Every so often I hear someone bemoan ‘Cancon’ rules. For those of you who aren’t familiar, local radio stations must play a certain amount of Canadian Content per hour.
The net result is that you hear music that you probably wouldn’t. Stuff that maybe wouldn’t edge out a top 40 Playlist. Here, in Edmonton, where I live, it’s how you come to hear Blue Rodeo play Lost Together instead of the Backstreet Boys.
We lived in an apartment complex at the time. It was grey and industrial and I was sad and lonely and badly battered. I heard it the first time sitting on a bench with my back propped up against a concrete garbage container, crappy FM reception through hard, foam covered earphones that always crushed my ears.
Strange and beautiful are the stars tonight. . .
I was transfixed. It is a song about being lost but not alone, and even 12 year old me understood that I was lost and very much alone, but maybe, just maybe there was hope I wouldn’t always be alone.
You know, it’s not my favourite song. It was the song that made me buy the album and through that I fell in love with the band.
Through clock radios by my bed, car radios, through tapes and cd’s and digital downloads. I have listened to them through all of my schooling, laying on the couch in my house with a glass of bourbon.
And last night, for the first time, live.
It was worth the wait.