A season of charity

It’s a quiet time for Kow. The festivals (Fringe and Kaleido) are over, four Kows have gone back to jobs after a summer break. But one thing fell by the wayside right after Fringe.

One of our friends, Trish Horobec, participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and challenged the five of us to do our own video/donation.

I know what you’re thinking. “But Jago,” you ponder in your mind, maybe circling the rim of your wine glass with your finger, “the ALS challenge is old news! It was overplayed the week after, let alone two months!”

You’re right. By the time Trish’s challenge went out, Apocalypse Kow was finishing up the run of “Apocalypse Kow Presents A Tribute to Apocalypse Kow.” And then we took a week off. And then we realized that it was more work to make a video challenge where five guys were getting doused with ice and cold water. And the performers we were thinking of challenging had already made their own challenge videos. And then we wrote it in a Second Cup. (Sorry, Fringe show joke.)

So we decided to switch up our challenge. Apocalypse Kow donated to five charities that we consider near and dear to our hearts. Let’s face it, the ALS Challenge was pretty darn successful. We decided to give money to some other charities to which we had some deep connection.

Stan chose The Endomitriosis Network Canada.

Devin chose the Canadian Mental Health Association, Alberta Chapter, a charity we’ve featured at a previous Apocalypse Kow Kristmas Kabaret.

Joel Forth chose the Heart & Stroke Foundation.

Joel Rivero chose Sorrentino’s Compassion House, a place for women to stay while undergoing breast cancer treatment in Edmonton.

I chose Myeloma Canada.

Now I can’t  fully speak on why the others chose their charities, but I can give you the reason I took the Kow portion to Myeloma Canada and bolstered it with a donation on my own.

Back in July, my dad was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, a bone marrow cancer. For the past ten years, Dad’s been living without kidneys, and has been doing dialysis two to three times a week. For ten years. So I tend to think that my dad’s nearly invincible. No kidneys? Okay, it’s time for dialysis. He got a kidney donated that failed after being transplanted. More dialysis. He was laying on the couch when the phone rang, and he snapped his femur in half. It seems that he had parathyroid glands that were leeching calcium from Dad’s diet and making his bones brittle. He got those removed, got a steel rod installed in his leg and now he’s bionic. He got better. Mom could remove the chair lift that occupied the stairs for two years.

You can see how I thought my dad was made of iron. But cancer? That scared me.

I educated myself and found that as far as cancers go, multiple myeloma is treatable. There’s treatments that are available in Canada and Saskatchewan, some of the treatements are new enough, but are still effective. Since August, Dad’s been doing chemotherapy, and the specialists my parents have been talking to have all said that the treatment Dad is going through has a conservative estimate of years of remission.

Dad has his good days, he has his bad days. He’s going to Moose Jaw’s hospital for both his dialysis and chemo. He’s not able to do all the handy things around the house and the lake cabin that he used to. But that’s what Mom and my brother Braden are for. When I went to visit for the August long weekend, Braden and I ended up moving three refridgerators and stoves to different places. (Old ones from the cabin to the dump. House ones to the cabin. Newly purchased ones from the garage to the kitchen.) And Dad was just itching to help.

So his spirit is still good, and the treatment’s doing it’s job. He’s still playing grandpa to my nieces with all the vigor he’s ever had, as seen below. But of course, donations to the Myeloma Canada organization are always welcomed, for research, for education. I did my part, and Apocalypse Kow helped out.

Gordon Jago

So what’s our ice bucket challenge? It doesn’t involve viral videos. It doesn’t involve potentially hurting yourself. (Have you seen those ALS fail videos out there? There’s a whole load of pratfalls and accidents. Hilarious!)

All it involves is our friends giving to charity. Christmas is coming soon. We’ll have our Kristmas Kabaret announced shortly, and as always, we’ll be choosing an Edmonton charity to raise money. You can come celebrate the holiday season with us and raise a few bucks. Or, if you’d like, I’ve hyperlinked those charities that Kow has donated to for our Ice Bucket Challenge. Go ahead and donate, if you’d like.



Performance alert! Choralfest Jazz 2014!

Hey friends! Miss us? We miss you, it’s like we hardly SEE each other these days! Well, how would you like to change that?

What are you doing on Monday, March 10th? Because Apocalypse Kow will be doing a set at Choralfest Jazz that night, and it’s a free performance! Come watch us work on some songs with a great clinician! It will be like going behind the scenes and watching us during a rehearsal, except with only half as many nerdy jokes and very little tangents. It’s a free show, and you’ll get to see us, as well as some great local vocal jazz groups, like The J Word and FORM.

When? We take the stage at 8 pm.

Where? Muttart Hall at MacEwan University Alberta College. (That’s at 10050 MacDonald Drive, just west of MacDougall United Church south of Jasper Ave)

Why? Because we thrive with an audience, and it’s set to be a great evening of jazz music! …and us. Choralfest is open to the public, and you’ll be able to watch us learn a few tricks on how to perform better then next time you see us.

We’re excited! It should be a great experience!

The 2013 Apocalypse Kow Kristmas Kabaret!

What’s this? What’s this?

Why it’s only details of the 2013 Apocalypse Kow Kristmas Cabaret!

This year, we’re raising money for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of Canada, and we’re wanting to you come out, watch some silliness, great music, and all-around Christmastimery to do it! We’re so thankful to the NAIT Students’ Association and The Nest Taphouse and Grill to once again donating their place for all of you to sit, eat, drink and be merry!

What’s that? You’ve got some questions? Shoot.

WHERE? The Nest Taphouse and Grill, located on the 118th Ave NAIT campus, just across the street from Kingsway Mall! Or, for you Google Mapaholics out there, 11762 106 St.

WHEN? Wednesday, December 11th. Doors open at 6:30, show starts at 7!

HOW MUCH? It’s $15 for tickets, with a reduced $10 ticket for students and seniors.

WHO? Oh, that’s the fun part! Not only will you be seeing Apocalypse Kow sing Christmas songs, new stuff and old, and the occasional skit, we’ve got two very special guests for you! Local Edmonton a cappella group, d6 vocal ensemble, will be there, as well as local radio personality and emcee Mike McGuire! d6 vocal ensemble loves them jazz chords and pop musics! Mike will be reading a very special Christmas story or two!

WHY? To raise money for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of Canada! Ever since we asked them if they’d be willing to be our charity this year, they’re said that a bunch of them will show up! They’ve even helped us prmote the concert when it was just a gleam in our little eyes. We’re also going to have our gingerbread house auction in order to raise a few more funds! And, of course, if you want to help out the Edmonton Food Bank, please bring a canned good or two to bolster their warehouse for the season!

You’ll see our poster around town, but here’s a sneak preview: Kabaret 2013

See you in just under a month! Click on our Shows page for the iCal link to the show!

Apocalypse on iTunes!

Apocalypse Kow has been dragged kicking and screaming into the digital market! How is this, you ask? Why, thanks to our good friend and webmaster Ryan Ro, you can now get Apocalypse Kow’s GREATEST CD EVER! in a multitude of different formats!

Are you tired of physical CDs? How about using cash to buy things? Seriously guys, it’s 2013! Our new album is now available on iTunes! Click this link, to be whisked away through the magic of the interwebs.

What’s that? You don’t use iTunes? You prefer MP3 format for your oh-so-nifty Zune or Creative Labs player that you bought back in 2007? You can also buy the digital album from CDbaby!

“But Jago,” you say, “I WANT a circular plastic disc mystically encoded with musical information!” Well then, have we got a deal for YOU, luddite! The Apocalypse Kow online store is now online for all your compact disc and t-shirt needs. Click the “shop” link now. Just want the new CD? This link is your friend!

Finally, you can stream the entire new album free from our soundcloud page, or the handy-dandy music player in the sidebar.

All these ways of getting our CD! It’s like we’re trying to get away from being completely unfriendly online!

It’s Fringe time!

Another year, another Edmonton International Fringe Festival!

“Apocalypse Kow’s Greatest Show Ever” is this year’s Kow concert/multimedia extravaganza! We’ve done Fringe shows for ten years now, and this year, we’re going all out! New songs! New dance moves! Pyrotechnics!  Will the five of us pull it off? TIME will tell!

Tickets are just $10 for adults, $8 for students and seniors, and available at the door and at the Fringe ticket website! Shows happen almost daily at 7 pm at Knox-Metropolitan United Church from Friday, August 16 to Sunday, August 25.

Will we see you there? We certainly hope so!