Review: Iron Maiden (Budweiser Stage, Toronto ON. July 15, 2017)

It wasn’t until the third song of Iron Maiden’s set on Saturday night that it finally dawned on me what I had taken for granted for so long about this band.

It started the moment I zeroed in on Steve Harris as he began the bass intro to “Wrathchild.” I’d heard the song a million times, so I wasn’t super excited to hear it again. I’m pretty sure he’s played it several millions more, yet here he was, running round the stage playing it with the hunger of the twenty-something man he was when he first recorded it.

In 1981. Continue reading

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Review: Caravan Palace (Rochester International Jazz Festival, June 31, 2017)

I am such a bad progger.

I mean, here I was, just two blocks away from the Eastman Theater, where King Crimson was playing, and I was on Jazz Street watching the free entertainment, eating poutine and drinking beer.

OK. Judge all you want. Because in the process of not seeing the iconic Mr. Fripp and his musical entourage (including  Tony Levin and Gavin Harrison, two of my personal musical heroes), I stumbled upon another, different kind of big band that brought a smile to my face and some pep to my (dub)step. Continue reading

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Life Gets in the Way (Part Two): The 2017 Flower City Half Marathon

Nine marathons. Nine half marathons. Eight Boilermakers.

You might say I’m an experienced runner, but I would say I don’t feel like it most of the time. You might say I’ve seen a lot, but I would say that I haven’t seen enough. You might say I’ve learned a few lessons, but after the 2017 Flower City Half Marathon — my tenth half — I would say there are times when I don’t feel like I’ve learned a damn thing. Continue reading

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Life Gets in the Way (Part One)

If April, as the great poet T. S. Eliot maintained, is the cruelest month, then March, for me, was its polar opposite–blessed, munificent, generous to a fault. But as that other great poet, Bruce Springsteen, has observed, “you can’t walk away from the price you pay.”

Only in my case, he should have sung, “you can’t run away.” Continue reading

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Review: Tool (Blue Cross Arena, Rochester NY. May 30, 2017)

Cutting-edge lighting? Check.

Laser array? You bet.

State of the art animation? Of course.

And overzealous security guards? Oh, go on if you must.

Continue reading

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The Obligatory Top Ten List to Celebrate My 100th Post

I’ve been blogging for over a decade now. My first attempt, which included the initial incarnation of the Brief Biography of God, appeared on my MySpace page around 2007. I immediately fell in love with the medium — it was the perfect vehicle for me to share my writing with the world. Not that the world needed it or, outside of a few friends, even cared about it.

Two years later, and everyone, including myself, had migrated over to Facebook. My readership, such as it was, declined to almost zero (I was never very good at picking a winner). But that was OK, because I had bigger fish to fry, and a new platform to showcase my writing.

In 2009, I started City Boy, my record label, and a year later I began to see the potential of blogging as a way to enhance my visibility as a professional and to drive traffic to the company website. In between the press releases, Thoughts from the Guv’nor, as the blog was called, featured reviews and interviews with thought leaders in the music business and beyond. Some of those posts now reside in the From the Archives section of this site.

In December 2012 as City Boy was nearing the end of its lifespan, I ventured over to WordPress and began this little corner of the interwebs. I started with a couple of posts detailing my journey to defeat Type II diabetes by getting off my couch and working my way up to my first ever marathon in Toronto in October of that year. At the time, Feats of the Flat-Footed Fox — as the blog was then known — was only going to document my running exploits.

For the next two years, that’s all I wrote about. But I really didn’t pursue it with a lot of energy — I managed a post a month in 2013, and a post every two months the following year. I knew I had a lot more to write about, but it wasn’t until January 2015 that I finally figured it out.

It was then I decided to write about the three things that really interested me — running and music, of course, but also matters of spirituality. I immediately rebranded. I bought my own domain and I’ve never looked back. Posting was more frequent and traffic increased threefold over 2013 and almost doubled again the following year.

So, to celebrate the one-hundredth post here at brucepegg.com, I’ve compiled my own top ten list of favorite posts. And to all you fans, pedants and bean counters out there, yes, I am fully aware this is post number 101. But, as has been the case so often in the last twenty years, Chuck Berry got in the way and beat me to it.

And if you don’t like it, sue me — I’m celebrating now.

Continue reading

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Chuck Berry and Me

It’s been a week since we got the news that Chuck Berry had finally passed away at the age of 90. The news was broken to me a little after six on that Saturday evening by a softly spoken Scotsman named Paul Coletti, who announced in a very calm, gentle way that he was calling from the BBC in London and had I heard the news?

I told him I hadn’t, wondering all the time how the hell he got my phone number.

“Well, Mr. Pegg,” he continued in his reassuring burr, “I hate to be the one to break it to you, but news is coming over the wires that Chuck Berry has died in St. Charles, Missouri.”

I’d like to say I was overcome by emotion. I’d like to say that the tears were rolling down my face as I sank to the floor in disbelief. Except, that’s not what happened.

No, my reaction was far more pragmatic. “Shit,” I remember thinking to myself. “My life just blew up.” Continue reading

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