Last night I had the joy of seeing the Joel Plaskett Emergency at Metro Square as part of the 2011 Luminato festival. I pretty much adore everything about this man, from his height and his long skinny legs to his enduring lyrics and overall charm. Having the ever-dashing Peter Elkas join the Emergency band on guitar and keys on this crisp, clear night just added to the magic of the experience. While I’ve seen J. Plaskett before getting to see him for free and at an outdoor venue was something special and just whispered “summer’s here.”
The band played a rousing set that spanned almost an hour and a half (including encore) and included hits from his solo triple release Three and Emergency albums Ashtray Rock, LaDeDa and Truthfully Truthfully, as well as his single “On The Rail” from the CBC Radio 2 Great Canadian Song Quest. He had the crowd dancing, singing and clapping along the entire time, and also shouting out requests to which he dutifully complied (well okay, the two dudes in front of me watching the hockey game on their phone while their girlfriends danced were only cheering because Vancouver scored but besides them…) It still blows me away how seamlessly he is able to transition from the ballad “You Came Along” right into the rocking “Snowed In” like it is nothing at all. Loved every minute of it.
Joel Plaskett, you truly are an iconic Canadian figure in the music world, and quite possibly my favourite.
Also, can I just say, I love harmonica in songs. And there are few things better than Peter Elkas playing the harmonica. That is all. Swooon.