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City hits musical peak

City hits musical peak


The City of Timmins, known for its discovery of gold 100 years ago, reached out to its local musicians to uncover vast talent while taking a trip down memory lane.

As the city continues to celebrate 100 years of existence, a special commemorative CD 100 Years in the Making -Timmins Celebrates Its Music, Vol. 1, was released last night.

A large crowd gathered at the Shania Twain Centre eager to hear the words and music associated with the city's past, present and future.

A total of 15 songs appear on the city, all written and performed by local and regional musicians. Some, like Timmins 100th Anniversary Song by Diane Armstrong or The Ballad of Dead Man's Point by Paul Henry Dallaire' have obvious connections to the city with a heart of gold, while others may simply express a feeling toward living in the North.

"I think when you look at what music means to our community, it's why we have so many people here tonight," Mayor Tom Laughren said. "We sometimes take for granted the talent we have here in our community.

"I don't care if you go to the Timmins Symphony Orchestra or the Sons of Maxwell, the theatre arts, there is a lot of talent in this community and I'm very proud of that."

In total, more than 50 local artists are featured on the CD, including The Shaftmen, Wyatt Young, Soul Doubt, Tom Oliver, Leslie-Ann Dupuis and Gabe Benoit, providing different genres of music from ballads to country to blues and rock.

"There's some excellent material on it," said Laughren. "People put a lot of time and effort into it, and I think it's one the community will be very proud of."

A public call for musicians was made last June, allowing them to compete for a spot on the album. Songs were chosen based on a number of criteria, including the originality of the song, voice quality, interpretation of the material, ease of performance and positive listener response.

Yvon Cloutier and his band Soul Doubt is just one of the bands featured on the CD, with Cloutier's song City Life. It may not have a direct tie to Timmins, but Cloutier said it speaks to life in a city and how it just wasn't for him.

"The place I come from is free," goes one verse. "There's nothing much to see, but it's my destiny.

"I want to go back to my family. I want to get away from this density."

Cloutier said he wrote the song a long time ago, but felt it was a good fit for the anniversary CD.

"It's the 100th of the city of Timmins and it's a pretty big thing," Cloutier said. "Small little towns like this are nice, quiet and peaceful and that's what I like in my life."

The CDs go on sale this morning at three locations. For $10.95 plus tax, only 2,500 copies are up for grabs at the Shania Twain Centre, the Chamber of Commerce and city hall. Being a limited edition, once the 2,500 are gone, there will be no more produced.

"If what I see tonight is an indication of what I hope to see tomorrow in terms of sales, we should be in good shape," said municipal communications co-ordinator Guy Lamarche.

However, the potential for a Volume 2 is there.

"If Volume 1 is a hit like we expect it to be," Lamarche said, "there's a strong chance there will be a pitch made to go forward with a Volume 2."



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I have travelled all the backroads of this country
From Georgian Bay to Alberta's golden sands
And I've flown above the great Atlantic waters
And seen Dick Nolan's little boats of Newfoundland

In my mind I can see Dawson City
Robert Service's yukon gold andĀ Diamond Lil
And to know the red soil of Prince Edward island
I sing of you your people and your trains

Ottawa Oh! hear your native son's a callin
For the Indians dance to keep it wild and free
And a Nova Scotia mother's heart is longin
For her soldier boys who fell at Normandy

For you my love my Canada

From the factories and the pool rooms of our cities
To the trucker that's clocked a million miles
From the Pizza Parlour to the Casa Loma
Your a littleĀ bit of heaven on this earth

From old Quebec's Laurentian mountain's grandeur
To Yellowknife in the Land of the Midnight Sun
The Northern Lights romance the moon of splendour
And dance for you my love my Canada

Words & Music
Paul Henry Dallaire
Paul Henry Pub.

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