Conducting Things at Massey Hall

Wow! How long has it been since I let my back bone slide on the dance floor with Ebony MC at The Rocket?  Yes it has been 25 years and now Maestro Fresh Wes is the Rap Prime Minister, making Orchestrated Noise.

[quote by=Winnipeg Sun” ]He hasn’t lost his touch on his seventh disc. Between his nimble rhymes and sharp lyrics and symphonic touches, the Godfather of Canadian Hip-Hop makes you an offer you shouldn’t refuse”. Winnipeg Sun July 2013[/quote]

Maestro Fresh Wes celebrated 25 years in the music industry at Massey Hall last night. That’s where we spent our Saturday night, dancing at the Canada Walk of Fame Festival Concert. I was thrilled to take my son Elliot to see the Maestro. What would I wear? I thought about wearing something subdued or casual, but it was an historic event and I knew Maestro would be wearing a tuxedo, so I dressed to impress. It was a win win situation, belated birthday gift  for my Elliot and a great way for me to wear a shiny dress and celebrate my birthday.

So, I won’t tell you which birthday I celebrated, but I had forgotten all about Mike Williams, the Rap City VJ from back in the day. My grey matter sparked to life and it all came flooding back to me when he opened the concert. I knew we were in the place to be, when a young black violin player graced the stage with two DJ’s and their four turn tables. It was a fitting intro, the symphonic raw blend;  just another example of how Maestro is seasoned and fresh all at the same time. This was classy Hip Hop event. Sounds like an oxymoron doesn’t it? But it’s not. Yes, he was wearing  a Black Tuxedo. Wes has wicked class and revels in being a Black Canadian making music history. I love the essence of Wes. He is a man who has stuck to his vision, and has continued  to create a unique collaborative Canadian Hip Hop sound.

Maestro’s Symphony was seriously in effect with all his friends and collaborators.  A steady stream of Juno winners and Canadian talent including : DJ LTD Saukrates, Ebony MC, Infinite,  Divine BrownShadLights, Rich KidKardinal OffishallK-OSRezza BrothersSaidah Baba Talibah,  and Nova Scotian hard rockers The Trews.

Artists and musicians constantly follow their passions throughout their lives.  The passion is a true expression of their lives and who they are as individuals. You can tell so much about an artist through their art and their music. Being an artist or musician  can be rough, lonely and unyielding life. Not everyone supports or can see their perspective or understand their passion.

Obviously, Wes has surrounded himself with the right people, in the right place, Canada and persisted. Not an easy road, but Wes exudes his dedication. He has paved and continues to pave the road for all of those who have and will come after him.  So 25 years later, I am still partying to Maestro and I was elated  and honoured to give my son the opportunity to experience Black Canadian artistic success up front and close.

Elly and I had VIP tickets, which translated to a photo op with the Maestro and a Orchestrated Noise signed CD. I had one of those crazy weeks at the evil day job, so no time to open personal email.  Yes, thats where the VIP instructions were emailed to. We were supposed to be at Massey Hall  for the photo op at 6:00pm. We arrived at  7:30pm and  we missed it, the big birthday plan gone astray.  Elly was disappointed.  I made a trip to the box office to see if I  could rectify the situation. I was just a little relieved to find we would recieve a CD in the mail. I sheepishly returned to our seats and apologized. I settled uncomfortably into my second row seat, but honestly I  felt terrible. Busy mom guilt is one a hell of a thing.

But the disappointment soon disappeared. Once the concert started Elliot was in awe. Break dancers, lights, music drummer, electric guitars, DJ’s, & Violinist’s! What a Mix!  So much awe, that when the three really decent guys in the front row invited Elly to join them he said “No Thanks. I’m OK”.  He was literally too shellshocked to accept. I mean this was his first live concert and he had watched “Let Your Back Bone Slide” a million times on You Tube. No, he  just couldn’t get that close.  The gentlemen they were, they offered several  more times. Finally a couple more songs and some elbow nudging  from me and Elly was climbing over the seats. Those awesome guys put Elliot front and centre. Thanks three guys!

Now what happened next was a truly serendipidous event and all my busy mom guilt feelings turned to utter excitement as Maestro hoisted Elliot onto the stage. Maestro asked him name and for a second I think Elly did not not know his name, his eyes were wide with shock, surprise and fascination. I was so excited I didn’t think to catch it on video…..

Maestro: What your name?

Elliot: Silence …… Elliot

Maestro How old are you Elliot?

Elliot: Ten

Maestro: Wow! A 10 year old at a Maestro concert.

Audience: Hooting, Hollering, Clapping & Cheering

Maestro : Who are you here with Elliot?

Elliot: My Mom

Maestro looks out into the audience and could only see the 3 guys who hoisted Elliot on the stage.

Maestro: Where’s your Mom?

Elliot points out into the audience, the three  guys step aside and point at me and I wave &  flash all the personalities in my shiny sequined dress!

Maestro: Oh good! I  thought you came with a bunch of ten year olds!

Audience: Laughter, Clapping, & Cheers

The moral of the story is always dress to impress and expect the unexpected!


Thanks for the photo op , Congratulations and Much Love to you.  XOXOXOX