I have been on this musical, lyrical journey most of my life. Living, trying to be the best human I can. Falling down, getting up and writting all the time. When I first picked up a guitar it became a part of me. When I couldn’t have a guitar in my hand it would be a harmonica. When I didn’t have that I would just cup my hands together and make harmonica sounds walking down the road just me, music and the open road. I was known as Guitar Gord back then and still am today with my family of friends that invited me into their lives when I made it to the west coast in the early 90s.
“You and your band kicked ass last night! You’re like a mad preacher calling down the Gods of Rock — love you.” Friend and fan Jackie.
A few of the projects I have been working on recently include writing a song for the school board I work for when I m not playing music and I’m paying the bills. It’s called the Restitution Song. It’s takes the ideas of the Restituion book written by Diane Gossen and puts them to music. Helping children work out their needs and recognize others needs as well. Solving problems on their own. The song has been picked up by many schools in School District 62. With overwhelming positive reaction.
This next quote is why I love making and playing music.
“We’ve enjoyed singing the Restitution song, and most of all, it’s been great to use music to really get the message behind restitution to resonate with the kids. So many have told me in the past couple of weeks that they now understand what restitution is about, whereas before, it was just a word they had heard people at school use, but they didn’t fully understand.
That’s the power of music!!”
Sandi Arts, music teacher. Poirier Elementary school.
Since this song was released I have written many kids songs with my youngest daughter. Usually on a Saturday or Sunday morning inspired by the world of possibilities in a childs eyes. Her voice is on the recording of Restitution Song.
Take a listen
Entering the CBC searchlight contest 2015 Was a wild ride. The Sooke Hiway song made it to one of top ten regional finalists.
Found out right away how much the community of Sooke out here on the west coast of Vancouver island can come together and support local musicians.
Thank you Sooke community and my home town of Sarnia and everywhere in between that voted.We will try again next year.
Here is an article written when we were in the running for the contest. Thanks Octavian. He is a great journalist and we are lucky to have him in our community.
CBC searchlight top ten regional finalist 2015
Another project in the works is a children’s book based on a song I wrote called Little Otter. I saw an otter on the beach one day and he inspired me to write about west coast animals. It wil be available in 2016.
The band and myself are working hard getting the next Album together. Very excited to share all this new music with everyone.
Here is a live version of the Sooke Hiway for you to enjoy
Also the link to the Looking Glass album, includes Sooke Hiway.
Thanks for listening and coming out to the shows. Without all of you, there’s no ears to hear.
Gord “I need to play” Phillips
Here are the lyrics to my tribute song to Stompin Tom Connors, to be released on the next album.
This here’s a tale about a man we knew
From coast to coast his song was true
About this land and the people all around
He’d weave some lore about some place
And fill the bar till there was no space
All the while his boot would stomp the ground
He’d keep good time on that plywood
Reelin ryhme oh so good
Tellin us all about a Lemington tomata
From the man in the moon to the redo canal
From PEI we know so well
Bout BUD the spud that ole potata
His name was Stompin Tom
Come on sing along
His voice echoes through ever little town
His boot has worn floor
From Sooke to Labrador
He’s a troubadour The Northlands Own.
Second verse, how it all began
His ma was poor his dad was gone
All he had was this here song
A pen guitar and the people he would meet
He left his home around fifteen
And hit the road the hiking scene
Travelled around on his own two feet
He’d been liven hand to mouth
East west north and south
Got his first gig
At the maple leaf Cafe
He was broke and short a dime/nickel
For a beer he bought that time
The bar tender said to get this beer you play
So He played three sets for that whole night
Had everyone up and feelin all right
From that point on his life would take a turn
Black Stetson hat and clothes to match
Black shirt , black pants black Stetson hat
The famous boots , the plywood that
He’d wear out at every single show
His name is stompin Tom
He wrote a thousand songs
Bout everything and everyone around
His boot has worn the floor
From sarnia to the northern shore
And shared his songs
To the nation far and wide
Big joe muferaw
Paddling into matawa
Margot cargo Riggs rig
Ian the wind
The donnelys pride
Little Joey tuktuk?
Back breaking leaf smokin tillsonburg
The Martin hart well story
The good ole hockeyy game
The snowmobile song
Sudbury Saturday night
The ketchup song
Real Canadian girl
Poor poor farmer
The blue berets ( Romeo dahliare played it for the un troops in rawanda)
Fire in the mine
The consumer for cbcs marketplace.
Thank you Gaetan Lepine for giving Tom his first job.