A quick Year in Review.
January found me and The Beautiful, Beautiful Band in Vancouver for the recording experience of a lifetime with Bob Rock. The grin on Cory Tetford’s face as he shreds on one of the same guitars that fueled Mötley Crüe, The Cult, and Metallica solos is a picture I have carried with me all year. We all had a ball and it shows in the tunes I’d say.
In February, Cory, Kendel Carson and I, along with the most awesome Dustin Bentall, went South. Like, WAY South to Buenos Aires and Montevideo playing some concerts and raising money for Olympic Athletes with the Gold Medal Plates organization. I think it is fair to say we all felt pretty lucky to be there.
We hit the road in March for a few dates in Ontario, but mostly south of the border in the US. One of the highlights was the stop in NYC at BB Kings, where guests like Bob Hallett, Murray Foster, and some of the cast of Come from Away joined us on stage. After an Easter break in April, we got to open for Barenaked Ladies for a few US concerts in Ithaca and Burlington. Always fun to jam with the BNL Gents.
The highlight of May was a wonderful opportunity to speak at a Governor General’s Leadership Conference in Whistler, BC. What a thrill to be amongst so many motivated people. June found us overseas with stops in the UK and Germany while July kicked off with a great Canada Day gig in Moncton and a glorious week at Jackson-Triggs Winery and wound up with a super fun and sudsy afternoon at the Toronto Beer Festival.
My fav show in August was definitely in Winnipeg. As ever, the Winnipeg gang came out in droves for the Canada Games gig in the Forks. I can’t help but think how many of my Year in Review blogs have had a Winnipeg gig as a summer if not year highlight. What a town. Loves it.
Saskatoon is always a blast and we had a time at the CCMAs in September which led right into recording a new album for the Ennis Sisters. I can’t wait for you all to hear the new tunes and sounds that Maureen and the Ladies have come up with. Just a few days after that, a joyous reuniting of the Indoor Garden party gang took place overseas. I met up with Russell Crowe, Scott Grimes, Carl Falk and the usual gang with a special guest, the most awesome Lorraine O’Reilly subbing in for Pretty Woman Sam Barks. What a time we had in London, Leeds and Dublin.
After a brief break at home, it was album and book launch time in October. What a thrill to have both of them debut so strongly and especially to have the book still in the Top 5 on the bestsellers list. Somewhat of a marathon press tour took me through most of October and included many morning shows and nighttime literary events. They were long days, but it was so satisfying to have such interest in the sophomore effort as an author. Grateful, for sure.
One special day in the midst of it all was a stop in Vancouver to raise some funds for ongoing care for John Mann, Spirit of the West singer, who’s been dealing with early onset Alzheimer’s. What can only be called a dream cast assembled at the legendary Commodore Ball Room in Vancouver for a show of love and support like I’ve never seen. We recorded a special song and the mighty Shehab Illyas put together an incredible video that we’ll be releasing early in the new year. There should be a link of sorts to a donation page and we hope you enjoy the song and give a little or a lot to continue the cause.
And finally, December was all about the CP Holiday Train. For a fella who grew up in an all but train-less environment, it was amazing to ride the rails though the hills and plains and by the long and winding lakes and rivers of the West Coast of the Canada. Thanks to the kind folks at Canadian Pacific for having us aboard. Hope they have us back soon.
And that brings us here, to the last day of 2017. With snow covering the backyard rink that my neighbours unbelievably let me tinker with on their property, I am about to get dressed to head to Mallard Cottage to sing a few tunes with pals for a National CBC Special. Tune in tonight. You never know who you’ll see.
I looked at my flight segments on my Air Canada app shows that I took 106 Air Canada flights this year. By memory, I took one on West Jest, two on United, one on a South American Airline I don’t recall and one on Harbour Air. I have never done over 100 flights in one year and this year I did 111. Jaysus that’s a lot of flyin’. But a lot of fun too.
Much to come in 2018. The Come Out With Me Tour starts in Seattle in just a couple of weeks and should run for the better part of this year and maybe into 2019. All the Winter and Spring dates are on the site and we’ll be announcing Summer stuff real soon.
I’ll have exciting news about a Mental Health and Addictions fundraising project that myself and two friends have been working on behind the scenes for almost two years. I really hope you’ll jump aboard with us. So, stay tuned, I suppose for more news to come.
For now, I’d just like to thank you all as ever for the life I get to live. You are the only reason I get to do it. I am more grateful to you all than I can say, sing, or write. But, still, I’ll be out there real soon to show you as best I can.
Much Love to you all from Newfoundland.
Happy New Year.