Hollerado Meets The Mayor

We're a band from Canada. This is a blog about us meeting a bunch of the country's mayors on our tour.

September 29, 2011 - Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi

When Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi walked in the room, we felt like we were meeting an Indian Mick Jagger. We had been told by many of our Calgarian friends as well as numerous mayors that we had already met that Nenshi was a rock star, yet still we were not prepared for charisma like this. He commanded the room, and before we knew what had hit us, we had smiles on our faces and white cowboy hats on our heads and were repeating an oath to become honorary Calgarians. The mayor informed us that the last person to receive the honour of being “white hatted” was none other than…and I quote….”the Shat”…William Shatner. In our brief meeting at City Hall, Mayor Nenshi embodied all that we love about our visits to Calgary. A youthful city, brimming with energy, looking to embrace new ideas and a passion for the arts and culture.

The mayor spoke of how proud he is to have festivals like Sled Island, which in our opinion is one of the coolest Indie festivals in North America. Nenshi said that one of his favorite local
artists was Chad Van Gaalen, as well as claiming he is pretty sure CBC Radio 3 is not a real station due to the fact that it is simply Grant Lawrence at a computer in his basement. Also, Nenshi has flown an F-18.

In conclusion, if you were to cross Freddie Mercury with Chuck
Norris and make this person the Mayor of Calgary, you would have Mayor
Nenshi.

Our Meeting (and “White Hatting” Ceremony) with Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi 

After the show, in Thunder Bay, with Mayor Keith Hobbs.

After the show, in Thunder Bay, with Mayor Keith Hobbs.

A letter of support for Mayor Hobbs of Thunder Bay

A story about our meeting with Thunder Bay Mayor, Keith Hobbs, recently ran on CBC.ca. You can read the article here. 

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/thunder-bay/story/2011/09/27/tby-hobbs-marijuana.html

 We wanted to respond to our readers with a letter of support for Mayor Hobbs.

 During our meeting Hobbs spoke candidly about his personal opinions on a variety of issues, one of which happened to be the legalization of marijuana. Although we do enjoy a nice little joint from time to time, we are by no means activists for the issue of marijuana legalization, as we feel there are far more pressing problems with this world and, in the realm of activism, there are a myriad of other causes to which our time and effort is better suited.

 In fact, we spoke with mayor Hobbs about many of these issues (such as Native rights and poverty), to which he provided us with much insight into the complexities of the issues as well as a sense of honest compassion that we feel is often lacking in “conservative” politicians. The reason we wanted to follow up on this article this is to re-iterate how Mayor Hobbs spoke openly with us about numerous issues, of which only one of was the legalization of marijuana. We feel that he may now be getting flack from some factions of his community due to his personal views this one issue.

We cannot state enough how grateful we are that the mayor spoke to us as openly as he did. He is a no-bullshit guy willing to speak candidly with four young people who want nothing more than to engage in an open dialogue with the leaders of a community. We strongly believe that if more politicians had this attitude, more people would feel empowered to engage themselves in the issues that concern them and the world would be a better place.

Mayor Hobbs, Thank you for showing us respect by speaking honestly and openly with us. Thank you for not backpedaling on your statement in subsequent interviews that challenged what you said during your meeting with us. We think you are a man of integrity and common sense and that you set an example of accessibility and transparency that other politicians should follow.

We hope you are not taking too much crap. I would like to say on behalf of the citizens of holleradoland that we stand behind you.

 Thanks

-menno, nick, dean, jake

p.s. The office of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has yet to respond to any of our requests for a meeting.

September 25, 2011 – Cumberland Deputy Mayor Bronco Moncrief

In Cumberland we were really fortunate to hang out with 84 year old Deputy Mayor Bronco Moncrief. He served for decades on council and as  mayor of the lovely village of Cumberland and is one of Canada’s longest serving municipal representatives. This video clip is a must watch. Bronco is a Mayor from another era and has the wisdom and charm to match. We quickly became friends and count him among our coolest mayors so far. Check out the video to watch him explain how he helped make Cumberland the nickname Capital of the World.

Meeting with Cumberland Deputy (and Former) Mayor Bronco 

September 24, 2011- Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin

We met Mayor Fortin for an 11am brunch at a place called Shine Café. Victoria has a radio station called The Zone, that actually plays good music. Pol and Jade from the station joined us and when they offered to pay for breakfast, we all immediately ordered Eggs Benedict (which after breakfast we would all agree was the best we’d ever had!). Mayor Fortin was a smooth talking guy who seemed to know everyone in the restaurant. Of all the mayors we have met to this point, he was the one who most fit the “politician” archetype. A nice guy who answered all of our questions with quick wit and diplomatic answers. It was clear that he loves his job and his city.

He  told us a cool story about when local hero Steve Nash was in town for the opening of a new rec center. The mayor knew a bunch of young local basketball players who desperately wanted to meet their idol. The mayor was scheduled to meet Nash, but was unable to bring any guests except for necessary staff. So he made up a whole bunch of fake job titles like assistant in charge of mayoral luggage, and hired all the kids for the day, so they could come with him and meet the basketball star. 

Also, Rifflandia was the best show so far. We played in bathrobes and
Chewbacca helped us shoot confetti. And we got to watch some rad bands
like Malajube, Besnard Lakes and Dinosaur Bones!

Meeting with Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin 

September 22, 2011 - Nanaimo…

Well, turns out we are still a rock band and eventually we would mess
something up and miss a meeting with a mayor. Mayor John Ruttan was
cool enough to set up a meeting with us at 4pm at city hall. Then Dean
got stuck in a shirt and we missed the meeting. We are very sorry and
thank the mayor for making time to meet with us. We promise to try our
very best to make sure that was the last meeting we miss on this tour.
Here is the video of Dean being stuck in his shirt.

Dean, stuck in a shirt.