Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November 13, 2013
Toronto, ON

Hello My Pets,

I know I've been a delinquent blogger of late ... Please forgive me. It's not that there haven't been stories to tell (oh, so many.) But some, I suppose, I've decided to keep secret and others I will soon divulge in Sweetlandish story form.  These may or may not concern a dingo, a deep dark cave, a jewel-encrusted pony, a fancy magic trick, a walk in the woods, a pair of flamenco shoes, and my new book.

But for now I'm very excited to announce some upcoming shows, and our glorious musical plans for the future...

Captain Dirt & The Skirt are pairing up with Gregory Hoskins and Gary Craig later this month for two dynamic duo double-bill shows in Toronto (The Drake Underground) and London, Ontario (The London Music Club.)

For more dates, info and links, please visit my TOUR page. And stay tuned for even more Captain Dirt & The Skirt winter dates, and a big Canadian tour in the Spring.

We sure hope to see you there!

More soon,

La Sweet
(The Skirt)

Monday, September 9, 2013

September 9, 2013
Toronto, ON

Our brand new beautiful Captain Dirt & The Skirt website is live!

Have a peek at

Dirt & Skirt

Thursday, June 20, 2013

June 20, 2013
Toronto, ON

Hello Summertime! The solstice bells will ring tonight at 1:04 am EDT, and I shall be there to pop the bubbly, and eat a celebratory strawberry. Or six.

It’s been a full double-fortnight since I last properly wrote – and for my silence, I apologize. A girl has to keep some of her secrets. But there are a couple grand tales I would love to tell … So get comfortable, gentle reader, and pour yourself a drink.

Once upon a time, in ye olden Italia, there lived a nice poet who was tragically banished from his beloved city and forced to flee to the lonely hills of somewhere-or-other. There he spent the remainder of his years wandering pouty-faced though the Italian countryside, mourning not only his home, but the woman he loved - who had both the effrontery to marry another man, and then also go and die.

Our hero found solace in writing, and his deep belief in the Spiritual realm. And thus, he decided go on a quest through the unforgiving Underworld, up yonder mountain of Purgatory, right to the shining resplendent garden of Paradise. Where apparently the girl was waiting for him with a hot outfit, and a cool refreshment.

I am indeed a great believer in the Joseph Campbell-esque “heroic journey.” This usually starts out with the Call to Adventure and soon beckons some form of Supernatural Aid. Welcome to my life. And as Dante journeyed with Virgil though the many shadowy layers of his unconscious, so have I been guided by dead poets and troubadours on my own hero's journey of late.

This week my Virgil has been a tall, charming Englishman named Jont. I met said pin-stripe suit wearing, often-barefoot, singing-songwriting, master of manifestation at the International Folk Alliance Conference in February. He breezed into town last week on tour from Halifax and together we threw a wicked house concert party at Casa Sweetlandia. It was truly a magnificent time, and may have to become a regular event. We feasted, lounged around the metaphorical pool, and enjoyed a fantastic artistic salon-style soirée of music and storytelling courtesy of: Jess McAvoy, Sarah Burton, Jory Nash, Evalyn Parry, Richard Flohil, Michael Wrycraft, Yours Sweetlandishly, and of course, Jont.

The most magical part of our adventure, I cannot even tell myself. For that, I must direct you to Jont’s blog. He did such a fine job of putting into words something of which I may never have spoken. But it’s too late now – It’s on the internet forever. You will need another drink for that one, I reckon.

And in other news…

The Captain Dirt & The Skirt CD release was a glorious success. A million thank-yous and sweet Sweetlandish kisses to all my beautiful Ladies In Waiting, the folks at Lula Lounge, and everyone who came out to the show. We love you! And there were also a couple photographers who took some great shots … Have a peek at these galleries by Sean Ryan and Levent Erutku.

The new CD&TS website is still under construction, but we’re getting close and can’t wait to unveil it soon in all its glory.

Ciao,  xo

Signorina Sweetlandia

They aren't quite Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise, but they'll do.
More photos here.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

May 28, 2013
Toronto, ON


Buy it now via Arbora Vita Music. Coming soon to iTunes too ... Stay tuned for more info and purchasing options.

Dirt & Skirt

Sunday, May 19, 2013

May 19, 2013
Dalkeith, ON

It's finally happening! 

Captain Dirt & The Skirt will be releasing our brand new album on May 29 at Lula Lounge in Toronto. “The Adventures of Captain Dirt & The Skirt” is a multi-genre instrumental journey produced by Juno award-winner David Travers-Smith (Wailin’ Jennys, Oh Susanna) and features the musical musings of such accomplished players as Ken Whiteley, Kevin Fox and Gary Craig.

The show will be another glorious Ladies In Waiting cabaret-style soirée, also featuring performances by Scarlett Jane, Sarah Burton, Tricia Foster, Faye Blais and Melanie Brulée, with burlesque by Loretta Jean of Nerd Girl Burlesque

It's been quite the adventure so far, to say the least. The album took nearly 14 months to make, and apparently so does a baby camel... Come on out and watch us give birth to a magnificent dromedary next week! We are so proud, and can't wait to share it with you.

The album itself will be released to the world at large and for purchase online on Tuesday, May 28. Keep an eye on this page for links to buy the album ... So exciting!

See you soon,

The Skirt

Coming to Lula Lounge on May 29. Eeeeeee!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

March 21, 2013
Farm Heaven, ON

Springtime salutations from sparkling Snowland. I am once again in Farm Heaven visiting my dear Captain Dirt at her famous farmhouse. It blizzarded with a passion on the day I arrived, but I rocked the long drive like an Ice Road Truckers superstar. Today I'm safe and warm by the fire, and quite focused on all my artistic endeavours.

The Captain and I are working out the final arrangements for our last two new album tunes (to be recorded next week) and they sound so good. I'm madly in love with the gorgeous 1978 Larrivée classical guitar my dad gave to me recently. He bought it on a trip out to Victoria, back in the days when Jean Larrivée still worked out of his tiny shop in Market Square. It has brought me new songs. And I am grateful.

Today I've been working on the lead guitar part for my newest instrumental piece "Soul Captain." It was inspired by the William E. Henley poem Invictus - the subject of my latest experiment in the Aristotelian art of mnemotechnics. Piece of cake. And so worthy. I shall repeat it over and over again ... And remember.

I've also been busy with my magical camera in the name of my eternal self-portrait series. From the Great Northern Railroad to the Lake of the Bloody Ice Hole, you'll find photographic evidence of all my recent Adventures in Sweetland here. My latest photography project is my daily Instagram photo, courtesy of my brand new iPhone. I'll be uploading one photo each day with a wee Sweetlandish vignette. Photos will be posted on my Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. So stay tuned.

And although the land around me is still in deep freeze, I can feel the melt beginning on the inside. It is magical and torturous - but we must incinerate the old to make way for the new. My friends and I have a tradition of making corn dolls on Autumn Equinox. We lovingly call them "The Hag" after the Cailleach, mythological Irish creatrix and Queen of Winter. We care for our Hags though the dark half of the year, and they are said to protect us from winter's wrath. We burn them come Spring - a sometimes bittersweet moment, as one often gets attached. My hag has thoroughly gone up in smoke and I am rising from her ashes. Ready for the next magnificent chapter.

Now it's time to strap on some snowshoes and make a journey into the deep dark woods. There is a cedar forest, a snowy churchyard, and a shimmering snow field with my name on it.


Snow Woods
Perhaps the deep dark woods aren't so dark after all...
More photos here

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

March 11, 2013
Cordova Lake, ON

Bonsoir from little frozen lake land, a sobriquet that might not apply much longer if it keeps raining kittens and puppies outside. I’ve been hiding away in the Kawarthas for a good week now. It's just me, my guitar, and the long stretch of white that leads on towards the horizon. There’s hardly a living thing in sight, not a songbird, a fly, or even a frozen lake monster to keep a girl warm on a cold winter’s night. Good thing there’s a nice wood stove in the corner. And I build a badass fire.

I have a few days left in sweet solitude before it’s back to the city for me. And I’m getting closer to checking off all the things on my cottage to-do list:

1.) Take one magnificent photograph every day (or reasonably magnificent.)
2.) Write one last new song for the CD&TS album.
3.) Watch inordinate amounts of Remington Steele.
4.) Remember how to relax ... On the inside.

So far I have one, two and three down. I’m working on four. There’s a bottle of whiskey in the kitchen that might have a suggestion or two for me.

I confess, it's my mind that I just can’t seem to slow down – eternally planning, examining, scheming, and dreaming.  Solving mysteries, I reckon. Last night I literally dreamt that the Folk Alliance International conference I just attended was being held in outer space. And I thought I had lots to pack before! That’ll learn me for watching the Discovery Channel before bed. But who can resist programs with flirty, scolding titles like “Bad Universe?” Like seriously.

Speaking of things I am planning and scheming, I am so excited to announce that the official Captain Dirt & The Skirt CD release show will be held on May 29, 2013 at Lula Lounge in Toronto. It will be another grand Ladies In Waiting production with all the trimmings and usual suspects … A glorious soirée to be true. More info coming soon. I hope you can make it!

And now, back to my fire and another new song. This one is an ode to the sea -or the metaphorical sea- and that one sailor you can’t wait to welcome home with a big, red lipsticky kiss.

Wood smoke and whiskey,


La Sweet

More photos from my icy Adventures in Sweetland here