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Old 04-04-2019, 09:47 PM   #6
Join Date: May 2000
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Default HOT DOCS-Lightfoot documentary - interviews/photos/articles-Apr.-2019

Jan Stephenson

'The cat's meow,' says Gordon Lightfoot of the idea of a feature film about his life.
Gordon Lightfootís notable life is appearing in all forms currently.

There was Nicholas Jenningsí 2017 bestselling biography, Lightfoot, and a new 2019 documentary, Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My Mind, directed by Martha Kehoe and Joan Tosoni, which will have its world premiere at Torontoís Hot Docs on April 27 before it gets a theatrical release in early summer and TV broadcast on CBC in the fall.

So the next thing could be a feature film right?

Sure, says the 80-year-old folk-pop legend who is touring southern Ontario including two dates on April 15-16 at the Living Arts Centre in Mississauga.

ďWell, I mean if somebody wanted to take it on,Ē said Lightfoot with a laugh. ďIím sure thereís some out there that would jump at the opportunity, who could really get into it with vigour.Ē

Just donít ask him if he knows who should play him.

ďNo,Ē said Lightfoot. ďThatís always such a thing to think about. My goodness. Wouldnít that just be the catís meow if anybody ever did that? I wouldnít care. Whatever anybody wants to do. Itís a free world. We live in a free world, thank goodness. If they do, Iíll try and help them. If it came down to that I would try to offer some input but I would not spend a whole lot of time. But I could certainly add something.Ē

We caught up with Lightfoot recently on the phone in Toronto.

What can you tell me about the new documentary?

We worked on that over the last three-and-a-half years with Insight Productions.

Have you seen it?

No, of course not! Itíll be the first time for me (on April 27).

Is it true you have 14 new songs ready to go for a brand-new studio album that would be your first in 15 years?

Yeah, Iíve got a whole bunch of material that I wrote a long time ago that I discovered one day while cleaning out my office. It was a very, very lucky day. They go back to about the turn of the century, 2001, just before the (stomach) aneurysm (in 2002). And let me tell you this. I had already chosen a number of tunes for the Harmony album (recorded in 2001 but not released until 2004) while I was still in the hospital getting over the first series of operations. I had seven operations. I was out cold for six weeks. I had no idea how close it came.

What approach might you take with the new album?

Iím half-tempted to let the whole thing go solo. Iím trying to figure that out right now. That would be really interesting. I remember when Bruce Springsteen did that with his (1982) Nebraska album. It could be (just me and my acoustic guitar) or I could go in with my orchestra and we could start working on the stuff that works into the fall. What Iím trying to say is, I would like to get on with it because Iím not getting any younger, letís put it that way.

So when do we get to hear it?

Well, if I do it this way (solo acoustic), itíd probably come out in the fall. You donít want to come out short and you donít want to come out long. Albums can be too long and you wind up with a couple of sleepers. So like 10-12 (songs). I donít like 11. Iíve got a couple of newer ones too that I want to record, demos, which will also be originals.

How are you feeling at the ripe old age of 80?

I feel that I move slower and my mouth dries out. (Laughs). I forget names.

But youíre still touring a lot so you must be feeling okay?

Weíve got the crowd these days. Everywhere we go anywhere now usually weíre full. So weíre just going to cruise along and hope that everybody stays healthy.

You closed Torontoís Massey Hall last year before two years of renovations. Do you expect you will reopen it again?

Probably. They will do whatever they want. (They havenít asked) not to my knowledge yet, but how could I not be there? For openers. The only thing that could happen is that it could be some kind of a health issue or something like that. So we always try to stay prepared for that mentally. Weíll see if they want me. If they want me, Iíll be there.
Gordon Lightfoot 2019 Canadian tour dates:
04/03 Richmond Hill Centre For The Performing Arts, Richmond Hill, ON ( 04/05-06 Empire Theatre, Belleville, ON
04/08 Talk Is Free Georgian Theatre, Barrie, ON
04/09 Stockey Centre For The Performing Arts, Parry Sound, ON
04/11-12 Partridge Hall First Ontario Arts Centre, St. Catharines, ON
04/13 The Meeting House , Oakville, ON
04/15-16 Living Arts Centre, Mississauga, ON
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