SHOW: Zoocheck – Steam Whistle Brewery

(back-dated to night of performance)
This was my first show at the Steam Whistle Brewery in Toronto near the CN Tower. Neat place, right downtown. I was playing a benefit for Zoocheck, an animal rights organization. I hadn’t heard of them before, but I was rather impressed to hear that it was their 20th anniversary. Organizer Mel had enthusiasm and seemed to be great with the PR, and I met the Zoocheck founder Rob, who was well-spoken and clearly had been dealing with animal rights issues for a long time. I drilled him for more info on the organization which he gave without hesitation. It was neat to discover that he was straight-edge like me.
As for entertainment that night, there was a big drum troupe, human acrobats, a fire-breather/dancer, and musicians. Quebecois musician Julie Crochetiere had a lovely voice and some jazz-influenced songs. She was backed by a guitarist and a violinist (Alex), who I chatted with for a bit and found out he quit mechanical (?) engineering to play music. Friendly DJ Hali did double-duty as the live sound guy. He cobbled together and ran the sound system for the night.
I pre-mixed myself (vocal, guitar, and iPod) through my spankin’ new Roland AC-60 amplifier. I know the amp will be a future life-saver when I won’t be able to count on a good sound person, which happens often.
It was my first night out of the house after being in bed for a week with a fever. I had a decent performance, although my runny nose ran and my cracking voice cracked. People were having a good time, and I estimated at least 120 people in attendance.
I saw some of my veg*n friends like Kira, Paul, and Holly, and my friend Laura hung out with us.
The best moment of the night however had to be watching one particular attendee dance. A young fellow in a wheelchair, obviously living without the use of his legs, hit the dance floor with two young women. He looked happy, they looked happy, and they all danced enthusiastically. The guy just swung his head to the beats (quite well, I might add). It was beautiful, and I wish I saw this sort of thing all the time.
DJ Hali spun some good funky stuff to close the evening, but feeling a bit ill meant I had to go before it was all over.

  • karen at 7:43 pm

    hi i was one of the drummers you were great i’d be too afraid to be up there by myself let alone singing!!!

  • Allan at 1:17 pm


  • Mel at 2:07 pm

    Hey Dyniss, Thanks again for performing! The night would not have been such a huge success without all of the performances, and we all truly appreciate it. We even made a few bucks…and got the word out about a few of our core campaigns. 🙂 It was my pleasure meeting you & I’m sure we will meet again…