May 17th @ Free Times Café

Much has been reported about the recent NDP electoral victory in Alberta, but, as usual, the real significance of this event has been missed by the mass media. It has also been missed by the non-mass media too (and by the way what do you call media that isn’t mass media – the no mas media?).

What, you may wonder, is the story that everyone has missed? I’ll tell you – I don’t really have a choice at this point I suppose – the victory of the NDP in Alberta provides the absolute definitive proof that rock and roll is no longer dangerous. See, now that I’ve said it I’m sure you’re nodding your head in agreement going ‘that’s right, why didn’t I think of that.’ If rather than nodding your head, you’re scratching it thinking ‘I thought he’d lost it a while ago, but now I’m sure,’ let me explain…

During the campaign, supporters of NDP leader Rachel Notley were often photographed wearing bright orange T-shirts (and you have to be committed to a political party to wear a bright orange T-shirt unless the party is Great Pumpkin Party) with ‘Notley Crew’ written on it. Notley Crew, get it, it’s a pun based on the name of the 1980’s hair metal band, Mötley Crüe (and I still don’t have umlauts on my computer but if I did they’d be over one two of the vowels somewhere – ed: fixed for you). Mötley Crüe – the Alberta NDP is mocking Mötley Freaking Crüe!

I don’t have the space here to list all of the dreadful things that the members of Mötley Crüe got up to in their years of recording and touring. Before going into great detail on the topic, the Wikipedia page on the band sums things up right at the start by saying “The members of the band have often been noted for their hedonistic lifestyles and the persona they maintained. Various original members have had numerous brushes with the law, spent time in prison, suffered from alcoholism, suffered from long addictions to drugs such as cocaine and heroin, had countless escapades with women and are heavily tattooed.” The band was even banned from Alberta at one point in their career (I can hear their manager saying ‘OK guys, the bad news is you’re banned in Alberta, the good news is you never have to go to Alberta again’).

In the good old days when rock and roll (or rock n’ roll if you prefer) was dangerous, mainstream political parties would shy away from any possible connection with a band of degenerate drug addicts. Opposition parties would scream about how even the taint of affiliation showed how unfit the other party was to govern. Now, now we give a rueful chuckle at the pun and wonder more about how anyone can walk around wearing a bright orange T-shirt.

Sigh.

I suppose if the dangerousness has gone out of rock all we’re left with is the music – which doesn’t bode well for the future of Mötley Crüe’s tunes. We have never done a Mötley Crüe song and likely won’t be doing any soon, although we do a lot of rock songs, and country, and folk and Scottish and Irish and pretty much everything else too. If you’re interested in what we’re up to these days you’re in luck, our next show is at the Free Times Café (College just west of Spadina) on Sunday, May 17. The show starts at 8 and there is no cover. Even better, Monday is a holiday so you can stay for both sets and not worry about having to miss work or school. Don’t thank us, just show up.

Hope to see you there.

Jonathan

P.S. I hope there is no truth to the rumour that Gus, our bagpiper, is trying to work up a pipe version of Mötley Crüe’s biggest hit – Dr. Feelgood – now that would be dangerous.


May 17th Set List
Set #1 Set #2
Ashokan Farewell
Riding Mountain
Bad Weather
Phone Company Rag
Across The Border
I Mean It When I Say I Do
Wedding Dress
Elvis Presley Blues
Together Again
Still A Part Of Me
Queen
She Loves My Dog More Than Me
Lay Down Sally
Dream Lover
Down In The Boondocks
Through And Through
Last Cheater’s Waltz
The Thrill Is Gone
Tunnel Vision
New Speedway Boogie
Spanish Pipe Dream
Breathe In, Breathe Out
Saskatchewan Sky
Greenfields
Night Rider’s Lament
Lodestar
Smoking Song
Orange Blossom Special
I Wanna