Friday, June 19, 2009

NxNE – Day 3

fate –noun
1. the universal principle or ultimate agency by which the order of things is presumably prescribed
The day started off slow, I had a bit of writing to catch up on so I didn't end up going out until the late afternoon. I decided I was going to give my cousin and his wife a break and rented a room downtown at the Delta Chelsea. They set me up on the 15th floor with a view of Yonge Street. I could almost make out the stage set up at Yonge Dundas Square, so after I settled in I strolled down to catch Black Hat Brigade’s set.

After some dinner and a shower I was ready to see a show that I was really looking forward to, Coeur de Pirate. Apparently I wasn’t the only one as I arrived at the Dakota Tavern the line-up was already around the block. The doorman told me that they were overcapacity and it was now a case of one-in-one-out. Later I would find that this was not true and in fact it was another case of the industry guest list ruining it for the rest of the fans. In fact I have a credible source that says not only was the Dakota way below capacity, but Coeur de Pirate’s manager had to come out and ask why they were not letting anyone in. The answer – industry guest list first.

Feeling dejected, again, for having my beginning of the night ruined by NxNE’s industry guest list policy I was at a loss of where to go next. I almost planned to work my way up to College street to see some of the 9pm concerts before making my way back to Yonge Dundas Square for the Wintersleep show, but at last minute decided to cross the street to The Painted Lady to enjoy a pint of Guinness and listen a few minutes of a PEI band by the name of Boxer The Horse. That decision proved fateful as the rest of the night could have been quite different if I decided to walk up to College Street.

Not wanting to miss any of the Wintersleep show I left The Painted Lady early and walked down Dundas Street in search of a streetcar that would take me to Yonge Dundas Square. I ran into a couple asking a man about the very streetcar I was looking for. I asked if they wanted to just split a cab, but the girl said she was really looking forward to experiencing a streetcar for the first time. As it turns out our NxNE experience was very similar. The girl, originally from Winnipeg, who I am dubbing Superfan Jenny, arrived from Ottawa on Wednesday, where she had been visiting her sister. We both had tried to get into the Coeur de Pirate show but were turned away and ended up going to The Painted Lady for a pint of Guinness. Amused by our coincidences I mentioned that I was staying at the Delta Chelsea, and of course they were as well. I said they had me on the 15th floor, they were on the 14th floor. It turned out that her boyfriend Jon is the front man for a band called The Details and they were performing at NxNE. I missed their show on Thursday by a matter of minutes when after Papa Groove I decided to take in a documentary, which I also missed. Furthermore, every show the night before we were all at the same venue, probably even standing right near each other.

We ended up taking in the Wintersleep show together and bought each other rounds of Mill Street Organic Drafts from the beer tent. Although Wintersleep put on a great show it paled in comparison of the new friendship we were forming. I met the rest of the band members from The Details after the show and we all headed down to the Drake Hotel to take in Halifax’s Ruby Jean and the Thoughtful Bees. Afterwards the band and Superfan Jenny called it a night and we planned to meet up the next day. I would see the band one more time in the morning, where they invited me to a party, which in the end I declined.

After I left the Drake Hotel I ended up at The Reverb and attempted to dance the night away to the sounds of the Parallels, 84.85 and Kenny Glasgow, but in the end the drink was too much for me and I headed back to my hotel room to pass out, alone, but happy for the experiences I had.

And that, Dear Reader, was my 3rd, and what would be my last, night at the North by Northeast festival in Toronto.

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