‘80 years strong’: Canadian music legend Gordon Lightfoot celebrates milestone birthday – National

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Singer, songwriter and Canadian music legend Gordon Lightfoot turns 80 today.

He’s currently in the middle of a North American tour and will mark his big day with a sold-out benefit show in his birthplace of Orillia, Ontario.

Lightfoot’s best-known songs include “Sundown,” “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” and “If You Could Read My Mind.”

Lightfoot, who became Canada’s most famous, and arguably most important, pop musician in the late 1960s, was born in Orillia, Ont. in 1938.

He was inspired to write his own material after listening to Bob Dylan and other urban folk musicians in the early ’60s.

His first hit in Canada came in 1965 with “I’m Not Saying.”

ARCHIVES: A glimpse into the life of Gordon Lightfoot on his 73rd birthday







That same year, “Peter, Paul and Mary” took Lightfoot’s composition “For Lovin’ Me” into the U.S. top-30.

When the folk music boom came to an end in the late ’60s, Lightfoot easily made the transition to pop. In 1971, he made his first appearance on the Billboard chart with “If You Could Read My Mind,” which went to No. 5.

And in 1974, both his single and album “Sundown” topped the Billboard charts.

READ MORE: Gordon Lightfoot donates canoes to Canadian Canoe Museum in Peterborough

Lightfoot’s other international hits have included “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” and “Carefree Highway.”

Between 1965-78, he won 15 Juno Awards, and in 1986 was inducted into the Canadian Recording Industry Hall of Fame.

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Kingston resident proposes curfew for Gordon Edgar Downie Pier – Kingston

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The first summer with the Gordon Edgar Downie Pier in Kingston has concluded and now many Kingstonians are voicing their concerns over excessive partying during the nighttime hours — with one longtime resident proposing a solution.


READ MORE:
Kingston remembers Gord Downie one year after his death

“Young people are going to the bar and then going down to the pier and partying, leaving a large mess. At times, there could be 50 to 60 people down there late at night. What we’re saying is, ‘Let’s put some ornamental gates that close the pier at night,’” said Phillip Brown, a longtime resident who lives near the pier.

Brown is asking council members to consider closing the pier from 10 p.m. to sunrise during the summer months, which he believes will make partygoers much more visible to residents living close by.

According to Brown, if there is a cry for help from Breakwater Park or closer to King Street, someone can actually hear them but if somebody is out on the pier late at night and they have an emergency and cry for help, no one is able to hear them.


READ MORE:
Kingston residents sign petition to close the Gordon Edgar Downie pier at night

Brown’s proposal to shut down the pier during the night hours is something city Coun. Peter Stroud is opposed to.

“To think that if you close off the pier, it would actually improve behaviour is a little bit naive and it sends the wrong message. I think we opened up that place, put a lot of money into that place and it’s wildly successful which is a good problem to have,” said Stroud.

Brown says one of the many reasons why he is pushing for more security measures is that he spoke to a local family who almost lost a family member swimming late at night in the area.

“One family commented firsthand what can happen late at night because two strong swimmers pulled their family member out just in time,” said Brown.


READ MORE:
A recap of the unveiling of the new Breakwater Park Gord Edgar Downie Memorial Pier

According to Brown, there are 600 signatures for his petition to close the pier at night.

A date has yet to be announced for when council will vote on the pier curfew and gates.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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