My parents are visiting us this week. As they are both music fans with broad tastes, we bought tickets for the Fred Eaglesmith concert tonight at Myron’s, dialed up the wonder-babysitter, and prepared to be entertained.
I was somehow operating under some sort of delusion that a group as talented and “alternative” as Fred’s would attract a crowd of angry, determined and vibrant youth. Or at least a crowd of moribund, melancholy and artistic youth. Of course I was operating in a musical fanspace that had its parameters put in place in and around 1985. To me that seems like “the week before last.” To the rest of the world it’s “almost 20 years ago.”
Long story short, the Fred Eaglesmith demographic consists of the following cluster groups:
- Nattily dressed Assistant Deputy Minister-looking types in button-down shirts and comfortable shoes.
- People from Breadalbane, North Granville and environs.
- Leo Cheverie and Devotees
- Ritchie Simpson and Devotees
In other words, for most of the night I was the youngest person in the crowd. Which, somehow, made me feel very old.
I need the young urban hipsters in the readership to explain to me why a Fred Eaglesmith concert isn’t young, urban nor apparently hip any more.
PS: The concert was excellent, and enjoyed by my mother, my father, Catherine and I, all for different but complementary reasons. The highlight for me was when Catherine found Fred after the concert and reminded him that she used to date his best friend from grade school, and that they’d seen each other again 10 or 15 years ago in Peterborough. Fred’s response was “oh yah, that was back in the day…” Which means that I’m dating a gal who knew Fred Eaglesmith “back in the day.” Surely this must mean that I’m just a little hip, doesn’t it? Or if not hip, well, whatever it is that the natty dressers and Leo Cheverie add up to these days.
On Canada Day 1992, I was at a Shuffled Demons open air concert in London Ontario when I thought it would be a great idea to go up after the fact as a friend of a friend. Two Demons were from Windsor and I went to ungrad with someone who played in the high school band with them. When I said her name the three at the stage front looked over their shoulders at the fourth back dealing with his equipment. They turned back to me as one basically saying “Do us a favour and get outta here, wouldja”. You never know where you’ll find a still brokern heart.
Saunters into the room, dressed in Father of Confederation suit, complete with top hat. Stops to check pocket watch and remove monacle.
“As a young urban hipster I ask: who is Fred Eaglesmith? Any relation to Meatloaf?”
Resets monacle into right eye. Cracks a gentle wry smile and wiggles goatee. Spins on heel and leaves the room.
“I need the young urban hipsters in the readership to explain to me why a Fred Eaglesmith concert isn’t young, urban nor apparently hip any more.
PS: The concert was excellent, and enjoyed by my mother, my father, Catherine and I…”
The man asks a question and then answers it himself. Even if ungrammatically. Autoblogging at its very finest. Of course, I’m unyoung, un-urban, but as hip as only a real live Boomer can be.