As I was driving down the street today, I passed a rather unkempt hippy type...hair flowing, almost dreads, but not quite; several years worth of beard growth; four bottles of what could only be moonshine creatively strung together and slung over his shoulders. The out of town guest who was with me commented, "I must remember to always have my camera on me when I'm in Nelson. They all seem to come out in the spring, don't they?" Honestly, why wouldn't they? ...whoever that they refers too. The weather has been fabulous and it certainly has brought me out.
Anyways, less than a block later, we passed a couple, a very different sort of appearance than the first fellow. They were carrying a bottle of wine and some sort of casserole dish. They were obviously on their way to a potluck...another very popular activity in these parts. All this to say that's part of what I love about this area...we actually do have ALL types and we all seem to be comfortable enough in our own skin to be open to interaction with those who may be quite different than ourselves.
This openness to exchange of ideas and cultures is probably what has made this area a mecca for artsy types. Nelson is known for their potters (and I'm not talking the marijuana type, although there's that too), painters, theatre types, creative street entertainers, musicians, you name it. To humour you all, one of these days I will venture out with my camera to document "a day in the life of..."
Speaking of all the artsy types that come from this area, I was recently introduced to the music of a musician who hails from the area that might be worth a listen: Shawn Hlookoff. He's young, and that does show through in his music. However, what I particularly like is his acknowledgement that music has a powerful influence on society and his desire to use it as a medium for positive change. In his own words, "My goal is to write songs that have some sort of positive message or meaning that gets ingrained in a persons psyche. I want to tap into the mind of someone who's struggling through life and change their pessimistic view into optimism."
Very lofty goal, indeed. He also says that he wants to "use music as a voice for people who don't have the power to get their voice heard, or to help all those unromantic bastards get some action. " Okay, so I guess we can't be deep all the time, and he is, afterall, only 22. If you are interested in checking out some of his music, you can have a listen to quite a number of his songs on his official website. Happy listening.