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McArthur, Doug - Change of Face (live)

Format: LP
Label: Posterity Woodshed PWS 015
Year: 1981
Origin: Hamilton, Ontario - Wakefield, Quebec
Genre: Spoken Word comedy
Value of Original Title: $50.00
Make Inquiry/purchase: email
Release Type: Albums
Websites:  No


Side 1

Track Name
The Ultimate Riff
Billy Joe Porque
Duck Drivin' Man
Debbie's Birthday

Side 2

Track Name
Charlton Heston
Rubber Suits
My Life Story
Lilac Lane


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In 1981 or so, a couple of things gave me the idea to do a live comedy album. First, I was a surprise success at a comedy festival in Orillia that featured a number of quality acts like Charlie Farqueson, The Frantics, Al Simmons, etc. The Globe & Mail gave me a rave review. Second, Bill Garrett and Bruce Steele approached me with the idea of hosting a CBC radio show that would travel all over the country and feature me giving an opening monologue and then interacting musically with various guests. This show would have increased my visibility greatly and a comedy album would give me something to flog at the shows. We signed a 20 show contract.

CBC technicians chose that very time to go on strike for an extended period. When the strike was over my time had passed. I got paid in full but no national show.

While I was still labouring under the illusion that I had a career as a comedian, Dave Essig and I took a remote crew into Change of Pace Coffee House in London where I was comfortable and well known, and over three nights we recorded "Change of Face". This was essentially my regular act with the music taken out and a lounge band back up. It was supposed to sound tacky. Some of this record actually stands up today, some of it is pretty stale.

Dave Essig produced. By the time the record was pressed, the expected market had disappeared.

Cuts included: "Charlton Heston, Rubber Suits, Lilac Lane,

"Rubber Suits" was a wry commentary on the vibrant exploding career of Stan Rogers who was then seen as a Maritime/Celtic act (although Stan transcended this label before he died in '83 to become our greatest songwriter). The record features a high pitched giggle throughout this piece which emanated from Stan himself, sitting inches in front of me in the club. I believe this is the only extant recording of Stan laughing his head off - a sound all his friends were very familiar with.

During this time period it finally dawned on me that I was not destined to spend my life as a rock star.

I had shown a bit of organizational talent when I booked the Knight 11 in Hamilton and Change of Pace in London. I parlayed this into a job with Orchestra London as Audience Development Coordinator (whatever that meant) and then I became one of three directors of the Winnipeg Folk Festival. After that I became Associate Production Manager for Roy Thomson Hall (one year) and the duMaurier Jazz festival (three years).


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