Relaxation in peace, Gord Downie — a raconteur of Canadian tales who gave a soundtrack to his nation.
Downie died Tuesday on the age of 53, after a battle with a terminal mind most cancers often called glioblastoma.
Identified in 2015, he and his band The Tragically Hip launched into a Canada-wide tour the next 12 months, making 15 stops in Victoria, B.C. and ending in Kingston, Ont., the group’s hometown.
Gord Downie, remembered, on Globalnews.ca:
Over three a long time, Downie and the Hip recorded songs that touched Canadians from coast to coast.
Listed here are a few of their most memorable works, as chosen by World Information employees:
‘New Orleans is Sinking’
“‘Hey North, you’re South, shut your huge mouth.’
A reminder to at all times concentrate on your environment, one thing Gord and the band will need to have been fascinated about on the time they launched that track, as they have been lifting off into their full trajectory of awesomeness!” — Ross Lord, Atlantic correspondent, World Nationwide
“I didn’t even know what the track was about and I didn’t care as a result of ‘New Orleans is sinking man, and I don’t need to swim!’ One of many best strains you’ll discover in any track.” — Mike Drolet, Toronto correspondent, World Nationwide
‘Forward by a Century’
“I’ll be the primary to confess, I wasn’t the most important Tragically Hip fan… that’s, till Aug. 18, 2016.
My telephone rang at 5 p.m., on the opposite finish was my buddy Ryan saying he had snagged two tickets to their present in Ottawa, which might be the penultimate present on their farewell tour. I hesitated for just a few moments after which Ryan stated, ‘Dude, I’ve two different individuals who need these tickets,’ so I lastly stated sure.
Probably the greatest choices of my life.
The seats have been proper behind the stage which gave me a novel perspective, seeing what they noticed, feeling the emotion of the group as they poured out their love for Gord Downie and the boys, as he poured out his soul on stage.
Whereas they sang ‘Forward by a Century,’ one among my favorite songs, I snapped this image exhibiting the handfuls of cellular phone lights held up as an alternative of lighters. It sits in my home as a reminder to the love a metropolis and a rustic have for the Hip.
The second image is Gord Downie leaving the stage for the ultimate time.
The highlight has now pale, however his mild by no means will. RIP, Gord.” — Mike Le Couteur, parliamentary correspondent, World Nationwide
“Music is the time and locations it evokes in our recollections.
My first publicity to the Hip got here as a child in small-town Ontario. My sister was dwelling in Kingston, of all locations, and located a job in TV within the U.S.
The present she labored on booked the band, regardless that nobody on employees had heard of them besides the Canadians. She introduced a promo copy of ‘Day for Evening’ dwelling. I had by no means heard something prefer it.
Once I take heed to the opening notes, I’m taken again to that place, listening to it on her previous stereo, discovering one thing I by no means knew existed. A track of anticipation and urgency; the sluggish burn that offers option to the crash of the refrain; it’s a journey of juxtapositions.
Once I heard Gord shout, ‘I come from downtown,’ final summer time on the Hip’s last tour, my very own small-town/big-city distinction crystallized. Wherever I hear it, this track is dwelling.” — Tristan Staddon, managing editor, World Nationwide
“A very long time in the past, earlier than cell telephones, I went to a music competition on the Race Metropolis Speedway in Calgary to see The Tragically Hip.
I went to the competition sporting a safari helmet — that is one thing you probably did in your 20s — and the band was taking part in ‘Grace, Too.’
At one level, I tossed the hat on to the stage, and Gord Downie observed. He picked up the hat, put it on his head, then did a somersault in it.
If solely I may have caught it on a cellular phone.” — Chris Gailus, World BC anchor
“Arguably Downie’s best vocal efficiency, with a gently swinging association from the remainder of the group, showcasing their subtlety once they’re so usually identified for his or her barnburners.
I see this second because the end result of a journey in direction of maturity and their ‘elder statesmen’ section that began with the Day for Evening album and gained footing with ‘Forward by a Century.’
Attractive.” — Sean Boynton, on-line information producer, World BC
“A poem, actually, about survivors’ guilt and PTSD. Its lyrics a couple of long-forgotten tragedy have been eerily up to date:
‘Now I used to be in a lifeboat designed for ten and ten solely,
Something that systematic would get you hated.’
A track so darkish and haunting but so lovely that you simply nearly don’t even realize it’s hit you – till these final strains.
‘Our dialog is as faint as a sound in my reminiscence,
As these fingernails scratching on my hull.’
I nonetheless shudder each time I hear that line.” — Leslie Stojsic, govt producer, World Nationwide
“‘Braveness’ was my introduction to well-liked Canadian music.
I bear in mind being seven years previous, watching MuchMusic, and seeing Gord Downie work himself right into a trance as he sang the track whereas sporting a Boston Bruins sweater.
The lyrics didn’t carry significance for me as a lot because the sound did — a uncooked, but delicate rock music that I might come to affiliate with the Canadian sound, and count on to listen to when the Juno Awards rolled round yearly.
The track took on new significance for me in 1997, when director Atom Egoyan launched The Candy Hereafter, arguably his best movie.
It tells the story of a rural B.C. group that was the positioning of a devastating bus accident during which quite a few schoolchildren have been killed, and the efforts by a lawyer to carry the households some closure.
Actress Sarah Polley offered a haunting cowl of the track for the movie.
Polley’s voice lent the track a haunting high quality, and added deep emotional resonance to a movie a couple of group making an attempt to maneuver on from a tragedy. It hit dwelling for me how a lot endurance is part of the Canadian identification.
Now, once I hear ‘Braveness,’ I believe not simply of the movie, or of Downie himself. I consider the resilience of Canadians.” — Jesse Ferreras, nationwide on-line journalist, World Information
‘Blow at Excessive Dough’
“‘Blow at Excessive Dough’ was the track that basically launched Canadians to The Tragically Hip, and maybe extra importantly, the voice of Gord Downie.
When the video appeared on MuchMusic, a era of Canadians have been hooked on the band as it will turn out to be the primary of many singles to hit the charts. The track’s opening line — ‘They shot a film as soon as, in my hometown’ — may very well be envisioned to be about wherever and nowhere unexpectedly, permitting all Canadians to narrate to it.” — Kevin Nielsen, nationwide on-line journalist, World Information
“As a result of it tells the story of David Milgaard.
It was a case I adopted earlier than I even went into journalism and to today have a eager curiosity in authorized circumstances involving the wrongfully convicted.” – Robin Gill, B.C. correspondent/weekend anchor, World Nationwide
“Implausible match of music to lyric. Highly effective track. And the way evocative of your highschool is that this line: ‘…the place the partitions are lined all yellow, gray and sinister / hung with photos of our dad and mom’ prime ministers…”
I’m as previous as Downie. I first noticed the band when all they did was ’60s covers — Doorways, CCR, and so forth. — and I nonetheless have their first vinyl report. They got here to my college (Guelph) to play pub nights in entrance of 400 individuals. And as a membership DJ for many of the ’80s and into the early ’90s, I used to be thrilled their stuff rocked a dance ground.
Their high ‘dance hits’ for me: ‘Blow at Excessive Dough,’ ‘New Orleans Is Sinking’ and ‘Fifty Mission Cap.’” — David Akin, chief political correspondent, World Nationwide
“It’s one of many first songs I discovered to play on the guitar (it helped that there’s solely three chords) and each time I hear that loon name it transports me again to the cottage campfire within the Ottawa Valley (simply east of the Paris of the Prairies). I discover myself listening to it extra since I moved abroad just a few years in the past.
The Hip isn’t well-known exterior of Canada, however the BBC revealed an article on Downie’s dying and tried to elucidate the Canadian love affair: ‘…greater than another artist, they’ve mirrored the sense of what it’s like to like and reside in a small, lovely, missed nation.” — Jeff Semple, Europe bureau chief, World Nationwide
“I bear in mind the precise minute I fell in love with The Tragically Hip.
It was Ottawa in 1992. I used to be driving down Bronson, and pulling into the Carleton campus to select up my girlfriend (a soon-to-be ex, because it turned out). Highway Apples was taking part in on a cassette. I parked and listened to the second-to-last track – ‘Fiddler’s Inexperienced.’
That second is crystal clear in my reminiscence. I’d identified the band for just a few years, however I bear in mind pondering, ‘Holy s***. This album is unbelievable.’
Fan for all times.” — Mike Armstrong, Quebec correspondent, World Nationwide
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