Monday, November 05, 2007

In Celebration of Mark Szabo

*Disclaimer: I'm not a record reviewer.

Recently, some people I know made an album celebrating the songwriting talents of local curmudgeon and hair farmer Mark Szabo. He's probably one of Vancouver's best kept under wraps songwriter. Did that come out right? And though I hardly ever see him anymore, I still enjoy the odd exchange on the streets of Vancouver.

Speaking musically, I came in around the time of Good Horsey. They were a great 3 piece that continues to inhabit my mind in the form of musical phrases.
Max Lee on drums is always a good thing.

Capozzi Park was next, with "Chocolate Covered Bad Things" and "The Record of Capozzi Park" . I think there were some tapes floating around too. Maybe there still are. It's laid back, and diverse, and cynical, and hopeful, and at this point, I'm looking back in I'm drifting off...
Mark has a great way of capturing life: snapshots, snatches of conversation that transport you to a poignant place in your own history. It's urbane and emotionally universal. Or at least it seems that way to me.

Here's a version of Daytime Emmy with both Mark and Marcie on vocals. This would be ....I dunno when....almost 10 years ago? d'OH!
I'm glad that I've retrieved them from the back of my dusty CD collection which is stored away and unusable.

So all these years later, a project called Heartbreak Scene was started. Their CD is called The Szabo Songbook. I was stoked to see the number of noteworthy folks contributing: Mike Ledwidge(Zumpano), Pete Bourne(where do I start...), Mark Kleiner(Jungle), Dan Bejar( al) to name a few, but not all that appear throughout.
Yes!! I know!!

There were only a couple of tracks that I didn't know, most absorbed through osmosis during blurry, happy times at Ms T's and the Anza club. Back in the salad days of indie rock......there I go again.
The Anza has always been one of my favourite places to quietly, or not so quietly get drunk and observe the mating ritual, or glasses grabbing fist fight, whatever was written into the evening by Fate.
Some day I will know who that was.
So it's no surprise that all this reflection of late has certainly made me stop and take note of the talent that is Mark. Just thought I'd say that.

One of the songs that I didn't recognize on the album is (Some Kind of)Watershed. It can hold it's own in any Pitchfork review I'd say. Don't you agree?
For $10 and with the Canadian Dollar so strong, you really should pick this up!
Franklin Bruno writes a fantastic opener that pretty much sums it all up.
That alone speaks volumes.
Do It!!!!!


anouk said...

I think that you've done an excellent job "reviewing" this, and if my sound card wasn't dead, I'd be listening to stuff right now.

Travelblind said...

I'm looking everywhere online to find some music by Mark Szabo. Because there is nearly nothing available online about him I stumbled onto your page. I'm hoping you could send me some of his music or lead me in the proper direction. I'm very interested. I look forward to hearing from you.