A Quick Note

May 1, 2009


As promised, a quick note to say hello and let y’all know that I got lots of great footage last weekend at ‘Summerside Drums ’09’, featuring World renowned award winning drummers Jim Kilpatrick, Tyler Fry, and John Fisher. Not only did I get great footage, but I had a great weekend getting to know these guys and having my son Christopher and his old buddies around. I gotta tell you, Jim, Tyler and John were super super nice guys who didn’t seem to mind having their workshops invaded by my camera and I, and all of them are just so dedicated to this passion that is drumming that it makes all the difficult, challenging parts of filming ‘Drummerboyz’ all that more worthwhile.  (Eg. trying to find the money to get to Vancouver and Scotland to finish the doc).  Experiencing Christopher’s enthusiasm and excitement as he left as ‘a better drummer’ was priceless, too.  In his words – “Jim fixed my rolls in less than three minutes”. Also, I guess he is in line for some lessons with John Fisher now, who also lives in Vancouver. Christopher felt that John Fisher is “the best drumming teacher in the world”.  Apparently John teaches rock drumming, too…to some rather famous musicians. So Christopher is in good hands, working with someone well connected in the biz. I like John ’cause he told me I looked like Diana Krall…which I probably don’t, really, except for maybe the hair, but hey, I ain’t complaining! I am a huge Diana Krall fan! It occurred to me later that he probably really knows her…so that was kinda surreal. Plus he laughed at one of my questions when I interviewed him – so he has a good sense of humour. I left the workshop also as Tyler Fry’s newest big fan…what a kind soul. And so passionate in his teaching! Not to mention unbelievably musical in his playing. Just a great, great, guy. And I got a hug from Jim Kilpatrick – my son’s biggest hero over the past number of years…look him up on youtube – you won’t believe what that man can do with a snare drum and sticks. Just wow.

So it was such a great weekend of filming overall (I am really getting to know my camera well, it just feels right) that it was no surprise that I had a complete and utter breakdown after putting Christopher on the plane on Tuesday. Went off to Timothy’s for a coffee and then just melted away into the crowd at Victoria Park and edited my novel for a while. Didn’t have it in me to try to smile and be happy and social at karate, so took some me-time and went to hide in the darkness of the movie theatre for the evening. Felt a bit better by the time I drove home to Summerside, but you know something, that ache in your heart when your child flies off to the other side of the Country just doesn’t really ever go away. Hence another reason to make Drummerboyz…it gives me the ability to freeze time for a bit. In the movie, Christopher will always be nineteen, heady and strong, talented, a little arrogant, has the world by the tail…wish he could always stay that way. Me, I am hopeful, optimistic, but tired of struggling all the time. I want to hide behind my camera and make some good art and tell hopeful stories and help change the world a little bit one film at a time. It seems to be my gift, if I can just get past the techno-challenges (I am sure my film friends on PEI are getting tired of me always asking them technological questions! ) and the financial challenges. And some personal challenges.

But we all have our crosses to bear, and it is how we overcome these that is the true test of character, isn’t it? Can we persevere? Can I persevere?  Faith is my answer – faith that the money will come for Scotland and Vancouver, faith that I am on the right path, and faith that Christopher will be okay in that far off city. And faith that Drummerboyz is going to be a wonderful, rousing, entertaining, poignant, passionate film.

Cheers –


PS Big news – Jars of Clay got an espresso machine.

PPS Bigger news – I gave them my mocha recipe.

PPS Even bigger news – they are learning how to use it. I turned them on to Starbucks vanilla syrup and caramel sundae sauce -I am thrilled!