Submitted by Jery Hayes.
This was probably the the second time that Bruce has played on the Quebec side of the Ottawa. An open air concert at Camp Fortune on the World of Wonders Tour might have been the first. That's maybe dating myself but then again I can remember seeing Bruce at L’Hibou and some of the local coffee houses in Ottawa! A grey day had fallen over the Outaouais Region. This was a new venue for us but a great intimate venue that also houses the school of dance and music. Bruce has usually played at Centre Pointe in Ottawa but Gatineau will be leading him back to a well deserved rest in Montreal from the grind of touring. The English press was limited on announcing the concert with the Citizen running a picture of Bruce watermarked with “…a thinking man’s troubadour…” indicating the time and place. But those that came out enjoyed an intimate evening in a great acoustically engineered hall “…Salle Odyssée…” with a greater acoustician! Premonitions of the musical journey that was about to take place.
With the concert set to start at 8:00 pm I looked around the hall at 7:50 and roughly counted around 200 in a hall that holds 485 in the mezzanine and 377 in the balcony. When he came on there may have been over 300 with not too much noise coming from the balcony. Wondering where the audience is?
Instruments: Two Manzers (one as a standby standard, Dropped D or F# Baroque Tuning, Guild 12 String with dropped D tuning.
Lovers In A Dangerous Time was followed by a humourous link to Céline Dion, who had, if my memory recalls, opened the Centre in the 90s. Wondering Where The Lions Are began with a tongue in cheek intro based on “Home On the Range”. The untitled instrumental was performed on the National in the same tuning as Down To The Delta and Wait No More (DACGCF); suggestions were welcomed. It was un-capoed and he gently explored some neat chord progressions up and down the neck “Silver Explorations of Dazzling Light”? My Beat is about the joys of riding a bicycle in Montreal where the pedestrians are as aggressive as the drivers look you straight in the eye wait until you are two feet away and then step in front of you! Jay walking is illegal but not yet mandatory!
I have seen Bruce many times over the decades and have always been struck by his humble and honest manner this was no exception. I wonder if he will ever get around to doing a stand alone instrumental album. His guitar work rivals his words and the latter well we all know the answer to that one, don’t we!