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My Week in Stages – Part 3 (GP)

This post is one of three that began as one long, too-big-to-not-fail post before being busted up, AT&T-like, into leaner and meaner ones. See also Part 1 (Dylan) and Part 2 (GRSF).

Sunday, July 14

When the owner of Brit’s Pub introduced Graham Parker, he noted that this was Graham’s 10th anniversary appearance at the pub’s annual Bastille Day celebration. I have photographs of Graham’s 2003 appearance which would make this at least his 11th.[1] But who’s counting?

At age 62, Parker is 10 years younger than Dylan. His voice seems 20 years younger. But his energy level isn’t what it once was, or at least didn’t seem to be on this night. It was difficult to hear the passion in “Passion Is No Ordinary Word,” and there didn’t seem to be any chance of combustion when he sang, “Get Started, Start a Fire.” Still, it was an enjoyable set in a fantastic location for an outdoor concert. The rooftop green at Brit’s Pub is the best outdoor space in downtown Minneapolis to have a drink and hear some music. (It is important, though, to be located close to and in front of the stage. It could be that my impression–”low energy”–of the show had more to do with our location at a table off of the green and to the side of the stage than with Parker’s performance.)

One highlight of Parker’s set was a cover of Dylan’s “If Not for You.” Full circle, sort of.

The Belfast Cowboys with Graham Parker

 (Bonus: added September 2019)   The highlight here is Van the Man’s “Tupelo Honey” with GP on vocals, but the Belfast Cowboys are a talented group in their own right. We weren’t able to stick around for their set on this occasion, but less than two months later I would find out just how talented when they played at Nick & Tam’s wedding. They were fantastic!


  1. A photograph I took at Parker’s 2003 show at Brit’s Pub has been featured on his Wikipedia page since 2005 or so. (See photo above.) At the time I posted it, his Wikipedia entry did not include a photo. This says something about the growth of Wikipedia. Nowadays, it is an obscure celebrity indeed who doesn’t have a photo there. [^]

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