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Old 01-20-2015, 02:04 PM   #1
johnfowles
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Default Concert Reviews

Over the years there have been a large number of detailed well written concert reviews most notably by our dear Moderator herself.
I have just reread a lengthy heartfelt 2005 Californian concert review by corfid member Sheryl (who said Goodbye publicly here in June 2006 after posting an impressive 673 messages in under two years but I believe ceased posting here but just maybe she still occasionally reads corfid.
I came across her review whilst searching for something on the now sadly largely defunct newsgroup at:-
https://groups.google.com/d/forum/alt.music.lightfoot.
which is I see currently a wonderful searchable archive currently totaling some 9818 threads(or topics) of which there were only 7 new ones in 2014 5 of which were irrelevant spam
that had followed a mere 3 in 2013 (all 3 being spam ) and
5 in 2012 (when only 2 were spam)
Ed Mullen who recently made two welcome postings here was a stalwart of the Newsgroup for many years and I summarized the history of the Newsgroup on a page on my website at
http://johnfowles.org.uk/LIGHTFOOT/newsgroup.htm
Here is Sheryl's review of the concert at The Canyon Club in Agoura Hills (which we found is a little north of Malibu and Los Angeles.)
this review is from the Newsgroup thread at:-
https://groups.google.com/d/msg/alt....k/OWajRJGTRnYJ
Oops the full text is too long for this forum to stomach so I have cut it for posting in a reply to this it starts with
Hi everyone, sorry I've been remiss and haven't been in here for quite a while. I was at this concert and I am a new woman, and a better one for it! There aren't enough adjectives in the English language to describe my feelings for this man... Here it is...
Agoura Hills Review - April 24, 2005
Let me preface this by saying that this was my FIRST EVER Gordon Lightfoot concert! And it was a magical night... I got there with my husband, Gabe, and there were at least 100 anxious, excited fans lined up outside waiting to get in. After a few minutes, I had my first thrill when I spotted John & Susan Fowles walking up! It was my first time meeting these lovely and warm people! Once inside, we could see wall-to-wall tables set up, banquet-style, sideways from the stage almost to the back wall, and several rows of chairs all around the dining area for those who bought "standing room only" tickets. Behind us was the upraised "balcony" where more diners sat, and in front, the stage... the place where soon all the magic would happen. The room was half-filled already and abuzz with talk. We were all applauding and shouting. Not a moment later, Gord sauntered up to the mic, the applause got louder, people were shouting out, and excited shouts and whistles rang out throughout the club. He wore (well-fitting, ladies!!) black jeans and a short-sleeved black Hawaiian shirt with tan palm trees, and black suspenders. He smiled at us, then turned around to pick up his guitar.
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Last edited by johnfowles; 01-20-2015 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 01-20-2015, 02:09 PM   #2
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Default Re: Concert Reviews

Part the second

The applause didn't stop, even after the first few bars of the first song, "Never Too Close." After a moment, we let him play! He sang softly at first, but, you could hear every word. It was like ambrosia to my soul. His sweet voice filled the club and my heart swelled with joy. (I still haven't stopped smiling....). The band was comfortable, relaxed, and, best of all, so was Gord. It was apparent. No first-night nervousness here! Before the song ended, the wild applause started, more whistling, and plenty of shouts. He went right into "Don Quixote," which we heartily approved. His polished guitar and tuners glinted brightly under the lights. I saw reflections of light bounce off his guitar strings. I wondered if he'd "boiled" them to make them so shiny!! (Those of you who don't understand this little inside joke, ask John F. I'm sure he'll bring up the topic thread! Next came "Minstrel of the Dawn." He made eye contact with various people, nodding here and there as people called out. After Minstrel, he said, "I guess you heard I was sick a while back..." and went on to talk about how well he's healed up. "I have my bellybutton back now!" Then he leaned over and in a quiet, confidential tone said, "The doctor said it was hiding!" We all laughed, as did he. It was a pleasure to see him so happy. He was radiant, if you can say that about a man. Then, he began to play "In My Fashion." His voice was clear and strong, even more so than the Live in Reno DVD (filmed back in 2000, before his illness). Now, remember, I have never seen him live before and since October of last year I have been able to acquire all of his albums, thus hearing the gorgeous body of his work for the first time only recently. I have watched Live in Reno over and over, and I treasure it. But, in this live performance tonight, there was a fullness, a richness to his voice that just blew me away, left me palpitating in my seat, and smiling a dreamy smile the entire night. He had lots of fun with the "rap" part and it seemed like he really would have welcomed an answer to his question "Do I look like the kind of guy...." I wanted to laugh out loud! The song ended and Gord said, "I wrote this next song when I was going through some emotional trauma... AGAIN!" (Laughter throughout the room.) "AGAIN!" he repeated, smiling at us, as if joking with old friends. We all smiled and nodded, knowing. Then he went into the sweetest rendition of "Harmony" I have ever heard. I have listened to it many times on the new CD, but, the way he sang it tonight, it was so sweet, yet mournful, I found myself touching my heart. The person in front of me was closing his eyes and swaying in time with the music. Everyone's eyes were on Gord, being there with him. Mike seemed almost introspective, at times closing his eyes, Terry watched Gord. Next, Gord said, "I think you'll like this next ditty." (I think he said the word "ditty!") And he went on, explaining that the song was about sailing etc. He smiled and then began the (very soft) whistling beginning of "Ghosts of Cape Horn." If he was relaxed at the beginning of the set, he was downright in his element at this point. He owned the stage and he knew it. Everyone's head was bobbing back and forth to this jaunty little tune. Shortly into the song, he turned his head to the right and said, "Faster." The tempo increased slightly. I believe after this song, as he was introducing his next one, he suddenly said, "What *is* that sound?" People shouted back, "The air conditioning!" There were cries of "Turn it off!" But, being the consummate professional he is, he leaned closer to the mic and softly said, "We'll play over it." Next was "Rainy Day People," which set off a burst of applause and shouts of "Yeahhhh!" (Oh, that was me!) It was a smoooooth performance. " Triangle" came next (my 12-year-old's favorite song of his), which made everyone smile and sway in their seats. I believe at this point, he adjusted his capo (KAY-po -- thanks for explaining that to me, Gord!) if I remember correctly, then he started "Cotton Jenny." (It was either for this song or "Bitter Green" later on that he adjusted it, explaining to us, "This is the only time I do this, folks.") After the song was finished, Gord came up to the mic, looked around at all of us and said, "I used to be a country singer." And then he grinned. We all started to laugh, probably remembering "Country Hoedown." Then Gord said loudly, "I Used To Be A Country Singer!" And we all laughed again, "getting" the joke. He said the song was written by "Even Stevens," joking that they called themselves that because they split everything down the middle. Then he began "I Used to Be a Country Singer," and nailed it. Next came "Sundown," to tumultuous applause. He smiled, as did Terry and Rick, at our excited response. Rick sang some of the chorus as I read he did (last night?) without a mic, and at one time, I saw Terry singing a bit, too. Some people starting clapping in time and I wanted to tell them to Stop it!, but, after a few claps, they gave up (thankfully). One woman to my left had her cigarette lighter on and was waving it back and forth. Gord finished amid much more applause and started to talk about his next song and how proud he was to have met many of the people connected with this ship (shout-outs started as everyone recognized what song this meant!) and that he was proud of the song, and how successful it's been. We all laughed at this, as did Gord, as he began "Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald." Lots of applause. No one made a sound as he sang his way through that moving, emotional song. And with the band's bang-on performance, you could practically smell the salt air and feel the waves pitching under you. About halfway through the song, I suddenly saw with wonder and amazement that about 20 years had been subtracted from Gord's countenance. It seemed as if he had gone back in time and was reliving the experiences that the song evokes. After wild applause, he intro'd his next song by saying that many years back, he spent time in Charleston and met a beautiful co-ed. We all laughed and smiled knowingly, as did he! Then he began the most exquisite version of "Spanish Moss," sung with all the passion and reminiscence of lost love. I touched my heart again and sighed. He turned it into a medley with "Shadows," at which time I realized, too late, that I had forgotten to wear waterproof mascara. I wiped a tear from my eye, as this is one of my most favorite songs of his, a beautiful, romantic, and, to me, almost painful entreaty to a lover who has turned away. He followed that up with "If You Could Read My Mind," at which time a collective, "Ahhhhhhh!" went up from the audience and you could hear people singing along softly, and many eyes closed. It was a poignant moment. I felt that in some transcendental way, we had all traveled back 35 years and each of us was reliving the sorrow of our own lost love. There was LOTS of applause after this one. Then, Gord went right into "All The Lovely Ladies." Up to this point, my interpretation of this song had been only one way. However, as he started singing so beautifully, I thought to myself, "My God, it's a benediction!" I heard this song with ears anew and felt the entire audience was blessed with this man's grace. I felt so lucky to be there. There was much applause at the end and I could feel the emotions in the air. He then began, "Baby Step Back" as if to pull us out of the quiet mood we'd slipped into. Some people began to clap along. Thankfully, after a few bars, they stopped. Then, he played "Bitter Green." I think this might have been the song where he picked up his 12-string, but, as I'm not a guitar player and I have to rely on my memory, I'm not positive. He followed that up with "On the High Seas," another of my favorites from "Dream Street Rose." That CD was actually the first one I bought last October and it's still my favorite album. I can listen to it over and over... and I have!! In fact, my 12-year-old wanted to borrow it and I said, "No way! I'll get you your own!" So I ordered her her own copy!! About two or three songs back, Gord had commented that, "Pretty soon we'll do the Trilogy..." and, sure enough, at this point he went into a most moving and bang-on version of "Canadian Railroad Trilogy." He had so much passion in his voice I wanted to weep and smile at the same time. He ended with a final flourish to HUGE applause, and then the band got up and left the stage. Gord shook hands with a few (DAMN LUCKY) fans sitting right next to the stage (We were seated about 25 feet from the stage, positioned just between Gord and Terry.) Then he jauntily sauntered off stage with a spring in his step, holding his guitar, and grinning a big Lightfoot grin - yes, THAT Lightfoot grin! We were all shouting, whistling, calling out, applauding, and standing up in ovation for the man who many have said changed their lives through his music. After a short minute, the band filed back in and the decibels in the room doubled as Gord strode back on stage to tremendous applause. He was smiling and nodding at us, looking here and there, making eye contact with people in varying parts of the audience, seeming to thank them by nodding. His encore performance was "Old Dan's Records." He was energized and he and the band were all smiling when they finally strode off the stage. We gave another thundering ovation, more shouts and whistles, but, eventually gave up hope of a second encore when the club lights went up and the piped-in music returned. The moment was over, yet the magic lingered on... All I can say is that it was more than I dreamed it would be, and all that I'd hoped for. I am one happy girl. I've just experienced 81 minutes of perfect bliss....
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Old 05-27-2016, 10:27 AM   #3
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Default Re: Concert Reviews

With momentous concerts taking place in the UK and yielding a few reviews I thought I would resurrect an earlier review thread that I just found the draft file for whilst trying find something else.
I just wish that Sheryl will see this and resume posting her comments on this forum
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Old 05-28-2016, 06:44 AM   #4
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Default Re: Concert Reviews

That sure was a nice review, one of the best of a live concert. Thanks for posting it.
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