Whose House? Mike’s House

Michael P Falk is a busy man. Between running his label (Head in the Sand), his recording studio (Volcano) and his band (Les Jupes - watch for a new EP this fall) he found the time to record some solo tunes as Oshima last August with Dave Quanbury (Twilight Hotel). More hushed than the big dark pop of his day band, these six songs feature contributions from engineer Cam Loeppky (John K. Samson), drummer Curtis Nowosad and singers Jaymie Friesen (From Giants) & Keri Latimer (Nathan). The Age of Shapes EP finds its way out digitally in August.

“With Les Jupes there’s a lot of ambition and work that goes into it,” Falk says. “With this it’s just ‘we’ve got these songs, let’s throw them into the world.’”

The busiest musician in Winnipeg also found time to let us into his home and look through his stuff. Here’s what we saw:

1. Salt & Pepper Shakers
“Our friends Jason and Erin got married last summer and their table gifts for the guests were salt & pepper shakers. Not everyone took theirs, so we just cleaned house. We’ve started amassing a bit of a collection.”

2. Jeremy Hamm Guitar
“He’s been a friend of mine a long time so I wanted my first custom built guitar to be by him. It’s modeled after the same guitar Costello is playing in that painting (4), which is modeled after a 1935 Century of Progress guitar. The wood that’s in the back and sides is lapacho and was actually sunken wood in Panama for a hundred years.

3. Bulleit Bourbon
“I used to drink a lot of scotch and I can’t afford a lot of scotch, and I also got a little tired of it. There’s fire and smoke in the bourbon that I like.”

4. Paintings
“I’ve been an Elvis Costello nut for a long time, so my wife got our friend Nick to paint me that for my birthday. Then her cat Paige died so I had Nick make one for her.”

5. Haitian Voodoo Flag
“When we got married we flew our friend Meagan from Haiti to marry us and she had that made for us.”

6. Grackle Painting
“I asked Dave Quanbury to paint me an ominous character from Austin, I thought he was gonna paint a street person everyone knew or something but he did a Grackle. In Austin there’s just swarms of these things.”

7. Frightened Rabbit Pedestrian Verse LP
“We’re in the middle of a lot of recording. I’m pretty emotionally engaged in all this stuff and it’s hard sometimes. That record has become my little soundtrack to this spring of recording.”

Photos by Nicholas Friesen

Published in Volume 67, Number 27 of The Uniter (July 17, 2013)

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