Sunday, September 5, 2010

2 Dope Boys In A Cadillac -- Season 6 of ToF!

Tongues of Fire -- Season Six kicks off in September (Thursday the 9th, natch!) and we do so in epic poetic style with a DOUBLE TEAM of POETS! It's Johnny Murdoch Macrae and shayne avec i grec, touring as 2 Dope Boys In A Cadillac! These kids give good interview, check it out... and then make sure you're at the Solstice Cafe on Thursday night for the premiere!

* * * * *

You're both dope boys, been running your particular poetic games for years separately... what made you get into this here Cadillac together?

Johnny: The bond we formed working together at the Banff Centre.

Shayne: Sheri-D Wilson’s spoken word program there…

Johnny: I was looking at setting up a tour, and Shayne and I did a great deal of smoking and drinking together, and a day of hiking. After simultaneously yelling poems at Banff from the top of a mountain (Sleeping Buffalo) that overlooks the town, we realized we had something. Shayne said we should tour together. He then said we should tour together ASAP. I couldn't disagree. Pretty soon we were 2 Dope Boys in a Cadillac.

Shayne: All signs keep pointing to YES and this whole endeavor is inescapable, really!

What can the ToF audience (discerning folk that they be!) expect from a 2 Dope Boys show? Do you have a style? Or an anti-style, even?

Johnny: Psychedelic Rock Opera. Our style is founded upon a desire to blow minds with Aquemini designs, while remaining inarticulate.

Shayne: I'm hoping the ToF audience has somewhat working knowledge of the Multiverse (which I’m sure they must!), as they're going to be meeting the Johnny MacRae & shayne avec i grec of Earth Prime. Psychedelic and Anthropocalyptic are descriptors that have been used to describe 2 Dope Boys in the past (and future!) and i definitely don't feel a need to refute them, personally.

You claim to be influenced by Bob Holman's tequila, which we do not dispute. Like, at all. Any other influences?

Johnny: Bob Holman's Absinthe.

Shayne: That's like opening Pandora's Box! For me the eternal influences are obvious and have been referenced many times (Saul Williams, Allen Ginsberg and Leonard Cohen). Lately, it's been a wide spectrum…

Johnny: Phillips Skookum Cascadian Brown Ale. Marijuana. Central City Brewing.

Shayne: Jeff Andrew and O’Malley have been amazing musical cohorts along the way, and continually influence me in ways both obvious and not. Ira Lee is way up there for sure (we were hoping to do a show in Montreal with him in December, but he just moved to France), Evelyn Evelyn, Buddy Wakefield, RC Weslowski and Wax Mannequin also…

Johnny: Howe Sound Bailout Bitter. Driftwood Brewery's Crooked Coast. Northfield blues.

Shayne: The new Meatloaf album rocked my world on initial listen, also – so i look forward to some more time with that!

Johnny: … and Outkast.

How did you feel the first time you stepped up a mic to read what you had written? And how long ago was that?

Johnny: Like a fraud. I had to follow on the heels of the Svelte Ms. Spelt, and I'd never seen spoken word before. I was aware how unready I was, and seeing someone so polished and so confident go on stage before me freaked the shit out of me. I suppose I first read my writing about six years ago at an open mic in Montmartre (the night in question with Ms. Spelt), but for me the real first time was the Spillious Speak and Sing at Cottage Bistro, two and a half years ago. I'm like a born again virgin.

Shayne: The first time I read something I’d personally written into a microphone on-stage, I felt quite drunk, dropped the jug of beer I’d been drinking directly (who needs a glass!) and was nervous as all holy-shit! I was reading it as an opening for my friends' punk/metal band at the Canmore Hotel. Late '03 it must've been....

Ah, Canmore. Quite the town. What's the next poetry-related goal you want to fulfill?

Johnny: Creating a fringe show? The story of our early life growing up in the Cadillac Mountains has barely been told---I feel like more people need to know.

Shayne: Well, Johnny and I've discussed some way cool po(e)tential with this 2 Dope Boys project, and I personally look forward to working at it for awhile and seeing just how far we can go with fleshing out the mythos and ideas we have on-hand. I'd also love to do a Ghosts of the Highway reunion somewhere down the road... but not for some time, I’d imagine.

Can you tell us about the poem(s) you haven't written yet?

Johnny: Considering my longest-term goal with poetry is to stop writing poems (and only speak them), I don't know that I can. Apparently trees, environmental politics, and bicycles are big themes for me, so I suppose there'll be more of that.

Shayne: I’ve got a love letter/advice column to the police that's been percolating awhile. I'd also like to spend some time exploring the history of the Innisfail/Big Valley region of central Alberta – not sure if that'll be a single poem, or a cycle. And something about Prince. That has to happen.

What are the subjects/objects that really engage you?

Johnny: Trees, environmental politics, and bicycles. I grew up in a family dominated by feminists, so gender issues and the subject of male-female relations (to be heteronormative) often come up for me. Pretty much, fuck the patriarchy. One subject I'd really like to dig into is my heritage---not much is really known about the Gaelic Scots (and don't even begin talk

ing about Mel Gibson), and I feel the histories of my people is one I'd like to tell.

Shayne: Community, comic books, hip hop, independent touring musicians, history, the internet, trying to make things better, and trying to make really outlandish things actually work somehow...

We're pretty stoked to be the first stop on your (almost) randomized tour of Canadian (and American) poetry hot spots! Where ya heading after this?

Johnny: Back to Vancouver, sharing our work at Raw Canvas for the Art of Word night. After that... other places? This is just the beginning, though, our Cadillac’s got a lot of mileage to put in.

C’mon! “Other places…”?

Shayne: Well, the show at Raw Canvas is on Sept. 15, and then we’ve got Poetry in the Raw IV at the V.E.C. on Sept. 27, and possibly another show or two in Vancouver after that, and before Johnny heads off to

CFSW in Ottawa. So Victoria and Vancouver are basically playing host to the “trial run tour”, while the eastern North America tour starts in Peterborough on Nov. 25 and includes Ottawa, Montreal, New York, Indianapolis, Toronto as many points in-between as will have us (hopefully Chicago, Worcester, Boston, Washington DC, Hamilton, London, Burlington, Guelph, Syracuse, etc.)

We run your poetry through the ice-cream maker: what flavour do we get at the business end?

Shayne: The business end of the ice-cream maker? Or the business end of the whole equation? I think the answer to the latter is pretty obvious...

Johnny: Hemp beer!

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