Tag Archives: Canada

Jeneen Frei Njootli’s “Anai, Nakwaltuk” Ringtone (Banff, Alberta, Canada)

Jeneen Frei Njootli is a visual artist who works at The Banff Centre. It’s fitting that she’s contributed the first tone in the Banff series, for it honors Aboriginal peoples in Canada. “I’m First Nations,” she told me, “with some Czech and Dutch in there, too.” If you’re unfamiliar with the terminology, “First Nations” describes various Aboriginal peoples in Canada who are neither Inuit nor Métis.

“I was born in the North, my home community is in the Arctic, but I was raised in Prince Edward Island, and went to school in Vancouver. Having moved around a lot, I find myself drawn to the energies that exist within the ‘inbetween places,’ that I inhabit. Part of my artistic practice is an investigation of history embodied in land–I’m interested in exploring the idea of stories associated with a place through sound and image. In terms of sound, when I look at the land, I imagine the stories various places might hold, and think of some of the ghosts, or spirits that are present, there, too.””

Here is Jeneen’s haunting Anai, Nakwaltuk (“Come here, I’ll tell you something”) Tone. We recorded it in a stairwell that had great acoustic quality, within the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed building on The Banff Centre’s campus. Her ringtone consists of improvised melodic vocals–her response to the beautiful land in the area. It’s a sound that Jeneen has been exploring lately with her newly formed (and still un-named) band. “I recently got a loop pedal, a mic and amp. I was thinking about an economical way to spend the winter here. There’s always snowboarding, but it is expensive and potentially painful. Plus, I’m bad at it. So I decided to invest in doing something this winter that will allow me to interact, practice, have fun, and play with other people.”

Here’s wishing Jeneen Frei Njootli a musically inspired and productive winter! Thanks, Jeneen, for this first and lovely tone in the Banff, Alberta, Canada series.

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September / October 2012: What does Banff (Alberta, Canada) sound like?

This fall, I’m at The Banff Centre attending an artist residiency program. I’m here to work on my other ongoing project, Ventwittoquisms, but I brought along my audio equipment to record a series of tones from the Alberta region of Canada. I’m hoping I’ll be able to capture the sound of Elk in rutting season, but I can’t be sure I’ll have that kind of luck.

I’m here for 7 weeks of Experimental Comedy Training Camp. Led by artist Michael Portnoy, the purpose of the Camp is “to make your art work funnier.” I’m working with seriously silly and talented artists from around Canada, the States, Finland and England. When we’re not reading comedy theory, making prank phone calls, having studio visits or performing, I’ll be fishing around for tone contributions from those attending the Camp with me. Perhaps I’ll even get some from those who are leading and visiting the program (such as one of my sound-making heroes, Reggie Watts).

If you happen to live in Banff and have an idea for a sound that’s special to this region, time permitting, I’d love to work with you to capture it out in the field. Just reach out to me here, or write to me directly at locallytoned *at* gmail dot com. Scroll down to see a some of my snapshots from Banff / Experimental Comedy Training Camp.

T. Foley’s “Popcorn Eating Act” with Hector the Dummy (of Ventwittoquisms)

Michael Portnoy introduces artist Sean Joseph Patrick Carney

Artist Bridget Moser’s chair bit at Performance Night

Michael Portnoy, Director of Behaviour at Experimental Comedy Training Camp, gets his 5 minutes at our first Performance Night

Artist collective Fake Injury Party–Derrick Guerin, Scott Leeming & Paul Tjepkema (video still)

Still from Maarit Suomi-Vaananen’s “In a Misty Musty Thicket”

Neil LaPierre’s “Take Control of Your Life” improvement sessions (with artist Birony Clarke)

Emily McIntyre & Selina Doroshenko–Nothing Special–sport spectacular outfits each and every day.

Slide from visiting artist Steven M. Johnson’s lecture

Artist Steven M. Johnson talks about his work

The Banff Centre is situated within a National Park–stunning vistas are everywhere.

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