Blues". I first heard that song when I was a young teen just finding out what the blues was all about. The album is called 'Rapped Up In The Blues and it'll be ready later this summer.
Leaving tomorrow for Ontario. Playing The Elmdale Tavern in Ottawa on Thursday night. Along with Marie-Josee Houle. And then sharing the bill with Blair Packham at C'est What? in Toronto on June 28th.
A Word on Recent and Future Shows. Also Album Progress. May 20, 2011
Played last night at The Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel. Classy gig, well paid and well treated. Michelle Richard joined me on vocals. Thanks to Shore 104.3FM for hosting. Lining up shows for the newly formed John Pippus Band. We've played twice so far, good feeling to see all the rehearsals paying off in the performance pressure cooker. See the "Shows" page for where/when this power trio will be playing next. Son Jake on drums. Rob Fillo on bass.
The new, all-blues album is motoring along nicely. Producer Adam "Ronii Wata" Bailie and I have tracked the vocals and guitar tracks at The Warehouse Studio in Gastown. We're adding drums and bass this week at Dynatone Studio in East Van. Tim Proznick on drums, one of Vancouver's most sought after session players, and Darren Parris on bass. Hank White Design is doing the album cover. Graham Vickers shot the cover photo. The album opens with my song, "I Dreamed About Muddy Waters Last Night" and closes with a cover of Eddie "Son" House's "Preachin' Blues". With a whole lot of blues in between. Pre-order info and preview track coming soon to the "Music" page.
Preview of the New, All-blues Album. April 19, 2011
Playing "My First Mistake" Live on CJSF Radio. April 14, 2011
Here's a Youtube video of me playing "My First Mistake", the second track from my 2009 release, "This City". I was joined by Juno-winner Bill Bourne on lead guitar, and Vancouver singer/songwriter and friend, Lindsay May jumped in on the extro for a bit of harmony.
"Born A Genius" on National Radio. April 3, 2011
I was happy to get word that the title track from the CD, "Born A Genius" was played on CBC radio's Saturday program, "Definitely Not The Opera". (Scroll down once you've clicked on the link, to see the playlist.) DNTO is hosted by Sook Yin Lee and is broadcast from coast to coast.
Back From The Tour. March 30, 2011
Got back from the Okanagan part of the tour on Sunday. Ivan Boudreau and I played in Vernon, Kelowna, and finished up at The Penticton Art Gallery on Saturday night to an appreciative audience. It was a perfect way to end the tour. What a difference when the audience is there to listen. And what a contrast to the night before when a noisy restaurant crowd basically ignored us. Ouch!
Ivan took this picture of me wearing my "Swifty Lazar" sunglasses. Here we are filling up in Keremeos before driving back to Vancouver.
On Tuesday night I was on CJSF radio's "Melodies In Mind". A two-hour show hosted by Ryan Fletcher. I was sharing the mic with Vancouver songwriter Lindsay May and Juno winner Bill Bourne. When I played "Follow The River", Lindsay joined me on spur-of-the-moment vocals and Bill added some tasty lead guitar. You can hear the tune here.
Five Nights in a Row. March 19, 2011
I guess you could call this the calm before the storm. A relatively quiet few days, but starting Tuesday (backing up Ross Fairbain at The Railway Club on electric guitar and amplified blues harp), I've got five shows in a row. Wednesday I'll be playing solo/acoustic at The Helm on Howe St. Then Thursday, Friday, and Saturday I'll be doing the Okanagan half of the tour I started last week with Ivan Boudreau on the Island. Oh, plus I played a full set at Trees Coffee House last night. Debuted a new one, "Sooner Or Later". The first song I've written with a reggae beat. Seemed to go over pretty good. A feel good, pop song, with a hooky chorus. Which reminds me, I better scoot over to the SOCAN website and get it registered.
Airplay on The Shore 104.3FM! March 18, 2011
Gord Rutherford, hosts the afternoon show on Vancouver roots and blues station, The Shore 104.3FM. I sent him a compilation of nine of my blues tunes and he likes 'em! He says: "I really like the variety in what you are doing...not just some electric guitar screaming." Besides playing some tracks on his Sunday morning "West Coast Blues" show (repeats on Saturdays), he's going to have me down to the studio to record an interview and a couple of tunes as well.
"Muddy Waters" Getting Airplay! March 1, 2011
Hello Edmonton! "I Dreamed About Muddy Waters Last Night" in rotation at Edmonton radio station, 95.7 FM The Sound. Recorded at Bryan Adam's studio over Xmas with Adam Bailie producing. Thanks also to Music Director/Afternoon Host Matt Schichter. Hear it on my digital-only, album-in-progress, "More Orphans and Singles" on my music page.
Fingers Crossed, February 22, 2011
Got this email this morning from a friend with L.A. contacts:"Your blues tunes...are bein listened to,in L.A...right now! fingers crossed." One lives in Hope... Finally reading the new Keith Richards book, "Life". So far , so good... Working on three new songs at the moment. An upbeat pop song, a hard rockin' tune a la Black Keys, and a new country tune along the lines of Lucinda Williams or maybe Brandi "The Story" Carlisle.
Highlights from the V-Day Show, February 15, 2011
Two Days to the Show, February 10, 2011
This is different. Usually I'm playing a venue where my only job is to show up ready to play and bug my friends to come out to the gig. This time around I'm the promoter. That is, I'm paying for the room up front, running the bar, and coordinating the whole thing. It's a lot to do and quite nerve wracking (Ice? Decorations? P.A.?) But advance sales are looking good, and the Facebook Event has, as of right now, 66 "I'm Attending" and 136 "Maybes". I rehearsed with Ev, Dewey, and Rob last night and we've got our 10-song set in order. On the musical front, we're stoked and ready to go. And checking around with the various people I've delegated jobs to, I'd say I've got a reliable crew in place. Great to have this support! Details on the show on my "Shows" page.
Trees Music Night Newsletter, February 4, 2011
I just sent out this month's Trees Music Night Newsletter. Over 1200 subscribers now, plus a media list and even a list of hotel concierges in the area that I send it to. I've been booking the music nights at Trees for close to five years now. And every week a few more people sign up to get the mailing list of who is playing, and other bits of news from the local singer/songwriter scene. Send your email address to firstname.lastname@example.org if you want get the newsletter too.
Still Feeling The Effects of Saturday Night, January 17, 2011
Man we rocked it. The Howe Sound Pub was full on Saturday night. We were treated well by the staff and audience alike. We love Squamish and want to get out of town a lot more in the coming months. Something about smaller communities liking to get out and boogie. Played way longer than we were supposed to. SO much fun. Here's a shot of Ev and I in action:
And I've started a Facebook band page finally. You're invited to "like" it and stay in the loop with shows, music, and all the gossip.
Playing in Squamish Tonight, January 15, 2011
Heading up to Squamish this afternoon for a show at the Howe Sound Brew Pub tonight. Squamish is a town about an hour north of Vancouver on the way to Whistler. Spectacular mountain and ocean scenery along the way. The local paper, The Squamish Chief, published an article in the current issue that documents the last time I played up there - back in the mid 70s (my, how time flies). The article (read it here) tells the story of my silver rock star pants and how the band I was with learned to appreciate their power.
Where Creativity Might Come From, January 10, 2011
Just finished reading "Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert. I know, I know, a chick flick starring too-cute Julia Roberts. But.... I liked the book, in spite of my misgivings going into it. For all sorts of reasons. But I'll just say I liked the book enough to look up the author's website and see what she looked like (and get this, she looks like Julia Roberts! - is this a first in book-turned-into-movie history?) and also to see what else she was doing lately.
Posted at her website is this 20 minute dissertation on the creative process, which in recent - 500 years or so - Western history we've come to acknowledge as a dangerous pursuit. IE. Write/act/dance/sing to a degree that is acknowledged by a wider audience, then die early or fade into obscurity. Broken, bitter, and alcoholic. Elizabeth Gilbert says it doesn't have to be like this. When you've got 20 free minutes, have a look at her charming take on the creative process and draw your own conclusions:
A Rainy Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Sent out my "Pippus Newsletter #17" a couple of days ago. (Sign up on the "connect" page if you want to get it.) Bought a Gibson SG Supreme off of Craigslist yesterday. A real beauty! Did a phone interview last night with a reporter from the Squamish newspaper in advance of the show up there on the 15th. Told him the last time I played in Squamish was in the mid-70s, wearing tight, silver pants that the band mocked until they saw the girls were taking them seriously.
Final mixing at Adam's this morning for "I Dreamed About Muddy Waters" and recorded a guitar track for a country tune, "Love Is Here To Stay". My guitar student arrives in about an hour for her weekly lesson. And one last rehearsal with the band tonight, before the show at The Railway tomorrow night. (See the "shows" page for details.)