Riding the Canadian

SELKIRK RANGE · Riding The Canadian

The Canadian (Le Canadien) is a transcontinental passenger train operated by Via Rail Canada with service between Union Station in Toronto, Ontario, and Pacific Central Station in Vancouver, British Columbia.  From west to east, east to west, enjoy the view ’cause it’s the best …

All aboard in Toronto, please take your seat-
have a good look around you, these are the people you will meet
on your way across the country to the coast of BC-
we’re all here as friends

Let’s get this train a-rolling, let’s get out on our way-
the first stop is Washago but we ain’t gonna stay
we’ll be passing through Parry Sound and I know one thing for shor’-
that’s a great hockey town and the home of Bobby Orr

We’re riding the Canadian now

Capreol to Gogama, Hornepayne to Nakina-
Savant Lake to Sioux Lookout, there goes Minaki as I shout out
we’re heading for Winnitoba but don’t be shocked if we don’t stop-
’cause it ain’t what you might have thought

Now calling on the Forks where the Cree, Nakota, and Metis met-
The Guess Who formed here in ’65, then Hedberg, Nilsson and the Golden Jet
Winnipeg in its glory, the Dominion at its best-
Union Station 1912, from where the settlers moved west

We’re riding the Canadian now

From west to east, from east to west-
enjoy the view, ’cause it’s the best
Riding the Canadian

Melville Saskatchewan, then on to Saskatoon-
where temperance came to set up shop and spend an afternoon
we’ll grab a big yellow taxi if you will allow-
and spin ’round to Floral for the ghost of Gordie Howe

We’re riding the Canadian now

Edmonton and the Great One, that’s the pairing you’ve all heard-
but the women Grads of basketball were the winningest in the world
Jasper is spectacular and the Rockies how they shine-
we’ll soon be crossing the Great Divide on this mighty CN line

From west to east, from east to west-
enjoy the view, ’cause it’s the best
Riding the Canadian

Kamloops, Boston Bar, Hope is close at hand-
whistle stop, Chilliwack (isn’t that a band?)

65 stops in almost 4 days-
5 provinces and 4500k
for those who want to get a bit sentimental-
this northern train used to be called the Supercontinental

Final stop Vancouver, Stanley Park, the Sea to Sky-
well folks I’m sad to say, it’s time to say goodbye

From west to east, from east to west-
enjoy the view, ’cause it’s the best
Riding the Canadian

Words and music by Gordon Gow, copyright 2020

Written for VIA Rail’s Artists on Board program.  

 

Part to Play

Now hand it over, give it to me-
and I will promise to keep it good company

The heart is an easy thing to break

Let us be thankful for the gifts that we each brought-
it may be wishful, but I think we got a lot

The heart is an easy thing to break
True love is an awful thing to waste

We both have our part to play

I wake each morning to that smile on your face-
we’ll keep learning to share in our grace

The heart is an easy thing to break
True love is an awful thing to waste

We both have our part to play

Now hand it over, give it to me-
I will promise to keep it good company

The heart is an easy thing to break
True love is an awful thing to waste

We both have our part to play

Words and music by Gordon Gow, copyright 2020

Singalong

You say good morning, I say good night-
the setting sun is a beautiful sight
play me some music all shiny and bright

While the shadows grow, there’s still more I want to know-
will you share your song

Creaky bones, aches and pains-
this getting old is such a shame
play me something that you composed

It don’t matter if the tune sounds strange-
’cause if you care to share your song, I’ll try to sing along

Singalong

From Lego trains to video games-
some Facebook photos are all that remain
Like a minor chord in a major key

You know the feeling’s strong-
although the child is grown and gone, I still sing along

Singalong

The hit parade it don’t mean a thing-
It’s your song that I want to sing

Synthesizers, drum machines-
the latest loop, fresh beats on the scene
play me something that will make us dance

It don’t matter that the tune sounds strange-
if you care to share your song, I’ll try to sing along

Singalong

 

Music and words by Gordon Gow, copyright 2020

California Morning

California morning-
Blue sky delight
A warm breeze filled the air

California morning-
Like an angel in flight
It lifted off without a care

And I am grateful for those things I have seen
And I will be faithful to those memories that should have been

California breaking-
Like the waves on the shore
Pretty girls and beggars in the night

You came sailing in-
To find me stranded on the sand
A California rescue close at hand

And I knew our worlds were still turning
Soon the wind and rain would come again
And I can still see the sun ascending
On that California coastline where it all began

California morning-
now a distant memory
Like a dream disrupted before it’s done

My California lover-
I know it to be true
I still miss you

Words and music by Gordon Gow, Copyright 2019

Image: “A Certain Sunrise” by David Goehring. Flickr, Creative Commons.

Wear Anything!

Who you gonna be-
where you gonna go-
what kind of hat-
are you gonna wear?

A baseball cap-
a cowboy hat-
a pink beret-
or a derby

A yamaka-
A panama
A black pork pie-
or a beanie

You can wear anything-
with that smile on your face

A tam o’shanter-
just might be you
maybe a turban-
or a fez

A fruity hat-
propeller cap
Something crazy-
to make the news

You can wear anything-
with that smile on your face
You can be who you want to be

Un grand chapeau-
un bel cappello
un pequeño sombrero

camel hair-
cashmere or silk
with a purple pom-pom-
just for show

You can wear anything-
with that smile on your face
You can wear what you want for me
You can be who you want to be

Music and words by Gordon Gow

 

 

Broken Horse

Amen-
that’s what we say when we talk to God
And this old soul-
knows when it’s all been said and done

Like a river run dry-
drowning in dust
in that grey autumn sky

Dreamers-
on a journey that had just begun
We were rebels-
breakin’ free from the herd like colts on the run

Riding wild on those rolling plains-
chasing visions in that
warm summer rain

A porch light on the prairie-
it casts a lonesome sight
While we bask in the glory-
of another starry night

This broken horse-
this broken horse don’t roam no more

Try as you may now-
you know it’s all just in vain
Git’ up, get on your way now-
they’ve forgotten your name by now

This broken horse-
this broken horse don’t roam no more

Words and music by Gordon Gow

 

Yellowhead West (video)

I’m really pleased to have worked with Long Sleeve Productions on the video for Yellowhead West.  Drazen and Kathleen were great creative partners in this undertaking and I think the results speak for themselves.

The interiors were shot on location at Maggie’s Hill Heritage Loghouse (where we recorded the song and much of the album) in Sherwood Park, Alberta.  The driving scenes were shot on the Yellowhead Highway between Edmonton and Jasper on a beautiful autumn day.  (Look for the drone shots of the truck).  The “empty mountain pass” is Talbot Lake at the east end of Jasper National Park.

Thank you to Martha Conrad for use of Maggie’s Hill and to Doug Elniski for loaning us his truck for this project.

Live show in October

headshot no guitar vintage

I’m excited to be performing at The Carrot Community Arts Coffeehouse in Edmonton on Friday, October 13.

Show starts at 7:30pm  I will be donating all of the artist’s proceeds to Edmonton’s Food Bank.  We need 50 fans to fill the house.  Let’s make it happen.