NEXT STAGE #15 April 22 2005

What are they building in there?

MegaByte 2 CD ROM

With a few quick mouse clicks the Mega Byte 2 CD ROM sparks to life and a fantastic snapshot of Yukon creativity is at your fingertips.

The creative juice that this sucker holds is enormous. Ten musical acts, four writers including What’s up Yukon’s own Sam Cashin, five visual artists and Michael Couchman: comedian

Down at the BYTE office Jen Jones told me “ This cd is written, performed, produced, recorded, designed, programmed and presented by youth right here in Whitehorse”. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she talks about the positive benefits of bringing youth together for projects such as this.

She went on to explain that projects such as these take a lot of specialized work skills and people necessarily get pushed out of their comfort zone. Everybody learns cooperative participation skills and discovers untapped talent that can always be taught to someone else. It is an exciting focused time for all involved.

Each artist has a page that presents a photo and bio by way of introduction. The music, print and visual material on this volume is integrated into each page.

There’s lots of Rap and Hip Hop music from local MC’s and DJ’s. Each artist presents a fresh and often local twist on this otherwise urban art form. Microphone assassins each and every one.

Death in Venice and Drifting, musical opposites in the same dark night are represented along side songsmith Kate Weeks and new songwriter Selina McMillan.

Jen Jones said that McMillan was recorded in the back of the Byte offices and her song Touch was a first attempt at song writing.

An interesting truth about Whitehorse is that the person that rides the same bus as you could be a poet. This is my relationship with writer Dave Harder, one of the featured writers on the cd.

Along with Holly Faye, Telek Rogan and “call me” Sam Cashin, Harder has his work presented as pages in a portfolio. Click your mouse and the pages turn.

Comedian, Michael Couchman has a live performance video on his page.

The visual artists section of this disc Brianna Quinsey, Erin Boake, James Green, Matte Morgan and Sheila Maclean each have their own section of work whose only drawback is that you cannot zoom in on the pages to observe fine detail. This is a small setback to an otherwise large and varied body of work by these young artists.

The reality of this small piece of plastic purring like a kitten in my hard drive is that a group of organized youth took it upon them selves to make what has become a sort of mixed tape for the new millennium. This would make a great stocking stuffer for Christmas.

The MegaByte 2 CD is available at Triple J’s Music Café for a couple of bucks or drop by the BYTE office at 407 Ogilvie. BYTE is online at

Bill Polonsky