Gordon Lightfoot Book, Music and More!

The home of music journalist Nicholas Jennings, author of Lightfoot, the definitive new Gordon Lightfoot biography from Penguin Random House.

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Obituaries, Books

Bobby Dean Blackburn - Deep blues and soulful highs

There are few personal histories as rich as Bobby Dean Blackburn’s. His musical legacy, which runs from the birth of rock ’n’ roll and rhythm & blues in Toronto through to his sons’ Juno-nominated blues band, is as long as Yonge Street itself.Bobby Dean’s ancestral story goes even deeper: his great-grandfather was a U.S. slave who found freedom in Canada on the Underground Railroad. For over half a century, he has paid tribute to that heritage with annual performances at Owen Sound’s Emancipation Festival.Now the veteran musician, who turns 80 later this year, plans to add to his lengthy list of accomplishments. Along with a double album of ballads and gospel songs on the horizon, a foll...
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Gordon Lightfoot at the Riverboat 1967

In 1967, Gordon Lightfoot's interest in trains led him to narrate and appear in a Canadian National Railways promotional film Movin'. It opens with Lightfoot performing his title song at Yorkville's Riverboat coffeehouse. The film and accompanying promo EP also include two other Lightfoot train songs: "Talkin' Freight" and "Steel Rail Blues."Click here to watch Lightfoot performs "Movin'
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Leonard Cohen - The return of the modern troubadour

Leonard Cohen, hailed 20 years ago as Canada’s answer to Bob Dylan, had slipped into obscurity. It was the mid-1980s, and audiences seemed more interested in carefree pop music than in the modern-day troubadour’s philosophical, often bleak compositions. Then, Jennifer Warnes came along. The Los Angeles singer had begun performing Montreal-born Cohen’s material in 1969 and, later, toured with him as a backup vocalist. In 1986 she used her lush soprano voice to interpret a selection of his songs. The resulting album, Famous Blue Raincoat, sold more than 750,000 copies worldwide. And while that success brought Warnes major stardom, it has also helped rejuvenate Cohen’s musical career. With...
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