Cameron Carpenter: Past and Present Tens – Tell it to Kari

First Dance Nov 7 2015

November 7, 2015 was a magical day. Kari Seattle Carpenter became Kari Seattle Perioris. Kari is my daughter. I guess every father hopes he will be there when his little girl walks down the aisle with the person that they will share the rest of their life with. I was thrilled to have that honour and to leave her in the hands of her husband Mario Michael Perirois.

Kari Mario Nov 7 2015

Kari and Mario

Kari, along with her baby brother Kyle (who was a handsome member of the wedding party as well as a speaker at the reception) both grew up in a musical household. The name Seattle came from the song “88 Lines About 44 Women” by The Nails (she was born pre-grunge). There were records, tapes, CD’s, posters, gold records, drums, guitars, keyboards and a piano in the house.  They both attended shows at an early age and it was not uncommon to have local and international celebrities hanging around the back yard. Here are ten great rock’n’roll memories I have with Kari.

  1. She loved music as soon as she heard it. When she starting speaking she would say “Duke, duke, duke” and this meant I had to put on  Gene Chandler’s“Duke of Earl”, “Pop” meant “Pop Goes The World” by Men Without Hats and The Complainers was her way of asking to hear The Proclaimers. By the age of four she could listen to a song and plunk out the correct notes on the piano. I am still incapable of doing this. 
  2. Unlike her father Kari never showed any signs of stage fright. She was in every school play and had no fear of belting out a song in front of a packed assembly. She was a fox in performances of “The Cunning Little Vixen” with the Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus at the Hummingbird Centre and in Grade 8 sang  Sarah McLachlan’s “Angel” in a school production to a hushed audience. 
  3. Kari was at the perfect age when the likes of Britney Spears, N’sync and the Backstreet Boys broke into the mainstream. She was fortunate that her Dad worked with all of those artists and she would often find herself (and a few friends) in the company of those artists. The first time ‘Nsync came to Toronto on a promotional visit we threw a little event for them at The Playdium in Mississauga. To this day she loves to tell the story of shooting hoops with Justin Timberlake. 
  4. Britney was another favourite and her first performance in Toronto was a three-song set at The Joker down in the entertainment district. Kari got to spend the day with Britney (she still has the signed setlist) both at the event and then for a private little dinner over at Planet Hollywood. I’m pretty sure she also saw and met The Backstreet Boys at every show they did in Toronto.  
  5. Alanis spent a lot of time at the house when she moved from Ottawa to the east end of Toronto. The two of them could entertain themselves for hours without me having to worry. When Alanis’ debut MCA went gold I had the company make my award out to Kari. When Alanis left the MCA family and recorded “Jagged Little Pill” her first promo visit was an afternoon set at The Velvet Underground (with Taylor Hawkins on drums) and even though Alanis was no longer my artist after the show she headed over to the rooftop of Wayne Gretzky’s restaurant with the entire family to spend some time with us and the kids. When “Jagged” exploded Kari and I went up to Molson Park in Barrie to watch her perform for 30,000 fans. Kari was interviewed by CTV at the event and she got to visit Alanis backstage. 
  6. 6. Kari was always close to The Pursuit of Happiness. She saw them many times in concert and the entire band were very kind to both of my children. Guitarist Kris Abbott was recording a solo children’s record (“Bottlehopper”) and brought Kari into the studio to help with the narration and a little bit of singing. The album was never released but I still well-up when I hear her demo recording of “Field of Flowers”. 
  7. As a family we were very close to Haydain Neale (who we lost six years ago on November 22nd), his wife Michaela and daughter Yasmin (who were both at the wedding). We would spend Easter together at Scratch Daniels in The Beach eating wings and watching the annual parade, and we spent many New Year Eve’s together at our house. Haydain took Kari into the studio a few times to help him with some vocals on the demos he was doing. For some reason I don’t seem to have any of those recordings. We honoured Haydain’s memory by playing a little Jacksoul at the wedding. 
  8. When I was managing the late-great National Anthem Kari was once again brought in the studio (Orange) to add vocals and sing a solo verse of their song “Sugarpop”. She did a wonderful job but unfortunately we did not have a hit single.
  9. 9. Around the time of their album “A Worm’s Life” The Crash Test Dummies were going to headline the annual Mix 99 Beach Labour Day show down in Woodbine Park. We decided to make a day of it and hosted the band and record company folks in our backyard for a barbeque. A good time was had by all. That night, in front of about 20,000 people Brad Roberts thought it would be fun to perform a cover of Britney’s “Baby One More Time”. The song becomes very dark when Brad takes over the vocals with his incredible voice. With no warning whatsoever Brad calls out for Kari to join him on stage and turns the song into a duet. 

10.     When the parents of the bride and groom were announced at the reception we entered the hall to the song “Kids” by MGMT, the wedding party danced in to “Backstreet’s Back” and Kari and Mario went directly to the dance floor for their wedding song “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran. For months I had been fretting about what song I was going to dance to with my little girl. Being a music guy people were expecting something different and hopefully I didn’t disappoint with “My Darling” from Wilco. The lyrics seemed very appropriate and now every time I hear the song I will think of that special day.

“ Go back to sleep now
My darlin’
And I’ll keep all the bad dreams away
Breathe now
Think sweet things

And I’ll think of all the right words to say
Because we made you
My darlin’
With the love in each of our hearts
We were a family my darlin’
Right from the start

Grow up now
My darlin’
Please don’t you grow up too fast
And be sure, darlin’
To make all the good times last
Because we made you
My darlin’
With the love in each of our hearts
We were a family, my darlin’
Right from the start”


Follow Cam on Twitter @CC59

Cam’s column appears every Thursday

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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, New Canadian Music, NXNE Magazine and Don’t Believe A Word I Say.

2 Responses to “Cameron Carpenter: Past and Present Tens – Tell it to Kari”

  1. Beautiful. ….and congrats to all. Now a whole new life begins.

  2. Beautiful Cam

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