On Saturday night, the famous Rolling Stones performed live at Burl’s Creek located in Oro-Medonte, Ontario. This might just as well be the last band’s show in Canada.
A Deep Connection
The Rolling Stones, definitely one of the most successful bands in the history of r’n’r shook the stage at Burl’s Creek in Oro-Medonte, Ontario. The band performed on June 29 at Canada Rocks, a one-day festival organized as the celebration of Canada Day.
Mick Jagger, the band’s frontman and lead singer, stated that this was even the 35th time the Stones performed in Ontario only. Ever since April 23, 1965, the band has made a profound and unique connection with the country.
From their performance at SARSStock, the greatest charity event in Toronto back in 2003, to recording live editions all over Canada (“Love You Live” in 1975 and “Light the Fuse” in 2012), the band has made an abundant history and won the hearts of millions.
The Saturday’s show was the sole Canadian stop in the entire country on their No Filter tour. Besides, it was the first time the band played in Canada after more than six long years.
A Concert to Remember
The Stones’ show was more than just a regular concert. It was a show worth remembering. Besides the chance to hear the band’s classics such as Angie and Honky Tonk Woman, the audience could watch Mick Jagger (turning 76 soon) marching around in his collection of elegant jackets.
Older fans might have relived their young and best years, but the entire festival was more than the Stones only. It was Canada Day done perfectly.
Everybody Was Amiable
Even though they had never met each other before, people were quite kind and friendly to one another. Strangers kept the place in line for each other. Also, fans from all over the country hung out together and shared stories of the past. Some even recollected previous concerts and explained what the Stones meant to them. The entire atmosphere was warm, welcoming, and friendly.
Fans From All Over the Globe Came
Canada Rocks Festival embraced people from all over the globe. Since the festival was organized on a massive field, it could accept such a high number of fans regardless of when they actually arrived.
People were coming from the entire North American continent, both from the U.S. and Canadian provinces. Even one Brit flew across the Atlantic Ocean to watch his favorite band on their No Filter tour. Also, an elderly couple that served in the Korean army arrived together with a father and daughter from Ireland that watched the band perform in Europe last year.
The Abundance of Food and Drink
Burl’s Creek event grounds saw a vast variety of smells during the day. In the beginning, calm fans who were waiting in the queue could enjoy some fresh air. Lately, when the gates eventually opened, the scent of fresh air was soon replaced with the smell of hot gravy, burritos, and tacos, spreading from myriads of food trucks.
Fans shared necessary sunscreen, drank beer, and ate fries. As soon as the gates finally opened, the venue turned into an ocean of lips and tongues.
Lips and Tongues Everywhere
Thousands of fans arrived in their carefully chosen T-shirts with the band’s logo obtained on various concerts. Each T-shirt had its own unique story. Some originated from the very first gig in Montreal or had some unusual holes and rips.
Other fans, especially the young ones, hurried to the stalls to get their first concert apparels. The festival granted a T-shirt unique for Canada: the famous Rolling Stones logo standing in front of a maple leaf.
Fighting for the Perfect Spot
Despite a large number of young and active visitors, it was quite astonishing to see middle-aged fans rushing to the front row to take the best spots. What’s more, they endured the entire concert without a toilet break.
The moral of the story: never underestimate a true Rolling Stones fan.
Luckily for beer lovers, the sellers gave cup lids which enabled buyers to stack three, four, or five beers on one another. However, the buyers were not that skilled at carrying so many beers around. The final outcome was a lot of spilled beer and angry looks.
Several Cases of Exhaustion
Even though the day was not quite sunny and bright all the time, there were periods when the sun was too strong. Some of the visitors ended up with mild reds and sunburns. What’s more, about four people fainted due to exhaustion and sunlight intensity. All this served as an element of the overall drama as the night was slowly approaching. Fortunately, security and health workers were ready all the time to give the necessary first aid.
As the concert approached, more and more problems started emerging. Namely, the festival planned to make the entire event completely cashless. However, these plans failed.
For an unknown reason, credit card machines at the merch stalls and beer tents stopped working. The fans started to panic — they waited for 20 minutes until they asked the sellers to take cash. However, extra long 20 minutes of additional waiting made the fans feel really grim. The final outcome was a combo of thirsty people and intoxicated troublemakers demanding free booze.
Luckily, the systems and machines were repaired, and the drinks started flowing again.
Exquisite Opening Bands
The attendees had a marvelous opportunity to see a range of talented Canadian musicians. The lineup included Sloan, The Beaches, and The Glorious Sons. Their excellent performances managed to keep the audience’s spirit lifted until the headliners arrived at the stage. But overly long breaks between the sets made the public feel a bit fidgety.
Longing for Shade
Sunburnt and slightly tired, thousands of visitors started inspecting the area in search of even the tiniest portion of shade to protect them from the scorching sun.
Under a tree or a set of bleachers, or even behind a massive farmhouse, spots of shade were a real commodity. At one point, people even started negotiating and discussing for them.
Once the clock struck 9 p.m., the Stones’ performance began. It was simply magical, as much as their numerous outfit changes.
As the sun set, a breath of cool and fresh air started to soothe the tired audience. All of a sudden, the chaos waned, everyone became quiet, with their eyes directed toward the center of the stage.
The Time Has Come!
A short and concise interpretation of the national anthem O’ Canada exploded at Burl’s Creek moments before the greatest rock band appeared on the stage. The audience thundered with loud applause. Ever since the beginning of their music career, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, and Ronnie Wood have unanimously shattered beyond expectations.
Jagger’s amazing dancing and brilliant harmonica solo in Midnight Rambler were simply astonishing. His stamina and entire behavior were fascinating, despite the heart surgery he had recently undergone.
Another memorable moment was Keith Richards’ singing lead vocals in Slipping Away, along with the excellent duet with Mick Jagger and Sasha Allen, the backup singer, in Gimme Shelter. At one point, Jagger used the opportunity to express his gratitude to the audience for coming to the concert “in the middle of the country.”
The High Spirit
Even though smoking was strictly forbidden, the (now legalized) marijuana smoke could be sensed during the concert. It’s Only Rock’n’Roll, after all, right?
All-time favorites such as Sympathy for the Devil, Miss You, and Tumbling Dice blew the audience away and made it dance to the well-known beats. Smiles were everywhere, both on and off the stage. Ronnie Wood and Keith Richards often exchanged smiles and even hugs after specific performances. Charlie Watts remained focused and strict as usual behind his drums.
Regardless of your position, you simply had to feel the high energy of the concert. It reached every single person at Burl’s Creek.
But is this the last time the Rolling Stones will perform in Canada? The four-piece left the stage with a gigantic message on the screens stating, “See you soon.” Could this possibly mean more Rolling Stones shows in Canada?