They have as many opposing traits as they have in common. But it’s still a very natural pairing. Now about to release their second album Love, War, and Propaganda these juxtapositions are on full display, creating a record that focuses on wide ranging political issues, but is grounded by their own personal lives and viewpoints.
Jeffrey C. Martin and Lena Montecalvo are two musicians who have worked as writers, educators and PR professionals for many years, slaves to the “corporate” machine, bound by the time-sucking and moral-draining practices. Recently they both stepped back, making music a focal point in their lives, but also chose to invest more in the people and issues that matter most to tem. Lena’s perspective comes from being a working single-parent mom, and the inherent difficulties and obstacles that come with that responsibility in 2012. Jeff has always been a politically active, outspoken person, but political process seems more broken then ever, and the weight of responsibility is now much more apparent. This natural pairing works so well because they believe the best possible solutions come from places of love, peace and joy. Not war. Not hate. Not greed.
The duo’s depth of scope is showcased not only in the richly verbalized stories, but also in the varied musical choices brought forth by producer Mike Trebilcock (former Killjoys lead, Juno award winner, now a respected and sought producer of popular, film and television music). Love, War, and Propaganda can be an intimate folk song one minute and a raging rock sermon the next. In lesser hands these genre hops could be seen as fits of fancy, or could relegate the album to mere “single-dom,” but the record never loses focus, always navigated effortlessly on the shoulders of Lena and Jeff’s easily identifiable personalities.
They’re unafraid to make a statement with this album. They shouldn’t be. We’re all living in a time that’s begging for individuals to make statements—big or small. And “Love, War, and PRopaganda” is another chapter in what will hopefully be an endless series of telling people’s stories.
Jeffrey C. Martin - Lead Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
Lena Montecalvo - Lead Vocals
Mike Trebilcock - Lead Guitar
Chris Jamieson - Bass
Dave Simpson - Drums
2nd Album: "LOVE, WAR + PROPAGANDA" (released Aug 31, 2012)
Arranged and Produced by Mike Trebilcock
Recorded at Threshold Studio, Hamilton
Mastering by Brian Lucey, Magic Garden Mastering, Columbus, Ohio
Debut Album: "Unfinished Thoughts" (released Sept 1, 2010)
1st single: Mr. Harper How? (released July 1, 2008)
2nd: single Sing Merry Christmas (with Tom Wilson) released Dec 1, 2008
ALL TRACKS ONLINE: http://thecaretakers.bandcamp.com
Single/video: Flowers for Peace — released 11/11/11 in support of War Child Canada
Tracks getting radio airplay:
- Flowers for Peace
- Love Is Lost
- Solitary Man
- Oh Banyarwanda
- Killing Me, Killing You
- Sing Merry Christmas
- It's Thinking Time
- Daddy Laughed
37 Days In Jamestown
Love Always Happens
Flowers For Peace
On Becoming Noam Chomsky
I'm The Happiest Man
Killing Me, Killing You
Love Is Lost
Left A Friend Behind
It's Thinking Time
03_Flowers For Peace_M1_16
The Caretakers on Toronto’s “Liquid Lunch with Hugh Reilly”
Hugh Reilly live Interview with the Caretakers
The Caretakers "Love, War + Propaganda" REVIEW
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By Sin Savage Music can directly affect my moods and has the ability to access emotions I’m exper...By Sin Savage
Music can directly affect my moods and has the ability to access emotions I’m experiencing on a subconscious level. Good music provides the listener with strong physical sensations, can create a distraction for the listener, it can revitalize the listener and it can take the listener to a very dark place and really fast as well. Music is astonishing.
When I set about to listen to The Caretakers new album, “Love, War + PRopaganda”, I turned the lights down low and reclined with my eyes closed. As it is with the modern world when I listen to music, I often visualize accompanying video clips in my head. I see snippets of scenes that, not unlike sugar plums, dance in my head. A black and white staircase covered in snow, a bald man in a plaid shirt, white pants and white scarves, and Breakfast Club dance moves in a wife beater.
When listening to “Love, War + PRopaganda”, I saw snippets of Skydiggers, The Watchmen, Sloan, Northern Pikes and more. While listening, my mind recalled a pastiche comprised of the heyday of early 90's Canadian rock. An example of this would be the track, “Killing Me, Killing You”; while listening to it I thought I had heard it before but realized I mixed it up with a 54-40 song. Maybe it was an R.E.M song, can’t say for sure.
This album is both texturally diverse, and interesting. There is so much going on it makes it obvious that it has been well produced and well mixed; there are lots of layers. There is also a noteworthy mix of global influences…from Canada, to Spain, to Africa and to the Southern U.S. “Love, War + PRopaganda” has a Blue Rodeo meets So-Cal / Nashville feel that you can really get into. The textures liquefy and melt together to make an overall good listening album.
Performing on this album:
Jeffrey C. Martin | Vocals, acoustic guitar
Lena Montecalvo | Vocals, tambourine, percussion
Mike Trebilcock | Lead guitar, banjo, harmonica, ukulele, mandolin
Carrie Ashworth | Bass
Dave Simpson | Drums
Barry Mac | Slide guitar
Kim Deschamps | Pedal steel
Jesse O’Brien | Piano, organ
Matt Coleman | Fiddle, violin
Norm Van Bergen | 12-string guitar
The Caretakers will be celebrating the release of “Love, War + PRopaganda” on Dec 7th at The Casbah with Hamilton musicians Adam Bentley (The Rest), City and the Sea, and Mike Trebilcock and the Lo Heels. Tickets are $10 and available at Dr. Disc, Picks & Sticks, The Casbah.
LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC: THE CARETAKERS – I’M THE HAPPIEST MAN
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“This album is dedicated to the 99% of the world population still waiting for a piece of the pie.” T...“This album is dedicated to the 99% of the world population still waiting for a piece of the pie.” Thus ends the credits of the latest record from The Caretakers, Love, War + PRopaganda. A very political musical duo, past PR reps Jeffrey Martin and Lena Montecalvo break their corporate shackles and use this latest output to back a statement. It’s essentially a protest record, promoting peace and love, and against greed and war, delivered by two very different but equally appealing voices.
Seeing as I’ve described this as a protest record, it seems odd that I’d share with you a song entitled “I’m the Happiest Man”, but that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Of all the songs on the record, the personal ones, the social issues, even the Neil Diamond cover, this one proved to be the most memorable. Perhaps this is because it is hopeful. Despite injustice, death, violence and misery, love remains. And with even the smallest shred of love, one can always be happy.
Caretakers CD Launch Party @ The Casbah
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The Care Takers "Love, War + Propaganda." Live is really where it's at, and The Careta...The Care Takers "Love, War + Propaganda." Live is really where it's at, and The Caretakers created some real magic on stage. Jeff and Lena's voices blended together to produce some great harmonies and backed by a stellar band they just couldn't miss. I swayed and bopped and applauded song after song. Some rocked "Love Always Happens", and "Flowers for Peace" and some made ya feel glad with the whimsical "I'm the Happiest Man" avec Ukeleles. And then some songs were just plain mesmerizing with songs like "Just like California"and "Daddy Laughed", but then again that could have just meant I had one too many.
Check out The Caretakers on facebook (http://www.facebook.com/thecaretakersmusic)
and (http://www.thecaretakers.ca/) to see where they're playing next and to get their new CD "Love, War + Propaganda"
New Caretakers CD: Love, War + Propaganda
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Love, War + PRopaganda is the latest CD from Hamilton's own folk-rock band with a conscience, th...Love, War + PRopaganda is the latest CD from Hamilton's own folk-rock band with a conscience, the Caretakers.
The group have taken the amazing sound from their debut disc and journeyed beyond. The bedrock is still classic, melodic folk rock though. Lena Montecalvo's powerful vocals and Jeffrey Martin's character-filled voice are on full display, as always.
In this cool collection, you get the funkiness of Just Like California, the pop-flavoured Flowers for Peace, the countrified Left a Friend Behind, the catchy I'm the Happiest Man (featuring some cool Ukele work) and much more. Lyrically, they cover many social issues (especially on songs such as On Becoming Noam Chomsky and In Humanity We Trust).
Jeffrey and Lena are the core duo of the Caretakers. Joining them are a number of amazing local musicians such as Mike Trebilcock (who also produces), Carrie Ashworth, Barry Mac, Kim Deschamps, Jesse O'Brien, Matt Coleman and former Caretaker Norm Van Bergen
The CD is available at their live shows and can be downloaded on Bandcamp.
Below is a song from the CD, courtesy of the band's YouTube page.
Love, War + Propaganda REVIEW
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Love, War + Propaganda is the sophomore release from Hamilton, Ontario due The Caretakers. Blending ...Love, War + Propaganda is the sophomore release from Hamilton, Ontario due The Caretakers. Blending elements from indie, folk, blues and Americana, the 13 tracks are crisply produced and perfectly performed. The Caretakers envoke a heavy 70's aesthetic both musically and lyrically, with an ever present counter culture message of peace and love. Get back to the scene. Stream and buy Love, War + Propaganda at the link below.
Album #3: Love, War + PRopaganda by The Caretakers
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Album #3: Love, War + PRopaganda by The Caretakers The 60s may have been the height of the “prote...Album #3: Love, War + PRopaganda by The Caretakers
The 60s may have been the height of the “protest song” era, but that doesn’t mean some new ones can’t surface every now and then. The Caretakers, a duo consisting of Jeffrey C. Martin and Lena Montecalvo (with a slew of guest musicians), dedicated the album to “the 99% of the world population still waiting for a piece of the pie.” It comes through in their music, namedropping peace advocates like Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr, and even referencing folk heroes like Bob Dylan. Martin and Montecalvo alternate on vocals and are generally supported by up-tempo roots- and rock-flavoured melodies. It’s an album with an overall message, which is something not seen quite as often these days. The album can be purchased from Bandcamp.
Rating: Strong Hoot (Good)
The Caretakers Love, War + Propaganda
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The Caretakers Love, War + Propaganda While allusions to Peter, Paul and Mary easily came to mind w...The Caretakers Love, War + Propaganda
While allusions to Peter, Paul and Mary easily came to mind with the Caretakers debut disc, the Hamilton based group's sophomore CD is at best Paul and Mary. With the departure of a founding member, the Caretakers – now the duo of singer/guitarist Jeffrey C. Martin and singer Lena Montecalvo – are growing musically but without losing their political thrust.
“The first album was truly a learning experience for us,” notes Martin. “It was our first time in the recording studio. Since then, Lena and I have spent more time focusing on individual songs with our own harmonies. We moved away from the first album's folk–rock sound to a more roots vibe perhaps.
“I'm a very political and passionate person,” adds Martin. “I've been a writer most of my career—magazines, speeches, scripts, annual reports, you name it but song writing has brought a lot satisfaction, in terms of telling a story. Recording those songs has been a real milestone. I had no idea how The Caretakers would evolve, having starting out as 40–somethings and not your typical teenage rockers. But the songs, the lyrics are indeed, what The Caretakers are all about. Our musical influences and our causes are diverse and it shows on this album. And we're pretty fortunate to have had the support of some of Hamilton's best musicians in the studio and on stage. So that's alone has been pretty rewarding.”
Veterans of the business world public relations firms, the Caretakers have been formally trained in communications but choose to send their own message via music. "Love, War and PRopaganda" sums up the ‘60s vibe, the political edge and the accent on their presentation of the ideas and melodies. With Mike Trebilcock producing, the Caretakers are modern agit–rock but with a retro vibe much easier to soak in.
“Mike Trebilcock was nothing short of stellar as our producer – one of Hamilton and Canada's true musical geniuses, and he brought a lot of discipline to our recording sessions,” says Martin. “Our goal was to refine the Caretakers sound from our first album—a little more angst, a lot more political message, a fuller sound and we're pretty thrilled with the final outcome.
“Music has always been a great way to tell a story,” continues Martin. “Human history has been passed down through the song. This collection of songs reflects much of what I've been writing about the last few years. And as much as it seems like a page from the '60s, it's fitting of the world today. Nothing has changed, just more of the same. In fact, the world is far worse off in 2012 than it was in 1968.
“Many people don't really know what's going on in the world today – others don't want to know,” adds Martin. “They bury their heads in the sand. So it's more important than ever to try to raise awareness and inform people about other more important issues—whether it’s a magazine article, a blog or a song. Political music has never gone away. Rather, the Internet was born and mainstream radio fragmented as did music genres—the political songs are still out there, just spread out more.”
It’s not all doom and gloom, oppression and outrage – but the Caretakers fancy themselves as the custodial crew for a generation that might still care about the world but need a little impetus to act. Martin writes of being the happiest man in the world, but through and though, the Caretakers are offering a wakeup call with their music and doing so when our times as they say, “beg for individuals to make statements – big and small”.
“The song "I'm the Happiest Man" is about the very thing that can alleviate the drudgery of the modern world— real love,” explains Martin. “The song is very autobiographical. It's about appreciating the non–material things in life despite the world being a fucking mess. Closer to home, my life is pretty good—certainly better than 90 percent of the planet but it doesn't mean you sit back and ignore what's going on around you. It's balance and perspective.
“I think every effort is important,” adds Martin. “Whether it's one song, one album, one event. If you can make someone think about an issue or take some action, and enjoy the medium you're using to communicate, then you've done a good thing. Our album has made an impact, small but still valuable. We're just a few of many people trying to make a difference in the world, this time through the art of song.”
The Caretakers play this Friday December 7 at the Casbah with Adam Bentley, City and the Sea, Mike Trebilcock and the Lo Heels and more. Click on caretakers.ca
REVIEW: Killing Me, Killing You
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The Caretakers are a two piece band that “wears their political motivations on their sleeves.” Basic...The Caretakers are a two piece band that “wears their political motivations on their sleeves.” Basically they make music for the 99 percent. “Killing Me, Killing You” is a track from their second album Love, War + Propaganda. It was originally called “Make Love Not War” and was written as a response to the wars and conflict in the Middle East over the past decades. The song references two of the world’s most notable biblical prophets, Jesus and Muhammad, as well as peace advocate Mahatma Gandhi. The song seeks a society where people live together without the threat of judgement, condemnation or killing. Listen to the entire EP at the band’s bandcamp page.
W: FLOWERS FOR PEACE – THE CARETAKERS
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Whoa! The last few days have been crazy around here, in case you missed it, yesterday we released ou...Whoa! The last few days have been crazy around here, in case you missed it, yesterday we released our very own Christmas compilation, “If Jesus Had Been Canadian, He Would Have Needed More Than Swaddling Clothes”, which you can download free here.
Anyhow, in the spirit of Christmas which is quickly coming upon us, we have a special holiday tune for you. Ask yourself this: where have all the protest songs gone? Hamilton band The Caretakers were thinking the same thing, and just recently they released a single supporting their new album, War and Propaganda. Called “Flowers For Peace” , the song was written for children affected by war — it’s their personal plea for peace for them. They’ve used footage courtesy of War Child Canada to create a video.
Ask yourself a second question: why can’t it be Christmas every day? Yes, we can all come up with logical answers, but I hope we can all give thought to this during the holiday season.
Along with spreading a great message, it’s also an extremely good song. Here’s “Flowers For Peace”.
REVIEW: Flowers for Peace: The Caretakers “Walk the Talk”
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While it seems many have given up hope that today’s songwriters can deliver a solid and passionate l...While it seems many have given up hope that today’s songwriters can deliver a solid and passionate lyrical response to world politics — the songs and insights of The Caretakers prove the contrary.
The band’s upcoming second album — “Love, War and PRopaganda” — provides a convincing soundtrack for the emerging international Occupy movement.
The new album speaks to the growing discontent of 99 percent of the world’s population with the global status quo — greed, inequality and corruption. Both the band and the movement target the same corporate and political perpetrators, their criminal and unethical behaviour. At the same time, they also work to balance their message with hope and encouragement for the future.
Slated for an early 2012 release, the album was recorded at Hamilton’s Threshold Studio with engineer Michael Keire, and is produced by Canadian music veteran Mike Trebilcock (The Killjoys, Fry Truck) and mastered by Brian Lucey.
The Caretakers, Flower for Peace
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Music is a means for all of us in various situations. Some listen to music to relax, entertain, or a...Music is a means for all of us in various situations. Some listen to music to relax, entertain, or associate it with a moment of their life, marking their milestones to remember. Others express their feeling through a chain of melodies.
A Toronto country rock band, the Caretakers, have striven to depict and convey one message across the nation.-World Peace. Having asked themselves,"Where have all the protesting songs gone?", the trio has come to craft original tunes to spread the message of love and peace themselves. The upcoming sophomore album, 'Love, War and Propaganda' will be packed with these songs,
The first single from the album, 'Flower for Peace' was released on the Remembrance Day. You can download it for free via their website and there is also an option to make a donation to War Child Canada, who generously support these children who have been affected by the meaningless fights in the war zones all over the world.
So let me ask you - “Why can’t it be Christmas everyday?”
INTERVIEW: The Caretakers by Christopher Rudder
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"Flowers For Peace" by The Caretakers The new album is being produced by Canadian music..."Flowers For Peace" by The Caretakers
The new album is being produced by Canadian music veteran Mike Trebilcock (The Killjoys, Fry Truck) and being recorded at Hamilton’s Threshold Studio with engineer Michael Keire. The 12 new tracks and one cover song feature an impressive line-up of renowned Hamilton musicians and a few special guests, including Kim Deschamps (steel pedal), Jesse O’Brien (piano/organ), Matt Coleman (fiddle) and former Caretaker, Norm Van Bergen (12-string). The full studio line-up included Dave Simpson (drums), Carrie Ashworth (bass), Barry Mac (slide) and Mike Trebilcock (lead guitar).
“The Caretakers music captures the spirit of easy going indie folk rock with a poignant message,” says engineer and former producer Michael Keire. “The Caretakers are fresh, offer up some great songwriting, and have their own soul and intrigue.”
This is one band’s music that speaks to your heart, mind and soul. The Caretakers are the real thing. Not packaged. Not young and shiny. And that’s probably what’s so appealing about them. etc
The Caretakers at FUEL
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While the loss of a founding member might prove fatal to a band, the folk rock trio known as the... While the loss of a founding member might prove fatal to a band, the folk rock trio known as the Caretakers now pruned to a duo, hope to continue to thrive fuelled by continued interest from fans and musical friends. Halfway through their initial pressing of their May 2010 debut CD release, Unfinished Thoughts (And Other Stories From The Songwriter’s Den), Jeff Martin and Lena Montecalvo offer a revamped vision and a large group of collaborators to flesh out the music.
“We’ve simply made a shift from a sort of Peter, Paul and Mary approach to vocals and harmonies, to more of the Buddy and Julie Miller school — less jingle jangle and a little more grit you might say,” notes Martin on recent developments for the band. “Our new songs really show it. Lena helps smoothen some of the abrasive edges I
instil in the Caretakers’ music. It’s a nice balance.
“Yes, Norm [van Bergen] left but we’ve added strength by adding the new musicians who join us regularly now – we’re simply evolving,” adds Montecalvo. “Change is important in order to move forward. Unfinished Thoughts engineer Jon Daly (lead guitar) and brother Thomas Daly (bass) join the Caretakers on stage with a regular and growing list of musician friends including Barry Mac (guitar), Bill Majoros (drums), Paul Vasilak (harmonica), Nick Cino (guitar) and Mike
Trebilcock (mandolin). While the trio began things, it seems the Caretakers and friends are an ever–growing collective.
“It wasn’t difficult at all because we included most of these guys at some point in the recording process,” notes Montecalvo on the live version of the Caretakers. “They tell us they like our songs and enjoy playing with us — we ask, and they continually oblige. The line–up feels natural now that everyone has added their own nuances and influences to our songs.
“We’ve played more gigs in the past six months than ever – mostly festivals and benefit concerts — rounding out our stage sound and presence,” adds Martin. “We have a great time playing and so do the audiences. When lyrics have a poignant role in a song, there’s a
bigger demand on fans to really listen. But people are both grooving and listening at our shows. There’s a nice easygoing feel amongst all the musicians when we jam. Not having a regular band might not allow us to play as often as we want to, but regardless of whether The Caretakers has a full time regular band or hired guns, it’s still a challenge to co–ordinate schedules, lives, rehearsals, time for writing, time for arranging, time for everything a song goes through. But it’s happening in so many different corners of the Hamilton music scene. It’s quite an amazing dynamic. That’s what makes this city’s
music scene so inviting, so engaging, so regenerating.”
Invigorated and inspired by music in the city and making music with these players, the Caretakers offer a special gig by special request.
Change is oft what Martin writes about and implores but when its changes within his band, it seems all a part of the natural process of making his art.
“We were specifically asked by our Halton area friends and fans to do something in their neck of the woods, and Joe Dog’s offered us their new upscale nightclub, Fuel,” explains Montecalvo. “It fell together easily and it’s an opportunity to let people hear how the new line–up and songs are coming together.
“Joe Dog’s is one of my favourite Burlington spots,” says Martin. “Not being your typical mainstream indie band or into the harder side of rock and roll can make it a bit more challenging to find your
audiences but the Fuel show will be a great time for all and the band
line–up is stellar. We sing about some heavy things happening in our
world today. All our band members for this and all of our shows very
much get and like what I write about and they all contribute to our
sound and vibe. Songs and bands evolve, so we’re simply adapting to
our changing environment. And so far, it’s working. Things can and
will always change.” V
The Caretakers and Friends play Thursday February 3 at Joe Dogs (531 Brant St., Burlington). Doors are 8pm with an opening set from Barry Mac and $10 gets you in. Click on theCaretakers.ca
The Caretakers Unfinished Thoughts: Still a band out there who give a damn about politics, war and the environment
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There are still band out there who give a damn about politics, war and the environment. Hamilton fol...There are still band out there who give a damn about politics, war and the environment. Hamilton folk trio The Caretakers raise the flag and share their Unfinished Thoughts with the listener.
Jeffrey C. Martin, the band's songwriter, are precise and succinct, but also warm and hopeful. Here is a man who wants the world to be a better place, following the footsteps of his late Sixties and early Seventies peers when folk rock ruled supreme as the thinking man's music of choice. As a former PR honcho who fell out of love with the industry and in love with the music he teamed up with singer Lena Montecalvo who is blessed with the vocal range to make his lyrics work. Guitarist Norm Van Bergen adds depth with his 12-string guitar, channeling The Byrds, and Peter, Paul and Mary. Calling in their friends from The City and The Sea (formerly known as The Mississippi Kings) to play with them on the album was a smart move, adding a soul rock groove to a couple of the tracks.
Decidedly uncool, The Caretakers bring their craftmanship and sense of melody to the fore. They are about music and the preservation of the Earth. Their type of folk rock is mixed with a sprinkling of hippie idealism and a punk DIY attitude. Food for thought and sounding great.
The Caretakers Play Daddy Laughed
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Listen to this track by 60s Greenwich Village-meets-60s-British-Folk-scene trio The Caretakers, actu...Listen to this track by 60s Greenwich Village-meets-60s-British-Folk-scene trio The Caretakers, actually a group of musicians from Hamilton, Ontario. It’s ‘Daddy Laughed’, a song about childhood memory, and sourced from the band’s EP of the same name. The track also appears on their full-length debut Unfinished Thoughts.
In our 21st century, when war and greed are still very much active when it comes to the shaping of our times, folk music that connects us to our own experiences, as well as finding commonalities in the experiences of others in other countries, is still very potent. Bandleader and songwriter Jeffrey C. Martin (vocals, guitar) understands this very well, and along with his bandmates Lena Montecalvo (vocals, percussion), and Norm Van Bergen (vocals, 12-string guitar), we’re reminded that this musical connection is still very much alive.
Among other things, I spoke to Jeff about songwriting, the importance of community among musicians, about causes, and about how art and political engagement can still converge in a more jaded and media-overloaded time.
+ INTERVIEW with Jeffrey C. Martin
Friday Freebies: The Caretakers
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Normally I don't like to just lift bits out folks emails, but I really liked the honesty of the emai...Normally I don't like to just lift bits out folks emails, but I really liked the honesty of the email I got from The Care Takers wondering if I would consider featuring them in Friday Freebies. After I gave them a quick listen and really enjoyed their tunes I couldn't not share this with you ... (quotes) So there you have it, I was genuinely inspired to listen their songs after reading that, I am glad that I did as it's pretty fucking good. You can make your own mind up though by heading downloading three songs for free from their Bandcamp music site.
Free Music Alert: The Caretakers – Daddy Laughed EP
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Got a heads up to this in an email the other day. Pretty good throwback to 60’s type of folk rock. R...Got a heads up to this in an email the other day. Pretty good throwback to 60’s type of folk rock. Really dig the song Blue Skies which to me sounds almost like a twangier Mamas and The Papas song. I’m pretty sure the male-female harmonies and laid back acoustic guitars are to blame for that. Also love the bit on “It’s Thinking Time” about the high grade grass from Ontario.
3 More To Explore: The Caretakers, Harlan Pepper, Erazer
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For those who like CCR or R.E.M., twang, jangle, and rock all converge in the delightful music of th...For those who like CCR or R.E.M., twang, jangle, and rock all converge in the delightful music of this Hamilton-based trio. They were recently nominated for a Hamilton Music Award (Best Roots/Folk Recording of the Year).
The Caretakers return to share Unfinished Thoughts
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The band that brought together multiple musicians to record Sing Merry Christmas, in support of the ...The band that brought together multiple musicians to record Sing Merry Christmas, in support of the AIDS Network and the Stephen Lewis Foundation, does it again with its debut album.
It was two years ago that the Caretakers — incorporating Burlington and Hamilton musicians — released Sing Merry Christmas, which still raises money for the charities.
After finessing its own folk rock music for the past few years, the Caretakers recently recorded its first full-length album, Unfinished Thoughts (and other stories from the songwriter’s den).
The band, consisting of Jeffrey Martin, Lena Montecalvo and Norm Van Bergen, hopes to perform at Joe Dogs in August as a CD release party.
The new album also features a myriad of local musicians who lend their talents to the Caretakers’ songs.
Produced by Glen Marshall and Michael Keire (Feist, Bob Lanois and Bethany Yarrow), the album features Carl Jennings, Tim Jennings, Ed Mitchell, Barry Mac, The Mississippi Kings, Jesse Lewis, Tom Wilson and Mike Trebilcock (the Killjoys).
Musically, the album depicts the band’s folk rock style with its inherent social conscience.
Written primarily by Martin, the album’s songs not only speak to social and political issues but the album itself will support War Child Canada with the proceeds from the first 500 CD sales going towards the charity.
“I usually have the news on in the background when I’m writing,” explained Martin. “So clips from the news are where a lot of these songs started. I’m very attentive to world issues.”
Martin made his living in public relations, working in the corporate world and teaching in various colleges. Although working full time, Martin continued to write music but hadn’t been in a band for decades.
“If you had told me three years ago, I’d be in a band again, I wouldn’t have believed it.”
When he came to a crossroads in his life, he decided music was the path he wanted to take.
“I was either going to take a masters degree or make an album,” he said. “I ditched the MA for the CD; it was a turning point in my life. I’m very happy I made that decision as I’ve never been as happy in my life as I am now.”
Always enjoying music, Martin got together with another PR colleague, Montecalvo, and Cumis colleague Van Bergen several years ago to play music they enjoy.
The album consists of 10 of the band’s original music with a bonus track.
“We re-mastered Sing Merry Christmas for the album as we still get a great response from it,” Martin noted. “I’m hoping to attract an established musician to do a cover of that song.”
The Caretakers perform at Hamilton’s free Festival of Friends on Aug. 7.
The band’s website www.caretakers.ca will be fully loaded in the next two weeks; meanwhile visit www.thecaretakers.bandcamp.ca.
The Caretakers release debut album, "unfinished thoughts"
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The Caretakers by Ric Taylor May 6 - 12, 2010 CARETAKERS w/Barry Mac, Greg Preston Saturday Ma...The Caretakers
by Ric Taylor
May 6 - 12, 2010
w/Barry Mac, Greg Preston
Saturday May 8 @ Vibewrangler Studios
468 Cumberland Ave. Hamilton
One of the newest groups to come out of Hamilton consist of some behind the scenes veterans. While they previously didn’t work as much in the spotlight, Jeffrey C. Martin, Lena Montecalvo and Norm Van Bergen take stage front and centre weaving some heavy social commentary into a tapestry of harmonies. Making obvious comparisons to the likes of Peter, Paul and Mary would be a little misleading, as the music of the Caretakers is a little more complex. Their name says it all – they write about issues that matter and they sing because their hearts are on their sleeves. They’re not teens looking to be the next sensation but this weekend the Caretakers follow their musical muse to offer their debut full length, Unfinished Thoughts.
As the Caretakers get on their proverbial soapbox, there’s that definite ‘60s folk influences that permeates some of the protest feel to the songs on Unfinished Thoughts but you could mix in some ‘70s southern rock or even early ‘80s new–wave/neo–psychedlia into the mix. Once they hit a local studio, the band really took shape and the songs took focus.
That feel harkens back to when people truly believed that music could change the world – they might be dreamers but they’re not the only ones. Putting their music where their mouths are, the Caretakers are supporting like–minded charitable organizations with their music at the studio where the band really began.
The Caretakers, Jacob Moon and John Ellison perform for Dundas bakery fire fundraiser
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Support for all victims of downtown Dundas bakery fire ‘overwhelming’ Craig Campbell, News Staff P...Support for all victims of downtown Dundas bakery fire ‘overwhelming’
Craig Campbell, News Staff
Published on Jan 28, 2010
Residents continued to step up and support all the victims of the Village Bakery fire with two fundraisers last weekend.
Many observers were already overwhelmed by the assistance offered to the staff of the well-known downtown Dundas business and residents living in the apartments above it.
More than $2,500 for the apartment tenants was raised with a performance by Dundas Valley Orchestra Sunday. A Saturday evening event featuring The Caretakers, Jacob Moon and John Ellison raised about $4,500 for staff and tenants.
Set list varies depending on specific gig - including all songs from new album, as well as songs from first album.
37 Days In Jamestown
Love Always Happens
Flowers for Peace
Just Like California
On Becoming Noam Chomsky
In Humanity We Trust
I'm the Happiest Man
Killing Me Killing You
Love Is Lost
Left A Friend Behind
It's Thinking Time
For What It's Worth
You Can't Always Get What You Want
There are no upcoming dates at this time.