I Heart Hamilton’s Best Of 2018
Happy New Year! To keep up with tradition I’m taking a quick look back at some of my adventures this year. 2018 marked year 7 of I Heart Hamilton and brought with it some changes and new experiences. Thanks for continuing to follow along with the blog, social media, and radio!
Here we go! In no particular order…
In 2017, the band’s concert at FirstOntario Centre (always Copps to the band, and to me!) was one of my Hamilton highlights of the year but in 2018 they outdid themselves with The Rally. Arkells played their biggest show to-date, selling out Tim Hortons Field and playing for 24,000 fans. They hand-picked Ellevator, Cold War Kids and Bishop Briggs to share the bill. The energy in the stadium with all of us waving our special yellow and black “Rally” towels in the air was electric. The event brought together so much of Hamilton, from the band riding SoBi bikes to the show with fans, to Hamilton Flea setting up shop outside the venue in the afternoon with local vendors. One of the best parties of the year, hands down.
Canadian Country Music Awards
The CCMA’s returned to Hamilton for the first time since 2011 (the year I Heart Hamilton began!). Now I may not know much about country music but I did have a blast getting to attend and cover the show (hosted by Shania Twain!) from backstage. I also had the opportunity to interview several artists on 93.3 CFMU. Aaron de Jesus and I had so much fun recording and filming interviews with The Washboard Union (who would go on to win at the big show!), Tebey, JoJo Mason, and Justin Tyler.
Speaking of CFMU, I hit the 5th year mark of my weekly show (Fridays 2-3pm) which coincided with the station hitting its milestone 40th anniversary. Once again it was a year of memorable moments (listen back in the archives).
A few highlights….
- 5th annual Live-To-Air broadcast and “I Heart Hamilton Day” at the Downtown BIA’s Gore Park Summer Promenade. Miles From Nowhere performed live in the park while I chatted with Toast Wine Bar, Kojo ‘Easy’ Damptey, Collective Arts, Pride Hamilton, and Art Gallery of Hamilton.
- Live performances in studio: Adelaide, Gillian Nicola, Royal Seas, Laura Cole, The Dunlop Brothers, Piper Hayes & Carson,
- Interviews with Logan Staats of CTV’s The Launch in February and in October
- Meeting and chatting with Iskwé
- Full episode with Glen Marshall and Bob Lanois of The Mule Spinner
- Having my friends Aestrid from the Netherlands in studio twice: April and November
- Interview with Poesy after her appearance on CTV’s The Launch
- Interview with The O’Pears
- Interview with Basement Revolver
I was so stoked to be the summer host of 93.3 CFMU’s Top 5 videos! I had a blast with Aaron, Brian and Kyle making these.
It was also through CFMU that I met the awesome Kayla Da Silva who not only did an awesome photo shoot with me so I could share a special True Hamiltonian shirt collaboration with Milli (Hamilton Has Heart) in support of McMaster Children’s Hospital, but she used one of the images in her thesis project. So cool!
The Mule Spinner
I had really missed booking shows and this year I was grateful for the opportunity to revive the “I Heart Hamilton Presents” banner over at The Mule Spinner (at Cotton Factory). Owners Glen Marshall and Bob Lanois asked if I wanted to curate the fall run of shows and I jumped at the chance! 10 shows took place every Saturday from September-November and I was overwhelmed with the amount of talent we saw each week! Thank you so much to the whole team at the venue, our sponsors Shawn & Ed Brewing and Hamilton Arts Council, All Sorts Press, everyone who attended, and to these fantastic artists: The Bandicoots, FXRRVST, Shanika Maria, Bonnie Hamilton, Miles From Nowhere, Emay, Buddah Abusah, Devin Bateson, LTtheMonk, The Handsome Devils, The Cumbys, Dizzy Spells, James Wyatt Crosby, The Ferns, Logan Staats, Johnny Shay, Moscow Apartment, Piper Hayes & Carson, Alex Whorms, Hanna Bech, The Geoff Hudson Band, Scott Orr, Essen, Fanny Price, and Aestrid.
YWCA Hamilton Women of Distinction Awards
I was absolutely honoured to be included among the nominees of the 2018 YWCA Hamilton Women of Distinction Awards. I really enjoyed getting to come together with so many amazing women, and meet not only the women in my category of Arts, Design & Culture, but across all disciplines. Girl power, to say the least!
It’s not every day you get to hang out with Terra Lightfoot, Lou Molinaro of This Ain’t Hollywood, Tim Potocic of Supercrawl, Dave Premi of dpai architecture, and oh yeah, the mayor! And oh yeah, in our pajamas! Some Mohawk PR students organized a fundraising day for POGO: Pediactric Oncology Group of Ontario and we visited several local businesses (plus City Hall!) to raise funds and awareness.
I Heart Hamilton’s mantra is “Be a tourist in your own city” and it doesn’t get more touristy than staying in a local Airbnb! I was totally spoiled by awesome Airbnb Superhosts Kelly and Andy when I spent a night in their gorgeous space. It was birthday month (#KApril), after all!
Fun times in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, and Collingwood this year!
Very grateful any time I’m asked to DJ – this year saw more stellar times with Diamond DJ Collective. We started up a Monday night residency at Toast, Mega Mondays. We also hit up Absinthe for the Goodbye Opioids fundraiser and returned to rock Because Beer (sharing a stage with Grand Analog and Rich Aucoin!). On my own, I got to DJ at Arcade, Synonym, and Casbah Lounge, plus Gore Park and Cotton Factory with DJ Seema.
Hamilton Harbour Queen
How many times is too many times to ride the Hamilton Harbour Queen? I hopped aboard several times this summer – thank you for the invites! I’ll never tire of the views of the water and enjoying a summer night on that ship.
Supercrawl / Sonic Unyon Records
Supercrawl is my favourite event every year, as you know! The festival hit its 10th year and it was my 8th time attending. This time I didn’t get to cover it for the blog by running around as I usually do. That’s because I got to join this incredible dream team and work with the festival this year, along with more events and projects under the Sonic Unyon umbrella. Very grateful!
A last minute surprise to end the year – I was invited to come on the evening news at CHCH TV to recap a year of arts and culture in Hamilton and highlight some New Year’s Eve events. Thank you so much for having me!
Happy New Year! As always, thank you so much for spending time with me on the internet and for sharing your love of Hamilton with me. See you in 2019 online and on the airwaves. Peace, love, and light to you all 💖