Tour Diary – Medicine Hat, Alberta (April 17, 2013)

This is going to be a weird one. Planes, trains and automobiles…except there won't be any trains. We flew to Calgary yesterday, picked up a cargo and passenger van and headed East. Three hours later we found Medicine Hat and a hotel with an indoor water-slide.

On our flight from Toronto I sat behind the former captain of the Montreal Canadiens, current hall-of-famer, ten time Stanley Cup Champion, Yvan Cournoyer….numero douze….”the roadrunner”. Jeff sat beside him and endured his elbows….lucky dog. He was sitting in the middle seat of the economy section of a budget airline…If he had played 20 years later he could have owned the airline. Timing is everything.

The drive across the Prairie was stupefying in its intensity, ferocious in its sameness, unrelenting, inexorable, grim, numbingly static. Miles and miles of power lines and pavement, a scattering of pumpers, a few collapsing homesteads and an unreachable horizon. God this country is huge. We skirted the edges of the badlands. This is very unforgiving land…in any season.

I don't have much of an opinion on Medicine Hat. It must be quite spectacular when everything is blooming and the river can be fished. But its economic heart has been ripped out by the malls on the outskirts. It's clean and tidy and slowly disappearing into the suburbs, which look much like any suburbs, outside of any town, in any corner of this continent. There is not much to recommend it to the tourist.

We played a beautiful hall tonight: The Esplanade Arts Centre. It wasn't a huge crowd but not bad considering we are truly outside of our normal touring territory. There seemed to be an appreciation and an understanding for the Nomad set and a buzz for the second. It was a great sounding stage and I think we played really well, especially in the second set which had a nice controlled groove about it. Day 1 done and gone.


This entry was posted on Friday, April 19th, 2013 at 7:05 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.

5 Responses to “Tour Diary – Medicine Hat, Alberta (April 17, 2013)”

  1. Big John Says:

    April 19th, 2013 at 9:37 am

    Well Guys…. welcome to Alberta. Looking forward to your St. Albert shows. So, what do you think of our weather???? Snowing at the end of April, well im sure you've seen your share of weather trends after this extensive tour. Thanks for putting us on your tour list.I really enjoy your latest work on The Wilderness. Geeze, it sure sounds like your older stuff. Well hopefully there will be a meet and greet tonight after the show and I can have the pleasure of shaking your hand after a lifetime of music.  Awsome….See you tonight.. John

  2. Mireille Hamel Says:

    April 19th, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    What a treat to have you in Cochrane last night!! Thank you for the beautiful, quality concert. It is always memorable to see one's favorite group live and the memory of last night's concert is a pleasant one which lives on. I am listening to The nomad Series as I write these lines. More great songs and great music to enjoy for years to come. Mireille

  3. Scott Gillespie Says:

    April 19th, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    I invite you to come again in June.  The rains make the prairie grasss flourish and the irrigation make green & yellow circles all over the land.  I loved the show a feel I'm getting to know an old friend again.  See you around.

  4. Chris Massini Says:

    April 21st, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    Your Medicine Hat Show was fabulous. The format you chose, the setting and music you selected created an memorable intimate experience that my wife and I will remeber for a long time. Well, for as long as people our age are capable, lol. The set one pieces told me I just had to buy the Nomad Series. I have contacted friends telling them to catch your tour if you are visiting their city. Thanks for a great night of entertainment. 

  5. Brent Slobodin Says:

    April 21st, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Looking forward to seeing you in Whitehorse.  I've been a fan since The Trinity Sessions.