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COVID-19 swinging a wrecking ball through the arts community

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Jesse Roads has a lot of experience playing in front of crowds.  Performing live is his life, and his livelihood.  In 22 years he’s seen it all, until now.  For the first and only time in his career, Roads finds himself at home, unable to play or book a single gig!   A couple of days into his own self-isolation, Roads sat down to tell Canadians what he and many thousands of artists are going through.  Here’s his powerful letter.

From Jesse Roads

First of all, are you ok? Are your family and loved ones looked after? With love and positivity as much as possible? I hope so much that all of the above is true for each and every one of you 💜

I’m Just your average Canadian touring musician, who doesn’t technically exist.

I’ve been quiet on all of this for some time now. Digesting day by day. Realizing this is for real. Regardless of the theories, conspiracy, agendas and any other possible thought process on the circumstances, this situation, this commonality we all now find ourselves in and yet out of our control. This is real. This is our “new normal.”

Yes, of course my upcoming shows are cancelled. Indefinitely. What does that mean? I have no idea. I’m so confused. Yet clearer than ever as to what’s important. For my family. For myself. What’s confusing is how, how in the hell can I pull this off? It’s ALWAYS been hustle day in day out. ALWAYS. I guess it’s also always been there if you work hard enough. If you swallow your pride and make it happen. It’s always been available to those of us who respect the art of making it happen. Living show to show. Supporting a family and in my case a rather large family. Is it absolutely crazy to live like that? Do you have to “sell your soul” for the best gigs on the circuit? Do you have to miss your kids birthdays, anniversaries, funerals, weddings and every other imaginable important occasion and significant moment that most people wouldn’t miss for the world? Must you sacrifice relationships and even risk being abandoned by almost every single person you let in close, regardless of the nature of why? Do you know every single time you stand in front of a microphone that everyone else is making money off of you whilst you struggle to make it through your 3rd 60 minute set of the night, of 6 nights in a row? Do you realize that almost your entire financial resources will always be a choice of Peter & Paul? Do you know that absolutely every single thing you create will be judged with or without your consent? And do you choose to do it every night smiling and giving everything you’ve got TIL there is literally nothing left relishing the absolute knowing that it was honestly your best, every time. YES. YES. YES. 1000 times YES.

See… the thing is I’ve never been an “online” thing. If you will. Yes. I am sincerely grateful for the few thousands of you that do follow me online, literally all over the world. So damn grateful. The online world of existence for me, for my music is recent tho. I love it. So much. That said it didn’t really start for me here. Most clubs I play I’ve played for years. Literally 20+ years. What comes with that is forming relationships that progress year after year. Meeting locals. Meeting owners. Meeting fans! So much comes from that. In fact I built my entire career on the back of my live show. That’s all there was when I started. Online was not even a thought. Something clicked tho. Even if it wasn’t a mouse. Lol see what I did there? (Ok Jesse enough of the dad jokes) I made it a mission to make performing live the best possible outcome I could. Which to be honest early on lol it was not that good. If you know me, you know I’ve never wavered. Never. I walk on stage and play every single show as if it were my last. Believe me, ive been on stage many times even recently feeling like it would be my last. Maybe I’ll write on that later. I’ve just never been able to not pull out all the stops. I don’t care if literally the only people in the room are the staff (let’s be honest with each other without the staff at these clubs we are nothing) I will still rip every string off of my guitar and give them something to remember. Why? Cause that’s who I am. I want anyone in the room to walk away from my show whether it’s the regular 200/300 ppl a night or an off night of 10. I want them walking away saying “What the hell was that. How is that even a thing?? DID YOU SEE THAT!?!? Because if everything else in my world is on the line for that, then I better make it count on a next level kinda way. EVERY TIME. I’ll honestly say it’s worked. It’s amazing to see what level people are willing connect on when it comes to live music.

Over the years I’ve shared the stage with some of the best friends and family a guy could ever imagine. Unbelievable to try and even recollect how many amazing times on stage I’ve been blessed with. I want that to be clear. I’ve always respected and looked up to every person that joins me on stage. In one form or another (lol most of the time I express this too much as I’m a very heart on my sleeve person) and if I’ve never said that to the many of you, then I say it now. Thank you. You’ve all helped shape me in an extraordinary way. I’m so absolutely grateful for each of you. Thank you.

So what next? Well… all of our kids are off school, myself with a pre existing heart condition, my step son with asthma are at an extremely high risk when getting sick. My fiancé works on the frontline at an emergency women’s shelter and some of our kiddos are them cray cray teenagers that think they know everything (lol sorry buds) so there’s that…

I’m very thankful that our Canadian government is rolling out help to those who do and don’t qualify. That is some serious financial aid. Is it perfect? Probably not. Not even close. But it’s a start. A huge start. I’m saying this knowing I don’t qualify regardless. It does fill my heart with some positivity that our government is actually doing “something.” The big six are deferring mortgage payments which is bloody amazing. I’m a renter tho lol. I don’t know if my landlord will pass it on or not, he is a very nice guy and has thus far shown nothing but genuine intent. Grocery stores are banding together to maintain supply and fair prices for all of us. This is beautiful. Our chief medical staff and all leaders seem to be actually working together. Also beautiful.

How do I navigate this then? I just don’t know. My mental health has always been a rough ride, anxiety, depression, loneliness and weight. Surprising right? I’m the calm guy. The nice guy. Polite guy. Well mannered caring attentive loving do anything for my circle guy. But yes up top it’s not always easy to hold it together. I get by every day because of my fiancé, our kiddos, and the rest of my circle. I should point out that music is the epicentre of all of it tho. ALL OF IT.

So… I’ll do this. I’ll create. I’ll love. I’ll give love. I’ll choose positivity (without losing sight of how important this situation is). I’ll cook. Lord will I ever cook (keep an eye out for that). I’ll play vids with my kids. I’ll read. I’ll write. I’ll plan. I’ll laugh. I’ll just continue to be me. I’ll help wherever I can. I’ll hope and pray that I can turn a fraction of my live show energy into something you guys want online. In whatever form I can. I promise I’ll try my best. I don’t know what it looks like yet. I’m not sure if it’s Facebook Live or IG or TikTok I just don’t know yet. I promise it will be something. I won’t stop giving my everything. That I’m sure of.

***OFFICIAL STATEMENT PLEASE READ***First of all, are you ok? Are your family and loved ones looked after? With love and positivity as much as possible? I hope so much that all of the above is true for each and every one of you 💜I’m Just your average Canadian touring musician, who doesn’t technically exist. I’ve been quiet on all of this for some time now. Digesting day by day. Realizing this is for real. Regardless of the theories, conspiracy, agendas and any other possible thought process on the circumstances, this situation, this commonality we all now find ourselves in and yet out of our control. This is real. This is our “new normal.” Yes, of course my upcoming shows are cancelled. Indefinitely. What does that mean? I have no idea. I’m so confused. Yet clearer than ever as to what’s important. For my family. For myself. What’s confusing is how, how in the hell can I pull this off? It’s ALWAYS been hustle day in day out. ALWAYS. I guess it’s also always been there if you work hard enough. If you swallow your pride and make it happen. It’s always been available to those of us who respect the art of making it happen. Living show to show. Supporting a family and in my case a rather large family. Is it absolutely crazy to live like that? Do you have to “sell your soul” for the best gigs on the circuit? Do you have to miss your kids birthdays, anniversaries, funerals, weddings and every other imaginable important occasion and significant moment that most people wouldn’t miss for the world? Must you sacrifice relationships and even risk being abandoned by almost every single person you let in close, regardless of the nature of why? Do you know every single time you stand in front of a microphone that everyone else is making money off of you whilst you struggle to make it through your 3rd 60 minute set of the night, of 6 nights in a row? Do you realize that almost your entire financial resources will always be a choice of Peter & Paul? Do you know that absolutely every single thing you create will be judged with or without your consent? And do you choose to do it every night smiling and giving every fucking thing you’ve got TIL there is literally nothing left relishing the absolute knowing that it was honestly your best, every time. YES. YES. YES. 1000 times YES. See… the thing is I’ve never been an “online” thing. If you will. Yes. I am sincerely grateful for the few thousands of you that do follow me online, literally all over the world. So damn grateful. The online world of existence for me, for my music is recent tho. I love it. So much. That said it didn’t really start for me here. Most clubs I play I’ve played for years. Literally 20+ years. What comes with that is forming relationships that progress year after year. Meeting locals. Meeting owners. Meeting fans! So much comes from that. In fact I built my entire career on the back of my live show. That’s all there was when I started. Online was not even a thought. Something clicked tho. Even if it wasn’t a mouse. Lol see what I did there? (Ok Jesse enough of the dad jokes) I made it a mission to make performing live the best possible outcome I could. Which to be honest early on lol it was not that good. If you know me, you know I’ve never wavered. Never. I walk on stage and play every single show as if it were my last. Believe me, ive been on stage many times even recently feeling like it would be my last. Maybe I’ll write on that later. I’ve just never been able to not pull out all the stops. I don’t care if literally the only people in the room are the staff (let’s be honest with each other without the staff at these clubs we are nothing) I will still rip every string off of my guitar and give them something to remember. Why? Cause that’s who I am. I want anyone in the room to walk away from my show whether it’s the regular 200/300 ppl a night or an off night of 10. I want them walking away saying “What the hell was that. How is that even a thing?? DID YOU SEE THAT!?!? Because if everything else in my world is on the line for that, then I better make it count on a next level kinda way. EVERY TIME. I’ll honestly say it’s worked. It’s amazing to see what level people are willing connect on when it comes to live music.Over the years I’ve shared the stage with some of the best friends and family a guy could ever imagine. Unbelievable to try and even recollect how many amazing times on stage I’ve been blessed with. I want that to be clear. I’ve always respected and looked up to every person that joins me on stage. In one form or another (lol most of the time I express this too much as I’m a very heart on my sleeve person) and if I’ve never said that to the many of you, then I say it now. Thank you. You’ve all helped shape me in an extraordinary way. I’m so absolutely grateful for each of you. Thank you. So what next? Well… all of our kids are off school, myself with a pre existing heart condition, my step son with asthma are at an extremely high risk when getting sick. My fiancé works on the frontline at an emergency women’s shelter and some of our kiddos are them cray cray teenagers that think they know everything (lol sorry buds) so there’s that…I’m very thankful that our Canadian government is rolling out help to those who do and don’t qualify. That is some serious financial aid. Is it perfect? Probably not. Not even close. But it’s a start. A huge start. I’m saying this knowing I don’t qualify regardless. It does fill my heart with some positivity that our government is actually doing “something.” The big six are deferring mortgage payments which is bloody amazing. I’m a renter tho lol. I don’t know if my landlord will pass it on or not, he is a very nice guy and has thus far shown nothing but genuine intent. Grocery stores are banding together to maintain supply and fair prices for all of us. This is beautiful. Our chief medical staff and all leaders seem to be actually working together. Also beautiful. How do I navigate this then? I just don’t know. My mental health has always been a rough ride, anxiety, depression, loneliness and weight. Surprising right? I’m the calm guy. The nice guy. Polite guy. Well mannered caring attentive loving do anything for my circle guy. But yes up top it’s not always easy to hold it together. I get by every day because of my fiancé, our kiddos, and the rest of my circle. I should point out that music is the epicentre of all of it tho. ALL OF IT. So… I’ll do this. I’ll create. I’ll love. I’ll give love. I’ll choose positivity (without losing sight of how important this situation is). I’ll cook. Lord will I ever cook (keep an eye out for that). I’ll play vids with my kids. I’ll read. I’ll write. I’ll plan. I’ll laugh. I’ll just continue to be me. I’ll help wherever I can. I’ll hope and pray that I can turn a fraction of my live show energy into something you guys want online. In whatever form I can. I promise I’ll try my best. I don’t know what it looks like yet. I’m not sure if it’s Facebook Live or IG or TikTok I just don’t know yet. I promise it will be something. I won’t stop giving my everything. That I’m sure of. I want to say there are so many people that I consider family whom are absolutely going to be devastated by this crisis. It’s unbelievably sad on so many complex levels. So so so many affected. From clubs to staff to owners to patrons to bands and comedians, agents, managers, and so many more. I’m so sorry we all have to go through this. My thoughts are with you all. Please, if you’ve made it this far through the read, you know who you all are, reach out to me. If you need to chat, vent, joke or cry. Please reach out. I’ll do my best to be available. I am thankful and grateful for you all. So very much. It’s ok if you didn’t make it to the end, lol if you know me you know I’ll talk forever. I don’t honestly know how I’ll hassle this time to get my family through. I’ll need help. Somehow. From somewhere. Groceries etc. That part is true. I can admit that. I’m gonna leave my email address here with ZERO EXPECTATIONS from anyone to send anything. That said if you find it in your heart that you may be able to send well wishes, monies, jokes, recipes or any other possible positivity in this dark time, myself and my family thanks you. From the bottom of our hearts. Anyone who does send monies will receive exclusive content. Created specifically for said sender. My email is: greengoosebiz@gmail.comThank you. I know I’m not the only one in this position. I understand this. Please only send monies if it is not leaving you and or your loved ones without. I’m excited to make a bigger splash online. Below is a link to my music, at the very least it would mean the world to me if you had some spare time for a listen and a follow. Spotify:https://open.spotify.com/artist/1qpilwOAm1tJ35Ia27tmvD?si=uSO-Z0MMQ9WXbdlRBwrOhgLastly I’ll leave you with this. Peace & Love. That’s what we need right now. With purpose. On purpose. Much love fam. I’ll get some content up real soon buds 💜- Jesse Sawback Brewing Co. Hotels Red Deer Gilmore Guitars Inc. Graffitti Music Lucid Tattooing + Design Shaw Spotlight CBC Calgary CBC Edmonton CBC CKUA Radio Network CTV Edmonton CTV News Global News Global Calgary Global Edmonton 106.7 THE DRIVE The City of Red Deer Justin Trudeau Jason Kenney Saskatoon StarPhoenix Edmonton Journal Todayville Red Deer Todayville Edmonton The Globe and Mail The New York Times Spotify Apple Music SONiC 102.9 106.7 ROCK The Howard Stern Show Buds on Broadway The Rose & Crown Banff Wild Bill's Legendary Saloon The Drake Public House Blues on Whyte / Commercial Hotel Capitol Music Club The Vat Pub Leah's Bar and Grill – LBG's The Velvet Olive Lounge The JUNO Awards Lake Louise Inn Global Lethbridge Lethbridge Herald Guitar World Rolling Stone Whiskey A Go-Go Red Deer Advocate #imnothteonlyone #jesseroads The Maple Leaf #nostringsolo #pleasehelp #where #you #can #be #love #and #positivity Original Joe's Elephant & Castle #somanymore #covid19 #coronavirus #canadaperforms

Posted by Jesse Roads on Wednesday, 18 March 2020

I want to say there are so many people that I consider family whom are absolutely going to be devastated by this crisis. It’s unbelievably sad on so many complex levels. So so so many affected. From clubs to staff to owners to patrons to bands and comedians, agents, managers, and so many more. I’m so sorry we all have to go through this. My thoughts are with you all. Please, if you’ve made it this far through the read, you know who you all are, reach out to me. If you need to chat, vent, joke or cry. Please reach out. I’ll do my best to be available. I am thankful and grateful for you all. So very much.

It’s ok if you didn’t make it to the end, lol if you know me you know I’ll talk forever. I don’t honestly know how I’ll hassle this time to get my family through. I’ll need help. Somehow. From somewhere. Groceries etc. That part is true. I can admit that. I’m gonna leave my email address here with ZERO EXPECTATIONS from anyone to send anything. That said if you find it in your heart that you may be able to send well wishes, monies, jokes, recipes or any other possible positivity in this dark time, myself and my family thanks you. From the bottom of our hearts. Anyone who does send monies will receive exclusive content. Created specifically for said sender. My email is:

greengoosebiz@gmail.com

Thank you. I know I’m not the only one in this position. I understand this. Please only send monies if it is not leaving you and or your loved ones without.

I’m excited to make a bigger splash online. Below is a link to my music, at the very least it would mean the world to me if you had some spare time for a listen and a follow.

Spotify:
https://open.spotify.com/artist/1qpilwOAm1tJ35Ia27tmvD…

Lastly I’ll leave you with this.
Peace & Love. That’s what we need right now. With purpose. On purpose.

The Red Deer Arts Council is sharing its current exhibition online!

#RedDeerStrong

And Money Flowed in the Streets….

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It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…

Charles Dickens was a masterful writer with a superb grasp of the human psyche. In his Christmas Carol, which has been retold thousands of time since its original publication, he captured the penultimate human tragedy and richness: gratitude and thankfulness leads to an overflowing heart.

However, in this time in our world while every medical officer and professional is running the Covid 19 marathon, internet and news channel surfers are digesting every chart and update hungrily, and business men and women are looking to an uncertain future post crisis, people are discovering what is truly valuable.

We have witnessed the dismantling of sports empires worldwide-the NFL, NHL, MLB, MLS, PGA tours and other professional sports are now on pause for the 2020 season. Our entertainment industry, in addition to seeing Harvey Weinstein charged with sexual assault is also shut down worldwide. Business empires, so powerful in previous months are now powerless to resist falling sales and changing trend.

The gods of this world are now neutered, powerless, crownless and less significant everyday.

While public gatherings have been outlawed in numbers over 15, and social distancing has replaced conversation and relationships, families are spending more time together and hobbies are on the rise. I would venture to say that more people have never read so many books, or cooked so many cookies, or binged on Netflix or have been engaged with video entertainment than ever before.

On the positive side, crime rates are down. People are home so thieves are less likely to find empty homes.

The porn industry has shut down.

Houses are cleaneMoney flowed in the stretsr, and early spring cleaning is occurring.

Income tax season, while lengthened, will be less stressful for people.

Afternoon naps are now fashionable again.

People of faith can now find (or make) time to pray, read, and watch sermons and seminars online.

Music is more likely being played from all decades more often.

And then we consider the plight of the rich and entitled, when Covid 19 or any disease/condition enters their homes and robs them of health and a sense of well being…

Earlier today on whatsapp, a picture was posted with a quote from Sidhu, but it could also be from Ecclesiastes as well…

The richest people in Italy threw the money on the road and said, “This did not work in our bad times, we cannot save our loved ones, we cannot save our children, what is the use of this wealth? There is a lesson for those who value money more than humanity …. humbleness

Ecclesiastes 1: 1-4 states that, in the words of the teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem that”

 “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher.
“Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”

 What do people gain from all their labors at which they toil under the sun?
 Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever.”

In Italy, where Covid 19 has claimed thousands of victims, where a country is held hostage by something so small and insignificant, they have realized that no matter how much money they have, no matter now much power they have, that it cannot save their lives.

Their money, once a symbol of wealth and stature, now blows down empty city streets, rolling and curling in response to slight breezes and great gusts. Passers by walk by, pick up Euro every now and then and gaze upon the piles of powerless and valueless currency that pales in comparison to the greatest treasure of all: faith, humanity, health and humility.

Crisis Financial Management-From Where Should It Come?

 

 

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#RedDeerStrong – If you’re struggling and you need to consolidate debt through a mortgage refinance, Kristen is here for you.

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What does your business do?

I’m a Mortgage Broker. I am able to help you and your family with:

-New home purchases
-Negotiating your mortgage at renewal
-Mortgage refinancing
-Reverse mortgages (Age 55+)
-Investment property financing
-Vacation properties & 2nd homes
-Alternative lending options & more

How has COVID-19 affected you?

In many ways, its still too early to say exactly how my business will be affected. In the last couple of weeks since we’ve gone into serious isolation mode, many of my customer’s jobs have been affected. Many have either been laid off, or had their hours reduced. My husband has also lost his job. As you can imagine, uncertainty around income and employment, can really throw a wrench into finalizing your mortgage.

Many people have put off their plans to buy a home this year, even if they are still working, simply because they’re scared. If you’re one of those people, I don’t blame you one bit! Some people who have been thinking about refinancing or renewing early, have been frantically trying to close their new mortgage, before their employment is potentially affected.

Kristen Bellows, Mortgage Broker

What are you doing to adapt?

I have always conducted a lot of my business over the phone, as well as through text and e-mail. Before Covid-19, I was having face-to-face meetings about 30% of the time, which I’ve had to discontinue for the time being.
I’ve always tried to be more of a support or a teacher to potential customers, so I have really been focusing more on that lately. I’m here for you!

What kind of help do you need?

My business thrives on positive word of mouth and referrals from friends, family, and happy customers! If you hear of someone who is still planning to purchase a home, needs mortgage advice for an upcoming renewal, or needs to consolidate some debt through a mortgage refinance, I would be honoured to help.

What do you want the community to know?

I’m here to help you! If you have been struggling financially up to this point, a catastrophic event can leave you feeling incredibly stressed and anxious. If there is something that I can do to help you, let me know. I’m always more than happy to provide you with advice and resources, even if I can’t help you with your mortgage.

Kristen Bellows
Mortgage Broker
phone: 403.598.6789
toll free phone: 877.426.4912
toll free fax: 877.432.4794
email: kristen.bellows@mortgagegroup.com

#RedDeerStrong – Small business wants to make a big difference to families with ‘isolated’ children

 

#RedDeerStrong – Adjusting to isolation? Now’s the time for new habits. Studio Pilates will help make fitness part of your new routine.

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april, 2020

fri17apr10:00 am9:00 pmFeaturedOur Best to You Spring Handmade Market10:00 am - 9:00 pm Westerner Park, Parkland & Prairie Pavilions, 4847A-19 Street Event Organized By: Signatures Shows Ltd

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