Archive for July, 2011
With an ALL STARS season of AMERiCA’S NEXT TOP MODEL coming out this Fall – one should take a few moments to reflect on all things ANTM: hair, make-overs, cat-fights, ‘smizing’, TYRA BANKS, MiSS JAY, judging panel, cat-walks – and eliminations. Personally I love ANTM – it’s always been a guilty pleasure if ever there was one.
Although I won’t deny there is a lot to criticize about reality television in general, the social worker and artist (and Aquarius) in me just loves watching ‘real’ people in any kind of competition that requires social skills. When you add in that the subjects are pretty moving dolls wearing pretty clothes and getting all sorts of stylish hair-dos – I’m like – SiGN ME UP BABY i”M iN!
ANTM in particular, appeals to that part of my brain that enjoys shiny things and the art of TRANSFORMATiON – and I get to feast on it: You get a gaggle of girls of all types and shades of beauty – and then make them over entirely. Like Cinderella for the ball!! For example you might expect to see a ballerina type brunette be chopped down into a white-blonde MiA FARRROW/ROSEMARY’S BABY cut. Of course she then freaks out and whines the entire season over it. (Through sobs) “My haaaiiir was my security blanket! ” or “How can I model this – I look like a man!” .. So much to enjoy and so much to criticize.
Photo shoots are an added bonus because if the producers are clever enough – the themes or what have you’s can provide for often really striking images – again, of pretty dolls/models. Of course it was through this show I learned what ‘smizing’ is and even how to do it! The bad photo shoots (floating in a air-duct??, Fabio??) are tolerable but I always hated the commercial episodes because of course there was never a photo to look at = boring.
Below I’ve selected just a sample of some of my more favorite (or at least memorable to me) – and if anything they are a great study in photography – reality show or not. Of course I’ve got my FAVORiTE GiRLS every Cycle – here are some of the names I remember loving :JADE, NAiMA, JASLENE, FURONDA, DOMiNiQUE. I also loved ANGELEA and many other alleged bitches and ego maniacs like ALEXANDRiA, CELiA and MELROSE…. Of course I rooted for iSiS back in Cycle 10 but she is apparently back this ALL STARS so we’ll have to see if she is a stronger model post surgery. They usually are the best~ That’s my TRiBUTE!
Have you ever suffered, or been unlucky at love or life in general? Have you ever been someone’s doormat or scorned ex? Go talk to TAMMY WYNETTE. Well, if she were still alive, that is. Chances are you have nothing on her. As a major fan of the traditional sound of the Grande Old Opry, I love me some good ol’ fashioned, twangy-ass country music. Don’t ask why. It’s in my nature. Perhaps it exists from years of exposure to smelter smoke at the HBM&S. Regardless, TAMMY WYNETTE, along with DOLLY, LORETTA, KiTTY and PATSY- added to the Nashville sounds that men had predominated for much of the 1940’s and 50’s. And I’m glad for it. Till I Get It Right was not the major hit that Stand By Your Man, or D.I.V.O.R.C.E was, but I consider it her best. She laments “My door to love, has opened out – more times than in. And I’m either fool, or wise enough, to open it again.” Rough stuff! I suppose I have felt that way enough times to relate myself. Don’t get me wrong, today I consider myself to be fortunate. Haven’t we all wondered just how many times we have to get knocked down by life, or how many frogs we have to kiss before we find our … Prince? It’s a terrible analogy, but my point is that we have all cried in our pillows over someone or something that has broken our hearts. Worse yet, we have all questioned the point in getting back ‘on the saddle’ (of life or love) again. Till I Get It Right is that exact point within such an experience. The point when we pretty much have to tell ourselves that if we ever want to be fulfilled we need to pick ourselves up and dust ourselves off, as the saying goes. Plain and simple. It is being you’re most raw, vulnerable and tender, while at the same time being you’re most strong and powerful. TAMMY WYNETTE accomplishes this on Till I Get It Right, embodying the sentiment beautifully. Just as in life when we agree to ‘get back on the saddle’ again, TAMMY and Till I Get It Right fittingly conclude “If practice makes perfect, then I’m near bout as perfect as I’ll ever be, in my mind. So I’ll just keep on falling in love, till I get it right.”
SATiSFACTiON is a 1988 teen flick about a young rock group called ‘The Mystery’, who get their first big break playing a summer gig at a high end resort. It fits perfectly in the vein of any I-Was-Never-The-Same-Again-After-That-Summer type of film, and at the time boasted quite the promising cast.
JUSTiNE BATEMAN, hot off the heels of her success on t.v.’s FAMiLY TiES – plays Jennie, leader of ‘The Mystery’ and as we learn early on, she is also the glue that holds the rest of this promising yet troubled band together. I had to remember just how much I loved JUSTiNE growing up, and to watch it again I did see a lot of promise, certainly in her acting but definitely not with her singing. But I am getting ahead of myself. While Jennie is accepting her diploma and giving her valedictorian speech at SATiSFACTiON’s opening – fellow band members are being assembled and go as such: bass guitarist Daryle (played by a very young JULiA ROBERTS) is accepting a marriage proposal from high school sweetheart Frankie. Within the group Daryle is for all intensive purposes, ‘The Slut’. Though hardly the role actors dream of – it’s not difficult to see how JULiA ROBERTS went on to achieve her own success in film because similarly to PRETTY WOMAN, she lights up the screen with that JULiA smile/hair and at times you forget she trying to pull off that she’s actually a competent bass player (the camera never even shows her playing it!).
If any of you remember other such 1980’s films like STELLA (with BETTE MiDLER) and UNCLE BUCK (with JOHN CANDY), you might remember teen actress TRiNI ALVARADO who plays the band’s drummer and gang member Mooch. She’s tough as nails and hates everyone. And to be quite honest, I wanted to smack this bird a couple of times myself – such a NEGATiVE NANCY! I kept thinking to myself – this girl has iSSUES. With the help of guitarist Billie (BRiTTA PHiLLIPS) and the bands lone boy/keyboardist Nicky (SCOTT COFFEY) they become ‘The Mystery’ and land themselves an audition at a high end summer resort.
SATiSFACTION’s basic premise is this: They go to a bar on the coast and play during the summer. Jennie falls in love with the owner of the bar, Martin (played by LiAM NEESON). They get an offer to play in Europe and perhaps become famous. But are they ready for it?
If you have your doubts – you should – but what SATiSTACTiON lacks in good writing it makes up for by being a good nostalgic laugh. Take for example a pivotal moment in the film when it’s clear that Jennie has begun to lust for the faded out 1960’s songwriter Martin Falcon. Young and nubile, and oh so ready to learn from a ‘pro’ – Jennie asks Martin if he wouldn’t mind taking her under his wing for the summer and teaching her a thing or two about the music business. At first of course, Martin, now a drunk and struggling club owner – wants nothing to do with her other than to pay her for her singing services rendered. But eventually he too can’t resist Jennie’s raw talent and street smarts. Like I said, I love JUSTiNE but other than wriggle around while furiously hitting a cow-bell and lip-synching the film has very little to offer in actual good music.
By mid-way through summer however, Jennie’s sheer determination to hold the band together and rock the clubs has Martin inspired to write music all over again – helping him to write these fine lyrics:
No one to touch you
No one to catch you when you fall
Like the wind talks to the trees
Like a soft, whispering breeze
Like the birds sing to be free
Talk to me
Talk. To. Me.
It’s poetic and fresh enough to land Jennie and the older Martin in bed together! Well at least for the summer. But as all summers have to end, so does the love/fling between Jennie and Martin – which is intended to be bitter-sweet. But faded 60’s songwriter OR LiAM NEESON, the relationship is better off DEAD because they have zero chemistry. And Martin Falcon was right to eject the young and fresh Jennie from his promises – in fact he says to her: “I don’t want you to turn your life upside down just to hang out with me.”
Jennie : You’re really sexy when you try to be a shit head.
Martin: I’m being serious.
Jennie: Well, don’t worry because this is my life and I’ll take the wave.
Spoken like a true go-getter JUSTiNE! Poor young thing – she had no clue. Jennie accepts this fate like a good little girl and decides to pack up the band and head home, so she can begin to plan out her Fall school term!!!! Yay!!! So a Europe tour no longer becomes an option but hey, Jennie and her band ‘The Mystery’ are still in fine shape by movie’s end. In fact, love has been found for everyone in some fashion by the end of SATiSFACTiON and I suppose that is what satisfaction is all about.
Recently having returned from a road trip, I rediscovered my appreciation for WHiTNEY HOUSTON when we pulled out her Greatest Hits (or ‘greatest tits’ as I like to refer). I know WHiTNEY is an up-and-down MESS but I have to give her props because no matter how messy she is today she was and remains a sparkling R&B vocalist in pop culture history.
WHiTNEY‘s first album, 1985′s WHiTNEY HOUSTON (how creative!) showed big promise as well as the huge ballad ‘Greatest Love of All‘ which was already her 3rd #1 single off the album and one of my early favorites. I LOVED her voice and thought she had a lot of soul, taking a lot of inspiration from AREATHA FRANKLiN, CiSSY HOUSTON and DiONNE WARWiCK (the later two being a part of her extended family). Her music was a lot of fun, what with ‘How Will I Know‘ and eventually ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody‘. The kids could like her – and those older R&B puritans still had their ‘Where Do Broken Hearts Go‘ and ‘Saving All My Love For You‘ to satisfy them. I followed her career for some time, but somehow I lost track of her by the time she released i’M YOUR BABY TONiGHT. I began to feel like she was lost on me by then, delivering mediocre songs, but I can always go back and listen to her older stuff and recall why it is I was originally impressed.
WHiTNEY also had a fairly strong return in 1998 when MY LOVE iS YOUR LOVE came out – and songs like ‘It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay‘, ‘Heartbreak Hotel‘ and ‘My Love Is Your Love‘ played on all the dance floors – well their remixes. But by then she had already reached her pique, what with the major success of THE BODYGUARD and DOLLY PARTON’S ‘I Will Always Love You‘ under her belt.
I still have an appreciation for WHiTNEY even today – although I do wonder if she has already laid down her best recordings. Who knows – as only time can tell if our beloved WHiTNEY can really make us remember the true R&B Soul Singer she is.
I salute you WHiTNEY!
“You can always go back home” is a catch-phrase I use often. And go back home is just what I had the opportunity to do in style this past week. I had the distinct honor of displaying both my photography and vocal talents at FLiN FLON’S NORVA Centre.
In many ways everything leading up to this exhibit was full-circle, in that it was a first for me to share such a part of myself with my home town, which I left in 1997 shortly after I graduated high school.
I want to first of all thank everyone at NORVA who helped make it the incredible event that it was; KAREN CLARK, my former high school mentor/art teacher/guidance counselor; Margie, SARAH TREVOR, and especially CATHERiNE JOA-HALL. Catherine your support leading up to the event as well as during were indicative of the love you have for me – and I can’t tell you how much I appreciated it. Having been invited to showcase my work meant the world to me. All of you ensured I felt a part of the community, no matter how long I’ve been gone. I wish NORVA continued success in bringing the arts to the forefront of Flin Flon!!
I also want to again thank the community of Flin Flon in general for making Summer 2011 such an amazing experience. With about 100 people cramming into NORVA centre on July 11th, you couldn’t have imagined my surprise at the amount of love and community support. It lifted me and made all of the blood, sweat and tears leading up to it worth it. I know it wasn’t easy for some of you to make it but EVERY SiNGLE FACE in that crowd – and every embrace gave me the greatest natural high. Thank you.
I also have to give special thanks to DALLAS CLARKE and CFAR RADiO for having me on for an interview as well as all the extra promotional help you gave. ANNE ROSS – thank you for the delicious gumbo, and DOUG MAGREGOR – THANK YOU for accompanying me on ‘My Tennessee Mountain Home’ with your stellar mandolin playing – how fun to jam with you. It won’t be the last! I’d like to thank JULiAN KOLT, editor of Cottage North – for coming out to see me and interviewing me for the local publication, as well as MARK KOLT for playing piano at the NORVA show. Thank you to JENNiFER HANSEN for lending her beautiful vocal talents as well as for extending such a warm welcome to me – all of you are very talented, not to mention SUPPORTiVE of your fellow Flin Flonners.
Finally I’d like to give a special shout out to my family and friends. It had to be trippy to have me back in this capacity, but what would I be without my family? Thank you for ALL the love – and ALAiN – I especially thank you for tending to all of my worries and concerns – <3
As I said in my introduction at the show – I could not be the CC TRUBiAK I am today were it not for my FLiN FLON roots. Flin Flon is my stomping ground and it was there I immersed myself in books, photography, film, music, and pop culture. This was how I endured the isolation. But the same must be said in that I could not be the CC TRUBiAK I am today had I not left Flin Flon. I needed to spread my wings if you will, and experience the many other things life had to offer me that Flin Flon alone couldn’t. All in all – weather in or out of Flin Flon, I’ve always looked to and used the arts as a means of SELF EXPLORATiON and SELF DiSCOVERY, but how wonderful to come HOME and share it with YOU!
I was happy to share my selection of photography (titled ‘Hail The Narcissist’), as well as be able to expand on what it is my photography is all about. Likewise – being able to play selections from my album THEY SAY i’M DiFFERENT was something that I had been looking forward to doing, as I hadn’t opened up my mouth to sing for Flin Flon since my high school days. You can imagine my surprise when I found that THEY SAY i’M DiFFERENT sold out completely!!! I had not anticipated such a terrific response, and I will be sure to send more copies up to Flin Flon for anyone who would like to get one but did not.
Once again – THANK YOU for the amazing time back home. Now I’m back to regular life as it is in Ottawa, but I can assure you I would like to return again and see all of you – in whatever capacity I can. Every promise I made to visit and see you – I WILL KEEP.
Love from CC
The dynamics between our dominant and submissive selves are the fundamentals of my portrait photography. My portraits begin with a character idea, evolving into compositions where this character becomes the primary subject; characterization as a means of emotional catharsis. To me, art is a reflection of both our dominant and submissive selves and my portrait photography allows me to explore other existing sides of my personal architecture by allowing the more submissive self to dominate and shine, even if temporarily so. When these selves begin to shine our darkness transforms from a weakness into a byproduct of strength. By getting dressed in our strengths and weaknesses, we attempt to toughen and wash our hands of what we perceive to be weakness.
Wear yourself out loud.