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Most Vocal Poets Society present Ian Ferrier
Wed, Nov 17
The Slice - Lethbridge


Time: 7:30-8:30 p.m.

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IAN FERRIER is one of the core writer/performers in the North American performance literature scene. His work is well-known across Canada, in New York and in Europe. Rooted in poetry, his live performances are a haunting blend: Some pieces are performed with acoustic guitar, others with choir; some are whispered and others wail to the trancelike music of a band called Pharmakon. ( ). His signature is the compelling voice at the centre of every piece. Planète Rebelle Press released his first CD & book—Exploding Head Man—to national acclaim. Rooted in the spellbound winters of his childhood, it took a passionate look at love, sex and death against a background of the falling snow. The pieces represented the best of three years of his collaborations with top musicians from Montreal and New York. The CD/book received critical raves. Canada’s National Post called it “a musical-score lament for a movie that never was; a movie starring a new breed of fearless poets/magicians doing their best version of Kerouac's rediscovered yelp: EE-Yah!” Said the Montreal Gazette newspaper: “Even without instrumentation, the poetry of Exploding Head Man—heady, impassioned, sometimes hallucinogenic stuff that regularly makes nods to the Beat work he grew up on—has sonic power. Dreamy words soothe, lusty sentences steam, and with a delivery that’s often more gentle that the imagery it yields (even at its most volatile, Ferrier’s vocalizations, with their warm, cushiony and almost child-like diction, scream pseudo-innocence) his spoken word is a complex song in and of itself.” This fall Ferrier travels with the trance/improv band Pharmakon as his new CD—What is this Place—is released by Vancouver’s Bongobeat Records ( That CD features two tracks with the new band, two solo works, and nine collaborations between Ferrier and a star-studded list of top Quebec musicians. Recently his work featured on Australia’s Going Down Slow CD and literature anthology, in Canadian Theatre Review and in the Review of the Americas special issue on Canadian Literature. Stories of his can be found in Telling Stories and the anthology You and Your Bright Ideas (both Vehicule Press). Impure—Reinventing the Word is a book from Conundrum Press that documents the literary scene of which he is a part, and you can find his poems and music in the Short Fuse anthology from Rattapallax Press and the Poetry Nation anthology from Vehicule. He currently collaborates with sax player Bryan Highbloom, voice artist Kathy Kennedy, singer/ poet Valerie Khayat, and the musicians of Pharmakon. Mr. Ferrier also co-founded the poetry/music label Wired on Words—which won public radio’s Standard Broadcasting Award in its first year. Wired on Words has released 7 CDs, 8 mini-CDs and 5 other recordings of poets. Pieces by Mr. Ferrier can be heard on CBC—Canada’s national radio station, as well as on public radio stations in the USA and Canada. He resides in Montreal, where he hosts the city’s monthly Words & Music literature series, and remains on the board of the Quebec Writers’ Federation as their past president.


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