Recent Blog Posts

Sultans of String Launch New Weekly Online Interview & Music Series: BACKSTAGE

New weekly livestream kicks off Friday with new video/single! Sultans of String are excited to announce… BACKSTAGE! Their new online Interview & Music series features guests from their Refuge and Sanctuary albums. Join Sultans of String each Friday at Noon EST on Facebook as they dive into the lives and the music of these fascinating artists,Continue reading “Sultans of String Launch New Weekly Online Interview & Music Series: BACKSTAGE”

Too Close to Heaven: A Poem by Christine Bode for Those Suffering With Their Mental Health

Do you or someone you know feel as if you’re getting too close to heaven? Do you feel that life is unbearable on this crazy blue planet and that you don’t know how much longer you can live here? I have felt that way too, I assure you. Acutely aware that an innumerable amount ofContinue reading “Too Close to Heaven: A Poem by Christine Bode for Those Suffering With Their Mental Health”

Exclusive Review of Finny McConnell’s (The Mahones) Debut Solo Album, The Dark Streets of Love

I’m honoured to be the first person to review Finny McConnell’s (The Mahones) debut solo album, The Dark Streets of Love!

After 30 glorious years of leading worldwide, renowned Celtic punk rockers, The Mahones—who have shared stages and toured with the likes of Dropkick Murphys, Shane MacGowan (The Pogues), Stiff Little Fingers, Billy Bragg, The Buzzcocks, Sinead O’Connor, and The Damned to name a few—Finny McConnell decided that it was time to make an album for himself as he winds down and adjusts to his “Van Morrison years”, although I’m sure he has enough piss and vinegar left in him that he will not go quietly or gently into the night.

Fantasy Book Review and Author Interview: A Drowned Kingdom (The Drowned Kingdom Saga Book 1) by P.L. Stuart

Fantasy Book Review Title: A Drowned Kingdom (The Drowned Kingdom Saga Book 1)Author:  P.L. StuartPublisher: FriesenPressReleased: February 2, 2021Pages: 404ASIN: B08VS15WTRBook Reviewer: Christine BodeStars:  4 Othrun, son of King Atalan the Falcon, the Second Prince, and estranged half-brother to Erthal, the First Prince (sons of the pear-shaped island kingdom of Atalantyx), narrates this epic taleContinue reading “Fantasy Book Review and Author Interview: A Drowned Kingdom (The Drowned Kingdom Saga Book 1) by P.L. Stuart”

3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING Commemorate the Anniversary of the 1988 OJHRI CAMP Disaster With New Video From Their REFUGE Project

WHEN: Video Premiere – Friday April 9, 2021 at 10:30 am ESTSONG: Ojhri Camp, from album Refuge Sultans of String, featuring Anwar Khurshid & Ravi Naimpally Go to the video on YouTube at this link https://youtu.be/L4TQs_WGbNI to SET REMINDER for the premiere. [Toronto ON] Sultans of String are releasing this song to coincide with the April 10 anniversaryContinue reading “3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING Commemorate the Anniversary of the 1988 OJHRI CAMP Disaster With New Video From Their REFUGE Project”

Author Dawn James Cheated Death and Now Shares Profound Revelations in her New Book, Unveiled: Autobiography of an Awakened One

Toronto, Ontario, Canada —March 18, 2021— Author Dawn James wrote a spellbinding new autobiography, Unveiled: Autobiography of an Awakened One, set for release on March 20, 2021.  James, who conquered vision and hearing loss, being paralyzed and mute, shares her audacious story of how she cheated death and awoke to life-altering revelations.  This memoir highlights James’s spiritualContinue reading “Author Dawn James Cheated Death and Now Shares Profound Revelations in her New Book, Unveiled: Autobiography of an Awakened One”

Chris Sunfield’s Second Single “Predator” is an Abrupt About-Face Following His Sunshine Pop Debut!

“PREDATOR” by Chris Sunfield OUT NOW! 12 February 2020 (TORONTO) – Chris Sunfield’s second single “Predator” is an abrupt about-face following his sunshine pop debut “The Little Things”. Predator is a provocative poison pen letter to romantic predators, exposing their psychopathic and Machiavellian ways. The lyrics, with their reptilian metaphors, serve to validate anyone who’sContinue reading “Chris Sunfield’s Second Single “Predator” is an Abrupt About-Face Following His Sunshine Pop Debut!”

Award-winning Celebrity Skincare Entrepreneur Jean Pierre Releases Powerful New Memoir on the Uphill Climb to Personal & Professional Success

TORONTO – Feb. 3, 2021  — On February 27th, Jamaican-Canadian Icon and Skin Care Guru Jean Pierre is set to release a bold new memoir entitled Uphill Climb. The book details Pierre’s inspirational journey as a healthcare practitioner, entrepreneur, international public speaker and creator of the popular Obsidian Skincare line. Uphill Climb delves into Pierre’s deeply personal health struggles as aContinue reading “Award-winning Celebrity Skincare Entrepreneur Jean Pierre Releases Powerful New Memoir on the Uphill Climb to Personal & Professional Success”

“The Matrix” a Poem by Christine Bode

The Matrix by Christine Bode Everett,in the movie Paterson says, after pulling a fake gun on everyone in the bar, “Without love, what reason is there for anything?”I don’t know, Everett… nothing, not a fucking thing that matters anyway.Without love, every day is the same damn pandemic day.Wake up, walk the dog, make coffee, drink coffee, read a book,do housework, workContinue reading ““The Matrix” a Poem by Christine Bode”

Sultans of String Interactive Zoom Concert #5 – Lockdown Smackdown on January 23, 2021

Happy New Year friends, I don’t know about you, but this new lockdown is making us feel a little too isolated…Therefore announcing our Sultans of String Livestream January 23, 8:00 pm EST Livestream -Lockdown Smackdown Edition! Let’s super-spread some good live-streaming vibes and keep connected. Isolating doesn’t have to be lonely! And we can celebrate the inaugurationContinue reading “Sultans of String Interactive Zoom Concert #5 – Lockdown Smackdown on January 23, 2021”

New Book, And Still Champion, Introduces the World to a Group of Undisputed Champions

Bold Men Who Have Found Victory in Telling Their Most Personal Stories Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion. ~ Muhammad Ali Atlanta, Ga. – Dec. 30, 2020  — New anthology And Still Champion: The Reality of What 7 Men Endured features the most revealing, provocative and personal stories of seven Black menContinue reading “New Book, And Still Champion, Introduces the World to a Group of Undisputed Champions”

New Book Captures the Courageous Untold Stories of 13 Women Who Have Triumphed Over Adversity

Atlanta, Ga. – Dec. 18, 2020 — Thirteen women reveal the hidden stories behind their smiles in a new anthology called, Beyond the Smile, released on Thanksgiving Day 2020 with a virtual launch event that took place on Cyber Monday, November 30th. Beyond the Smile contains 13 powerful stories of African American women who have beaten the odds and haveContinue reading “New Book Captures the Courageous Untold Stories of 13 Women Who Have Triumphed Over Adversity”

Anti-Labyrinths by Boris Glikman and Michael Cheval

Discover the Philosophical, Fantastical Fiction of Australian Writer Boris Glikman, and a Sneak Peek of His Upcoming Coffee Table Book, Anti-Labyrinths, with Art by Michael Cheval Over the years, I have published many of Australian author, Boris Glikman‘s short stories on my blog, because I’m a fan of his work. He is currently working onContinue reading “Anti-Labyrinths by Boris Glikman and Michael Cheval”

Mary’s Meals Canada celebrates Annie Lennox and “Universal Child” Gift

Mary’s Meals Canada Celebrates ANNIE LENNOX and“Universal Child” Gift TORONTO, Canada. Mary’s Meals Canada, the school feeding charity, celebrates Annie Lennox and the gift of her hit single, “Universal Child.” Recognized as one of the most successful, iconic, and revered pop artists, Ms. Lennox has sold over 86 million albums worldwide. “With deep gratitude, we areContinue reading “Mary’s Meals Canada celebrates Annie Lennox and “Universal Child” Gift”

Raise Your Vibration and Transform Your Life with Dawn James

Title: Raise Your Vibration, Transform Your Life: A Practical Guide for Attaining Better Health, Vitality and Inner PeaceAuthor: Dawn JamesPublisher: Lotus Moon PressReleased: 2010Pages: 158ISBN: 978-0-9865378-1-3Stars: 4 Title: How to Raise The Vibration Around You: Volume 1 – Working with the 4 Elements to Create Healthy and Harmonious Living SpacesAuthor: Dawn JamesPublisher: Lotus Moon PressReleased: 2014Pages: 171ISBN: 978-0-9865378-0-6Stars: 4Continue reading “Raise Your Vibration and Transform Your Life with Dawn James”

3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING take their Global Grooves & Goodwill to hearts and homes with their Christmas Caravan & UNHCR Fundraising Zoom Concert!

SAT. DEC. 19, 2020 – 8:00pm EST (5:00 PST / 7:00pm CST) SPECIAL GUESTS: Rebecca Campbell, Tamar Ilana, Donné Roberts, Kristine St-Pierre & more TBA! ZOOM TICKETS: http://christmascaravan2020.eventbrite.caFACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/202730184800176 As winter crests and the mercury falls, everyone from your taxi driver to the music supervisor at the mall starts running timeless hits like “Jingle Bells” andContinue reading “3x JUNO Nominees and Billboard Charting SULTANS OF STRING take their Global Grooves & Goodwill to hearts and homes with their Christmas Caravan & UNHCR Fundraising Zoom Concert!”

21 Resilient Women: Stories of Courage, Growth, and Transformation

This autumn, I have been honoured to work as a copy editor on four books for PublishandPromote.ca and this book was the first of a trio of anthologies. This anthology contains stories by 21 different women who are sure to inspire you with their courage, growth, and transformation! The book was compiled by Canadian careerContinue reading “21 Resilient Women: Stories of Courage, Growth, and Transformation”

Debut Single by Chris Sunfield “The Little Things” Out Now!

Reinvented, former consultant teams up with Juno-Award winning producer for later-life debut single! “The Little Things” Chris SunfieldOUT NOW! 15 OCTOBER 2020 (TORONTO, ON) – “The Little Things” is the debut single by Chris Sunfield on Radar Love Records. The song, written by Sunfield, is a modern, sunshine pop song on steroids, with a wall-of-soundContinue reading “Debut Single by Chris Sunfield “The Little Things” Out Now!”

Canadian Singer-Songwriter David Leask Releases “Voyageur in Song”

Republished with permission from David Leask Today is the release of my new record, “Voyageur In Song”, songs written on and with the Six String Nation guitar, nick-named Voyageur.  This incredible instrument is made of 64 pieces of Canadian history and culture.  I have written songs about a group of those pieces and their inspiring stories.  There’s a reasonContinue reading “Canadian Singer-Songwriter David Leask Releases “Voyageur in Song””

Sultans of String featuring Béla Fleck and Robi Botos release “The Grand Bazaar” from the New Album REFUGE

Artist: Sultans of String Single: The Grand Bazaar, featuring Béla Fleck and Robi Botos From the new album REFUGE “Refuge is a fantastic, moving, dreamlike, epic, timely album.” ~ Ken Micallef (Jazz Times, Stereophile, Downbeat) New York, NY – Sultans of String release gorgeously evocative and powerful single The Grand Bazaar, featuring 15 time Grammy AwardContinue reading “Sultans of String featuring Béla Fleck and Robi Botos release “The Grand Bazaar” from the New Album REFUGE”

Reality and “Reality”: A New Perspective by Boris Glikman

Reality and “Reality”: A New Perspective by Boris Glikman   Part I Imagine if you had a friend who had the following characteristics and personality traits and behaved in the ways described below.  Suppose that this friend considered it his sacred duty to visit you daily at your home and make a report to youContinue reading “Reality and “Reality”: A New Perspective by Boris Glikman”

Book Review: Burt Reynolds on Screen by Wayne Byrne (Featuring Q&A with Author)

BOOK REVIEW Title: Burt Reynolds on Screen Author:  Wayne Byrne Publisher: McFarland & Company Inc. Released: December 19, 2019 Pages: 314 ISBN: 978-1476674988 Stars: 5 In 1972, Burt Reynolds became famous with his breakthrough role in Deliverance. The actor also posed as Cosmopolitan’s first-ever nude male centerfold in 1972, “marking a milestone in the sexualContinue reading “Book Review: Burt Reynolds on Screen by Wayne Byrne (Featuring Q&A with Author)”

Mary’s Meals Canada celebrates Annie Lennox and “Universal Child” Gift

Mary’s Meals Canada Celebrates ANNIE LENNOX and
“Universal Child” Gift

TORONTO, Canada.

Mary’s Meals Canada, the school feeding charity, celebrates Annie Lennox and the gift of her hit single, “Universal Child.” Recognized as one of the most successful, iconic, and revered pop artists, Ms. Lennox has sold over 86 million albums worldwide.

“With deep gratitude, we are very excited that Annie Lennox has so generously gifted her hit single, “Universal Child to our lifesaving work of Mary’s Meals,” said Sheri McConnell, Executive Director of Mary’s Meals Canada. “Ms. Lennox recently released a digitally remastered version of her sixth solo album, A Christmas Cornucopia – a collection of inspired interpretations of traditional festive songs, rounded out by Ms. Lennox’s composition of “Universal Child.” This song is a wonderful tribute which reflects Ms. Lennox’s generosity in her gift, to the work we do.”

No stranger to the work of Mary’s Meals, the Scottish singer-songwriter, political activist and philanthropist lent her voice and testimonial originally to Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, Chief Founder of Mary’s Meals and author of “The Shed That Fed a Million Children” in 2015. “Mary’s Meals feeds a million children every single day,” said Lennox, “It’s not rocket science and it really works.” Since Ms. Lennox’s endorsement in 2015, Mary’s Meals now, feeds over 1.6 million children a day in 19 of the world’s poorest countries. The cost to feed a child is $26.40 (CDN) for 1 school year, or .13 cents per day.

“For many years now, I have been supporting the wonderful work of Mary’s Meals,’ said Ms. Lennox. “Children have always been close to my heart, I guess this is one of the reasons I wrote Universal Child.”

Universal Child” is kindly donated to Mary’s Meals by Annie Lennox.

ABOUT MARY’S MEALS 

www.marysmeals.ca

Mary’s Meals feeds over 1.6 million children a day through school feeding programmes in 19 countries: Malawi, Liberia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Haiti, Kenya, India, South Sudan, Uganda, Ethiopia, Benin, Lebanon, Syria, Myanmar, Thailand, Ecuador, Niger, Madagascar and Romania.

Mary’s Meals is owned and run by local communities in the countries in which it operates. Where possible, meals are prepared using food that has been grown locally. This helps to support families and boost the local economy.

While schools are closed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the charity’s work continues. Through community distributions of food parcels and essential hygiene items, Mary’s Meals is continuing to reach almost every child enrolled in its feeding programs, enabling parents or guardians to cook daily meals for the children at home, in their temporary place of education.

Mary’s Meals began in 2002 when Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow visited Malawi during a famine and met a mother dying from AIDS. When Magnus asked her eldest son, Edward, what his dreams were in life, he replied simply: “I want to have enough food to eat and to be able to go to school one day.”

In 2010 Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow was named a TOP 10 CNN Hero. In 2015 Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow was named one of TIME MAGAZINE’S 100 Most Influential People

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Irene Carroll | Irene.Carroll@Marysmeals.org | 416-366-5473

Mary’s Meals releases Love Reaches Everywhere featuring Gerard Butler

For those of you that miss Gerard Butler, LOOK what he’s up to!

Love Reaches Everywhere

You may be wondering why I’m blogging about Gerard Butler. Anyone who knows me will understand but the truth is, I’ve been a big fan since 2003 when I first saw him in the movies Timeline and Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life. The tall, handsome, Scot with the piercing blue-green eyes, immediately captivated me with his talents and I made it my mission to look for his acting work. I bonded with one of my closest friends, Gaye, who is an avid movie buff, when we met in 2005 and I turned her on to Gerry’s work. We watched a lot of his films together, even some that we weren’t all that keen about, and we still talk about him to this day. I have seen 35 of his films and continue to follow his career. The thing that makes Gerry so special is not his good looks or his acting talent, but rather, the size of his heart.

I learned about Mary’s Meals because of Gerard Butler and it is because of him that I have made it my number one charity. I was fortunate to be among the first people in Canada to view the exclusive premiere of Love Reaches Everywhere on Tuesday, June 23, 2020 and the documentary, which is so full of joy, hope and beautiful children, left me with a huge smile on my face, a lump in my throat, and a renewed commitment to do what I can to support Mary’s Meals. Today, Thursday, June 25, 2020 is the day that Love Reaches Everywhere launches in Canada.

******

TORONTO, Canada.

Mary’s Meals, the school feeding charity, has teamed up with longstanding supporter and Hollywood star Gerard Butler to release a new film Love Reaches Everywhere, which follows the actor and producer as he travels to Liberia and Haiti with the charity’s founder, Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, to experience the charity’s work.

Filmed before the Covid-19 crisis, Love Reaches Everywhere shows the transformative power of education and the desperate need for food in school for some of the most vulnerable children in the world. These children continue to need support even though Covid-19 has closed many of their traditional places of education.

“We are in a time of unprecedented global crisis that is impacting the way people around the world are living, working and being educated,” said Magnus. “Children are especially vulnerable and at risk in this situation and there is a significant danger that they are forgotten amid the fear and confusion of this new world.”

“As a charity that is committed to feeding children in some of the world’s poorest communities, it is more important than ever for Mary’s Meals to keep its promise and support those children by delivering food to them in their communities and homes, which are their new places of education.

“By sharing his experiences with Mary’s Meals through this film, Gerry is helping us to shine a spotlight on the children we feed and ensure their voices aren’t lost.”

Gerard Butler, who has starred in films such as 300, Angel Has Fallen and P.S. I Love You, was able to meet some of the real-life heroes at the heart of Mary’s Meals. In the film, Gerard says:

“Going on this journey hit me from so many different angles – emotional, spiritual and physical. I make movies about heroes, but often they’re in big, over-the-top settings … and then you go to Liberia and Haiti and you see that the teachers in the schools are heroes, and the kids are all heroes that come here on empty stomachs every day to get an education.

“Every meal served by Mary’s Meals is a piece of charity and a little piece of love. And that all passes down into the families and communities and gives that sense of hope. It’s the difference between a kid saying, ‘I want to survive tomorrow’ and ‘I want to be a doctor.’”

The film shows Butler immersing himself in community life – teaching a math’s lesson, dancing, planting crops in a school garden, preparing food, carrying water from a local well, and even sharing acting tips with some children ahead of a school nativity play.

The global launch of LOVE REACHES EVERYWHERE is now available.

For More Information:
www.marysmeals.ca
Irene Carroll | Irene.carroll@Marysmeals.org | 416-366-5473 

Kindly Note:

  • Mary’s Meals feeds over 1.6 million children a day through school feeding programmes in 19 countries: Malawi, Liberia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Haiti, Kenya, India, South Sudan, Uganda, Ethiopia, Benin, Lebanon, Syria, Myanmar, Thailand, Ecuador, Niger, Madagascar and Romania.
  • It costs $26.40 (CDN) to feed a child for a whole school year or .13 cents a day
  • Mary’s Meals is owned and run by local communities in the countries in which it operates. Where possible, meals are prepared using food that has been grown locally. This helps to support families and boost the local economy.
  • While schools are closed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the charity’s work continues. Through community distributions of food parcels and essential hygiene items, Mary’s Meals is continuing to reach almost every child enrolled in its feeding programs, enabling parents or guardians to cook daily meals for the children at home, in their temporary place of education.
  • Mary’s Meals began in 2002 when Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow visited Malawi during a famine and met a mother dying from AIDS. When Magnus asked her eldest son, Edward, what his dreams were in life, he replied simply: “I want to have enough food to eat and to be able to go to school one day.”
  • In 2010 Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow was named a TOP 10 CNN Hero
  • In 2015 Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow was named one of TIME MAGAZINE’S 100 Most Influential People

Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow and Gerard Butler for Mary's Meals

Timeline of a Friendship
The Background to Love Reaches Everywhere

2010: Gerard Butler presents Mary’s Meals’ Founder and CEO, Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, with a ‘CNN Heroes’ award in recognition of Mary’s Meals’ work, feeding hundreds of thousands of children in some of the most impoverished communities around the world. Gerard has already heard a lot about the charity from his mum, who is a big supporter of Mary’s Meals and has always wanted Gerard to get involved too.

After chatting with Magnus backstage, Gerard says, “I just thought, ‘dude, you’re amazing!’ and, from that moment on, we became fast friends.”             

2013: Magnus invites Gerard to travel with him to Liberia to see Mary’s Meals in action and visit some of the schools where feeding is happening. The trip sees Gerard pitching in to help volunteer cooks prepare and serve up Mary’s Meals. He also teaches a class of orphans, plays football with kids, loads a truck with sacks of rice, plants pepper seeds and pineapples at a school garden and dances with villagers.

During the trip, Gerard says: “I have been struck by the strength of peoples’ dignity – Mary’s Meals is all about respecting and promoting the lives and cultures of people and showing just what they’re capable of.”

Magnus says: “Gerry has a great gift with kids and I hope that through his commitment to raise awareness of our work, we can reach many more children with Mary’s Meals.”

2014-17: Gerard continues to support Mary’s Meals and features in one of the charity’s key film releases, Generation Hope.

2018: Gerard calls Magnus to ask if he can accompany him on another trip to a Mary’s Meals programme country. Together they set off for Haiti, where they visit schools where feeding is already taking place and others where no food is yet available. They meet an inspirational array of people including children and teachers, programme staff and volunteers, all with their own stories to tell. Gerard witnesses first-hand the dire need of some communities and the difference it makes when Mary’s Meals finally reaches them. The trip has a profound effect on Gerard and he says: I make movies about heroes, but often they’re in bigger, over-the-top settings. And then you come here and you see there’s a hero right there… the teachers in the school are heroes, the kids are all heroes that come here on empty stomachs every day to try and get an education.” 

Gerard Butler Mary's Meals
Feb 2020: Magnus and Gerard meet again at another awards ceremony… but this time it’s Magnus handing out the honours to Gerard, as he is recognised for his work with Mary’s Meals at the ‘Cinema for Peace Awards’ in Berlin. Previous winners of the accolade include Angelina Jolie, George Clooney and Leonardo Di Caprio. Magnus says: When Gerry speaks about our mission, and those we are serving, he does so with deep understanding and compassion, and because of that, he has inspired so many around the world to take action in support of Mary’s Meals. I could not be more thrilled that he is being honoured and recognised in this way!”

June 2020: Love Reaches Everywhere is released – a film which captures both of Gerard and Magnus’ trips (to Liberia and Haiti) and explores themes from friendship and community to love, hope and everyday heroes.

CONNECT WITH MARY’S MEALS: https://linktr.ee/marysmeals.ca

Please Help Support This GoFundMe Campaign for my Friend, Fred Chapman

Fred ChapmanI donated to this Go Fund Me campaign because Fred Chapman has been a good friend of mine for many years and a great supporter of both me and my musician clients. He’s a wonderful, smart guy (he has his PhD in Math!) who really just wants to work and get his life back and I know very well as a self-employed person, that when the chips are down, we need help like this! Someday it could be me.

If anyone I know or that this post reaches can help with tips for a job for Fred (his LinkedIn profile is in the campaign description), a donation (any amount is appreciated) or simply by sharing this post, we would both be very grateful! Thank you so much!

All my best, Christine 🙏

DONATE HERE: https://www.gofundme.com/downsized-looking-for-work-cannot-pay-rent