I showed up at McCabe's expecting to see two headliners, Fred and Mary, with the former possibly getting a little more stage time. It turned out there were not two, but six performers. I did not know any of the four unannounced musicians. They performed a grand total of thirteen songs, while Mary Gauthier sang only six. That was a bit disappointing.
The evening kicked off with Gordie Tentrees, followed by Roger Marin and Bill Poss. They all played three-song sets that were decently good. I liked Roger and Bill the best. The latter's humorous "Give My Daddy A Call" is the only song of theirs that I can still recall. They all received support from the members of Fred's band, namely guitarist Matt Simpson, drummer Kori Heppner and bassist Justine Fisher, with Roger Marin pitching in on lap guitar. Throughout the evening, I enjoyed focusing on Matt's electric guitar and his outstanding solos.
Mary Gauthier's set, albeit short, was the highlight of the evening. She was quite relaxed and cheerful and, with a smile on her face, admitted that Justine's good looks were a bit of a distraction to her. Mary sounded just like on her records, with the very same phrasing and vocal inflections. I thoroughly enjoyed everything she did. With the band playing right behind her, I did not miss the sparse accompaniments of her earlier appearances at McCabe's and I think she also enjoyed the higher decibel level of her performance.
Somewhat surprisingly, Mary Gauthier's short set included not fewer than three songs that she did not write. Here's her set list:
Cigarette Machine (by Fred Eaglesmith)
Thought I Heard a Train (by Tom Mason)
Your Sister Cried (by Fred Eaglesmith)
Last Of The Hobo Kings
|Mary Gauthier having fun at McCabe's|
|Mary Gauthier, with Roger Marin (left) and Matt Simpson|
After an intermission, Texan singer Tif Ginn, yet another unannounced musician, delivered a well-received set of four songs. In addition to singing, she played the guitar and accordion. After the show I learned that Tif and Bill Poss are married to each other.
|Tif Ginn and Matt Simpson|
|Fred Eaglesmith at McCabe's|
|Tif Ginn (left) & Justine Fischer|
|The arrival of the train people|
|My friend Steve handing guitar picks to Roger Marin|
|The merch table|
|Mary Gauthier greeting her fans, myself included|
|Fred and Mary arriving at McCabe's|
|Mary Gauthier memorabilia for your pet|