Monday, June 15, 2009

Pheaturing Michael Hughes


Hello there, are you ready for a Monday phixing of the Phile? The Phile is as you probably know by now a sponsor of and TACAnow.orgI heard Prince needs a double hip replacement. Wow. Tonight he's going to party like he just turned 99. The Olsen twins both turned 23 this past weekend. They'll celebrated like they do every year — they got a birthday cake and didn't eat it. President Obama signed a note for a fourth-grade girl who missed school so she could attend his town hall. I don’t see what the big deal is. Bush wrote notes for fourth graders too — he just called them “speeches.” Lil Wayne will be the proud father of two new sons from two different women. Yeah — the women were Lil Drunk and Lil Stoned. Norman Brinker, the man who invented the salad bar, passed away this week. The wake was open-casket but with a sneeze-guard. They lowered his casket into the ground using giant tongs. And now for a special Monday edition top ten list...

From the home office in Pot Jefferson, NY, here is this week's top ten list...
Top Ten Sonia Sotomayor Excuses
10. Been drunk since Obama picked me.
 9. Too much X-Box "Dance Dance Revolution".
 8. No idea how it happened, dude, it's like "The Hangover".
 7. Tripped over my pet ferret, Otto.
 6. Larry Craig knocked me down rushing to the men's room.
 5. I ain't saying nothing 'bout nothing 'til I talk to my lawyer.
 4. Kicked wall in frustration after learning "According to Jim" was cancelled.
 3. El Nino.
 2. Lost the case of Gravity v. Pavement.
And the number one Sonia Sotomayor excuse...
 1. Twisted ankle trying to get away from Clarence Thomas.

Petros Philargos is elected Pope Alexander V by the Council of Pisa. This poses a certain amount of difficulty, as there already is a Pope in Rome, Gregory XII, and another in Avignon, Benedict XII. Ultimately, none of the three is willing to step down, leading the Chuch into a double schism.
Jean-Baptiste Denis performs the world's first blood transfusion on a human subject. He gives a feverish and drowsy man about 12 ounces of lamb's blood, after which the patient "rapidly recovered from his lethargy, grew fatter and was an object of surprise and astonishment to all who knew him." Nevertheless, it will be another century before human-to-human transfusions are attempted.
The Eisenhower administration stages the first annual OPAL exercise. In the "Operation Alert" drill, air raid sirens blare across America to assess our preparations for a nuclear attack. Duck and cover, people.
"Hee Haw" debuts on CBS television as a summer replacement for the "Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour". The country bumpkin musical comedy show quickly becomes an institution, airing weekly until its demise in December 1997.
The Supreme Court rules in US v. Alvarez-Machain that it is permissible for America to abduct suspects in foreign countries and smuggle them into the United States for trial, without extradition approval from those other countries. Of course, the U.S. recognizes no reciprocal right for the reverse to happen on our soil.
The Washington Times reports that at least 1,416 Boy Scout leaders have been expelled for molestation since 1973. Of course, those were only the ones who actually got caught.
Nicholas Vitalich is arrested outside a supermarket in San Diego, California for slapping his girlfriend upside the head with a large tuna. Vitalich is booked for assault with a deadly weapon, namely the fish.

The first look at Mickey Rourke as Iron Man's new nemesis, Whiplash, has hit the Internet courtesy of USA Today. Rourke is playing Ivan Vanko, a Russian ex-con (notice the prison tattoos) who has constructed his own version of an Iron Man suit. Of course, he has all kinds of nifty little additions such as a pair of whips, powered by the suit's glowing chest piece. But Jon Favreau won't say whether or not Vanko works for Stark Industries' rival Justin Hammer, as he does in the comics. "We like to play into and against the expectations that people might have so, we mixed it up a bit." Here he's making his first appearance not just online, but to the Marvel world at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix. So, what do you think? It's definitely inspired by the original character's suit, but thankfully doesn't resemble an S&M gimp. I like how raw and unfinished it looks, and the tattoos are awesome. Overall, it's a rather terrifying effect... but I think that has more to do with Rourke and his surgical enhancements than anything to do with the costume or the character.

And now for...

Okay, let's get on with today's guest. He is a very talented singer from Canada who looks like a young Donny Osmond. He'll be playing at Harbourfront Jubilee Theatre, Summerside, Prince Edward on June 23rd (wherever that is). Please welcome to the Phile... Michael Hughes.

Me: Hello, Michael, welcome to the Peverett Phile. So, I have to ask, has anybody ever told you you look like a young Donny Osmond?

Michael: Haha! Lately, people have been telling my little sister and me that we look like Donny and Marie. I think it’s hilarious. I’m going to try and talk her into dressing up as them for Halloween this year. I’ll send you a picture.

Me: I checked out your blogspot, and it looks pretty good. Better then mine looks. Well, almost. How often do you update it?

Michael: Thank you! I TRY to update it every time I have a spare minute… which hasn’t really been working out the busier I have been getting. BUT I do have some exciting news! In the next few weeks we are taking the blog HIGH DEF! You can expect to see Video Blogs, Performance Footage (videos from my various gigs/studio sessions, with cameos by my crazy talented friends), and some other really fun things that are still in the planning stages. The main goal is to keep it entertaining and interactive, with updates every couple of days!

Me: I interviewed quite a few Canadians, Michael. Where in Canada are you from? Do you still live in Canada?

Michael: I was born, raised and currently reside in Toronto, Ontario.

Me: We have something in common, Michael, we both worked for Disney. Actually, I still do. What did you do for the company and for how long? I have been at Epcot for over 20 years. Ever been there?

Michael: I worked as singer for Disney for two years in Tokyo, Japan. It was a really wonderful experience. That city is as cool as it gets. And I got to be friends with Mickey Mouse. That guy is a serious celebrity in Japan! Haha! I haven’t been to Epcot before, but I heard this great rumor that you can have a “Drink around the World”. If it’s true then I think I will definitely have to plan a visit sometime soon!

Me: You recently came back from a USO tour of Japan, right? How was that? Were you well received and did you take a full band?

Michael: Yes I did. It was a whirlwind experience. I don’t think I got more than three hours sleep the whole time I was there. We were always finishing a show and then going to the hotel to try and sleep a couple hours before getting on a bus in the middle of the night and driving to the next Naval base or airport. I got to see a whole other part of Japan that I didn’t get to experience while I was living in Tokyo. One night we opened for the band, Alien Ant Farm. It was an odd pairing. But I am really thankful for that experience. The troops and their families were so friendly and welcoming and a lot of them had been really looking forward to the performances. I would love to go back now that my album is complete and really do it up. That would be awesome.

Me: Weren't you in a movie with James Marsden? Is he Canadian? Are you two friends? What did you think of his role as Cyclops?

Michael: We actually worked together on a short-lived Canadian sitcom. It was so bad that you can hardly find any information about it on the internet. I heard it was a HUGE hit in Japan, though I never met anyone there who had ever heard of it. Haha! I think Jimmy is a really nice guy and a great actor, and incidentally, not Canadian. I loved the first two X-Men movies… but don’t get me started with the third one.

Me: Let's talk about your new CD, Michael. What can you tell the readers about it, and is it all covers or some originals? It is getting some good reviews. I looked for it on iTunes but there's another Michael Hughes there. Will you be getting it up on the US version of iTunes anytime soon?

Michael: The album is a collection of contemporary and classic tunes from the pop, jazz, R&B catalogues that have been reinvented with some really amazing arrangements. There is one original song that was written for me by my producers called "Until Dawn". The album was produced by Alan Poaps and Shawn Daudlin of Apmar Music. Mixed by Juno Award (The Canadian version of the “Grammy”) winning engineer Denis Tougas and mastered at Sterling Sound by Tom Coyne (Britney Spears, Beyonce, NSYNC). It is going to be up on iTunes very soon, I’ve been told within the month. So check back soon! And tell that “other” Michael Hughes that I’m coming for him. Haha!

Me: What's the name of it, by the way? You seem to have a very large band playing with you.

Michael: The album is self-titled. And the band is pretty big. We were able to enlist some of the best musicians in the country to play on the album. I think all in all we used twelve musicians and over fourteen different instruments including horns and strings.

Me: Are you planning on touring behind the CD, coming down to the States?

Michael: I would love to tour with the CD. And if everything continues according to plan then there will most definitely be a couple of U.S. dates in the future.

Me: You went to school to study music, didn't you? Where did you go, and did you learn a lot there?

Michael: I studied Classical Voice for seven years at Cardinal Carter Academy for the Arts. We sang everyday but we also had to study music history, music theory, ear training and anatomy.
After graduation I attended what is known as the most prestigious Music Theatre Performance program in the country, at Sheridan College Institute. There I was able to take all that I had learned in my classical studies and apply it to all sorts of musical genres such as jazz, pop, and of coarse Music Theatre. I am so thankful for my wonderful education that I received; it really has made all the difference.

Me: Do you play any instruments or just sing?

Michael: My mother is going to LOVE this question! I took piano lessons off and on for close to twelve years, and one of my biggest regrets is that I never took it seriously enough. Playing did not come naturally to me as a kid, and that was very frustrating. Though, as I began understanding theory more, it became much easier for me. Now I can play well enough to teach myself new music. Also, I have tried and failed at playing the violin and guitar. I blame it all on my small hands.

Me: Who are your idols, and if you could do a duet with anybody of your choice, who would it be?

Michael: I have a lot of music idols. Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Dean Martin. In a way these guys were like my first singing teachers. I love Chet Baker. Whether he was singing or playing there was always this beautiful underlying sadness to everything he did. I also really admire Canadians, Rufus Wainwright and Michael Buble. But if I could do a duet with anyone of my choice, I would have to say it would be with a Canadian singer of the female persuasion. But there are too many good ones to have to choose just one!

Me: So, are you dating anybody right now? I bet you get a lot of girls falling for you with your looks and talent?

Michael: Oh geez. I have been travelling so much, and so involved with the music the past few years, there has not been much time for dating. But I have definitely been getting more attention from the ladies then I am used to. It is embarrassing but not unwelcome! Haha!

Me: Finally, did you have fun with this? DO you have anything to plug, what is your website and when are you going to interview me for your blog? LOL.

Michael: Check out my website at From there you can access my music, BLOG, Myspace and Facebook accounts and read even MORE about me!! I had a lot of fun with this interview, thank you for having me! And you can be on my blog any old time you want, Jason!! Just say the word.

Me: All the best, my friend, and continued good luck with your music


Thanks, Michael, for a great interview. And I never heard of this drinking around the world business at Epcot. ; ) Thanks also to Jimmy Fallon and Wikipedia. The Phile will be back with a great singer, songwriter and lead in one of my favorite bands, The Figgs. Mike Gent will be here. Also, there'll be a reminder to send a letter and some stuff to some of our troops over sees with the Phile's adopt a soldier program. So, as always, spread the word, not the turd. 

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