John Roby: Steve, Its Time to Leave


by John Roby

In the March edition of The Walrus I read Erna Paris provocative essay, The New Solitudes, on Stephen Harper and the erosion of democracy in this country during his tenure.

It made me, normally the most complacent of political souls, want to exchange my usual cocktail for a Molotov and run to the barricades.

With the recent events of the Bev Oda scandal, the charge of contempt and now the election, alittle political ditty, Steve, Its Time to Leave came out like a musical hairball. Scott Stephenson, a talented videographer with The Mercer Report, offered his considerable talents to come and video me singing the tune in my studio. If this song makes even a few people vote for a more democratic government i.e., anything but Conservative, then my modest musical effort has at least made some small dent in the Harper Government armour.

– John Roby

Composer, lyricist,and musical directorJohn Roby has won two Dora Mavor Moore Awards for his work on Theatre of the Film Noir and Girls In The Gang (with Raymond Storey). His compositions for film include The Hanging Garden and Beefcake for which he received the Atlantic Film Festival Award for Best Music Composition.

Roby has just released his new CD, An Unfashionable Love, co-written and co-produced with William Thaine Thies. In 2010 at the Stratford Festival, Roby composed a new musical with George F. Walker entitled King of Thieves. He appeared with Doug Riley and Tyler Yarema on the CD Stride that won Best Traditional Jazz Performance award in the 2005 Canadian Collectors’ Congress. When not scoring for theatre, film, and television, John can be found as a pianist/vocalist knockin' out the tunes in restaurants like Centro, Jacob's Steakhouse, Sassafraz, Sopra and The Fifth to name a few.