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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Puck Rock - Rock 'n' Hockey

A battle of the bands is usually won by the group with the best guitar pyrotechnics and drum solos. But last year at an indoor rink in Toronto’s west end, some of Canada’s best-known musicians settled the score with slapshots, glove saves—and punches. The Black Stokes were facing their archrivals, the Morningstars, in the playoff semi-final of a recreational hockey league. Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy, Cowboy Junkies’ Peter Timmins and Skydiggers’ Andy Maize were all playing for the Black Stokes, while Rheostatics’ Dave Bidini and members of such bands as Lowest of the Low and the Morganfields were among the Morningstars. In a previous game between the two teams, a bitterly fought contest won by t...
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Rheostatics - Rock in a literary groove

It is a particularly eerie case of life imitating art. In Paul Quarrington’s novel Whale Music, rock musician Desmond Howell writes a song called “Claire” that unexpectedly becomes a hit single. Recently, the Rheostatics, a Canadian rock band with no previous hit singles to its credit, recorded a sound track for the film adaptation, including their own version of “Claire.” The song, a dreamy slice of melodic pop, is now getting airplay on commercial radio stations across Canada, exposing the critically acclaimed group to its largest audience to date. “Normally, we just follow our instincts on our albums,” admits guitarist Dave Bidini. “Here, we got a chance to pretend to be someone else...
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Feature Article: Stompin' Tom Connors - A rebel's return

Mild-mannered and moderate, Canadians are generally wary about wrapping themselves in the flag. But Stompin' Tom Connors is unabashed about his patriotism. When the country singer hit the stage last week in Owen Sound, Ont. - his first concert in 13 years - the backdrop was a giant Maple Leaf. As the flag unfolded across the back of a high-school auditorium in the Georgian Bay community, 190 km northwest of Toronto, Connors walked onstage, and the packed audience of 700 greeted him with a standing ovation. Gaunt-faced, wiry and dressed from Stetson to boots in black, the 54-year-old musician from Skinner's Pond, P.E.I., looked more like a villain from a western than a defender of Canadian cu...
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Liner Notes: Stompin' Tom Connors - Stompin’ Tom Sings Canadian History

If nationhood is a peoples’ sense of their past, then Stompin’ Tom Connors has contributed greatly to our national identity with his backward-glancing songs. Whether it’s courageous cowpunchers, ghostly shipwreck sites or bold mainland-linking bridges, Stompin’ Tom has sung about this country’s people, places and things with incomparable passion and conviction. Entertaining and instructive, he reminds us of familiar characters and events from our past while rescuing from obscurity some that never showed up on our collective radar screen in the first place. That takes genius. No wonder they gave him an honorary doctorate.Dr. Tom’s historical songs, the best of which are collected here, neatly...
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