Five songs about Vancouver


The Wheatpool

Originally uploaded by ‘daisies.

Five songs about Vancouver worth checking out:

– “Emily Carr” by The Wheat Pool [twp]: Just up on iTunes “Emily Carr” [itms], like most of the album, is a nice blend of alternative rock and prairie country music. It is perhaps the least Vancouver sounding of all of the songs that will follow in this list, owing more to the Edmonton birthplace of the band, but it’s subject matter holds true to anyone whose ever found themselves in Vancouver running away from the middle of the country.

– “Let the Ass Bray” by Spirit of the West [wp]: What’s more Vancouver than being miffed at an indie band refusing to enjoy their fame and just shutting up and playing their hit song? Years before Matthew Good was told to shut up and play guitar Vancouver band Spirit of the West was using a symphony orchestra to record a song about Thom Yorke being spoiled by Radiohead’s early “Creep” fame. One wonders what they thought of the Radiohead movie Meeting People Is Easy.

– “Vancouver Divorce” by Gordon Downie [gd]: Gordon Downie’s first solo album sort of got lost in the fact that he was also releasing a book of poetry to go with it, which is about as far away from the hockey arena venues of his day job in the Tragically Hip as you can get. When it stays on track though Coke Machine Glow is a really good album, or rather it has good songs.

– “Suburbia” by The Matthew Good Band [wp]: It might not say Vancouver anywhere in the lyrics, but one can’t help but feel that Matthew Good must have been writing these lyrics while riding the Skytrain, or taking public transit around Coquitlam. Still one of my favorite songs by the defunct group, “Suburbia” [itms] is really about pretty much everywhere these days.

– “Expo ’86” by Death Cab For Cutie [wp]: Though its hard to see how the lyrics directly relate to either Vancouver, or Expo ’86 the band is from Bellingham and the song is titled after our moment of pre-Olympic world fame. Though more about a failing relationship it’s title sets Vancouver as the backdrop said failing relationship. One imagines a music video complete with Science World and that robot.

Edit: The bonus number five song is after the jump. It was a terrible selection, and once I came up with Death Cab For Cutie I knew I had to move it away. However just so you can see how foolish I was the entry is saved in its original form after the jump.


– “Drinking In LA” by Bran Van 3000 [wp]: This is what you get when you start trying to make a list of five songs based only on your own private iTunes collection, you get “Drinking In LA” as being a song about Vancouver. Opening with a clip from a Vancouver radio station holding a contest for a Bran Van concert at the Pacific Coliseum, the song is pretty much about LA from that point forward. And drinking. So given the fairly shitty end to what began as a good list of songs about Vancouver, I’m throwing it open to the comments. What’s a good number five on this list of five songs about Vancouver?

11 Comments so far

  1. Chris Cruthers (unregistered) on September 14th, 2007 @ 1:36 am

    I was always partial to Lowest of the Low’s New Westminster Taxi Squad.

    itms

    That robot’s name was Ernie.


  2. Brooks (unregistered) on September 14th, 2007 @ 8:36 am

    You forgot the best one of them all! Vancouver, BC by the Smugglers:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EewEH8VrnY0


  3. alice (unregistered) on September 14th, 2007 @ 9:22 am

    “Stardust” by local band Children of the CPU refers to the rollerskating rink. But I guess that’s Richmond, technically.


  4. Ryan Cousineau (unregistered) on September 14th, 2007 @ 6:46 pm

    What, no votes for “The More I Like Vancouver Town” by Rolf Harris?

    Philistines!


  5. keith lim (unregistered) on September 15th, 2007 @ 4:40 pm

    Should I be flattered or insulted that not included was my “The Streets of Vancouver“?


  6. Carol (unregistered) on September 16th, 2007 @ 1:59 pm

    Someone told me that a local punk band sang a song called “Dewdney Trunk Road”. I just can’t remember the band’s name, though.


  7. (unregistered) on September 18th, 2007 @ 3:55 pm

    You forgot Chinatown by the Be Good Tanya’s – easily the best song about Vancouver.


  8. (unregistered) on September 18th, 2007 @ 3:57 pm

    Sorry Chinatown is the album – I meant Junkie Song…


  9. Emm. (unregistered) on September 20th, 2007 @ 12:12 pm

    If you search “Vancouver” on the iTunes music store, there’s a “Vancouver essentials” compilation. There’s 25 songs about Van city, including:

    English Bay by Blue Rodeo
    Vancouver by the Violent Femmes
    and Showdown in Gastown by the Honeymans!


  10. Rachel (unregistered) on September 22nd, 2007 @ 12:54 am

    “The City You Live in is Ugly” by local band Young & Sexy. It opens and closes with the sky train sound!


  11. Jordan (unregistered) on September 27th, 2007 @ 1:24 pm

    English Bay by Blue Rodeo was the first that popped into my head.



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