When you think about successful Canadian musicians over the last 30 years, it is hard not to include Bryan Adams in the conversation. I have loved his music since I heard it for the first time in 1983 or 1984. His live shows are incredible, and his enthusiasm and love for his fans are well documented. I had the extreme pleasure of seeing him perform in a smaller venue a few years ago. It was him, his guitar and a guy on the grand piano. That is the style of performance which separates the true performers from the wanna-bees. No technology to hide behind; just the instruments and vocals – Incredible.
What I really wanted to talk about was a late summer day in Winnipeg, Canada back in August of 1992. Bryan Adams was on the top of his game, and he rolled through town for a day festival which featured The Steve Miller Band, Extreme, Honeymoon Suite and Sass Jordan.
My friend and I planned to be there very early that day, and the forecast was cloudy with a good chance of showers. I will never forget walking out the door with a light jacket and my dad asking, “Maybe you should take a rain jacket?”
“Nah dad, I am ok”, I responded. “Those are not rain clouds”.
Well I was wrong, dead wrong. And within a half hour of arriving on the concert site at Birds Hill Park near Winnipeg, it started to rain. It seemed to rain all day, and rarely stopped. Many of us were not dressed for the weather, and absolutely soaked. But none of us dared to leave.
The other bands were incredible, and the vibe was fantastic, but we were all there really for one reason – Adams.
When he finally came out, he did an incredible live version of House Arrest. This is a newer live version that I pulled off his YouTube channel.
Unfortunately he was never able to finish the concert because of the weather – but he still played for a long time. I remember his stage hands basically having to pull him away from the microphone because he did not want to leave. That is a sign of a true performer committed to his fans. But it was getting dangerous up there.
Whenever somebody in my family has gone to an outdoor event for the last 20 years and does not take proper clothing to be ready for inclement weather, we always say,
“Remember Bryan Adams”.
Nothing else needs to be said. We just know what it means!