See Joe Smile Reunion/Thom Turns 30

When Thom said he’d like to celebrate his 30th birthday with a concert, it made sense that we would reunite the full band lineup to play. 30’s a big milestone and deserves some fanfare, and that’s exactly what we provided. It also turned out to be a farewell to the home that served as our main practice space for many years.  The old family home was sold this summer and so Thom’s 30th birthday concert became a farewell to Maley Lane, as well as a special birthday surprise for his mom, Cathy. It was fun returning to the house to practice, all of us living quite a distance away from it now, and being graciously welcomed by mom with snacks and drinks while we practiced. Just like the old days… The party was a private affair, just for family and friends, but when I think about it, See Joe Smile has always played for family and friends. Even when we played at new venues to new people, we always had family and friends present and I’d like to think our music welcomes people into a friendly and comfortable atmosphere, too. We missed Kaitlin who has just given birth to a boy, a few days earlier, but we were happy my wife, Michaela, was ready to jump in and sing. She’s been singing with the band for any full band appearances we’ve made over the past five years so it was great for her to join us for this special occasion. The setlist included our most popular SJS originals and a few of our favourite covers: It’s All Been Done (medley...
Concert Retrospective #1

Concert Retrospective #1

Teitur @ Cafe Dekcuf February 2004 Hi friends. I’ve long had this idea of a recurring blog post topic. In fact, about five years have passed since I took pictures of my old concert ticket stubs and corresponding t-shirts. I did this for two reasons: in case I forget about all of the great concerts I’ve attended and because I liked the visual way it captured the memory.   So here we are in early 2004. I had only recently begun seeing live shows down in the Byward Market, exploring my newfound independence as a 19 year old university student. My pal, Steve had begun performing as a solo artist and it was a real joy to support him at his shows. This one was a big deal because the headliner was an emerging singer-songwriter from the Faroe Islands, Teitur. My buddies and I saw him when he opened for John Mayer, a few months earlier at what turned out to be my first major concert experience at the Corel Centre (now Canadian Tire Centre). To get the opportunity to see him play again was amazing luck. Even better, this was a much more intimate venue, with a high probability of getting to meet him afterwards. It was also special because my pal Steve opened the show. What I most enjoyed about Teitur’s live performance and his songwriting, in general, was how poetic it all was. The imagery he employed, the metaphor, the honest emotion dripping from every phrase, for a 19 year old guy in the midst of a tumultuous transition between highschool and university, crushing on girls to...

One In The Spirit

Back in 2011, I wrote a theme song for the 128th Men’s Cursillo weekend in Ottawa. Selected to be the music leader for the retreat and learning that the theme was about unity in the Lord, I immediately thought how fitting it would be to write a song that represented exactly that. With inspiration and influence from the scripture passages that rector Tom Lane chose to support his theme, I penned the song “One In The Spirit”. I’m thankful for how it turned out and thankful for the opportunity to have written the song. I still play it a few times a year at mass, when it fits the readings, and people seem to enjoy it. The lyrics are below the recording… http://seejoesmile.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/2011-11-09-one_in_the_spirit.mp3 Refrain: We are one spirit, we are one spirit, we are one body united in the Lord, we are one spirit, we are one spirit, we are one body united in Jesus Christ Verse 1: We aim to be holy, to be with the Father and Son The Spirit guides our hearts and calls us to be one Lord, we reach to know Your ways we offer our everyday, for… Refrain Verse 2: All things are possible, through Christ who gives us grace All good things come from You so we lift our voice in praise Lord, we long to reside in mercy’s overflowing tides, for…...

SJS at the Moloney Wedding 2013

As part of my on again, off again, video archiving project, I’ve finally gotten around to looking at videos from 2013. Here we have footage from one amazing day in life for the members, friends and families of our band- Thom & Alicia’s wedding. This song, in particular, has a special meaning for Thom and I, as it is one of the first songs we sang together. Immediately, we struck upon the idea of embellishing certain lines and improvising ideas and stories which extend the song far past its usual length. Audiences enjoyed what we did and so, we have enjoyed singing it at various concerts. It was only natural that we would reprise this at the wedding as part of our set, and it might be one of the few times we played it full band, with Paul on bass and Tyson on drums. Enjoy!...

Past Solo/Duo/Trio Shows 2006-2012

Dear friends, During the summer, I compiled a list of shows that I have played that were not with the band lineup. These shows may have been solo efforts, or shows where I was joined by a friend or two (or three), or where I supported another musician with the set. It was neat to look back on these shows and all the great people I’ve had the pleasure of joining in song. I’m not sure I’ve remembered all of the shows like these, but most of them are listed. So, for those people who are interested in local music history, or just interested in where Joe has played over the years, here’s the list: 2006: **May 1st-3rd @ St. Paul’s C.H.S. (Drummer in the band for “Godspell”, put on by Ottawa Catholic Youth** August 18th @ CKCU Studios (Ottawa Live Music with Charles Anthony) October 7th @ Holy Redeemer w. Lukas Grant and The Wayfarers 2007: January 27th @ Holy Redeemer w. Lukas Grant and special guests March 3rd @ St. Monica’s (Challenge Coffee House) March 17th @ Holy Redeemer (St. Patrick’s Day Dinner) May 23rd @ Holy Trinity C.H.S. (Dominican Republic and HR Youth Fundraiser) w. H.T. Rhythm & Blues Band and Falling Off August 24th @ Holy Redeemer w. Lukas Grant August 27th @ Club Cousineau w. WBPE & Falling Off December 1st @ A.Y. Jackson H.S. Battle of the Bands (Drummer for Falling Off) 2008: January 26th @ Holy Redeemer w. Billy Boulet (Fedora Lounge, WYD Fundraiser) May 16th @ Eglise St-Remi “An Evening of Jam” w. guests June 18th @ Avant-Garde Bar August 29th...

Past Shows 2009-2011

Greetings friends, This past week, I’ve been cleaning up the office which has all of my files, books, and archives of various things from school to music. I finally got around to making a little binder of “See Joe Smile” memories. It’s a similar idea to those books you can get at Chapters these days which tell the stories of bands, like Nirvana and Red Hot Chili Peppers, and include setlists, posters and ticket stubs. It was pretty cool looking back on some of the shows and sets we’ve played. It makes me excited to create more musical memories in the future, and I’m hoping that in the upcoming year, some of those memories will take place in some new places around the province! Here’s a list of shows See Joe Smile has played, in full band form, since its beginnings in 2009: April 17, 2009– Zaphods, opened for Tara Holloway and The Rebel Year, Ottawa May 9, 2009– Holy Redeemer, Challenge/Cursillo event Closer To Him June 13, 2009– Amberwoodstock, Stittsville July 1, 2009–  Canada Day @ Goulbourn Rec Centre, Stittsville, ON (“PG & The Praisers Farewell Tour”) August 31, 2009– Zaphods with Tyler Kealey and The Girls (Michaela & Arianna DGM), Ottawa January 8, 2010- LiVE Lounge, opened for Stories Underground and Bluestone, Ottawa April 7, 2010- Zaphods with Joe Zambon and Ami Jette, Ottawa May 30, 2010- Duffy’s Tavern, part of the Pitter Patter Festival with Bella Clava, The Natural Shocks and Persian Rugs, Toronto June 12, 2010- Private Anniversary Function at St. Maurice’s, Ottawa July 22, 2010- LiVE Lounge, opened for La Strada from NYC, Ottawa...