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(Sept. 2010 Interview reposted in honor of a lovely man with a terrific sense of humor. Marvin left this world far too soon – as is evidenced by his poetic and profound response to my final question in this interview, “Any life lessons you’d like to share?” MARVIN: “Don’t know yet. I feel like I’m still in the middle of the storm. According to legend, we will know during those final moments that we draw our last breath. I’ll either have a smile on my face, or someone at bedside will be slapping it. I’ll know then.”    Our thoughts are with his family.)

Original interview:

This amazingly multi-talented Guest Star has lived the COOLEST lives – that’s right – plural! No, he’s not reincarnated…that I know of…

Born in Havana, Cuba, raised in Toronto, Marvin Kanarek has lived everywhere from Paris to LA.  He has worked as a studio drummer and toured extensively (HOW COOL IS THAT?!?) with: Rough Trade, The Bonedaddys, Burton Cummings (The Guess Who), Randy Bachman (BachmanTurner Overdrive), Janis Ian, Bo Diddley, The Beach Boys, and that’s only the beginning!!

My head was spinning from all he’s done, but I think I covered it pretty well…

HDYGT: Welcome, Marvin Kanarek, I’m thrilled to have you on HowDidYouGetThere. Please tell our readers what you do for a living?

Marvin Kanarek: I am a multi-disciplined artist. I am a drummer–“don’t be afraid!”– singer-songwriter, painter, writer, architectural designer and according to my brother, a pretty good photographer. I am also working on my black belt in Bordeaux tasting.

HDYGT: That’s a lot of discipline! Let’s start with drummer/singer/songwriter–Yes, I’m terrified, but in a cool way, like when I used to sneak home after curfew.

Marvin Kanarek: (nods, smiling) Stay up to watch the sunrise?

HDYGT: No…I had to be home before sunset.  But once I missed my curfew!

Marvin Kanarek: No!

HDYGT: Yea! It was totally dark when I got home!! I was such a rebel…that one time… WILD times.

Marvin Kanarek: (wonders if he’s ever even gone out before dark) Wow.

HDYGT: So how long have you been a musician?

Marvin Kanarek: Too long to remember.

HDYGT: This memory problem – was it brought on by too much music? I’ve read that can happen.

Marvin: No it can’t.

HDYGT: What can’t?

Marvin Kanarek: Music can’t give you a bad memory.

HDYGT: You have a bad memory?

Marvin Kanarek: No, I have a great memory… Music is actually good for the brain. Ever heard of the Mozart Effect?

HDYGT: Mozart? (checks notes) I thought your name was Marvin.

Mavin Kanarek: (wonders if it’s too early for a glass of Bordeaux) Of course I’m Marvin.

Man in the Middle, by Marvin Kanarek

HDYGT: (smiles, extends hand) Nice to meet you, I’m HDYGT. Thank you for meeting me. So what do you do?

Marvin Kanarek: F*ck it. (signals waitress for a bottle) I believe we were discussing my being a drummer/singer/songwriter?

HDYGT: (plays really bad air drums) A drummer!! How Cool is that?! What do you like most about it?

Marvin Kanarek: (smiles, because the wine has arrived) The spontaneity and freedom. I am a practitioner of the ”Do what you love and never work again” philosophy.

HDYGT: You’re a Philosopher?! I’ve never interviewed a Philosopher before!

Marvin Kanarek: Uh, no… I’m NOT a philosopher. I adopted this philosophy after not being able tofunction in the regimented 9-5 world. I had no choice.

HDYGT: I see… so…what’s it like being a Philosopher who has no choice?

Marvin Kanarek: (hopes HDYGT’s terrible childhood is the reason she’s like this) I couldn’t say, really…

HDYGT: Couldn’t say? –Or choose not to? No, wait. If you have no choice then you can’t choose not to say. That doesn’t make any sense. And I love making scents –I learned how in arts and crafts.

Marvin Kanarek: Right…(Suspects HDYGT was born like this, her poor parents were probably trying to protect her through isolation) Anyway, as a musician I’ve had a wealth of choices.

HDYGT: Oh my God! You’re a Musician, too?! This is WAY Cool!! (high-fives Marvin) Who have you worked with?

Marvin Kanarek: (laughs because it hurts too much to cry) Well, let’s see, I’ve worked as both a touring and studio drummer for many Canadian and American artists: Rough Trade, The Bonedaddys, Burton Cummings and Randy Bachman of The Guess Who and Bachman Turner Overdrive, and DJ Massive, DCB, Janis Ian, Bo Diddley, Junior Walker, The Beach Boys, and more. And I’ve had my own bands as well.

HDYGT: Wow—Impressive!! What kind of music do your own bands perform?

Marvin Kanarek: One of my groups included a Chilean DJ, a country-rock guitarist and a reggae singer. We had a House music hit which stayed on the U.K. club charts for 13 weeks.  And as a solo artist, “2forty6″ was my first album, titled after the place that will always be home in Toronto, and “Looking Back Ahead” is the latest one.

HDYGT: And the other disciplines you mentioned?

Marvin Kanarek: As an architect, I’ve worked on many residential projects and as an artist I’ve had many one man and collaborative art shows. I am now concentrating on following my muse just to see what “comes out”. Mainly in my music and art. Occasional architecture, if it interests me.

HDYGT: Oh! – I know of a muse if you need one, but I think she may be busy working for your brother…

Marvin Kanarek: Really? I’m in the market for a muse…

Benjamin Kanarek: (storms up to outdoor café) Hey, forget it! Frédérique’s my muse and you can’t have her.

Marvin Kanarek: Oh yea?!

(horrible fight ensues: screaming, kicking, chairs fly, tables topple.

The Brothers Kanarek finally get HDYGT to calm down and stop flinging furniture. They leave the waitress a very large tip, apologizing profusely as they carry HDYGT out, one on each arm.)

HDYGT: That was a riot! Rock and Roll!! Any life lessons you’d like to leave our readers with?

Marvin Kanarek: Don’t know yet. I feel like I’m still in the middle of the storm. According to legend, we will know during those final moments that we draw our last breath. I’ll either have a smile on my face, or someone at bedside will be slapping it. I’ll know then.

HDYGT: If you need anyone there to slap you, here’s my number. But until then – Thank You so much for Playing!!