Tag Archives: somniloquy

Terrific BBC Article on “Epic Sleep-Talker” Dion McGregor and His “Dark Tales”

23 Feb

Thanks to David Robson for doing a splendid job sharing the story of legendary sleeptalker (and Torpor Vigil recording star) Dion McGregor!


The Dark Tales of the World’s Most Epic Sleep-Talker (BBC article by David Robson)

Dreaming Like Mad Release

14 Jul

The official release date of the new Dion McGregor album is July 20th. Pre-orders have been filled—and it’s truly exciting to get some enthusiastic early reactions to the audio, the CD package, and the t-shirts/tank tops (featuring Kerry Zentner’s cover art).

To see related posts, kindly drop by the Dreaming Like Mad Facebook page:

I’d better start tweeting, too, now that I’m into the getting-it-out-there phase!

There’s still work to be done before the 20th, but everything’s up and running on the Dion McGregor Bandcamp site (with the possible exception of shirts and prints):

What have I got for a picture this time … ? How about the earliest known photo of Dion (photographer unknown):Young Dion McGregor

Best from Torpor Vigil HQ in Toronto,



The Time Has Come for Dreaming Like Mad!

19 Jun

Praise Morpheus, the god of dreams: the new Dion McGregor album is finished at last!

Preorders for the CD will be filled the first week of July. Meanwhile, I’ll be making the download version available not just to those who preordered it but to those who’ve been awaiting the disc and will have to wait a little longer for it to be shipped.

Each unavoidable delay presented an opportunity to improve upon the layout and design of the album. This new release will be a worthy offering on the golden anniversary of The Dream World of Dion McGregor.

New orders for the album, in CD and download forms, will be filled starting the second week of July–a month shy of the tenth anniversary of The Further Somniloquies of Dion McGregor (the first “dream world” compilation from Torpor Vigil).

I can guarantee you, this new Dion McGregor release will be nothing to thumb your nose at!*

Steve Venright

* You’ll know what I’m talking about when you hear the dreams.

Annie Paladino “Dreama”s Again

9 Apr
Annie Paladino's show inspired by the dreams of Dion McGregor

Annie Paladino’s show inspired by the dreams of Dion McGregor

Annie Paladino is remounting her wonderful solo show Dreama, in Seattle. The show was “written” by Dion McGregor in his sleep: Annie inhabits his dream world as she vocally recreates some of the great sleeptalker’s somniloquies. Here’s the Facebook page, and the link to tickets:

Kickstarter Blog Interview About Dreaming Like Mad

21 Mar

Sam Hockley-Smith had some excellent questions for me about the forthcoming Dion McGregor album.

Kickstarter: Final Week

19 Mar

This is the final week for the Dreaming Like Mad Kickstarter campaign!
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1823544782/dreaming-like-mad-with-dion-mcgregor *

NPR Broadcast About Dion McGregor

18 Mar

NPR’s All Things Considered aired a new interview about Dion McGregor with sleep and dream expert Dr. Deirdre Barrett (who’s been studying Dion’s somniloquies) and fellow Harvard prof Dr. Robert Stickgold. A splendid prelude to the new Dreaming Like Mad album!

NPR, USA Today, and Kickstarter Updates

15 Mar
Dion McGregor (from the archive of Phil Milstein; photographer unknown)

Dion McGregor (from the archive of Phil Milstein; photographer unknown)

The awareness/fundraising campaign for the forthcoming Dreaming Like Mad with Dion McGregor album got a boost from Whitney Matheson in her USAtoday.com column Pop Candy, and tracks from the new album will soon be featured on the NPR program All Things Considered. For details, and to read other updates on the DLM Kickstarter campaign, the best idea is to go here:

NPR Interview: Dion McGregor’s Further Somniloquies

1 Mar
Inverted version of Richard A. Kirk's cover illustration for The Further Somniloquies of Dion McGregor

Negative of of Richard A. Kirk’s cover illustration for The Further Somniloquies of Dion McGregor

Here’s a 2005 interview about Dion McGregor on the NPR show To the Best of Our Knowledge.

Jill Battson’s Play About Dion McGregor

24 Feb
Kerry Zentner's illustration for Sleeptalker—Jill Battson's play about Dion McGregor

Kerry Zentner’s illustration for Sleeptalker—Jill Battson’s play about Dion McGregor

Thought you might enjoy seeing this program for the workshop reading of a play by Jill Battson. I’m hoping the time and resources will be there for Jill to resume this project.

Dreaming Like Mad Pre-Release News!

17 Feb

Portrait of Dion McGregor by Kerry Zentner (based on an uncredited photo in the 1964 Bernard Geis Associates publication The Dream World of Dion McGregor)

The release of Dreaming Like Mad (Yet More Outrageous Recordings of the World’s Most Renowned Sleeptalker) is slated for late May. To raise funds for the final phases of production—and just to get the word out—I’ve launched a Kickstarter campaign (see link below). The CD can now be preordered on the TVR website. The download version will be available via iTunes upon official release in May.

I’ve just finished digitizing 27 somniloquies that were previously unknown to me. These were considerately restored to the archive of McGregor recordings by Patrick Ramsay after he discovered several tapes stored among Michael Barr’s belongings. Michael, who recorded Dion’s somnolent monologues during the 60s, died in 2009, passionate to the end about the mad dreams of his old songwriting partner and roommate. Several of these long-lost dreams are truly outstanding, and I plan to incorporate a few of them into the DLM track list.

Dreaming Like Mad on Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1823544782/dreaming-like-mad-with-dion-mcgregor

Preorder the CD: http://www.torporvigil.com/012TVR/SectorPages/Store.html

DLM Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/dreaminglikemad

Thanks for checking in. Drop by again soon for further updates.

Dreaming Like Mad promo video

17 Jan

Kerry Zentner’s cover illustration for the 2014 Dion McGregor album from Torpor Vigil Records

Here’s the first promo video for the forthcoming Dion McGregor album.

Dreaming Like Mad with Dion McGregor (promo video)

Dreaming Like Mad cover illustration by Kerry Zentner

Two Classic Dreams by Sleeptalker Dion McGregor

17 Jan

Richard A. Kirk’s cover illustration for the 2004 Dion McGregor album from Torpor Vigil Records

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Dream World of Dion McGregor (Decca, January 1964), here are a couple of my favourite McGregor somniloquies. These are from the 2004 Torpor Vigil album The Somnolent Adventures of Dion McGregor: More Outrageous Recordings of the World’s Most Renowned Sleeptalker. The new album—Dreaming Like Mad with Dion McGregor—is scheduled for release in April of this year. These recordings were made by McGregor’s roommate Michael Barr. McGregor, amazingly, was fast asleep at the time.

There will be more and more Dion McGregor activity as the year goes along. Currently, there are projects underway on many fronts, including audio, film, publishing, theatre, and illustration. Hang on a minute and I’ll also post the promo video for the forthcoming release!

Steve Venright

Further Somniloquies cover by Richard A. Kirk