Sunday, September 13, 2009

Margin Notes: Imbayakunas, Talking Bridges, TBTL

The Imbayakunas performed near the entrance to the CN Tower in Toronto, Ontario on 2-September-2009

TORONTO, ONTARIO - One day while working in Roundhouse Park in Toronto, Ontario this summer, our crew thought we heard Simon and Garfunkel's "El Condor Pasa" coming from the Rogers Centre. It turned out to be the Ecuadorian group The Imbayakunas performing outside the CN Tower. The group became a fixture for much of the summer, providing the far background music for the area. In addition to traditional Ecuadorian songs and "El Condor Pasa" (which was inspired by Andean music), their repertoire includes a varied list of pop music including The Eagles ("Hotel California") and even Celine Dion ("My Heart Will Go On"). Don't they count as "CanCon" (Canadian content) without covering Dion?

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The headline could have come from a model railroader, but these protest signs along the Georgetown Line were actually calling for electric-powered commuter trains. This one was along Dundas Street West on 2-September-2009

Many trains already pass the CN Tower every day, but many more will if GO Transit/Metrolinx's plans for expanding service on the Georgetown Line come to fruition. GO wants frequent trains to Pearson International Airport and longer-distance commuter trains to Kitchener-Waterloo on the route. The plans are encountering quite an organized resistance in many neighborhoods, not so much for their frequency as simply the fact that they would be diesel-powered. Protest signs against [Premier] Dalton [McGuinty]'s Dirty Diesels have appeared all along the line in Toronto recently.

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Some interesting graffiti was found on the Wallace Avenue footbridge in Toronto, Ontario on 12-September-2009

On the Wallace Avenue footbridge over the tracks that may be electrified, some interesting graffiti was found recently. If a bridge path could talk, what exactly would it say? Get off of me?

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Radio shows aren't alive, either, and the show called Too Beautiful To Live has lived up to its name. The last broadcast of the evening talk show aimed at younger listeners on KIRO-FM in Seattle, Washington was Friday night, though Luke Burbank, Jen Andrews, and Sean DeTore will continue the program as a podcast. I must give Blatherwatch and Michael Hood credit for making the comment of the week, noting that the programs replacing "TBTL" are not awesome. Frank Shiers is live and local, but not terribly exciting, and Allen Hunt's religious program is an odd choice for the otherwise-centrist station. Interestingly, the other major Bonneville effort at reaching a younger audience, KSL's Nightside Project in Salt Lake City, Utah, rolls on--maybe it's time for me to finally listen to that program.

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I have been listening to NPR's All Things Considered often enough to catch Noa Adams doing fill-in hosting, which has been a nostalgic return to the era lasting until 2003 when he was one of three regular hosts along with Linda Wertheimer and Robert Siegel. Hearing Adams and Siegel co-hosting again took me back a decade, though Adams fans probably most enjoyed his solo hosting on Labor Day.

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