URBAN TAPESTRY HISTORY
By Allison Durno
This proved to be a very exciting year for our new group! In January we attended Confusion in Michigan, where we gave our very first concert ever. It was a children’s concert with the group BC2. Jodi was also Madeira-ed by Mark Bernstein at that convention J . Our first non-children’s filk concert was at Astronomicon in Rochester in February. At FilKONtario in Toronto we also gave a concert and we released our first tape, “Castles and Skyscrapers” (produced by Kathy Johnson, sound engineered by Carl, cover art by Ruth Ohi). We also attended Ad Astra and Toronto Trek, where we were involved in filk programming. In May Debbie’s song “A Neurotic Love Song” was printed in the “Farewell to ST:TNG” issue of the TV Guide. Jodi and Allison sang “Two Voices” at Mike and Elisa Green’s wedding. We attended our first WorldCon in Winnipeg and performed with new filk friends. We sang children’s music in a series of concerts for the Toronto Public Library in the fall. We were dazzled to be the Interfilk Guests at ConChord in LA, where we met many American friends and broadened our filk horizons. We finished the year by publishing the “Urban Tapestry Songbook”, a volume of music, chords, photos and cross-stitch patterns.
This year we returned to Confusion in Michigan, where we were again involved in filk programming. We were asked to perform a concert at Toronto’s FilKONtario. We were featured with many other local filkers on the filktape “North Coast Cabaret”. We were music guests at Toronto Trek where we gave two concerts and performed as the pre-Masquerade act. We gave a concert at the Ohio Valley Filk Festival where we were also honoured to be nominated for our first Pegasus Award for Best Performer (deservedly won by Michael Longcor!).
We enjoyed being involved in filk programming at FilKONtario, Ad Astra (participating in a filk coffee house) and Toronto Trek (singing a media concert with Paul Kwinn and Ookla The Mok). Deb’s song “TechnoNerdboy” was broadcast on the CBC radio program “Basic Black”. We began recording our first CD, “Myths and Urban Legends” with sound engineer David Goulden. Beckett Gladney agrees to do the cover art for our new CD. Bill Roper’s company, Dodeka Records, agrees to produce and distribute the CD.
At FKO we performed a children’s concert with Scott Snyder. At that same con we did some recording with Scott for his filktape “Bardic Lug”. We also travelled to Buffalo to record with Ookla The Mok for their CD “Less Than Art”. We performed at an SCA event in Rockwood with Mark Osier. We were brought to KeyCon in Winnipeg to perform thanks to the Musician’s Hat Fund. The Second ConCerto, the NorthEast Filkcon (June 13-15) invited us to be their Guest of Honour. We also performed at Ad Astra and Toronto Trek. We attended OVFF where we released our first CD, “Myths and Urban Legends”. We were also honoured to win our first Pegasus Award for Best Performer.
We performed a joint concert with Ookla The Mok at Confusion in Michegan. We attended FKO in Toronto and Contata in Maryland and we gave children’s library concerts for the Toronto Public Library.
(Note: From 1998 until 2003 I did not keep Urban Tapestry archives nor an on-line journal, so my memories of what UT did in those years is more sketchy.)
We were honoured to be invited as Guest of Honour for our hometown filkcon, FilKONtario. To mark the occasion Debbie wrote a song about the con called “Home To FilKONtario”, which FKO has used as their closing song on Sunday afternoon ever since. Allison and Debbie attended the Winnipeg Folk Festival in July, hanging out with the “BaggieCon” filkers. We all attended OVFF.
We were the Guest of Honour at Didgeri-Douze, the English filkcon, where we met a whole new group of wonderful filk friends. We also attended FKO.
We were the music guest of honour at Ad Astra, along with fellow literary guests Connie Willis and Robert J. Sawyer. We were also the filk Guest of Honour at Consonance in San Jose, California. We also attended both FKO and OVFF.
We came full-circle from our Interfilk gig at ConChord in LA in 1994 by being guest of honour at ConChord in 2002. And, of course, we attended FKO!
We attended FKO in the spring. We went to ConCertino, the NorthEast filkcon, where we participated in a children’s concert and where we held a party to celebrate our 10th anniversary as a group. WorldCon took place in Toronto in 2003 (Torcon) and we gave a concert as well as participating in a children’s concert and a filk space celebration. We also released our second CD, “Sushi and High Tea” at Torcon. “Sushi and High Tea” was a collection of live tracks that we had performed at Didgeri-Douze in England and ConChord in LA (mastered by Chris Conway, cover art by Beckett Gladney).
At FKO we were involved in a fantasy-themed joint concert. We also went to Confluence in Pittsburgh, where we had a concert. In September, Allison was interviewed by her hometown paper, The Richmond Hill Liberal, about Urban Tapestry. A month late Jodi was interviewed by her hometown paper in Newmarket, as well. We were part of a children’s concert and the Pegasus Nominee Concert at OVFF and we were honoured to win the Pegasus Awards for Best Performer and Best Song, for Jodi’s “The Lady”.
Besides going home to FilKONtario we were also invited to be the Guests of Honour at Boskone in Boston, where we gave a concert and participated on assorted panels. October saw us winging our way to Germany, where we were the Guest of Honour at FilkContinental at a wonderful castle in Freusburg. We met a whole new fabulous community of German filkers!
At FKO we gave a joint concert with German filker Franklin Gunkelmann. Later in the summer we were honoured to win the Aurora Award (Canadian Science Fiction Award) for Fan Achievement. We sang in the Pegasus Nominee Concert at OVFF and Deb and Jodi tied with Tom Smith, winning a Pegasus Award for Best Food Song for “Sex and Chocolate”.
The year started with us as Guests of Honour at GaFilk in Atlanta. We did concerts and workshops, cross-stitched a quilt square of ourselves for the charity quilt and danced as Jodi performed with "Play It With Moxie". We participated in a children’s concert at FKO. We drove down to Rochester to give a house concert, hosted by the wonderful John and Joanne Hall. In November we recorded a NaNoWriMo song written by Debbie to be featured on their webpage.
We flew to Baltimore to be the music Guest of Honour at Balticon. We gave a concert, led theme filks and presented a workshop. In September we performed at Nathan Phillip’s Square at the “Run For The Cure” event. Deb wrote a song called “Run For The Cure” for the occasion. We also attended FKO and OVFF.
We had a lot of fun at our first ToastMistress gig at FilKONtario. We performed a concert, presented a workshop and ran around announcing everyone else. The second half of 2009 saw little UT activity due to Allison breaking her wrist while hiking the Viking trails in Newfoundland that summer.
We recorded backing tracks for Dandelion Wine’s new CD, “The Face On Mars”. In the fall, we're the Guests Of Honor at OVFF (Ohio Valley Filk Fest).