Lola Parks (top left) will join Chris Andres (right), Mother Trucker (bottom left) and a host of other Island musicians in a tribute concert to the late Gord Downie, lead singer of The Tragically Hip, on Dec. 8 at The Loft Pub. Contributed photos

Victoria musicians stage tribute to Gord Downie

Island artists will perform favourite Hip tunes to benefit Cool Aid Society and BC Cancer Agency

Gord Downie once said: “Music brings people together. So my function in anything I do is to help bring people closer in.”

On Dec. 8 at The Loft Pub in Victoria, artists from across the Island will gather to do just that, performing a tribute concert to The Tragically Hip frontman, who lost his battle with cancer Oct. 17.

Island-based community record label Mighty Speck had initially planned to celebrate their fifth anniversary that evening.

“And then when we heard about Gord Downie’s passing, we decided to use our booking for a tribute to Gord instead,” Mighty Speck president James Kasper said. “It’s the Canadian thing to do.”

A roster of local acts including Kasper, Chris Andres, Gord Phillips Band, The Lost Talkers, Mother Trucker, Blake Andison, Nick Taylor, Lion on a Leash, Pon The Rebel, Bill & John Allan and Lola Parks will hit the stage to perform their favourite Hip tunes. Proceeds from the show will benefit Victoria’s Cool Aid Society and the BC Cancer Agency.

“His words were so much about our people, our landscape, our hockey,” Parks says of Downie and the band. “It didn’t pigeon hole them so much as made them.”

Growing up on the Lower Mainland, she says, Hip fans were few and far between. “The Hip are pubs and beer and Ontario,” she laughs.

“But there were summers where you lived off of The Tragically Hip,” says the singer-songwriter, whose memories of teaching her best friend to drive play to the soundtrack of Up To Here.

Parks once entered a CBC poetry contest where the stipulation was writing verse using Hip lyrics, and in 2003 at a show in Montreal, she got to meet the rocker. They chatted about hay fever and allergies, because Downie mentioned his nose was “stuffed up.”

“I think a lot of people have met Gord, he was sort of like our Che [Guevara], he was a man of the people.”

Reflecting on Downie’s influence as she gets set to release her new album The Hustle, Parks says, “I wish I wrote like that, I wish I pulled in Canadiana like that.

“I really think [he’s one of] these cultural, social vessels, that connected us. Some people would call that a poet or an icon.”

The Gord Downie Tribute Concert & Benefit happens Friday, Dec. 8 starting at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door or in advance at The Loft, 229 Gorge Rd. E.

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Police incident in Mount Douglas Park leads to road closure

Officers turning cars away, letting hikers go up trails

PHOTOS: Women’s March through downtown Victoria draws crowds of activists, allies

Attendees of all ages carried instruments, posters with empowering messages

New Victoria Conservatory music scholarship recognizes long-time Sidney resident

O. Thomas Webb died in Sidney last year after retiring to the community in 1975

‘Like an ATM’: World’s first biometric opioid-dispensing machine launches in B.C.

First-of-its-kind dispensing machine unveiled in the Downtown Eastside with hopes of curbing overdose deaths

Canucks extend home win streak to 8 with 4-1 triumph over Sharks

Victory lifts Vancouver into top spot in NHL’s Pacific Division

BC Green Party leader visits northern B.C. pipeline protest site

Adam Olsen calls for better relationship between Canada, British Columbia and First Nations

B.C. society calls out conservation officer after dropping off bear cub covered in ice

Ice can be seen in video matted into emaciated bear cub’s fur

Horgan cancels event in northern B.C. due to security concerns, says Fraser Lake mayor

The premier will still be visiting the city, but the location and day will not be made public

PHOTOS: Eastern Newfoundland reeling, search underway for missing man after blizzard

More than 70 centimetres of new snow fell overnight, creating whiteout conditions

Prince Harry, Meghan to give up ‘royal highness’ titles

‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family,’ says Queen Elizabeth II

Ice chunk from truck crushes vehicle windshield on Vancouver Island

None injured, but Nanaimo RCMP say there can be fines for accumulations of ice and snow

Calls for dialogue as Coastal GasLink pipeline polarizes some in northern B.C.

Coastal GasLink is building the 670-kilometre pipeline from British Columbia’s northeast to Kitimat on the coast

Most Read