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Family Aid 2020
   Vol. 22 No. 22
Monday June 26, 2023

Gordon Lightfoot Remembered

Geoffrey Arend, Geoffrey Arend II and Gordon lightfoot

     On May 1 Canadian singer/songwriter and absolute perfectionist Gordon Lightfoot died.
     I still have a bright memory of a Lightfoot performance my son laid out at our feet in New York City’s Legendary Town Hall one fine day in May almost four years ago May 15, 2019.
     “He left us without ever having made a bad song, and every time I listened to one of them, wished it would last forever,” Bob Dylan graciously said.
     Lightfoot’s music is still with us as it is on dozens of albums and was also recorded by Neil Young, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Grateful Dead, Barbra Streisand, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Eric Clapton.
     The Band’s great Robbie Robertson said Gordon Lightfoot “is a cultural treasure of the Canadian nation.”
     ‘If You Could Read My Mind’, ‘Sundown’, ‘Carefree Highway’, ‘Early Morning Rain’, and ‘Rainy Day People’, Lightfoot was born in Canada and began singing in the local church and taught himself piano and guitar, playing in large pop-folk ensembles across Canada, and studying at the Westlake College of Music in Los Angeles.
     In 1975 Lightfoot wrote ‘The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald’, a song about the sinking of the SS Edmund Fitzgerald in Lake Superior on November 10, 1975.
     When we saw him, his regular backups that had remained with him through thick and thin were there as he gallantly performed all the tunes, and some new ones as well.
     Some members of the audience used to attending concerts of mega volumes were anxious.
     Town Hall, to its credit, brings great artists to their audience all the time. I recall seeing Elaine Stritch in the same venue and feeling the same wonderful passion from the crowd going back to Gordo.
     Later a few of us gathered at P.J. Clarke’s.
     The voice wafted over the place spreading the loneliest early morning feeling in the world that has been rattling in my brain since I first heard it in 1966:
               “This old airport got me down
               It’s no earthly place to be.
               And I’m stuck here on the ground.
               Cold and drunk as I can be.
               You can’t hop a jet plane, like you can a freight train.
               So I best be on my way,
               In the early morning rain.”

     So long Gordo and thanks Geoffrey II.

If You Missed Any Of The Previous 3 Issues Of FlyingTypers
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Vol. 22 No. 18
The Constant Forwarder
Vol. 22 No. 19
The Inimitable Jan Krems
CNS Gets Down To Business

Vol. 22 No. 20
Can't Wait For Tomorrow
Women In Air Cargo
Security & Dangerous Goods
Oscar Nobre Is Good
Put Gen AI to Work

Publisher-Geoffrey Arend • Managing Editor-Flossie Arend • Editor Emeritus-Richard Malkin
Film Editor-Ralph Arend • Special Assignments-Sabiha Arend, Emily Arend

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