Thursday, July 8, 2010

MONTREAL Je t'aime - part III of III

On the same night of my previous entries - Montreal Je t'aime parts I and II, after Kathy and I changed into more suitable atire in Jim's van with its tinted windows we headed over to the Metropolis to catch Eric Burdon and the Animals. Yes, THE Eric Burdon; but no, not THE Animals at least not in their original form, none of the members playing that night were from the original band.

How very '60's you might say.

I felt like a stranger in a strange land as they played such tunes as: It's My Life and Please Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood while all around me ageing hippies, or shrubbies as they're called on Vancouver Island, rocked out. The  surreality got amped up when the band went into We Gotta Get Out of This Place and the whole place was brought to a riotous frenzy as geezers pounded their canes on the floor in time with the beat. And, I was awestruck as I witnessed the audience — a sea of swaying and bobbing grey heads — tripping back to the teenagers they once were, rebelling against (even though they are now) the establishment.

These songs were their anthems of protest, not mine. The '60's was the best time of their lives; the worst of mine. I am not nostalgic for that time and I found it difficult in this context to realize that I am one of them.

Instead of having flashbacks like the rest of them I was having flashforwards. I've been doing some Shiatsu for nursing home residents and frequently visit my Mom's who lives in Burloak Longterm Care Centre. Her generation is soothed by the gentle, bittersweet songs of the big band era, Benny Goodman, Frank Sinatra, Satchmo, jazz and the like and it filters out into the hallway from resident's rooms as I pass by.

As the lyrics "We gotta get out of this place if it's the last thing we ever do" written by a rebellious youth but sung now by a grey haired 69 year old (albeit with an amazing set of pipes and agile moves) I couldn't help thinking that when we populate the nursing homes the desire to get out will rise up on occasion (as does in Mom's case) but when we do get out it really will be the last thing we ever do.

And, 20-30 years down the road when members of my generation, fuelled by songs of teenage angst and rebellion, become residents, if there's going to be any peace at all for the caregivers, we're all going to have to be heavily medicated. Soon ads like: TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE? HELL NO, JUST TRIP DOWN or YOU WON'T WANT TO GET OUTTA THIS PLACE or MARIJUANA MOMMA MANOR will have children of the '60's pounding on the doors to get in.

Now comes confession time. A most pleasant surprise of this evening was the band's virtuosity as individual musicians were highlighted with solos and tight jamming during  prolonged, blues-inspired segments. Stripped of '60's references, I can truly say that they blew me away! And they did a most excellent rendition of The House of the Rising Sun - a song I've always loved

And Burdon did a song called I Believe to My Soul which I'd never heard before and which showcased his amazing voice and his ability to interpret a song. Take a moment and listen to the power.

P.S. Thanks to Betty Blogger for making this so easy. It would have taken me days to search just how to do this!!!

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