The Final ‘Tragically Hip’ Show at Larkin Square – Laura Daniels Thoughts
Saturday evening was an emotional night for anyone who grew up in WNY listening to The Tragically Hip and music fans in general.
The Canadian band decided to put on one last show for the fans, as lead singer Gord Downie was recently diagnosed with an inoperable and incurable brain tumor.
Many bars and restaurants were running the stream, and a few venues had an opportunity to gather together in a concert-like setting, like at Larkin Square, put on by Community Beer Works. I went to that event with my friends Maria and Jeremy.
Yes, the line for the beer stand -- ONE beer stand -- was long. But it was a beautiful evening, outside, with a lot of great people who came together for more than just the beer.
As the show was about to start, it was clear there would be some sound issues. You could hear the speakers cracking in and out, and at a few points, buffering -- which I understand happened at MANY venues, not just Larkin -- caused a bit of a lag and loss of audio.
Yes, there were some sound issues. And after 3 of what were possibly the most emotional encores I've seen in recent history, just as the song everyone was anxious to hear, "Ahead By a Century", was about to close the show...11pm rang like a death knell, as the city noise ordinance went into effect. Audio promptly cut off, resulting in loud cheers, chants, and fruitless efforts to bring back the sound.
Personally, I had a great time, being surrounded by generally peace-loving and wonderful people, watching a band who had such an impact on so many, with an emotional heartfelt good-bye concert.
Due to some of the issues, the organizers pulled what I thought was a classy move -- they put out a notice saying they would offer a refund (the ticket was just $10 and went to the Sunnybrook Foundation) to those who wanted one. They would, in turn, make a donation so they were following thru with their promise to the foundation.
While some echoed my sentiments of taking the GOOD from the show, I was saddened by the amount of negative, back-biting, childish name-calling comments I saw after the statement was issued. Folks will say ANYTHING when behind the keyboard.
Guys, Gord has incurable brain cancer. He shared his last performance, doing what he loves the most, with all of us, on an international level.
Maybe we can learn to have some perspective...if waiting longer than you'd like for a beer, and missing a few songs, is what totally ruined your experience, perhaps you need to dig deeper.
Thank you, Gord, and the rest of The Tragically Hip, for allowing me to share those moments with you.