Soul legend Grayson Hugh takes the stage at the Port Hardy Civic Centre Friday

Soul legend brings personal touch to Hardy

Soul legend Grayson Hugh made his first stop at Port Hardy’s Civic Centre Friday evening.

Elena Rardon

Gazette staff

PORT HARDY—Christine Hunt never imagined that an online purchase would lead to an international friendship with her favourite singer.

But blue-eyed soul legend Grayson Hugh, whose hits have been featured in films including “Fried Green Tomatoes” and “Thelma and Louise,” made his first stop at Port Hardy’s Civic Centre Friday evening following an invitation from Hunt.

A long-time fan of Hugh, Hunt discovered his official website and attempted to make a purchase. When her postal code was not accepted on the online order form, she wrote an email. The email she received in answer was from the singer himself.

“I couldn’t believe it,” she said Friday, “that he himself would answer me!”

The two wrote back and forth and quickly became online friends and pen pals. Hugh mentioned that he had never visited the North Island before and Hunt invited him to a feast.

“Then I thought, ‘why don’t we do a concert while you’re here?’” said Hunt. “And he agreed.”

The show opened Friday with Hunt’s husband, Alan Moberg, a talented musician in his own right. Moberg entertained the audience with stories about growing up and fishing on the Sunshine Coast. While his repertoire featured folk, country, and gospel music, the real surprise of the night was his yodelling, which received uproarious enthusiasm from the crowd.

Hugh took the stage afterward accompanied by wife and backup singer, Polly Messer.

“This is one beautiful part of the world,” he said as he took the stage. “I looked outside this morning, saw the mountains and salmon jumping, and thought, ‘I want to live here!’”

Hugh played a mix of classics and hits, as well as songs from his newest album, An American Record. He described the new album’s sound as a “criss-cross” of different genres.

“It’s all the music I’ve loved all my life,” he said.

Like Moberg’s set, Hugh’s music emphasized finding a sense of place in songs like “Road to Freedom” and “Lost Avenue.” Other pieces harkened back to his grandfather’s experience growing up in Wales and England.

He dedicated the song, “What It’s All About” to Hunt as a thank you for putting together the event, before closing with his hit “I’ll Remember You” and an energetic cover of the Beatles’ “Drive My Car.”

Friday’s event also featured a concession put on by the Quatsino Band, featuring fry bread and chili, with all proceeds going towards the girl’s baseball team.

 

Just Posted

VIDEO: Saanich resident shocked when trespasser licks security camera, rummages through mail

‘I found the situation really bizarre,’ said the Gordon Head resident

BC Ferries crew member taken to hospital after getting struck by bow doors

Two sailings between Horseshoe Bay and Departure Bay were cancelled

Commercial fisheries off-loading business booming in Port Hardy

Off-loading facilities pack, ice, and load in totes the fish that are caught by commercial fishermen

STRIKE: WFP and USW are back at the table for mediation

“No further updates until either an agreement is reached or one party or the other breaks off talks”

ELECTION 2019: It’s so close, it could come down to who turns out to vote

Black Press Media’s polling analyst on the origins of predictive seat modelling in Canada

Jack’s Devils beat Quinn’s Canucks 1-0 in NHL brother battle

New Jersey youngster scores first career goal against Vancouver

Two charged after owner’s wild ride through Kamloops in his stolen truck

Crystal Rae Dorrington, 37, and Derrick Ronald Pearson, 32, facing multiple charges

Judge orders credit union’s bank records for Kelowna social worker facing theft allegations

The man is accused of negligence, breach of contract, fraud and a conspiracy with Interior Savings

Leaders pour it on with rallies, boosts for candidates as campaign reaches peak

The federal election campaign has reached a crescendo

Allegations of racism lead to ministry investigation at Vancouver private school

St. George’s School was contacted over what the school describes as ‘deeply offensive behaviour online’

Not a political question: Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta

Edmonton police estimated the size of the crowd at about 4,000

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

B.C. public safety minister says cannabis edibles not in stores til January

Mike Farnworth says he wants regional issues considered when it comes to licensing

Most Read