Burton Cummings kicks off the Grey Cup

On a day when the Toronto Argonauts emphatically won the 100th Grey Cup final by beating the Calgary Stampeders 35-22, Burton Cummings set the tone for the festivities with a dynamic pre-game concert that was stunning in its simplicity. Cummings may not be accustomed to delivering matinee performances but in reality he can do no wrong.

Supported by his faithful Carpet Frogs backing group, Cummings sailed through a set list full of Guess Who and solo hits before 3,500 mesmerized fans at this intimate venue. Cummings has obviously sung these songs many times before yet still injected a sense of energy and good humour to his performance, communicating affably with his audience as though he had set up shop in his living room.

Metro Toronto Convention Centre, November 25th 2012
Photography by: Ted Van Boort

And you couldn’t knock his song selection. Kicking off his 90-minute set with `No Sugar’ and `Mother Nature’ before sailing through a selection that feature virtually all of his early Guess Who hits ( `These Eyes’, `Laughing’) followed by crowd favorites like `Running Back To Saskatoon’, `American Woman’ and `Hand Me Down Love’ to solo hits like `Break It To Them Gently’,` Stand Tall’ and `My Own Way To Rock’ before wrapping things up with an encore of `Share The Land’.

No, there were no surprise covers or any new material but the crowd which spanned a demographic of 20’s through to 60’s, lapped up his spirited performance, a perfect prequel to an ultimately satisfying day for the pro-Toronto crowd.

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