Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Neon News 120411 and all that jazz

Hey Fanz!

Here's where I'll be playing in the next month:

Electro Swing Club
Friday, April 13, 11:00 pm
$15 at the door
$12 in vintage attire!

Gordon's Acoustic Living Room
The Free Times Café
320 College Street (west of Spadina)
Sunday, April 15, 8 pm-11 pm
No cover,no minimum!

Year ten of monthly gigs continues. New tunes every month!

And this month is special because Bert is back! Our former bass player who moved back to BC will be with us again for a special appearance this month!

The Mississauga Big Band Jazz Ensemble
Open Mic Night
Bloor Street United Church
300 Bloor Street West
Saturday, April 21, 7 pm

A literacy coach, a construction supervisor and a policy writer are among the 12 singers who have been put through their paces to perform with the Mississauga Big Band at the first-ever Big Band Open Mic. The singers, who come from all walks of life, will realize their big-band dream on Saturday, April 21.

Each singer has “worked out” with the band to get a little more comfortable with the concept of sharing the stage with a conductor and 17 musicians. “It’s a lot different from singing with a smaller group,” says bandleader Rob Boniface. “If a singer does something unexpected, they learn in a hurry that 17 people behind them cannot all adjust at once. But even with the learning curve, I’m really impressed with the talent of the singers who are joining us.”

The audience can expect a fun array of different vocal styles, as the open mic singers tackle everything from soulful blues to fast-driving Sinatra songs.

Response from singers has been so positive that the band has set up a waiting list and is already thinking about Big Band Open Mic – the Sequel. The talent is definitely out there – and so is a big band that is committed to helping songsters across the GTA to realize their big band dream.

What: Big Band Open Mic with the Mississauga Big Band Jazz Ensemble
When: Saturday, April 21, 2012
7:30 p.m.
Where: Bloor Street United Church
300 Bloor Street West, Toronto
Tickets: $20 per person, $10 for children and people aged 65 or older
To order, email or call Rob Boniface, 905-270-4757

and later that same night . . .

La Palette
492 Queen Street West
Saturday, April 21
on the bar at midnight

Just one week later . . .

Mississauga Big Band Jazz Ensemble
CD release featuring Bruce Cassidy
The Rex
194 Queen Street West
Saturday, May 5, 3:30 pm-6:30 pm

Songs from our new CD, "On the Periphery", plus a whole set of original tunes and arrangements by our conductor, Bruce Cassidy.

See you soon!

Wayne Neon

Monday, February 27, 2012

Proportional representation defined

The Oxford Dictionary online offers the following definition of proportional representation:

"an electoral system in which parties gain seats in proportion to the number of votes cast for them"

This is, of course, wrong.

Proportional representation is not "an electoral system" at all. It is the desired outcome of an election, and a principle underlying several families of voting systems designed to achieve this outcome.

The definition could be greatly improved by adding one letter: "any electoral system in which parties gain seats in proportion to the number of votes cast for them".

But this is still inadequate. Although the accurate translation of votes into representation is the immediate goal, the ultimate aim of fair voting reform is nothing less than the transformation of our political culture.

There are basically two types of voting systems—proportional systems and winner-take-all systems.

Winner-take-all, or "majoritarian" systems are designed to divide us into winners and losers.

A few winners, and lots and lots of losers.

Proportional voting systems are win-win systems. The goal is to provide representation for all, so that all voices are heard, and all the stakeholders are at the table when the decisions are being made.

Proportional voting respects and promotes diversity.

Proportional voting systems require the sharing of power. They are designed to create a more consensual type of government and a more civilized style of politics.

Above all, they are designed to give voters the power to hold politicians and political parties accountable.

And an end to phony majorities will make Government accountable to Parliament, as it should be.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Neon News 120211 Will you be my Valentine?

Hey Fanz!

With The Holy Gasp and Jumple.


Doors open 8 pm.

Also coming up in February:

La Palette
492 Queen Street West,
Saturday, February 18, 2012
On the bar at midnight!

And the next night . . .

Gordon's Acoustic Living Room
The Free Times Café
320 College Street (west of Spadina)
Sunday, February 19
8 - 11 pm
no cover, no minimum

and yet more Rambunctious!

Mardi Gras
El Mocambo
454 Spadina Avenue (at College)
Saturday, February 25, 2012

Thursday, January 5, 2012

What Americans Keep Ignoring About Finland's School Success

Yet one of the most significant things Sahlberg said passed practically unnoticed. "Oh," he mentioned at one point, "and there are no private schools in Finland."

This notion may seem difficult for an American to digest, but it's true. Only a small number of independent schools exist in Finland, and even they are all publicly financed. None is allowed to charge tuition fees. There are no private universities, either. This means that practically every person in Finland attends public school, whether for pre-K or a Ph.D.