Theme Times – Gordon Lightfoot

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Gordon Lightfoot by Arnielee [Own Work]

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Gordon Meredith Lightfoot Jr.(born November 17, 1938) is a Canadian singer-songwriter who achieved international success in folk, folk-rock, and country music. He is credited with helping to define the folk-pop sound of the 1960s and 1970s. He is often referred to as Canada’s greatest songwriter and is known internationally as a folk-rock legend.

Lightfoot’s songs, including “For Lovin’ Me”, “Early Morning Rain”, “Steel Rail Blues”, “Ribbon of Darkness”—a number one hit on the U.S. country chart with Marty Robbins’s cover in 1965—and “Black Day in July” about the 1967 Detroit riot, brought him wide recognition in the 1960s. Canadian chart success with his own recordings began in 1962 with the No. 3 hit “(Remember Me) I’m the One”, followed by recognition and charting abroad in the 1970s. He topped the US Hot 100 and/or AC chart with the hits “If You Could Read My Mind” (1970), “Sundown” (1974); “Carefree Highway” (1974), “Rainy Day People” (1975), and “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” (1976), and had many other hits that appeared within the top 40.

Several of Lightfoot’s albums achieved gold and multi-platinum status internationally. His songs have been recorded by renowned artists such as Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Hank Williams Jr., The Kingston Trio, Marty Robbins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Judy Collins, Barbra Streisand, Johnny Mathis, Herb Alpert, Harry Belafonte, Scott Walker, Sarah McLachlan, Eric Clapton, John Mellencamp, Jack Jones, Bobby Vee, Roger Whittaker, Tony Rice, Peter, Paul and Mary, Glen Campbell, The Irish Rovers, Nico, Olivia Newton-John, Paul Weller, Nine Pound Hammer, Ultra Naté, The Tragically Hip, and The Unintended.

Robbie Robertson of the Band described Lightfoot as “a national treasure” Bob Dylan, also a Lightfoot fan, called him one of his favorite songwriters and, in an often-quoted tribute, Dylan observed that when he heard a Lightfoot song he wished “it would last forever”. Lightfoot was a featured musical performer at the opening ceremonies of the 1988 Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Alberta. He received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree (arts) in 1979 and the Companion of the Order of Canada in 2003. In November 1997, Lightfoot was bestowed the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, Canada’s highest honour in the performing arts. On February 6, 2012, Lightfoot was presented with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. June of that year saw his induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. On June 6, 2015, Lightfoot received an honorary doctorate of music in his hometown of Orillia from Lakehead University.

Dedicated to Paula of Light Motifs II

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I have never heard of Gordon Lightfoot until now, mind you l had never heard of Jim Croce who had five tracks on this morning post – l am just a noob to such things – however – Paula loves his work, and that is what matters here – so without further ado – here is Gordon Lightfoot.

“The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald”

Canadian Railroad Trilogy Live in Concert BBC 1972

Carefree Highway

Early Morning Rain

If You Could Read My Mind

Sundown

Rainy Day People

The Circle is Small

Ribbon Of Darkness Over Me

Talking In Your Sleep Live In Concert BBC 1972

BONUS

So there we go folks, Ten of Gordon Lightfoot’s best tracks – even after listening to him sing these songs, l am still none the wiser to the singer songwriter himself – however that’s just me, what about you – are you fan, and if so, what are your best tracks?

4 thoughts on “Theme Times – Gordon Lightfoot

  1. Omgosh awesome! It’s funny cuz I just yesterday said I could live without music on Cyranny’s QOTD, but I would be said if I never could listen to the Read My Mind album again. Every song on there is superb, not just the title track. I confess I haven’t heard some of his older ones either!

    1. You are just feeling down Paula, when people are low, music features very low on their own lists of enjoyment.

      However the fact that you had fun listening to it, shows that you are still fired up 🙂

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