July 16th @ Free Times Café

There is really annoying car commercial I keep seeing on TV. Now I realize that pretty much all the car commercials on TV are annoying and if they’re not annoying then they’re just boring and forgettable. The same thing goes for the truck commercials too, of course. Except those that feature Sam Elliott doing the voice over. It’s not that the commercials are any good, but that Sam Elliott has just the greatest voice and so when I see those commercials I just think about how cool it would be if I had his voice (I mean he makes the word ‘truck’ seem almost mystical). On the other hand, he doesn’t have a very good singing voice (and that’s being charitable). And you probably don’t believe me because you think I’m just jealous of a guy with such a cool voice and so, if you want proof, you can hear him croak through Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down” – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdyRPjv-G14 but don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Anyway, back to the particular annoying car commercial that sparked this missive. It’s actually not just one commercial but a series of commercials in which a smarmy guy talks to real people, not actors – the ads make that point repeatedly. These real people, not actors (and what is this saying, aren’t actors real people – I mean this seems pretty unfair and derogatory towards actors) see some cars from the car company. Sometimes they get to sit in the cars. These real people are all blown away by the cars and compare the cars to more expensive cars and love the dashboards and regret purchasing the cars that they purchased. All of this is on camera and it must be true became these are, after all, real people not actors.

What doesn’t happen in any of these commercials is that any of the real people actually drive any of these cars. They express bitter regret about their previous car purchases based on a car they haven’t taken out on the road. I am somewhat skeptical of a car whose greatest asset appears to be what it looks like sitting in the driveway as opposed to doing what cars are supposed to do which is moving people from place to place (although admittedly in Toronto trying to get from place to place in a car often means not moving much at all).

I suppose what I’m saying is you can’t pick a car by how it looks sitting still or as Bo Diddley memorably sang ‘You Can’t Judge a Book By Looking at the Cover’ – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lch0o4wwGyw (and think of this as a wonderful curative to Sam Elliott’s misplaced foray into music).

This inevitably, if circuitously, brings me Gordon’s Acoustic Living Room; that 10 piece assemblage of tuneful wonderfulness that I am proud to be part of. While I would never place the Living Room on the same plane as the incomparable Mr. Diddley, I would like to think that we would fall closer to his place in the musical pantheon than Sam Elliott’s. I realize that’s not asking much but I think it’s fair.

Anyway I invite all real people – and actors too – to come out to see the band later this month. We will be plying our trade on Sunday July 16 at the Free Times Café (on College, just west of Spadina). The show will start at 8. The cozy venue is air conditioned and there is lots to eat and drink. On top of all that there is no cover – which makes me think that we’re not really plying a trade but just giving it away – which works too.

Hope to see you there.


P.S. And no, Bo Diddley never had bagpipes on any of his tunes – yet another reason to love him forever.

July 16th Set List:
Set #1: Set #2:
Calypso Piper
Five Days In May
Sugar Mountain
Pinball Prison Blues
Chemical Workers Song
My Father’s Son
I Won’t Back Down
Linda On My Mind
Wild About My Loving
I Mean It When I Say I Do
Dream Lover
Summer In The City
Tell Old Bill
Yellow Submarine
Pale Blue Eyes
Killing Me Softly
Right Here Right Now
If I Could Only Win…
Unchain My Heart
Pancho And Lefty
Famous Last Words
Pamela Brown
Hank Williams
Don’t Get Around Much Anymore
Diamond Girl
Everytime You Walk Into The Room