Gordon Lightfoot: Banned In the USA?

Live at Royce Hall

Tuesday, November 8, 8:00pm

By Ross Altman

Gordon_LightfootCanada’s highest civilian award—the Order of Merit—doesn’t grow on trees; it has been  bestowed on only three musicians, and one of them will be at Royce Hall on Tuesday evening, November 8 at 8:00pm—Canada’s Folk Laureate, Gordon Lightfoot. He once lived in Los Angeles, way back in 1958, when he was just 20 years old. He stayed here for two years, already determined to be a singer/songwriter, when like the hero of a great French-Canadian folk song, Un Canadien Errant he got homesick. In the folk song he tells his friends, If you see my homeland, tell my friends I will always remember them.

The line is so famous it is engraved on their license plates, in French of course: “Que Je Me Souviens D’eux.” Lightfoot went him one better, and returned home to Canada. Though he has never lived here since, his music has made a new home south of the border, where he is one of Canada’s most enduringly popular artists. He has recorded 20 albums and toured extensively for five decades. His songs are covered by artists all over the world, and include some of Canada’s and America’s own major songwriters. But that’s not why I am recommending you go see and hear him.

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