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pogo2posterFINAL2The Last Pogo Jumps Again studies the evolution of Toronto from small town to big city and it’s pop/counter-culture lifestyle during the early and mid-70s.  It centers around the first wave of Toronto punk rock and new-wave music, from the Ramones playing the New Yorker Theatre in ’76 through the police shutting down Teenage Head and causing a riot at the Horseshoe Tavern’s infamous “The Last Pogo” concert in December 1978.

London had the Sex Pistols, New York had the Ramones, but Toronto had a punk movement all it’s own.  The Toronto landscape by the late ’70s was forever changed with the infusion of the DIY/Punk/Alternative Culture(s) movement.  Six years in the making, The Last Pogo Jumps Again successfully explores the whys and wherefores of what was arguably one of the most exciting but misunderstood movements in Toronto’s history.

The DVD contains the 204 minute documentary, plus over a 100 minutes of added material, and a snazzy 24-page booklet.  Check the Shop for details on where you can purchase it.

The Last Pogo (1978) is the documentary that chronicled the last punk rock show at the Horseshoe Tavern when it was run by legendary Toronto promoters The Garys (Topp and Cormier) featuring The Scenics, Cardboard Brains, The Secrets, The Mods, The Ugly, The Viletones and Teenage Head. The Last Pogo was released on DVD in 2008 to great reviews.  Available at the Shop.

C’est la guerre

Random shot of an asshole.  There’s no crying in Punk Rock.

You win some, you lose some.  Yesterday the staff and crew at Pogo H.Q. were sadly shocked to discover that the Canada Arts Council have decided not to give us a few sheckles to finish our epic documentary, The Last Pogo Jumps Again:  A Biased And Incomplete History Of Toronto Punk Rock And New Wave Music Circa September 24 1976 To December 1 1978.  C’est la guerre.

We soldier on, mofos.

Not a shock really — it’s highly competitive, and for all the artists in our country we should be glad that the Arts Councils exist, period.  But still.   (Note to our non-Canadian friends: Yup, we sometimes get free money from the government to make art!;  nope, we’ve never heard anyone pronounce “about” as “aboot”; and yes, we will say “Sorry!” if someone bumps into us.)

After the initial shock wore off, we called the main administrator of the Media Arts Program to find out wtf.  And felt better afterwards.  In our true inimitable Canadian fashion, we thanked them. ( “Hey, thanks for turning us down!  You rock!”)  By all accounts the jury thought the project was “fascinating” and “full of passion” and a “great oral history” although they “took pause at the notion it was going to be five hours long.”   The bottom line is simply that there just isn’t enough money to pass around, especially in the film and video section.  The good news was that they’ve told us we can re-apply in October (something they didn’t allow you to do before;  if you got rejected for a project, you had to dream up something new for the next round) and so the secretary pool is chat-chat-chat-chat-chat-chattering away and busily downloading new applications.  But like John Cleese said in the film Clockwise “It’s not the despair that kills me, its the hope.”

Its easy to bitch about this, but that’s for suckers.  Fuck ’em if they can’t take a joke.

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