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.

Beatlemania and the Toronto Sound

The Beatles changed the world in countless ways, but they also dramatically changed Toronto over three consecutive years of performances (1964 to 1966) at Maple Leaf Gardens. Almost overnight, the city was hit with a cultural shift of seismic proportions: Boys grew Beatle bangs, girls pinned photos of John, Paul, George and Ringo on their walls and parents worried about the sanity of their teenaged children. Canada’s folk darlings Ian & Sylvia had ruled up to that point, but as the male half of that duo, Ian Tyson, remembers, “the minute the Beatles arrived, it was over—well and truly over.” The folk boom slowed, as every kid on the block rushed to form rock bands.Toronto’s music scene f...
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Music Review: Paul McCartney - Egypt Station

At 76, Sir Paul could be forgiven if he slowed down and kicked back in his slippers with a nice cuppa. But that’s not Macca’s way. In fact he’s as busy as ever, going viral with James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke and launching another world tour Sept. 17 in Quebec City. On his 17th solo studio album, McCartney sounds still in his prime—feisty, frisky and having fun. The flirtatious “Come On to Me” is a delirious rocker, while “Fuh You,” produced by hitmaker Ryan Tedder, is sexy and infectious. The rest of the album, produced by Greg Kurstin (Beck, Adele), ranges from the Latin jazz of “Back in Brazil” and the bouncy “Happy With You” (about his wife Nancy Shevell) to the cautionary political...
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Obituary: Beatles visionary, talent scout Paul White

Capitol Records Canada executive Paul White (second from left) with the Beatles, Toronto, September 1964. Photo by Lynn Ball.
He’s the man who first brought the Beatles’ music to Canada—almost a full year before America embraced Beatlemania. He then opened the doors for other British Invasion acts and went on to sign the first wave of Canadian pop artists during the 1960s, including Anne Murray and Edward Bear, in his capacity as Capitol Records’ artists & repertoire executive in Canada. When Paul White died on March 13, after a cardiac arrest, the music industry mourned the loss of a jovial gentleman and creative trailblazer.Along with issuing Beatles’ singles, beginning with “Love Me Do” on February 18, 1963 and hitting number one with “She Loves You” by the end of the year, White designed and compiled severa...
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Music Feature: Beatlemania Toronto Style

The Beatles changed the world in countless ways, but they also dramatically changed Toronto over three consecutive years of performances (1964 to 1966) at Maple Leaf Gardens. Almost overnight, the city was hit with a cultural shift of seismic proportions: Boys grew Beatle-bangs, girls pinned photos of John, Paul, George and Ringo on their walls and parents worried about the sanity of their teenaged children. Canada’s folk darlings, Ian & Sylvia, had ruled up to that point, but as the male half of that duo, Ian Tyson, remembers, “the minute the Beatles arrived, it was over – well and truly over.” The folk boom slowed, as every kid on the block rushed to form rock bands.Toronto’s music sce...
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Music Review: Yoko Ono - Yes, I'm a Witch Too

Yoko Ono has long been misunderstood. Blamed for the Beatles’ breakup and criticized for her influence over husband John Lennon, she has never been accepted outside of avant-garde circles. That may be changing. Last year, New York’s Museum of Modern Art mounted an extensive exhibition of her paintings, drawings, sculptures, films and music. Now everyone from Sonic Youth to Lady Gaga is calling the controversial 83-year-old an influence. A new album of collaborations sees contemporary musicians reinterpreting her music. Alt-rockers Death Cab for Cutie provide new synth backing to Yoko’s “Forgive Me My Love,” while Sweden’s pop-rock trio Peter, Bjorn & John offer dramatic accompaniment to ...
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