Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Filed Under (for the sake of the song, general, music, Simcoe County, Songwriting, Tiny, Uncategorized) by Sean on January-22-2014

Each January, about 40 friends rent Wildfire Outdoor Education Centre in Wyevale Ontario for a DIY musicians getaway weekend of great food, music, and workshops presented by the participants.  Here is my DIY workshop on how February Album Writing Month and Nanowrimo changed my creative process.

Outline and links.

How to Lose Your Mind in Thirty Days

Creativity and impossible online challenges.

Sean McGaughey: ,

In 2013, I accidentally fell into a creative whirlwind. From February 1 to December 23, I wrote 49 songs and 1 novel.

Read Forevuary prologue.

February Album Writing Month

  • Http:// (stay very away from .com)
  • Write 14 Songs in 28 days.
  • Online forums, personalized page. Supportive community.
  • Song skirmish– someone suggests a skirmish at a certain time. At the given time, they post a title. Then you have one hour to write, record and post a song
  • Feedback on the site is invaluable. Usually within an hour of posting you will get a couple or more comments from other writers.
  • Collaboration: some writers are pure lyricists and will post –‘ needs music’ to invite people to set their song to music.
  • Strong culture of sharing your music and providing constructive feedback to others.

Fifty-Ninety: 50 songs in 90 days


  • Premise: Write a novel in 30 days from Nov 1 to Nov 30.

  • Supposed to be a new novel project– not one in progress 1667 words a day– 50000 words minimum. You will not write a novel in 30 days, but if you succeed you will have a very good start on a first draft.

  • I finished nanowrimo as did my daughter and niece.

  • Culture of Nanowrimo: Local events and write-ins, online chatrooms and forums,

  • Word wars– timed writing against others.

  • Culture of not sharing writing in progress. Would be too time consuming– interfere with people’s ability to write 1667 words daily.


Midland Penetanguishene Songwriters on Facebook.

  • Saturday Songwriters at the MCC. Third Saturday morning of the month at 11am in the Roxy Cafe at the Midland Cultural Centre. For FAWM we will meet Jan 18 then every Saturday in February 1,8,15,22 and March 1.

Time to Write: Song Skirmish Title: Polar Vortex, Snow Day, Do It Yourself


We had 4 writers in the group and here is our finished song.

Do It Yourself


(DIY 2014  Jan 11, 2014)  (c) Mary  Marcolin, Ed Winacott, Sean McGaughey,  Chris Johnston


Remember the story of the Little Red Hen

She didn’t get help again and again

No one stepped up to hoe, or reap

But they all lined in time to eat.. the bread


Don’t you know you can do it yourself

Best not to count on anyone else

Take a deep breath and give it a shot

All you need, you’ve already got.


The Little Red Hen told her chicks

Together, there’s no problem we can’t fix

By the end of the day we’ll all get fed

When we work together for our daily bread.


Don’t you know we can do it ourselves

Best not to count on anyone else

Take a deep and give it a shot

All we need, we’ve already got.

Sometimes life gets a little perverse

When you least expect, a turn for the worst

For a home cooked meal with all the fixin’s

Free Range, Grain Fed, is Finger lickin’

Filed Under (Midland, Penetanguishene, Songwriting, Tay, Tiny, Uncategorized) by Sean on September-21-2013


For several years I have discussed and procrastinated the idea of forming a songwriter’s group in the Midland-Penetanguishene area. I have never felt an urgency to do so because my needs to belong to a community of fellow songwriters are well met through my membership the Barrie and District Association for Singer Songwriters (BADASS) and online through February Album Writing Month and the Fifty-Ninety Songwriting challenge.  But the idea of having a collective of writers supporting each other and building opportunities within our communities of Midland, Penetanguishene, Tiny, and Tay remains.




I would like to gather with like minded songwriters to form GrUMPS  or GUMPS  (or another less cutesy acronym)  GRownUp Midland Penetang Songwriters


GrU=  Grownup =  This would be a group for adult writers to get together and share and hone their craft.  We would not turn away talented exceptional young adults (in fact welcome them), but young musicians are already being served in our area by several groups notably Stellula.

MP–  Midland-Penetanguisene  (and Tiny and Tay)  The four townships define the general boundaries of our community.  We would not turn away songwriters from Coldwater, Barrie, or even Saskatoon, but we want to keep the focus on our community.


S–  Songwriters.  The GBMA and HFA serve the needs of many musicians and artists.  Songwriters have a need to gather as peers, share our songs, hone our craft, collaborate, create opportunities for songwriters to showcase their music.

Who?  I personally know a bunch of area songwriters who may be interested in such a group.  If you are reading this, I likely sent it your way via facebook or email.  Please share this idea with your musician-songwriter friends.


When? Where?  The songwriting group I currently belong to meets once a month at one of the members homes.  We have a core group of about 25 members scattered over the North of GTA area from Newmarket and Tottenham, to Barrie, Orillia and Midland.

We could use this model of meeting in member homes or perhaps use a public use room at

one of the libraries.   (I’m looking at you Scott).


Why:  To promote collaboration and community among the songwriters in our community, to hone our craft, …


How? Good Question.  Let’s dive in and figure out what kind of a group we want.  We could have meetings to co-write, share songwriting tips, we could organize showcases, we could use social media and websites to promote local songwriters…

 I have set up a Facebook group called Midland Penetanguishene Songwriters.  Let your songwriting friends know and let’s see what we can build together.

Filed Under (for the sake of the song, Mariposa, Midland, Ontario, podcast, Uncategorized) by Sean on August-7-2012

Photo from

I am launching a new format for this podcast.  Think of it like the director’s commentary on a DVD movie but for albums.  I will have a conversation with musicians while we listen to one of their albums.  The conversation will last for the duration of the album.  Enjoy.

Christopher Thompson
 is a young fingerstyle guitarist from Orillia.  He recently released his second EP, La-La on Sleeper Records.  Sleeper records was founded by Aaron Howes as a way to promote young Orillia area musicians.  You can download it on Bandcamp  or find it on iTunes.  We are joined on the podcast by Chris’ Sleeper Records labelmate, Aaron Mangoff.

All Songs ©  Christopher Thompson from the EP, La-La

You can leave comments on the blog, send me an email to ductapeguy at hotmail dot com or join the For The Sake of the Song Podcast group on Facebook.

Add this podcast to your favorite podcatcher at
Add Sean  McGaughey- For the Sake of the Song » podcast to CastRoller

As usual, all songs and musical performances are copyright by the performer-songwriter.


Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Sean on August-1-2011


I first saw the Breakmen performing at a little stage behind the booths in the middle of the midway at the Edmonton Capital City Exhibition in 2006.  Their tight harmonies and obvious respect for bluegrass, country and roots music delighted me from the first song.    It was my pleasure to interview Ben, Matt and Lee at the Mariposa Folk Festival last summer.



For the Sake of the Song (©2003 S. McGaughey)

Play Me Another One  © The Breakmen

Belong to that Band

Km 19 © The Breakmen

Links:  Find the Breakmen on Facebook MyspaceYoutube, and Sonicbids.


You can leave comments on the blog, send me an email to ductapeguy at hotmail dot com or join the For The Sake of the Song Podcast group on Facebook.

Add this podcast to your favorite podcatcher at
Add Sean  McGaughey- For the Sake of the Song » podcast to CastRoller


I only captured a part of the Breakmen and Deep Dark Wood’s powerful rendition of Belong to that Band at Mariposa 2010.  Fortunately someone else got it on video and they posted it on their youtube channel.

Filed Under (for the sake of the song, Ontario, podcast, podiobook, Simcoe County, Uncategorized) by Sean on December-15-2008

Jake Hill

Jake Hill is still in his teens but he is an accomplished performer and songwriter. I know him as a regular performer at Good Vibes Coffee House. He was not very talkative during the interview, but his songs speak for themselves.


Theme Music: For the Sake of the Song (©2003 S. McGaughey)

Keep on Believing (© Jake Hill)

Unemployment (© Jake Hill) — Warning– a very foul word appears in the chorus– cover your ears if you need to.

Test of Time (© Jake Hill)

Alone Without a Song (© Sean McGaughey)

Mount Saint Louis Corner General Store (©)

I Never Wanted to Be a Star (© Jake Hill)

You can leave comments on the blog, send me an email to ductapeguy at hotmail dot com, send me a voice feedback at 206-337-0611, or join the For The Sake of the Song Podcast group on Facebook.

Add this podcast to your favorite podcatcher at

or Subscribe in Itunes

Filed Under (Barrie, for the sake of the song, Midland, music, podcast, Uncategorized) by Sean on September-29-2008

Theme Music: For the Sake of the Song (©2003 S. McGaughey)

This show I have no guest. Instead I’m looking back on past episodes, forward to future shows, and I play the newest song that I’ve written. I was inspired to write after over a year by Stevie Z’s monthly songwriting challenge at

The August challenge was

  1. GENRECountry
  2. TOPIC Summer
  3. WORD/PHRASEBridge

My new Song: Summer’s Journey (©2008 S. McGaughey)

John Meadows from the On The Log Podcast with his song Friends Again (©2008 John Meadows)

Songwriting Clubs in Schools:
Bringing Music to the children and youth of Simcoe County.
Student Songwriting Clubs
Spring Week of Music in Schools
Spring Community Concert

Artemis Chartier and Dale Russell are the founders of the School Alliance for Student Songwriters (SASS), a group which facilitates songwriting clubs in schools and arranges songwriting showcases and contests for students in the Durham County region of Ontario and in British Columbia. Dale and Artemis are my guests on the next episode of For the Sake of the Song.

Song: Artemis Chartier and Dale Russell: Do it for the Love (©Dale Russell)

Songwriting Resources

Tom Slatter is a London, UK based songwriter and podcaster. He is half of the acoustic pop duo We’ll Write and produces the wonderful Songwright blog and podcast where he explores music theory to get inside the structure and process of crafting a song. He has recently released a free Ebook of Songwriting Worksheets for the Songwriting Guitarist as an incentive for people to sign up for his mailing list. In it, he includes, For the Sake of the Song on a list of online songwriting resources. Check out my feature interview with Tom: For the Sake of the Song with Tom Slatter

The Essential Secrets of Songwriting Blog

Bryan Murdaugh

followthatsong is a recently launched blog by my friend Paul Court, the founder of BADASS– The Barrie and District Association for Singer-Songwriters. I interviewed Paul about a year ago on For the Sake of the Song, while he was in the process of writing his newly released CD, Blood and Fire: The Donelley Project. For the Sake of the Song with guest Paul Court

Song: The Ballad of Billy Farrell from Blood and Fire: The Donnelly Project (©paul court)

Send me your favorite songwriting resources or other feedback by leaving comments on the blog, send me an email to ductapeguy at hotmail dot com, send me a voice feedback at 206-337-0611, or join the For The Sake of the Song Podcast group on Facebook.

Add this podcast to your favorite podcatcher at

or Subscribe in Itunes

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by Sean on August-22-2008

Last weekend I attended the Niagara on the Lake Meetup for podcasters and social media enthusiasts. It was a wonderful event attended by about 30 people and held at the beautiful Prince of Wales hotel in Niagara on the Lake. Congratulations to the organizers Keith Burtis, John Meadows, and Bill Deys for organizing a fantastic event. Some of my personal highlights included the lovely personalized tweetup badges provided by Jim Milles and Kristina Lively, Bill Deys’ presentation on posting video “all” the hosting sites on the web, and seeing many friends from previous meetups and podcamps. I have received some excellent feedback from my presentation at NOTL2008 including blog posts about the event which mentioned my talk by Mark Blevis and Wayne MacPhail.

I neglected to record my talk but John Meadows remembered and he has posted audio to the talk on the NOTL site.

You can

the audio of my talk here.

I did not prepare slides for my talk, because I wanted to focus on facilitating a conversation with the other attendees rather than just present a monologue of my own thoughts.

I worked from a set of prepared notes with a few audio clips thrown in for illustration. My notes are below.

Examining Your Personal Purposes and Potential For Podcasting

Sean McGaughey NOTL Meetup

  1. I subconsciously ripped off the theme and of this talk from John Meadows. On the Line Episode 13:

  2. He talks about how so much of our computing world is defined by metaphor

  3. Email– Carbon Copies

  4. Keyboards, Qwerty, Shift Keys, Return// Enter Keys

  5. Dial Tone- Ring Tones

  6. Taping audio and video

  1. Object Demonstration: Scavenger hunt for computers in the room

  2. Look for Laptops, phones, PDAs watches, hearing aids, clocks, projectors, portable recorders, cameras etc…

  3. They are all computers… It’s all zeros and ones. Computers are limited by the restrictions of the Hardware and software. And By the imaginations of their users

    1. physical vs market– business limitations.

  4. What are computers for?

  5. What is the Internet For?

    1. Give my “Facebook is for wrecking marriages” example.

  6. Give examples of how the Killer App for something may differ from what the designers intended.

  7. An argument for openness

  8. Examples of how children use computers

    1. My daughter conducting interviews at Podcasters Across Borders.

    2. O– 3 years old touches screen to try click on videos—He knows how computers SHOULD behave.

    3. I have a smartboard in my classroom. It changes both how I teach and how I interact with computers.

    4. Once you have a touch interface you can tell how it becomes instantly indispensable– by the fingerprints on the screen.

  9. How my use of metaphor restricted me in my podcast.

  10. Metaphors I wish to touch upon that affect us as social media power users.

    1. Podcast:
    • Uncle Seth Song: You Don’t Need an IPOD
    • NO– You don’t need an IPOD.
    • Play–George Motoc’s metaphor of podcast like a newspaper. From his excellent podcast series, “What is a podcast?
    • Why the term podcast stuck– For certain tech savvy people (like us) it instantly resonated and we could see the potential of audio and visual media and programs available on demand on the internet and brought directly to you through the magic of RSS.
    • It gained a life of its own as the phenomenon grew.

    • Why the term “podcasting” sucks.
    • NO– You don’t need an IPOD.

    • Apple is VERY overprotective and litigious re: the phonemes “POD”– so watch out

    • It’s limiting social media to a very narrow kind of mostly audio programming. We need other terms for vidcasting, multimedia chatrooms, youtube, microblogging etc…
    • What other terms do we use?

  11. Friends
    • Friendsters vs Friends

    • Imaginary Friends


    • From a hobbyist’s perspective

    • From a business//marketing perspective

    • From a faith perspective

    • Community Divas

  1. Bottom line. It is important to examine the metaphors we use to understand the devices and processes. We can be limited by the metaphors we bring with us. Our metaphors may also mask ‘but what is it really for.’

« Previous Entries