Category Archives: Uncategorized

On A Whim At Fleetwood Mac

On a whim, day of concert – found Ticket Master on the web and did a search for Fleetwood Mac.  Figured there may just be one solo seat somewhere in Calgary’s Saddledome.  Voila.  Second row of first balcony next to the aisle with a clear stage view.  Click.

Ambience was quiet and friendly in eager anticipation.  Folks next to me found tickets, same way.  We all beamed in delight over our luck.  Wouldn’t you know it – new friend in next seat has a mutual acquaintance and we share a passion for squash.

Lights go down and up comes Second Hand News.  Good opening number that immediately had me feeling that these guys are still hitting their notes.  Looked to my new friend and exclaimed, it’s like a time warp.  Stevie’s long blond locks still flowing softly with features that defy her age.  Yes, monitors gave us the close ups while a digital backdrop added color and imagery.

Next comes The Chain which has always been a favorite.  The moment seems surreal.  I can’t believe I’m sitting listening to these songs that I spun over and over again on my turn table in my bedroom as a teenager listening attentively distracted from homework.  Never in a million years would I have thought that I would be listening to a favorite rock group going hard and strong 34 years later.

Stevie takes the wheel and demonstrates her unique vocal prowess with Dreams. This sentimental favorite has everyone settling in now.  It’s becoming apparent that we’re going to get all the big hits and there’s going to be no holding back.  Incidentally, Stand Back was featured later on in the evening.

Lindsey speaks about Tusk and this creative foray in which he bemuses that Warner Brothers may not have actually expected this tangent on the heels of such a string of classic rock hits.  In the spirit of Tusk’s place in FM’s ensemble, Lindsey offers up Not That Funny and only he with his guitar greatness could pull something off with this song lacking in melody.

Lindsey referenced creative forces still at work at this late stage in their career with a couple of tracks for EP release.  Sad Angel was profiled along with Without You.  Not gripping but an admiral effort.

The biggest surprises of the night were Lindsey’s Big Love  and I’m So Afraid guitar solos.  Simply stellar performances.  Lindsey Buckingham at 64 showcased lead guitar in such fashion that rivaled anything ever produced in a studio.

No Fleetwood Mac performance would be complete without Landslide.  Stevie and Lindsey teased us with their chemistry with their glance and thought of one more chorus line on wrap.

A particular pleasure was the intros.  They kept us guessing as to what was being led.  Support musicians chimed in with rhythm and chord work whenever Lindsay wasn’t standing alone.  It would have taken the hundred plus plays of the classics from the past to appreciate the play on the rudiment riffs.   Gold Dust Woman exemplified simplicity flavored with timely marks of musical magic in a calmness that the audience felt as Stevie’s aura faded from the backdrop in a golden haze.

The climactic pulse of the event unfolded with and exhilarating version of Go Your Own Way.  This enchanting rhythmic delight abounded in fun and fervor.  The whole band came together and unleashed an energy only achieved by the harmonious inputs of a musical force aged to perfection.

Admittedly, Mick Fleetwood has lost some acumen with the drumsticks but with a boyish enthusiasm in his 65 year old body –he gave us his best drum solo with World Turning.  Everyone was pulling for him and he came through in style.

I gave my new friend to the right a tap in my gesture of departure and walked the corridors alone.  I discovered the back stage along concourse and caught a glimpse of Stevie Nicks and gave her a wave.  Don’t Stop has lyrics of positivity making for a fitting close.

You And The Market

As an entrepreneur and someone who has no boss, no job, no set hours, and no limits on income – I marvel at the anxiety that those with jobs go through to keep themselves relevant in the work place.  I learned quite a while back the “life is not fair”….and consequently are we not sometimes picking fights where the best course of action might be simply to veer off the conflict and find greener pastures along the detour?  The pension plan and golden hand shake appear to still operate vexingly in spite of sapping creativity and self-initiative from the inner purpose of an individual.  What good is a pension if it comes at the price of sacrificing our most precious asset, “time”, for the good of a padded dividend to some high net worth benefactor alien to our existence?  You can embark upon entrepreneurship while holding your job!  Yes, you can!  There is no law against moonlighting!  If your company frowns upon it – how much does it really care about you and your financial autonomy?  Where is the loyalty of an employer during the downturns and pink slips?  Does your employer deserve to have it both ways?  Are there interests at work that encourage you to believe that you cannot achieve?

Lance Armstrong Debacle

Since he keeps showing up in the news, let’s pontificate the Lance Armstrong debacle.  This man lied consistently for years and apparently would never have come clean had he not been caught.  He can apologize all he wants but this was not a misstep.  It was the ultimate in a calculated effort to cheat himself, his competitors, his sport, and his country.  He had children stricken with cancer believing he was a hero and a model member of society worthy of emulation.  Most want to forgive transgressions but I’d leave bicycling and competitive sport to those who have trained clean all their lives in pursuit of an athletic dream free from performance enhancing drugs and / or treatments.  Armstrong will be in a much better position to receive redemption in a contribution to society that no longer involves sport. 

Fearless Youth at The Aussie Open

Jan 24, 2009
Occasionally you stumble acrose moments of athletic genius upon channel surfing late into the evening. TSN puts on its top ten hightlights of the night which oftentimes gives reason to pause. However; tonight the last half of the deciding set between Alize Cornet and Dinara Safina in the round of sixteen down under was raucous. With the favourite Safina down 5-2 and two breaks of serve, she came screaming back like a ferocious tiger. In no way shape or form did the nineteen year old Cornet wilt with fatigue because her ground strokes were matching in heaving power and topspin. The kid just out of juniors was simply the target of a rejuvenated Safina destined to step through to the finals and ultimately into the number one world ranking. We’ll see how things wind up with the rest of the draw.

Go West Young Man

Nov 2, 2007
I woke up this morning to a Canadian dollar, jobless rate, oil price, and gold price that have all flirted with all time records. The pace of Canadian currency ascent has absolutely shocked all. Recruiters are holding seminars in Toronto encouraging folks hit by the manufacturing sector to jump on the commodity boom and go west while shoppers boycott stores reluctant to match U.S prices. Suddenly, Canada is becoming something more of an economic footnote with expertise, capital markets, and reserves of energy and materials available for exploitation. Governments appear prudent and reliable notwithstanding some peculiar posturing on non-economic matters. Indeed, it’s a different kind of environment from the recession of 81-82 (my senior high school year). Young workers are walking from job to job nowadays with ever increasing rates of pay in the industrial parks of Calgary. Brand new commercial condo bays are under development in the vast city outskirts as are office towers downtown (twelve in all). Good luck finding parking in the cities’ core. Apparently, it’s among the richest parking spaces in North America. Last week’s news of a royalty rate increase in the oil patch is all but forgotten in lieu of awe inspiring economic indicators.