We Got the Funk 2017 – A Reading

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2017 Reading for the Orson Clarke Tribute. As read (spoken word) by Carolyn Fe

“Dearly beloved

We are gathered here today

To get through this thing called life

Electric word…Life

It means forever and that’s a mighty long time

But I’m here to tell you

There’s something else…”

This Night…

THIS…Night!!!

Here.

We gather, in Montreal, the City of Cities, at Rosewood, THE Club of Clubs, to render homage and tribute to Our Orson Clarke.

Be Ye:

Family, Friend, Band-mate or Fellow musician

 

To Remember Orson Clarke:

Mentor, Prodigy

Funkster, Foodie

Geek, Star Wars disciple

Camaro gasser, Aquarium filler

BBQ worshiper, Fridge emptier

Alien funkin’, Bootsy bassin’

Conversation starter, Conversation ender

Master of Ceremonies and Joker of the Court.

 

We bid you Welcome to this evening’s merriment, and thank you for your participation and support.

This year, our word of the night is Gratitude.

We share the gift of gratitude this night, because it is the gift that Orson Clarke imparted to us in the Time he spent with us. For those that knew Orson, He was the ultimate definition of the wod share. He shared his:

Music

Voice

Opinion

Knowledge

Laughter

Friendship

Love

Fandom & geekery

Love of food, but not necessarily what was on his plate…but he would describe it to you, aroma texture and scent…in great detail, but that he best enjoyed himself.

We remember him tonight through the music he left us, by giving some back, and paying it forward.

Like from Jedi to Paduan

Like from Batman to Robin,

and like Prince to, well, Everyone…

Orson was, and is, one of those Soul’s that always had a smile that warmed your heart and a laugh that echoed through the rafters. (and it echoed, and echoed…and echoes still)

He argued for fun and debated for sport. That’s what made him Orson.

He put the Fun in Funk (always with a capital “F” or “Ph”, and always held his end of the groove as much as any conversation and friendship.

On stage and off, he conducted his Life the same way.

He lived it with One Love, and he lived it with Gratitude.

“O” loved his Family.

He cherished his friends.

He lived for his music, and was more than passionate for his hobbies and interests.

And, He shared All.

You knew of his passions, as IF he would ever be shy about them.

A walking musical encyclopedia, he could illustrate and or educate you on any of some of the 10,000 songs he was reputed to know. He’d walk and talk you through the progressions and changes, keys and breaks, and be warned should you beg to differ. The volume would rise, but only in accordance with the smile that hid behind the power of debate.

Not just about music, but about cars, trucks, science fiction, superheroes, fish..and the all powerful wordcraft related to the consumption of the culinary arts. All these passions made the man that shared them with us, and gave us cause to call him Friend.

This night, We regale in Orson’s Spirit, we share in our loss, we pay it forward and play tribute to the love of the music he left with us.

“One Love” binds us this night, on this 4th anniversary gathering.

Thank you for sharing, being part of, and participating in each given way.

It’s all about the memories, it’s all about the music.

But most of all…it’s all about our One Love for Orson.

These notes are for you.

Amen my friends, have a great night. Enjoy, reminisce, talk, share, play…and have FUN!

May the Funk Be With You!!!

(written word, Rik Roe)

Life’s Silver…lining

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Life always has ways of surprising us, from the littlest of things to the grandest. In this Age of Opulence, where one is always vying for the gold, I will always be more than happy with Silver.

This year marks 25 years that Fiona has been my Wife, earning her the win (apparently) of the Silver Jubilee, and not my life insurance since (also apparently) I am still here…writing this (or am I?).

Marking a quarter century is somewhat of a milestone, not so much in bragging rights, as it is in being proud knowing that we have spent that much more of our lives together than apart.

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Today is a day of our celebration of marriage, a crowning mark of the achievements that we’ve made together thus far, and those that we’ll be making in the years to come.

The color is Silver, which I am usually reminded by the Grey in my hair, by the one who likes reminding me most, especially after 25 years.

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I’m just happy to be party to the party.

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I’ve learnt over time that less is oft more. Garner and enjoy your time, and not things. There are always more things, but never enough time. Hopefully that way you may have fewer regrets should events cause us to lose time we wish we had spent, because time is only spent once (obviously I’m still not a believer in reincarnation).

My life lesson that has been learn-ed often enough during this 1/4 century with my Bride.

I’ve gained 25 years that may or may not have been, and am richer for it.

As a Husband, as a Father, as a “silver-haired” man.

Here’s to the next 25 years…

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The Glass is Always Full

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“Is the glass half empty or half full?” a common expression, a proverbial phrase, generally used rhetorically to indicate that a particular situation could be a cause for optimism (half full) or pessimism (half empty), or as a general litmus test to simply determine an individual’s worldview.

2017 seems to have begun with 1 of these 2 views, and based on media (both real and social), obviously more of one than the other.

What we tend to forget that Life, is much like the Tao:

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Yin and Yang, are two opposite and complimentary energies that make up a whole; that one is not ever fulfilled without the other. Yin and Yang cannot exist without the other, they are never separate.

Whether we perceive them as freezing and boiling, dark and bright, good and evil, they are but parts that become a sum.

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Exactly how we view a glass in a”simpler” fashion/expression/time.

A Worldview in the making.

The Mind, like an opinion, is a terrible thing to waste, and recent tidings have encouraged me to be much less reliant on the media machine, for what is fed to us through and media “feeds” preys upon our sensitivities and sensibilities to foster what I deem a lot of air in the glass. Substance without weight that doesn’t really feed or nurture us.

Not to say that all is such, that would bring us back to the Yin and Yang, bits of each in all.

Strong wills create strong views and stronger opinions, but a tempered view can cut a swath through the falsehoods, biases, and untruths. Unless (a) we don’t want to, or (b) we trust too much.

This is where faith and intelligence play into the picture, and we once again return to our yin and yang situation.

Thank you 2017.

We are supposed to be entering the year with an air of rebirth and refreshed ideals. Not of dread, not of ill-will, not of contempt, and certainly not of prejudice.

I am Canadian, and regardless of what I would let all Media believe, I live a Good life.

I am happy to drink from a glass that is half-full, I am even more glad with that the love and respect of my family and friends that my cup doth runneth over.

I will also never let one’s glass ever be empty, it is always filled and refilled at my table, regardless of choice of drink. I judge not.

Judging is one thing, and Respect-ing is however another, and when that Yin Yang becoomes Love/Hate, Respect/Disrespect, I am determined to replace the negative with positive, and the perception of “entitlement” with Gratitude.This year has been painted with more of the former of this (than the latter) til now, and is already due for a fresher coat, or some better primer.

I urge anyone reading this to Believe in Good, have Faith in the Just, but moreso, have faith in you and yours 1st. Think before reacting, and respect the views and opinions that others exude, and file them appropriately.

What separataes from the animals, is that we don’t have to react to instinct, we have the ability to ponder our decisions becfore reacting.

Let 2017 be the year of Action, and not a year of re-Action.

I wish you all the best. Fill your cup, drink until satiated.

Your cup will Always be Full.

One Love.

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A Scottish Candle

In numerology, the number 49 resonates with focus, conscientiousness, and being realistic, generally with concerns about and directed toward solutions for humanity.

The number tends to be both pragmatic and idealistic. Where the two ideas can’t coexist, pragmatism generally prevails.

In addition to resonating with an intent to better the human condition in ways that make a noticeable difference, 49 supports and encourages the assistance of other humanitarian individuals and organizations. Its support may be by donating time or by donating funds.

The numerology number 49 isn’t a social number. It tends to be so very focused that it may not notice attempts to get its attention.

Be that as it may, 49 is compassionate when it does interact with others, especially with individuals and organizations intent on doing the world some good.

49 doesn’t entertain general or non-specific goals. Instead, its goals are specific and achievable.

When 49 decides to do something, it determines the method and steps required to accomplish it, then applies its focus to that method and those steps until the goal is reached.

It would be at this point that I wish my Wife and better-half, Fiona, a wholehearted “Happy Birthday”.

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It is also at this point that I would encourage the reader to go back, re-read the previous, and replace the numerical component with her name, and see just how true it rings.

Knowing that we have spent more years together than apart, is probably more of a gift to me than to she, but it is a gift of gratitude that just keeps on giving. (Just waking every day, knowing that she hasn’t smothered me in my sleep is a welcome breath of relief.)

49219_originalOn this day, I am happy to have been able to have been able to celebrate soooooo many years with a woman who:

  • always gives
  • never takes
  • listens (kinda)
  • educates
  • nurtures
  • has encouraged my maturity, and lack of as well
  • raised two (somewhat) great Sons
  • enjoys sarcasm
  • grown to love music if not musicians
  • love a quiet lakeside fire
  • encourages the proliferation of vineyards and breweries
  • tolerates canines of all statures
  • tolerates friends and  acquaintances of all statures
  • doesn’t act like a “Princess” even if married to an Ogre
  • enjoys every day for the regal-ness  that it is

The best gift I can give my better-half, is being that other half.

Welcome to being the same age as me again.

Happy Birthday Fi!

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Friends In Deed. Thank You.

 

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Thank you.

For 3 years: friends, family, musicians and well-wishers have gathered to commemorate and honor the memory of Orson Clarke.

Gone too soon, our eye-glinting ever-smiling and jovial friend, left us to contribute to the thunder that we occasionally hear rolling overhead, reminding us of musicians on high, and of that rolling baritone of his that has us always look up yonder with that same eye sparkle we miss of his.

We have payed homage to Orson’s life, with a musical gathering, for 3 years now, and I am proud to have been able to count on those that came, participated, and enjoyed.

It is an evening that this year I dedicated to the sentiment of “One Love”, that is forever mantra-ed by friends, and fit the evening’s intent fully

Leslie “Snooksta” Alston, along with Ben Comeau, Daniel “DJ” Joseph, and Naveen Uttamchandani, were the musical hosts, and also great friends of Orson’s, that have continued the tradition of lyrical honor, and supplied the Heart, Funk, and Soul to the beauty of the evening that brought and brings us all together.

To Snooki, Ben, DJ & Nav, I say Thank You.

Special guest, orator, and singer, Carolyn Fe, gave an eloquent presentation and reading of “One Love”, a piece written for the evening, and brought to light with her unrehearsed and enraptured delivery. Having words put to voice, in that special way, is a gift. Thank you for giving the words I put to paper life, and expressing them with the intentions of which I had put pen to paper.

To Carolyn, I say Thank You.

Victor Cowen’s annual Opening introduction started our evening, as Orson’s daughter Jazz’s closing comments graced the evening’s honors. Everything that transpired between these two, were true and just, and deserving of the man they were meant for.

I thank you both for speaking in earnest, and in respect.

Music drove the night, initiated by the dedication, and the care, the “One Love” that all present shared for Orson Clarke. Many took to the stage, and many more were just as content to sit, watch, and listen (myself included).

Singers, guitarists, bassists, drummers. A plethora of people that love to play, are what made us remember what Orson loved doing.

Photos were taken, video was made…but more importantly the “magic” that has surrounded these memory making honors to our friend; in the gifts of your presence, and the presence of the gifts of your time and  spirit, makes having these get-togethers all the more spiritually enriching.

It was about the Music.

It was about the Kinship.

It was about the Camaraderie.

It was about the Stories.

It was about having a Good Time.

It is about One Love.

Officially, I raise my hands, and I clap them to you, for making this annual event, in My and My Family’s eyes, a great success.

I, and We, Thank You.

See you next year…

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A Gathering for Orson

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It doesn’t seem that long ago, and yet, it does.

July 4th marked the passing of a friend, 2 years past, and yet it still seems like yesterday that we were sitting, laughing, and jibing and heckling each other.

That was time well spent with Mr. Orson Clarke.

Orson was a Blessed individual. He was surrounded by family, friends and musicians (that were also comprised of both of the latter) and people that admired him based on audience and reputation.

Due to this, my Family & I were proud to continue trying to give back the gift that he gave us: the Gift of Sharing, Respect, and UnConditional Love, that made him the true friend that was always reflected in his smile.

We made this gift into an evening of musical tribute, a simple gathering of those that knew Orson, and understood the simplicity of a “gathering”. In his own words, a “Gathering” could be as simple as a pair of people having a great time, to “party-central”, but it had to be “fun-filled with awesome-sauce”. Full of music, good conversation, banter, memories and recollections, and even some “good serious argument just for argument sake”.

This is what was always Orson’s Gift was, this is what he always brought to the table,

In this, we brought it, and will hopefully continue to bring to you.

Joining together at Duffy’s at Dorval, we invited all who shared memories and love of Orson Clarke, to such a “Gathering”, and from what I could surmise from the turnout, along with the smiles and tears, everyone found some fun(ky) memories and solace.

I would like to personally thank Orson’s daughters, Lexi & Jazz, for joining us & honoring their Dad’s memories. They were his most cherished loves and achievements in life, publicly disclosed or not.

Thanks also go to Orson’s best friend, Victor, for stepping up to the plate again this year, as emcee/Host to honor his “partner in Rhyme” and truly remind us all of the imperfections and perfections that make us proud for having known Mr. Clarke, and some of the thing that we didn’t know about him.

Thanks to Orson’s musical counterparts that comprised the House Band for the evening: Leslie/Snooki, Ben, DJ, and Nav. The true backbone of the evening, they supplied the groove that perpetuated the evening’s festivities, and ensured it’s success. As Orson would say “When you have the Best, you Get the Best!”.

To the many and varied musicians that joined in the Jam to celebrate, a heartfelt Thank-You. Understandably you gave of your livelihood to honor a musician-in-arms, and gave of your time, energies, and want, to show love for Orson. All very much appreciated.

To the friends and family that joined the Gathering; “One Love”. Orson was more about “friends and family” than he ever let known, most thought it was always about Music. Proof is shown and reminded in this night of respect. We hope you all had a taste.

Special thanks to the Venue and Owner, for respecting the vision I have/had in mind regarding the Gathering.

It transpired the way it should have, in the way that Orson and I shared conversations.

Simple, down-home, true, open and honest.

About the people, about the music, about the memories; ie. about the Funk.

Thank you for making it a Funktastic evening!

Rik, Fiona, Erik & Iain.

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18 and Life

IMG_3733My Son,

Our Son, 

You are now of the age of Majority, and well on your way to becoming the man that your Mother and I envisioned you to be.

It seems such a short time ago that your Mom and I cradled you at the hospital, and you gave us the greatest of grins and happiness that new parents could have.

You were our 1st, and everything we had and did went into providing for you, shaping you into the Son we wanted.

We spared little to make sure you enjoyed your youth, and that you are constantly able to pursue the interests you wish to. Our expectations of you are simply that you are happy, and that your pursuit of happiness is only affected by the limits of the efforts you put towards everything you do.

You’ve learnt, over time, that efforts reap rewards.

You’ve lived my belief that “Life is a lesson”, and we are proud of the path you have taken, a path that has led you 18 grand years later to no longer being a child, nor a young man or young adult, but the year of ascension that now makes you legally an adult.

Being an adult now weighs heavier on aspects of your livelihood, and we wish you to simply continue being the Son that you have been to us, and continue the path that you deem “right”.

Enjoy being a “Man”, and all that entails.

You have the rest of your Life.

Love,

The ‘Rents