It was just one of those Mondays where you wish you could just wake up and discover that the past 24 hours were nothing more than a bad dream, but unfortunately this was not one of those days. The past 24 hours have been loaded with some of the most heinous news in recent memory with a guy callously ending the lives of close to 60 concert-goers, and irrevocably changing the lives of thousands more. Then, as if the universe felt the need to put a topper on a day drenched in tears and an endless news stream of sadness, it took from us one of the great singer-songwriters in Tom Petty with a swift, severe heart-attack. And while it seemed there was a glimmer of hope as they were able to resuscitate him and get him to the hospital, by that time it was just the shell of the legendary performer.
‘You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
Sail away, kill off the hours
You belong somewhere you feel free’ – “Wildflowers” – Tom Petty
“Wildflowers” – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
“Cryin’ in the Chapel” – Charles Bradley
Seriously now, another powerhouse left us this year after cancer took a second run at the passionate soul man. He was slated for both the 2016 and 2017 Halifax Pop Explosions, both of which had to be scrapped due to Bradley’s health issues, but his 2012 visit to the Halifax Jazz Festival is the stuff of legends.
“When I Come Home” – Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings (w/ Prince)
There aren’t too many shows that I walk away from that are certifiably life-affirming, but the Sharon Jones performance at the 2015 Halifax TD Jazz Festival was certainly an indelible one. I enjoyed her music for a bit, but seeing Ms. Jones perform live and being awash in her energy and positivity was something otherworldly. I was thankful to have had the opportunity to see both Ms. Jones perform live, as well as the Purple One, who shockingly included Halifax on one of his last big tours, and it was another one of those shows you’ll never forget. But who other than Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings to bring in the talented musician Prince?
“Pennyroyal Tea” – Nirvana (MTV Unplugged)
This was the first big celebrity/singer death that really affected me. There were others before and after that passed, but being a massive fan of Cobain’s music and Nirvana’s entire catalogue, the news of Kurt’s body being discovered was heartbreaking. To have that ripped away so unceremoniously, and so tragically, it was one that came as an absolute shock to everyone. This was just the first artist that passed who was a fixture in my personal soundtrack.
Check out Side B of the Mixdown here.