No province has captured my imagination more than this one, even with a name more befitting like Newfoundland and Labrador, to reflect the island and the mainland. In elementary school, we all partnered up to research a province. My friend P and I examined Newfoundland from its geography to industry. (In 2001 the name changed to Newfoundland and Labrador. Proof you learn something new.) The fact they joined Canadian Federation in 1949, a fact even my own kid mind knew was later than 1867, fascinated me. The way I saw it, the people of Newfoundland and Labrador sized us up and thought sure, why not. How they joined proves more complex historically but it makes for a fun theory.
Enter Alan Doyle, lead singer of my favourite band Great Big Sea, currently embarking on another solo project. Last Friday, it was Newfoundland and Labrador’s turn to showcase their artists during the Canada Summer Games, and my prediction it would turn into a flatland kitchen party turned out right and then some. We missed Fortunate Ones but took in the dance-pop sounds of Repartee, before Doyle took the stage as the headliner. First off, he’s the kind of guy you would like to have drinks and play guitar in your kitchen. The Forks has people standing, had people sitting, hundreds of people but it felt like an intimate gathering. Alan Doyle can do that. How? Not sure will have to ask one day.
The solo show did have a few Great Big Sea numbers keeping every up and dancing. It was Friday, the night air calm and just right, the mosquitoes nonexistent, and the clear sky a canvas for the fireworks at the end. I debated going out on my own or just staying home and, luckily, my friend C texted wondering if I was coming out. While I enjoy a good solo outing, this proved a fun time to share with a friend. Even remembering it makes me dance in my chair.
Hopefully, Alan Doyle and his backing band of talented musicians in their own right will make a return trip to support the latest album ‘A Week At The Warehouse.’ If this track is any indication, it’s the kind of album to crank up with Lou. (Remember Lou? My new car.)
Not forgetting the GBS fans, this track closed out the night and it never fails to get me up and singing at the top of my lungs:
Now if only airline tickets to visit the place can come down a tiny bit. How expensive? It’s cheaper for me to fly back to New York.