Skip to main content

Gordon Downie of the Tragically Hip performs during the Live 8 concert on July 2, 2005, in Barrie, Ont.

Carlos Osorio/Carlos Osorio/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

"I get a sense of connectedness; exclusive tight, but nothing dangerous." A line from The Tragically Hip's Inevitability Of Death, one of the many of their songs with references to Canadiana. The lyric "Terry's gift is forever green; it got me up, back on the scene" acknowledges Terry Fox, the iconic cancer-struck cross-country runner.

Tomorrow, the band, icons themselves for their staggering, athletically anthemic rock and the take-notice words of frontman Gord Downie, play Burl's Creek, near Barrie, Ont., where audience members will make connections – to the band, to the country, and amongst themselves. With that in mind, we offer a primer on the true-northness of Downie's lines.

- "Can't tie yourself up for this deal," from New Orleans is Sinking: Possibly unsolicited and unappreciated political advice to the Prime Minister who would sign the North American free trade agreement.

Story continues below advertisement

- "If there's a goal that everyone remembers, it was back in ol' '72; we all squeezed the stick and we all pulled the trigger," from Fireworks: Who fired the puck in Moscow? Foster Hewitt told a nation it was Paul Henderson.

- "Late breaking story on the CBC; a nation whispers, we always knew that he'd go free," from Wheat Kings: On April 16, 1992, after spending 8,355 days incarcerated, the wrongly convicted David Milgaard was freed, as the Crown corporation anchorman Peter Mansbridge announced nationwide.

The Tragically Hip, with Death Cab For Cutie, New Pornographers, The Rural Alberta Advantage. June 30, 3 p.m. $86.50, The Commons at Butler's Barracks, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.; July 1, 3 p.m. $85.50 to $141. Burl's Creek, Oro Station, Ont., ticketmaster.ca.

Report an error Licensing Options
About the Author

Brad Wheeler is an arts reporter with The Globe and Mail. More

Comments

The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

We’ve made some technical updates to our commenting software. If you are experiencing any issues posting comments, simply log out and log back in.

Discussion loading… ✨

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Thank you!

You are now subscribed to the newsletter at

You can unsubscribe from this newsletter or Globe promotions at any time by clicking the link at the bottom of the newsletter, or by emailing us at privacy@globeandmail.com.