My editorial strays away from the main theme of the edition and touches on Trent’s 50th Anniversary celebrations, taking place next year. In particular, some of the musical aspects of that planned party.
Coming Soon: 5 Decades of Music
Roughly 20 years ago, I recall sitting onstage with my guitar at the legendary Red Dog Tavern, more than a little bit tipsy, more than a little bit scared, mouth agape as a crowd of 100 people or so started chanting “Rotting flesh! Rotting flesh!” at me over and over and over again.
Such was the vibe of the room, where a mostly university crowd were locked into whatever was happening onstage – particularly if the act was also from Trent.
On this evening, they were totally in sync with the performers – I was opening a show for Toronto singer/rocker Sara Craig, and had the task of warming up the crowd. Not exactly an extroverted, crowd-whipping sort of folk singer, I was filled with dread. Then again, I had stage fright at the best of times.
Then, one song in, I introduced a piece called “Carrion Street.”
With a penchant for mumbling while singing, I wanted to make sure people knew what the song was about.
“Y’all know what carrion is, don’t you?”
“Rotting flesh!” cried my then-girlfriend. Then she shouted it again.
And then the chant started, first at her table, and then across the bar. A roomful of people all chanting “rotting flesh.”
Even with my stage fright, I couldn’t help but crack a laugh at the situation. It was a highlight of a fairly short onstage musical career.
As with many alumnus, much of my social life at Trent revolved around music. Almost everyone I knew went to shows at the Red Dog, the Underdog, and the Trend. I lived with a couple of the larger Trent bands of my era, Boot Factor 5 and the Spleenbishops. And the social event of the year? Bacchus, of course – where it seemed that every single person at the university came out to celebrate homegrown Trent talent.
A few years back, Trent Magazine put out a music edition. It easily received more feedback than any edition before or since.
In short: music is a big part of the Trent community.
With this in mind, I was excited to see the itinerary for next year’s 50th Anniversary celebration included no shortage of music – and plenty of Trent-created music at that.
The Friday night features a concert by Blue Rodeo – with Trent alumnus, Doug Paisley, opening. My gut tells me that there will be other alum hitting the stage as well. No offense to Misters Cuddy and Keelor, but it is the Saturday Night that really has me excited. We are invited to “join with friends and classmates at your “decade- designated” favourite local hotspot for live music by bands of the decade.”
Now that has the potential to be legendary. Really, truly legendary. Just think about the many bands that were pumping out killer tunes when you were at Trent. And then imagine them hitting the stage next year, with all of your old party-mates grooving along beside you.
I may have to put in a phone call to the boys in Boot Factor 5. I think they still have some funk to give.
For more information on the 50th Anniversary celebrations, please visit www.trentu.ca/fifty And be sure to book early!
See you on the pubcrawl!