Nova Scotia’s Rose Vaughan goes digital

The Rose Vaughan Trio in the early 1990s.
The Rose Vaughan Trio in the early 1990s.

CBC Radio host Peter Gzowski once said, “Rose Vaughan’s songs are like Alice Munro short stories.”

High praise, given that Munro just won the Nobel Prize in Literature!

Halifax singer/songwriter Rose Vaughan has penned many iconic tunes over the decades. As a young and vibrant septuagenarian, she still performs occasionally and plans more recordings.

album2
The Trio’s second album

One of her tunes, “Stone and Sand”, from the Rose Vaughan Trio’s 1993 Fire in the Snow album, is featured in this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z2e7VMqJKt4

Rose’s songs have been going around in my head lately, as well as on my DVD player, because she recently hired me to get her songs online so people could buy them digitally. 

Winter Rose album cover
The Trio’s third album

I was delighted to be asked, as I’ve known Rose since the 1990s and even played a little accordion on her Winter Rose album. Cathy Porter, a consummate musician who did most of the Trio’s arranging and has gone on to be a sought-after side performer with some of Nova Scotia’s biggest stars, also enhanced the sound of bands I was in back then – much smaller stars in the firmament, I assure you. 

Their music was part of my life in the years after I returned to Nova Scotia and before I had my family. They’re lovely human beings whom I feel privileged to know.

The Trio's first album, Sweet Tarragon
The Trio’s first album, Sweet Tarragon

Each of Rose’s songs paints a story. The music is gentle and melodic, and the lyrics thoughtful and introspective. I can’t claim to be objective because of the nostalgia factor, but I’m truly enjoying listening to the albums again.

If you like “Stone and Sand” above, I invite you to take a listen to the songs on the Artist Playlist on her Facebook page, and samples of her other songs there and on her website, where she now sells CDs and mp3s.

Nova Scotia Sea School Restoring Dorothea

An iconic sight in the waters of Mahone Bay and beyond, Dorothea has taken hundreds of young people on maritime sailing adventures as part of the Nova Scotia Sea School.

It’s the kind of intense, group adventure that teenagers crave and need for their development, and that schools don’t usually provide.

Lives have been changed.

Dorothea needs an overhaul. Compare the $30,000 they’re looking for to the cost of rebuilding Bluenose II! Small projects like this are very satisfying to support as they can have a huge positive impact on individual lives.

 

Click here to visit the Nova Scotia Sea School website.

Rissers Beach Sand Castle Competition

The 12th annual Sand Castle Competition was held on a perfect sunny day, July 14, 2012.  Here are photos of some of the entries. The winners were the giant lobster and the pyramids.

 

Storm surge near Oak Island, October 30, 2011

Storms don’t always coincide with high tides, but today’s nor’easter did.

Tide was 2.2m (7.2 ft) late this morning (see this link for tide chart), and near the causeway to Oak Island the road was covered with several inches of water. In 8 years of watching storms here, this was the highest storm surge we’ve seen, with water flowing completely over the road.

Summer Days at Hirtles Beach

It’s one of the South Shore’s favourite beaches, and it was a hit with our visitors from Ontario.

Playing in the waves at Hirtles Beach

The water was cold – but no matter. We had great fun body surfing.

In August, the sand is deep enough to bury a treasure.

A big kid digging at Hirtles with a big kid's shovel, August 2011

But come back in October, and you’ll find just rocks where there had been sand.

Hirtles Beach in October 2010. Not much sand.

Make play while the sun shines.

Flying a kite on sandy Hirtles Beach, August 2011

An impressionist’s view of winter in Martins Point

Late February: the best part of winter. The sun is shining straight through my office window in the semi-basement. How pleasant. Meanwhile, outside, all is white, hard and frozen. Last weekend, a couple of anglers walked about three hundred meters over the frozen sea in front of our house, carrying two chairs, a pack of beer and their fishing rods. They sat there motionless for hours, looking at the hole in the ice they had made for fishing, while drinking beer and having a good chat, I bet. Way to go!

Winter ice at Martins Point

Ready and waiting for Earl

Extra lines from the mooring to the mast, just in case.

It’s a bit surreal preparing for a hurricane. If it weren’t for the weather forecasters and mass media, we’d have no idea that anything was coming. We take it on faith that they’re right, and act. We aren’t going camping or sailing this holiday weekend. Instead we’ve battened down the hatches and stocked up on cheese, and we’re waiting it out.

It looks like Earl will have been downgraded to a tropical storm before it hits Nova Scotia. We’re used to that. The colder water around Nova Scotia sucks the juice out of many hurricanes. But tropical storms can still pack quite a punch and cause damage, flood roads and unmoor boats. And occasionally a big one hits, like Hurricane Juan in 2003. So it’s best to be prepared.