NXNE 2011: Day 2, Part 1-- breakfast, brushes with fame and barbeque

"You're going to need some energy for the long weekend," proclaims the website for Cora in Toronto. Truer words were never spoken, as we met at the Cora on Wellington on Friday, Jun. 17, our second day at NXNE, at 9:30 a.m. to record The Wrath of Khanna: the Breakfast Club with #R3NXNE for CBC Radio 3 with 14 other bloggers. No doubt to the bemusement of none other than Peter Mansbridge, who was in a nearby booth enjoying breakfast.

We enjoyed ours as well-- the spinach and cheddar crepe and a bacon omelette. Many thanks to Cora for accommodating us, and especially to Vish Khanna, who then took us on an amazing tour of the CBC studios where we got to meet Rich Terfry, watch a live broadcast of the news, explore secret passageways and genuflect in Craig Norris's empty office (he's off the R3 for the summer hosting "Know Your Rights" for Radio One).

Next, our first music fix of the day: the Kelp Records/Line of Best Fit barbeque at the Global Village Backpackers Hostel. It was a relaxing afternoon (welcome after all the rushing around) of good company, food, conversation (including a chance to say hi to Andy Magoffin and Jenny Omnichord, one of our favourite shows in 2011) and performances-- even if, curiously, none of the bands were from Kelp Records. We just missed Pink Moth, but caught a set of likeable pop by The Elwins, followed by the main reason we added the barbeque to our agenda, Slow down, Molasses (Saskatoon).

Slow down, Molasses

Their generally folksy songs can be evocative as their name or a rocker like "Late Night Radio" from their latest release, Walk Into the Sea. Drummer Ryan Drabble came up after and said, "I saw you smiling the whole time." Why yes, yes we were. We just heard that Slow down, Molasses is too, as they beat out more than 1,400 other bands for one of eight slots at England's End of the Road Festival.

We were sorry to miss all but a bit of Shuyler Jansen's set, but we had a date with a group photo back at CBC at 5 p.m., and then another evening of great music before us. In our next post, we review The Most Serene Republic, Elephant Stone, Braids and the Pack a.d.