In an area of that country that is replete with great little towns, Northampton stands out as one of the jewels. This place has the aesthetic of a town built by hippies with cash. There are lots of local cafes all serving excellent coffee and food that is locally sourced, organically grown, etc, etc; one of my favourite second hand book stores (The Raven) is in this town; there are a couple of very good ice cream parlours; there are a few excellent record shops; lots of locally owned retail; some of the nicest bars and restaurants that you’ll ever find in a town this small; and, most importantly, huge dollops of Tolerance. There are also more music venues than most cities five times as big. It helps that it is surrounded by tens of thousands of college students and that the prestigious Smith College is located in the city’s environs. It’s a great town.
Our regular haunt in Northampton is The Iron Horse Music Hall. We have played here many, many, many times. It’s not the greatest place to play a gig; the stage is too small; the dressing rooms are haunted and depressing and there is basically no PA. But we return because of the town and the locals who are keen to hear us play and the staff at the bar are usually friendly and helpful and young and good-looking. This place always makes for an interesting show and tonight we had just that, an interesting show. It was about as sloppy as we have been in a long while (especially me), but there were some true highlights (like Me and The Devil)….and we had fun. Tonight I fell in love with a mannequin….sure, it’s all a little Twilight Zone-ish, but it’s the road and its Northampton and weirder things have happened around here, I’m sure.
This entry was posted on Saturday, August 11th, 2012 at 9:50 am and is filed under Tour Diary. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
From where I was sitting, I couldn’t tell that it was a sloppy show. It was a treat for me because I had a ticket for one of your shows in Amsterdam in 1996 that was cancelled — so in ~20 years of being a fan, this was the first time that I got to see you live. I came all the way from NY City (I was traveling during your shows last week) to see you at the Iron Horse.
Hey Mike, a modern Roxy Music “In Every Dream Home A Heartache” w no need to inflate!
It was my third CJ show, but absolutely the first one outside Italy. I forced my family for a “200 more miles” deviation in our holiday trip to see CJ. I already wait for you in Turin next autumn!
And finally I also met Margot in the Hotel elevator …
The latest Iron Horse concert reminded me of their first visit to the Iron Horse back in the late 80′s. Love seeing them in a small club setting !!
Northampton is such a great town. It’s the kind of town we aspire to be here in Jim Thorpe PA – we have a ways to go, but we’re getting there! Looking forward to having you in the Opera House, a very friendly place for bands like Cowboy Junkies to perform – we’ll do our absolute best! (Plus there’s a great second-hand bookstore just down the street from the venue called Sellers Books, and a little down from there, a coffee joint called Strange Brew.)
We drove down to Northampton from Brattleboro
Vermont for this show…(another awesome
small town, minus the students…) We caught
the show in Newport RI as well. If the band
was a little “sloppy” at the Northampton show
we certainly didn’t notice!! It was an incredible
show (as always…!!) Margo graciously signed
the back of my tee shirt for me..perfect end
to a Great, Great evening!!
Many Thanks to the band and Jeff for all
the great music, live and recorded!!
I have been a fan since the late 80′s but how special it was to me that my teen aged daughters were the ones to see that you were coming to the Iron Horse and begged me (not much begging required) to get tix for the family. The result was 2 generations of a normally dysfunctional bunch absolutely mesmerized by your art. For one night at least, we all got along, there were no arguments or conflicts. Thank YOU for that.