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February 2012 Archives

SUNDAY, February 26

0730 DK Ibomeka gets around. The Toronto jazz singer has toured extensively in the wake of this first two albums---especially throughout Europe. These days he's spending most of his time in New York City where he's studying with a jazz mentor. But DK recently to come back to his hometown to launch album Number Three. It's called Ocean and DK joined Mary Ito to talk about his musical career to date.
Listen audio (runs 10:55)
NOTE: Music clearance restrictions prohibit inclusion of music originally contained in this item.
Get the lowdown on the new album and what he's up to at DK's website.


0800 The deadline for making RRSP contributions is fast approaching. But some people might prefer to open a TFSA. And others wonder if it might be better to pay of accumulated debts. Fresh Air's new personal finance columnist, Hilary Doyle, joined guest host Karen Gordon with her thoughts on what's best.
Listen audio (runs 10:18)
For more of Hilary's financial musings, check out her Thousandaire column in Toronto's The Grid newspaper.


0830 David Shamoon will have a special reason to watch the Academy Awards tonight (Feb 26). He'll be in the audience because the Torontonian wrote the screenplay for the film In Darkness, which is nominated in the Best Foreign Language Film category. David joined Karen a few days before he left for Los Angeles and the Awards to talk about both the film and his unexpected entry into the movie biz.
Listen audio (runs 11:28)
Learn more about the film at the In Darkness website.

Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy on Dispatches

You can hear an extended interview with Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, the
co-director of the Oscar-nominated film Saving Face, on CBC Radio One's Dispatches.
That's tonight at 7 p.m.
The details are on the Dispatches website.

Sonja's Sideline

You probably know Sonja Smits as an actor. After all, she's starred in Street Legal, Traders and The Eleventh Hour. And that's just on television---it doesn't begin to cover her stage and film credits. But did you know that she also a "player" in the food and spirits biz?
Sonja reveals all...this coming weekend.

What's On for February 26

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Dance of the Flowers Ottawa
Winter Garden Party Ottawa
Kiwanis Music Festival Kingston
Self Help at Fergus Grand Theatre
Women Strut For Women Toronto


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

SATURDAY, February 25

0730 His name is Iain Baxter&. Yes, that ampersand is officially part of his last name. His work encompasses photography, installation, sculpture, painting, drawing, and a performative aspect. And this Windsor-based artist is being celebrated with a retrospective at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Iain Baxter joined Mary Ito to discuss his life in art.
Listen audio (runs 10:32)
IAIN BAXTER&: Works 1958-2011 runs March 3-August 12 at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto.
Details are at the AGO website.


0800 If marketing is the topic, Allan Middleton is a good person to call.
Allan is an assistant professor of marketing at the Schulich School of Business at York University. He was Mary's guest to talk about the increasing use of targetted marketing.
Listen audio (runs 9:27)
Learn more about this guest at Alan's Schulich website.


0830 David Rocco's latest book is a culinary love-letter to his favourite country OTHER than Canada---Italy. It's called Made In Italy and David joined Mary Ito to talk about that Mediterranean country's cornucopia of food offerings...and the recipes that David has created to showcase them.
Listen audio (runs 10:22)
Made In Italy is published by HarperCollins.
There's always something "tasty" to be found at David's website.

What's On for February 25

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Bowl for Kids Sake London
War of 1812 Bicentennial Conference Guelph
Miss Lou's Room at Harbourfront Centre Toronto
Concert for Free The Children Toronto


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

Women Strut For Women fundraiser

This is the event that musician Suzana d'Amour is organizing to benefit the Fred Victor Women's Shelter and Day program in Toronto.
It's happening March 8 at Glenn Gould Studio at the CBC Broadcasting Centre.
All the details are at the Fred Victor website.

SUNDAY, February 19

0700 Mark Wigmore brought Fresh Air listeners another installment of his On The Doc column. This morning he profiled a documentary called If A Tree Falls: The Story of the Earth Liberation Front. It's nominated for an Academy Award and it airs tonight (Feb 19) on CBC News Network's The Passionate Eye at 10 pm.
Learn more at the Passionate Eye website.


0730 He's a musician whose star is on the rise in Quebec. But you've probably never heard his name before. It's Patrice Michaud. And he's coming to Ontario later this month. Radio Canada's Line Boilly joined Mary to talk about Patrice and his approach to music.
Listen audio (runs 7:37)
Patrice Michaud will be in concert in Hamilton on February the 24 at the Staircase Cafe and then in Oshawa on Feb. 25 at La Salle Paroissiale.
There's more info about him on Patrice's website.


0800 This past week, CBC launched a digital service called CBC MUSIC DOT C-A. It provides listeners with a choice of 40 different web radio stations. CBC's director of radio music, Mark Steinmetz, gave Mary the lowdown on what it's all about.
Listen audio (runs 7:49)
Check out the web stations on offer at the CBC Music website.


0830 He lives in a hotel. His name is Christopher Heard. And he's written a book called The Suite Life. Christopher shared some of his experiences with Mary.
Listen audio (runs 10:47)
The Suite Life: The Magic and Mystery of Hotel Living is published by Dundurn Press.
There's more on Christopher and the book at the Dundurn website.

What's On for February 19

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Family and Heritage Day at Watson's Mill
The Dusty Owl Reading Series celebrating Black History Month
The Voyageur Winter Carnival
Chamber music concert organized by The Human Family in Christ


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

SATURDAY, February 18

0730 If you have a teen driver, it's time to have "the talk" That's what Lorraine Sommerfeld advocates. Lorraine writes the "Drive, She Said" column in The Globe and Mail's Drive section. And she joined Mary Ito to talk about ways to make YOUR teen a better driver.
Listen. audio (runs 9:56)
Read Lorraine's columns at the Globe's Drive, She Said website and be sure to check out her other writings at Lorraine's website.


0800 Planning a home reno? Looking for a reputable contractor?
Citizen Talin came into the Fresh Air studio to talk about the do's and don'ts if you're in search mode. You can hear her conversation with Mary by going to Talin's column.


0830 They're a pair of brothers from Ottawa...who just happen to be one half of one of the hottest bands in Japan. Their names are Maynard and Blaise Plant. Their band is called Monkey Majik. And they joined Mary to talk about their life and musical times in Japan.
Listen audio (runs 12:39)
Learn more about the band at the Monkey Majik website.

Finding a contractor

So...you're ready to do a home reno. The first step is finding a good contractor. That's a decision that can make or break your project. And Citizen Talin had some valuable advice on how you should proceed when she joined Mary.
Listen audio (runs 8:08)

Here are the websites that Talin either mentioned or suggests you investigate:
CMHC on Hiring a Contractor
HomeStars
Building Industry and Land Development Association
Go Pro

What's On for February 18

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:


Kids Fest/Toronto & Hamilton
Family Days at the ROM
Big Sale at the Textile Museum
Sudbury Winterfest
Flamenco Show in Etobicoke


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

DK's Excellent NYC Adventure

DK Ibomeka gets around. The Toronto singer/songwriter has several European tours to his credit. He's also played major jazz festivals both in North America and abroad. DK is currently living in New York City where he's studying with a jazz mentor. And he's just released his latest album. It's called Ocean and DK will join Mary ito to talk about both it and his new "home" this coming weekend on Fresh Air.

Mary's Best Books...

The Toronto Public Library recently asked Mary to pen a list of her favourite recent reads. Here's Mary's introduction to the list:


The Best Books Make Me Stupid

I know there's a general belief out there that books make you smart. But something strange happens to me that defies that notion. I can't seem to function properly after reading a book that moves me, in a soul-shaking, mind-bending, chest-thumping kind of way. Thank goodness there are only so many of these BMDs (books of mass destruction) because the better the book, the worse my condition. It's been very hard on my family.

Here are five outcomes (in ascending order, or descending depending on how you want to look at it), of what a great book can do:

1. Feel deeply satisfied after reading it
2. Must blab about it to anyone within a 100 miles (call it the 100 Mile Book Diet)
3. The opposite effect - I'm rendered speechless
4. Speechless AND prostrate
5. I enter a coma-like state as a fog settles in my brain and disrupts all cognitive function.

Because of this precarious condition, I must be extremely careful NOT to read two coma-inducing books back to back. This happened once unintentionally when I read Jon Lee Anderson's Che Guevara and then Blindness by Jose Saramago immediately after. I honestly can't remember much of Venice. (What did happen on that trip?) But that's where vacation pictures come in handy. The problem is (like a relationship) you never know what kind of effect it's going to have until you're deep into it, and then once it's got a hold of you (like a relationship), it's almost impossible to extricate yourself.

Another time, we were vacationing in San Francisco and my husband had the misfortune of trying to talk to me immediately after I'd read The Elegance of the Hedgehog. BIG mistake. He asked me the most impossible question, something like, "where do you want to go today?" It might just as well have been "what are the chances we'll have peace in the Middle East , and do you think Kim Jong Un's hairstyle will eventually morph into his father's?" Eerie silence. My husband looks at my daughter and asks "what's with your mother?" She replies, "Dad!!! You KNOW she just finished reading that hedgehog book!!!" True story.

These books left me at the very least deeply satisfied, and a few were coma-inducing. But no worries, I've recovered. You may not.


And here's the link to the TPL Book Buzz Virtual Book Club to check out Mary's selections---her entry is dated February, 9, 2012, so you'll have to scroll down to find it.

SUNDAY, February 12

0730 Stephen Leacock's Sunshine Sketches Of A Little Town is coming to television. And one of the actors in the CBC production is Jill Hennessy. She plays Leacock's mother in this unusual adapatation...which weaves Leacock's real life into those of his characters. Jill joined Mary to talk about what's in store.
Listen audio (runs 8:29)
Sunshine Sketches Of A Little Town airs tonight (Feb 12) on CBC Televison at 8:00 p.m.
Get all the details at the CBC TV website.


0800 She was a slave who gained her freedom...and then brought more than seventy other slaves to Canada along the Underground Railroad. Her name was Harriet Trubman and she's the subject of a new book by Rosemary Sadlier. Rosemary joined Mary to talk about this remarkable woman,
Listen audio (runs 8:50)
Harriet Tubman: Freedom Seeker, Freedom Leader is published by Dundurn Press.
Learn more about the book at the
Dundurn website.
Rosemary is also president of the Ontario Black History Society. You can find out more about its activities at the OBHS website

0830 Unjunk Your Junk Food is a new book that offers healthy alternatives to conventional snacks. Lisa Tsakos and Andrea Donsky---two of the three authors---joined Mary Ito to talk about what they learned when they "deconstructed" many of the most popular snacks and beverages.
Listen audio (runs 10:45)
Unjunk Your Junk Food is published by Gallery Books and distributed in Canada by Simon and Schuster.
You can learn more about the book at the Simon and Schuster website.


What's On for Feb 12

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Ottawa Winterlude

Aurora: Story Quilts, The Threads That Bind Us


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

Monkey Majik and DK in NYC

Monkey Majik is a Japanese pop band that's 50% Canadian---two of the four members are from Ottawa. DK Ibomeka is a Toronto musician who was originally going to be a doctor but who's now studing wth a jazz mentor in New York City. What do they have in common? They'll both be on Fresh Air this coming weekend.

SATURDAY, February11

0630 World Music columnist Reuben Maan joined Mary Ito to preview a concert by the Israeli singer Yasmin Levy. The details are as close as Reuben's column.


0700 Laugh Out Loud Presents takes place on Thursday (Feb 16) at Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto. It features comedians Dave Merheje, Ali Hassan, Keith Pedro and Gilson Lubin. You can get ticket information at the Laugh Out Loud website.


0730 Tia Brazda has just unveiled her first recording. It's an EP called Cabin Fever . And the ex-Vancouverite says she had to come to Toronto to find a home for her mix of musical styles. Tia came into the Fresh Air studio to talk with Mary and play some tracks from the recording.
Listen audio (runs 12:17)
NOTE: Music clearance restrictions prohibit inclusion of music originally contained in this item.
Tia will launch her EP--- Cabin Fever ---at The Cadillac Lounge in Toronto tonight (Feb 11). Showtime is 9:00 pm. All the details are on Tia's website.


0800 Valentine's Day is almost here. What better way to say "I love you" than with a good book,.. But choosing the right read for your sweetie can be a challenge. Erin Balser from CBC Books and her partner, Matt Elliott, shared their literary ups and downs with Mary.
Listen. audio (runs 7:55)
There's lots about books and other literary topics at the CBC Books website.


0830 It's called Big Chill marketing. It's the use of hit songs by advertisers. And it's Terry O'Relly's topic this weekend on Under The Influence. Terry gave Mary a sneak "listen".
Listen audio (runs 13:14)
Under The Influence airs Saturdays at 11:30 am on CBC Radio One...and repeats the following Monday, also at 11:30 am.
Get the full story about the show at the Under The Influence website...and take time to check out Terry's website, too.

What's On for Feb 11

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:


Toronto Rhubarb Festival

Toronto Zoo: Valentine's Weekend

Cobourg Winter Festival

Cobourg Heart for the Hospital

Cobourg An Evening with C.S. Lewis


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

Yasmin Levy

She's the daughter of a famous Israeli singer. He died when she was just a child. But Yasmin Levy inherited her father's musical talent. She'll perform in concert tonight (Feb 11) in Toronto at Koerner Hall. And Reuben Maan came into the Fresh Air studio to talk about Yasmin.
Listen audio (runs 4:05)
NOTE: Music clearance restrictions prohibit inclusion of music originally contained in this item.

SUNDAY, February 5

0730 Music guy Mark Rheaume brought in an early Valentine's Day gift for Mary Ito when he made his monthly visit to Fresh Air. He profiled three female singer-songwriters whose recordings had caught his ear of late. You can learn who they were by visiting Mark's column.


0800 Pain affects everyone at some point...but in different ways. And treatment of pain poses many challenges for doctors. Fresh Air's Your Health columnist, Dr. Mike Evans, took Mary through the labyinth of pain diagnosis and management. You can hear that conversation by going to Dr. Mike's column.


0830 She came to Toronto to start a new life. But she had to go to the Yukon to learn what this country is really about. Her name is Manjushree Thapa. And she joined Mary to talk about a journey that began in her homeland of Nepal and eventually took her to Canada's Far North.
Listen audio (runs 11:38)
Manjushree's latest book is Seasons Of Flight , which is published by Penguin Books.
Learn more about her writing at Manjushree's website.


Diagnosing and Dealing with Pain

Dr. Mike Evans joined Mary to talk about our complicated relationship with pain and the challenges in treating it.
Listen audio (runs 10:09)
And check out Dr. Mike's website for more information on this and other health-related topics.

He's Under The Influence

He's Terry O'Reilly---advertising guru. You know him as the host of the long-running CBC Radio One programme The Age Of Persuasion. But that was then. This is now...and Terry's new show is called Under The Influence. He'll be Mary's guest this coming weekend to explain why we've left the era of overt one-way messaging and entered a new world order of two-way dialogue.

Mark's Music for February 2012

Links to artist websites will open in a new window.


Artist: Bernice (Robin Dann)
Album: What Was That
Song: How To Be French
Website: Bernice


Artist: Amy Cunningham
Album: To The Stars We'll Return
Song: Real
Website: Amy Cunningham


Artist: Lynzie Kent
Album: Something Wild
Song: Pancakes In Bed
Website: Lynzie Kent


What's On for February 5

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Bon Soo Winter Carnival

Rag and Bone Puppet Theatre Ottawa

Carl Stewart's Belated in Ottawa

Carl Stewart's Belated in Belleville

Winterfest in Goderich


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .

SATURDAY, February 4

0730 David Eddie is the author of Damage Control ---both the book and weekly advice column in The Globe and Mail. He joined Mary Ito to talk about the challeges that parents face when their teenaged children want to throw a party in the family home. And David speaks from personal experience.
Listen audio (runs 8:27)
There's more about David and his writing at David's website.


0800 Shannon Kyles is Fresh Air's "eye" on Ontario's architectural heritage. She's particularly fond of Romanesque architecture. And she came by the Fresh Air studio to tell Mary all about it...including where you can find some fine examples in Ontario. In her real life, Shannon is both a professor at Mohawk College in Hamilton and the architecture editor at Arabella Magazine.
Listen audio (runs 10:30)
If you have an interest in Ontario's architectural heritage, check out Shannon's
Ontario Architecture website.

0830 Emma-Lee has divided loyalties when it comes to her profession. She's both a musician AND a photographer. Fortunately, one compliments the other. She sat down with Mary to talk about her two careers...and how one informs the other.
Listen audio (runs 11:03)
NOTE: Music clearance restrictions prohibit inclusion of music originally contained in this item.
Emma-Lee will launch her new album Backseat Heroine at Lee's Palace in Toronto on February 9.
All the details are on Emma-Lee's website.
And you might also like to look at her Emma-Lee Photography website as well.

What's On for February 4

Here are Mariel's What's On selections:

Wiarton Willie Festival

Feb Fest Kingston

Better Mus' Come at TIFF

Kuumba Festival Harbourfront Centre

CBC Toronto's Celebration of Black History Month


Would you like Mariel to feature YOUR event? Let her know about it!
Just click on What's On to send her information about your event .