Saturday April 29, 2017. Fairmount Theatre at 5240 Parc Avenue.
Thanks to Eva Blue http://evablue.com/ for these rich photos of a night Billy Bob Productions is very proud of.
Mack Mackenzie has a history with us – opening many a show as a solo artist at the old Club One (Zone) on Crescent Street. It was a treat to see Mack on stage at The Corona last November at the 40th Anniversary Celebration of The Last Waltz. There was an obvious connection (history too) with Shane Murphy. But on that night they paid tribute to Bob Dylan and Neil Young. On this night, it was their job to pay tribute to Mack Mackenzie and his terrific outfit from the late 80s and early 90s – Three O’clock Train. (If you’re not familiar with Mack’s back catalogue we’ll provide a link. But in the meantime the sound follows in the tradition of Gram Parsons but with a little more aggression, while ballads like “Fake Honeymoon” are on par with anything The Flying Burrito Brothers recorded. If you like(d) Uncle Tupelo, The Jayhawks, The Long Ryders, Whiskeytown, Old 97’s, Jason & The Scorchers or Neko Case I think you’d love Three O’Clock Train.)
Mack’s band – led by Shane – ripped through an hour of vintage Three O’Clock Train material that hasn’t been performed live for years. It was an incredible set, especially considering how little time Shane and the boys had to learn the songs. It was another night of Montreal musicians kicking ass. And it was so cool to hear those songs come alive again. Mack was truly in his element. Watch for what figures to be high quality footage of this set as Mack arranged to have the evening professionally filmed and recorded.
Mack MacKenzie – Vocals and guitar/Shane Murphy – Guitar & Vocals/Alec McElcheran – Bass & Vocals/Tony Albino – Drums
Tom Wilson has also been cranking out high (and low) voltage rock n roll since the 80s, hitting the radio charts (including CHOM where he still gets air play) in the early 90s with Junkhouse. Coming out of the vibrant Hamilton music scene (Teenage Head, Daniel Lanois, Crowbar, Neil Peart, The Arkells) Tom is one of Canada’s finest artists, songwriters and musicians who finally connected with a large Montreal audience last November at The Corona. His four song set (Neil Diamond’s “Solitary Man”, Neil Young’s “Comes A Time” and Van Morrison’s “And It Stoned Me” and “Caravan” – backed up by a band put together by Rob Lutes) wowed the sold-out crowd, many of whom were witnessing Tom’s considerable on stage persona for the first time. It was in the spirit of that night that we put this double bill together, allowing music fans to take in a lot more of what these musicians are really all about.
Tom’s set was sprinkled with tunes from his entire career – as a solo artist, with the Canadian roots super group Blackie & The Rodeo Kings and his most recent incarnation as Lee Harvey Osmond, which he refers to as “acid folk” or “Pete Seeger meets Massive Attack”. Tom started Lee Harvey Osmond, with help from Michael Timmins of The Cowboy Junkies, in 2009. LHO’s third album – “Beautiful Scars” was released a couple of years ago. It’s dug in real deep, so much so that it has made it difficult for me to devote much listening time to anything else. It was an absolute treat to finally witness Tom and his band (including son Thompson) do their own thing. The set ended with a frenzied take on The Velvet Underground’s “I Can’t Take It” (From LeE HARVeY OsMOND’s initial 2009 release “A Quiet Evil”), while the encores featured a return to the Lou Reed theme with as hot a version of “Sweet Jane” as you’ll likely ever hear live. In between the Velvet covers, Tom brought out Mack to help out on the Junkhouse classic “Out Of My Head”. You kind of get the vibe of the night now, don’t you? Yeah, you should have been there with close to 300 rock and roll fans who can’t wait for his return.
This night – preceded by Tommy Youngsteen the week before – was a labour of love. Thanks for coming out to support quality music – and especially quality local music. Thanks to the staff at Fairmount Theatre, headed up by co-owner Olivier Corbeil and night manager Veronique Ouellette. And again to Tim Snow and Eva Blue for the photos.
Many thanks as well to friends and co-workers who helped get the word out including Leonard Yelle, Bill Brownstein, Walter Lyng, Bilal Butt, Jason Rockman, Aaron Rand, Andrew Carter, Conor McKenna, Sarah Deshaies, Jason Devine, Kesh Dheer, K103 (Laurie Deer, Jake Lawrence, Susie Delaronde) & KIC Country 89.9.
LeE HARVeY OsMOND is Tom Wilson – Vocals & Guitar/Thompson Wilson – Vocals & Bass/Guitar/Jonathan Goldstein – Guitar & Pedal Steel/Ray Farrugia – Drums
Enjoy the photos.