043010 Mark Knopfler, Montreal, QC

On April 30th, 2010 I woke up in some hotel or another in Montreal following an orchestral Peter Gabriel concert at the big hockey rink downtown. I have no idea how I spent my day – though I suspect it involved a significant amount of poutine – but I know I spent my evening in the presence of one of my favourite rock guitar players, the great Mark Knopfler…

042910 Peter Gabriel/Ane Brun, Montreal, QC

On April 29th, 2010 I went to Montreal to see Peter Gabriel. He was touring in support of an album of all cover songs set to orchestral music called Scratch My Back. I’ve long been a fan of Peter Gabriel’s solo career and the few times I had seen him live before this were nothing short of astounding…

041604 Tortoise, Ottawa, ON

The Capital Music Hall was a large venue right downtown on Ottawa’s Rideau Street, just across from Maverick’s and Cafe Dekcuf/The Whipping Post. It was a big room with a professional stage and lighting rig and was unquestionably a concert hall. It looked a lot like a House Of Blues or some such thing, and though it was open for several years I think I only went there twice…

041511 Bruce Cockburn, Ottawa

On April 15th, 2011 I saw Bruce Cockburn at the soft-seat hexagon that is the National Arts Centre. It’s a pretty great room to see a performer like Cockburn, that is once you manage to get up and down the unforgivable slanted staircases that run throughout the venue in strict adherence to the architects apparent love of the six-sided polygon…

041309 Neil Young, Kingston, ON

I think the Neil Young concert on April 13th, 2009 was my first time in the K-Rock Centre. Regardless, the arena had been open for business for barely a year at the time and I soon found out that they didn’t quite have their act together yet…

040614 Mike Gordon, Burlington, VT

The Higher Ground people are famous for their tight security at the door and it always takes longer than you think it will to get it, no matter how many times you (or in this case, I) go through the process. And for some reason it’s always (always!) much colder waiting in that line than you think it will be…

040491 Paul Simon, Ottawa, ON

April 4th, 1991 was my first time seeing the great, great Paul Simon. The show was relatively small, taking place in the 9,000 seat Ottawa Civic Centre just a short stroll from Carleton University’s campus where I was living in one of the school’s residence buildings…