Business Opportunity


It’s not just business. It’s everything we’ve worked on for the past 35 years wrapped up in a location where other artists can come and stay for free while they work on projects that intend to change the world. I’m nearly ready to buy the property and open the Free Artist Residency for Progressive Social Change, but I’m taking a last minute chance and offering 5% of my net profit from my painting income in exchange for a $100K USD investment to get a place that functions as accommodation, an artist residency program and an art gallery as opposed to the lowest price house in the region and all that implies.

$100 USD paintings (11 x 14″) 800+ SOLD



35th Anniversary Micro Tour

Vancouver, July 13
photos by Bob Hanham
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mn 4
mn 2

Seattle, July 18


Olympia, July 19

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Anacortes, July 20

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David Lester Interview

North by Northwest (CBC Radio) interviews illustrator David Lester about “1919: A Graphic History of the Winnipeg General Strike”


1919 Winnipeg

Jean Smith Interview

Jean talks about raising funds to open the Free Artist Residency for Progressive Social Change by selling her $100 USD painting series on FaceBook.


No Hat #347 800

“No Hat #347″ (11 x 14”) SOLD

No Hat #348 800

“No Hat #348″ (11 x 14”) SOLD



“I Walk Alone” on Better Things

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Better Things with “I Walk Alone” by Mecca Normal (original studio version, 1986).

Season 3, Episode 2: Holding
March 7, 10:00 p.m. (EST), FX channel

“Because it’s my right to walk alone in any city at any time of day wearing whatever I want to — I walk alone.” – Jean Smith

Buy I Walk Alone on BandCamp

We’ve played “I Walk Alone” at a ton of shows since 1985. I think we gave it a rest for some time in the late 90s, but it’s in our current set list. Here’s a snippet of the LIVE version at Horses Records a few years ago.

“I Walk Alone” is also on the New Album: LIVE in Montreal, 1996 (Artoffact Records, 2019) — part of a three- song ‘medley’ with “Man Thinks Woman” and “Strong White Male”. Pre-Order // Limited Edition

NEW Live Album (1996)


Mecca Normal live in Montreal, 1996
LP, CD, download (extra tracks on BandCamp)

Jean Smith – vocals
David Lester – guitar
Peter Jefferies – drums

Release: March 22, 2019

Irritated by the standard four-guys-on-stage scene in the early 1980s, Mecca Normal – Jean Smith and David Lester – formed their voice-and-guitar duo with one thing on their mind. Changing the world. Weirdly, they succeeded. Frequently cited as an inspiration to the co-founders of Riot Grrrl, Smith regularly spoke from the stage between songs in the 80s and 90s, encouraging women in the audience to form bands of their own, and a few key figures did just that. “Jean Smith was really poetic and had feminist ideas at the core of a lot of her songs and she wasn’t ashamed of it. And when I saw her, I was just like, that’s it. I’m done. I’m sold.” Kathleen Hanna, Bikini Kill (The Fader, 2010)

For a few years in the 90s, Vancouver’s Mecca Normal headlined (and sometimes sold out) shows on the west coast and in the Northeastern USA, yet, until now, there hasn’t been a live album. For a brief time in the mid-90s, New Zealander Peter Jefferies (Nocturnal Projections) was on drums. Known for the intensity of their live shows, this one borders on incendiary. Recorded at The Cabaret, a beautiful little theatre in Montréal, Québec on April 16, 1996 for later broadcast on CBC’s Brave New Waves, Smith’s unparalleled delivery of songs about injustice is viscerally enmeshed with Lester’s furious guitar. As for the drums… while there is wisdom in not allowing romantic partners in a band, that tension had been intensified after the couple in question started a new band (2 Foot Flame on Matador) while living in New Zealand. “Maybe it’s just me, but I figure the guitar and the drums are both trying to get the last word, while I felt I needed to elevate my performance to justify the drama,” Smith recently divulged about the show.

In 2016, Mecca Normal opened three shows for The Julie Ruin (Bikini Kill members) at which Kathleen Hanna said from the stage: “Their music is still as relevant as it was 25 years ago when I first saw them. It makes me happy that their music is still relevant because they’re doing it better than ever. And their new songs are so fucking great and hilarious.”

Jean and David’s incredible creative partnership continues, but its focus is currently visual art. Lester’s graphic novel about the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919 is out now, and Smith has sold over 600 of her ‘$100 USD brand’ paintings on FaceBook.

Mecca Normal’s long-running association with the CBC’s Brave New Waves included many interviews as well as songs recorded by Kevin Komoda at DNA Studios in Montréal. Mecca Normal’s Brave New Waves session is released on vinyl, CD, and digital formats. The digipak CD comes with a short interview with Brent Bambury, as well as bonus cuts from the CBC archive. Released on Toronto-based Artoffact Records.

ORDER / limited edition

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Limited edition 12″ vinyl on see-thru green wax with insert of Jean Smith’s $100 USD paintings

1. Water Cuts My Hands
2. Prize Arm
3. Don’t Shoot
4. Tower Island
5. Revival of Cruelty
6. The Dogs
7. Drive At / Peach-a-Vanilla
8. Ribbon
9. Man Thinks Woman / Strong White Male / I Walk Alone
10. Armchairs Fit through Doorways
11. Are You Hungry Joe?

Limited edition digipak CD with bonus tracks
1. Water Cuts My Hands
2. Prize Arm
3. Don’t Shoot
4. Tower Island
5. Revival of Cruelty
6. The Dogs
7. Drive At / Peach-a-Vanilla
8. Ribbon
9. Man Thinks Woman / Strong White Male / I Walk Alone
10. Armchairs Fit through Doorways
11. Are You Hungry Joe?
12. Crimson Dragnet
13. Brave New Waves CBC interview, 1986
14. You’ll Never Know
15. Black Star
16. Hideous
17. Alibi

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Patti photo
Peter Jefferies, Jean Smith, Patti Schmidt (Brave New Waves host), David Lester

David Lester, Jean Smith, Peter Jefferies
photo: Robert Karpa