Five Canadian soft rock classics
There are still some of us around here secure enough in our masculinity to rock softly once in a while, or even a lot, including one or two of the guys. And besides, you can’t call yourself a music lover until you acknowledge that “Sweet City Woman” takes a dump on anything ever recorded by, I dunno, BTO.
Joani Taylor, “You Look Good”—aka “What was that song from the Buick commercial in 1976 that I liked so much?” Ms. Taylor’s freak hit weirdly disappeared from the face of the earth after it united the entire country under one glorious shingle of sub-Paul Williams cutie-pie pop for a brief but beautiful interregnum in the ‘70s. An entire generation sat around for the next four decades waiting for somebody to invent YouTube.
Gary and Dave, “Could You Ever Love Me Again?”—Great song, but the deeper appeal lies in reading the semiotics of the champagne-and-Rolls Royce lifestyle album cover, especially since it anticipates same-sex marriage by, what, 40 years? And how does the golden retriever fit into things? Pioneers.
Gordon Lightfoot, “Carefree Highway”—Gordo could neck a 40 of Thunderbird and then kill a man by driving his middle finger through his eye socket and into his brain. Name a single indie rock douche that can do that.
Nick Gilder, “We’ll Work it Out”—this wasn’t a hit for the golden boy from your own backyard, but it’s from his best known album, the mega-platinum worldwide beano City Nights featuring pervy old "Hot Child in the City". The whole record is the feelgood album of your life, but this track is arguably the best thing on it, like rock salt on gourmet chocolate
Neil Young, “Lotta Love”—if you thought the softest thing about Crazy Horse was Billy Talbot’s head, you’d be right. Nonetheless, even Neil Young’s favourite band of hairy drunk stoned idiot thugs knew how to play pretty when the spirit (or one of Young’s loveliest songs) moved them.