Reading: the “F” in Funk

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Orson Clarke Tribute 2017, reading by Caroline Venor

The “F” in Funk

First of all, Thank You.

Second of all, in the Honor of, and in the words of Orson Clarke:

“Funk You”

Yes, I said Funk…I’m ALWAYS po-lite.

We all know Mr. Clarke, as a genuine “#onelove” kinda guy. Just one love for many passions, one love for the many offerings of Life.

Passions that made him smile, that made him laugh, which in turn, made him share and pass the laughter forward. Those that knew him will be forever marked by that smile, and forever scarred by his laugh. Look at his daughters, and you see and hear both of these, as well as that glimmer in the eyes that you just know is that “something is up” look.

Back to the “Funk You” part tho…

Carolyn Fe gave us the nice clean build up presentation before…

I’m here to give you my side of the story. The “adult” stage and “dirty”musical side of the story…

The tail end, or “hatchback” view that Orson had on life, because he had the best view in the house,

stage,

and well, from his perspective.

Orson, as a stage partner, was a pocket man. He forever held that low funky groove. Hard, tight and firm when needed, or gentle soft and soulful, spiritually filling, and resoundingly climactic.

Yes, I am talking about his bass playing.

Orson knew how to play his instrument so well that he could play it so softly that the the gentlest of melodies would be coaxed from that wooden tool of his, or he could thump, bump, snap, pop, or ground and pound his instrument that you’d think the thunder from on high was controlled from his groove. The groove that became, was, and is, what we call Orson’s Funk.

Regardless of  styles musical styles, y’always knew it was Orson. Pop, Funk, Rock, Blues, yep, and even Disco.

All grooved, all had style. All had junk in the trunk. You rocked, you grooved, you moved, you danced when he played.

Orson loved that bottom end, and he wanted everyone to enjoy it.

And we did.

Big guy gave as much as he got, the more you enjoyed his stage antics, the more he enjoyed playing for you.

Orson was a Giver, not a taker.

Once again…talking about Music…

Oh yeah, I do digress…but so did Orson…changing the topic, well we share that…I’m just not gonna talk about Batman, Star Wars, Camaros, or droptops or hatchbacks…but we are gonna talk a bit about the F words. The F words that bring us here to make music and noise.

We all love those F words.

 

Tonight we celebrate the F in Friends

Tonight we celebrate the F in Family

Tonight we celebrate the F in Fun

Tonight we celebrate the F in Funk

 

So, please, lets put our hands together, clap for those we’ve lost, clap for those we love.

The friends, the Family, that Help us celebrate the Funk.

And let’s all just say together, in harmony, in unison, as Family

…for Orson…

Funk You!

#thefinfunk words by Rik Roe

 

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)

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…

ORSON2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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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