The honour of the first concert hosted in our newly named arena went to John Mellencamp. The American songwriter performed at the GFL Memorial Gardens to about 3,500 fans Thursday night as part of his Sad Clowns and Hillbillies tour. He last performed in Sault Ste. Marie just over a decade ago.
Shortly into his 90-minute set, Mellencamp suggested we – as a border town – build a wall. The wall would only need to be about two feet high because "you guys could figure out how to get over it but we couldn't. We're a bit confused in America. I'm sorry for the confusion," he said to roars of applause.
It didn't take long for the audience to get off their derrieres with hits like Small Town, Lonely Ol' Night, Jack and Diane, Crumblin' Down, Rain on the Scarecrow, Check It Out, and Pink Houses included in the setlist. Lesser-known but equally crowd-pleasing selections included The Full Catastrophe from his 1996 release Mr. Happy Go Lucky, Longest Days from 2008's Life Death Love and Freedom, and Easy Target from his most recent effort Sad Clowns and Hillbillies.
This current tour will take Mellencamp to Thunder Bay, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Kamloops, and other Canadian stops before wrapping up in mid-November.
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