Cameron Carpenter: Rock’n’Roll Rewind – Pope On A Rope and NXNE 2015

Cam Slaughter

If this seems a little bit dated it is because it went missing in cyberspace last week sometime on Tuesday.

I can tell you now that Cobra Ramone rocked, Bellwoods played a great show at The Rivoli and 54.40 did a fine job in The Beach last Saturday night.

(Editor’s Note – This column was originally meant to run last week. It somehow ended up in my SPAM folder and was hidden from sight until Cam sent it to me again with the update above. Here’s the column that was originally slated to be published a week ago today.)



It’s been busy around here. Last week I ended up on the video set for the new single from Ambers Dragon with Dale Harrison (Headstones) and Greg Godovitz. Hey, if you shooting a video in my hood you best believe I’m going to hear about it.

On Friday friends and family gathered at the Balmy Beach Club to toast this humble scribe as yet another birthday was celebrated.

Last Saturday saw the annual gathering of the Segarini clan as my boys Slaughter rocked The Phoenix. I have known Mark Slaughter and Dana Strum since the Vinnie Vincent Invasion days (1986) and although close to thirty years have passed we still manage to stay in touch and can pick-up a conversation like it was yesterday.


Mark, Cam, and Dana

As I sit writing this week’s column I am listening to Mark’s first solo record “Reflections In A Rear View Mirror”. You can check it out HERE.

The boy can still rock but there is another side to him as you can hear on “Carry Me Back Home”. I like what I hear so far.

Mark Knows Stuff….


(Editor’s Note – Remember, this was supposed to run LAST week. My apologies to Cam for misplacing it).

This week most of us will be knee-deep in NXNE. It is going to be a bit less strenuous for me this year as there is no full-fledged film festival and I have not spent the last ten months watching 400 submissions.

There are a couple of films to take note of, the Canadian premiere of the Amy Winehouse documentary “Amy” at the gorgeous Bloor Hot Docs Cinema on Saturday June 20th at 9:30 PM, and a wonderful film I have had the pleasure of seeing, “Diamond Tongue” on Sunday June 21st at 8 PM which screens at the NXNE Hub at 170 Spadina. The dramedy stars Leah Fay from July Talk and Leah will take part in a Q+A after the screening. The girl is a star.

Leah Fay’s Day Job….

I will of course be at The Bellwoods show on Friday night at 9 PM at The Rivoli and will also be checking out my old friend Cobra Ramone on Thursday at midnight at The Bovine (which will be rockin’ and servin’ until 4 AM).


Cobra Ramone


Ok, let’s rewind back to March of 1978 and a story I wrote for the Ryerson Eye Opener on Carole Pope.

“There’s Hope For Carole Pope” – March 17, 1978 


‘A black leather riding crop, it’s gonna make me squirm, undo your top. I’ve got a different kind of fetish trip, slow down Carole, kiss my whip.’

Is Goddo singing about Joni Mitchell? Bette Midler? Amy Carter? No my friends, Toronto’s toughest band sings about Carole Pope, the kinky lead vocalist of Rough Trade.

Carole has been cruising the bar scene for the past few years with such memorable bands as O, The Bullwhip Brothers and the exquisite Rough Trade. Well kids, it looks like the days of Grossmans and leather are over for this lady, Carole is ready for the big times. Toronto had its first taste of the ‘new and improved Rough Trade last December when the band put on its highly successful revue ‘Restless Underwear’. It was then that we saw the direction Carole was heading in; a full theatrical stage show which would bring more visual delight to her already steamy lyrics.

Carole and Kevan Staples (the cute little guitar picker) are now getting ready to move into the next phase of Rough Trade. It seems that the other Tradettes are dbawis-gasworksbusy with their own private projects so when Carole and Kevan tour they will use American session men. The only time we will get to see Rough Trade in the future will be when their tour dates bring them to Toronto. Never again will we be able to scoot on over to the Gasworks on a lonely Friday night to get our fair share of decadence. It’s lamentable.

I asked Prima-donna Pope what she thought of the other female singers in this lucrative business.

‘There are women in punk bands but punk is so minute that it really doesn’t count. Then there are all the other women, but for the most part they suck. There hasn’t been any strong women in rock since Janis Joplin.”

Carole, if anyone can bring women back into the spotlight it’s you.

carole and kevin

Carole and Kevin

The Horseshoe Rough Trade

Never a Dull Moment in Toronto

Kiss My Whip’ used with the kind permission of Greg Godovitz. From the album ‘Who Cares’ from Goddo.  

Get on out there and support live music and the great bars that work hard all year to bring us great entertainment.

Come by the Kensington Lodge and request “Up All Night” or “Dykes By Default”.


Cam’s column appears every Thursday.

Follow Cam on Twitter @CC59

Contact us at:

DBAWIS ButtonCameron Carpenter has written for The New Music Magazine, Music Express, The Asylum, The Varsity, The Eye Opener, The New Edition, Shades, Bomp!, Driven Magazine, FYI Music News, The Daily XY, and New Canadian Music.

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