Jerry Leger: Live at Warehouse Concert Hall

Jerry Leger

Living here in south-central PA, it is often a daunting predicament when shows are announced at our fave ON venues through the winter months – knowing that while purchasing tickets is an easy task, putting our trust in Mother Nature to play ball come travel time is often a crapshoot. A cursory glance at the long-range forecast in the Farmer’s Almanac (back in mid-December) told us to expect a mild late February in the Niagara region – and like going all-in on red on the roulette wheel, tickets were bought! 

Opening for Elliott BROOD and touring to promote his most recent “Donlands” album, Toronto-based troubadour Jerry Leger received a warm welcome at Warehouse Concert Hall.  “Hey there, it’s great to be back in St. Catharines,” Jerry announced. “I got here early enough to visit the record shops. I didn’t find anything.” Asking the room if they went to the local record store prompted no feedback. “I did have the best shawarma in town,” he added. “Where?” “Now we hear ya!” “Now you’re listening,” Jerry joked. “I just discovered a new trick. I’ll try that in other cities.” 

Jerry Leger

With a well curated mix of songs old and new, Jerry would dip into his “Donlands” material frequently – sharing cuts from what many critics consider to be one of his finest album releases to date. Having heard only a couple of singles from this album (“Three Hours Ahead Of Midnight” and “Slow Night In Nowhere Town” – both performed), it was great to experience other new cuts for the first time – “Sort Me Out” and “I Was Right To Doubt Her” – and we made sure to pick up a copy on vinyl to enjoy all of these new tracks once back home.  

Some of Jerry’s popular hits from the last few years would fill the room, including “Nothing Pressing,” “Troubled Morn,” and “Underground Blues,” with less familiar offerings too – such as “How It Ends,” described by Jerry as “a newer song that I wrote for The Everly Brothers… I think that they’re going to record it.”  And, of course, Jerry’s songs often seep into your psyche and leave you guessing if-and-when you’ve heard one before – which for me, was certainly the case with one of his tunes towards the end of his set.   

Jerry Leger

Taking time to inform the room about the merchandise he had available, Jerry would mention his book of poetry that he created during the lockdowns. “I’m going to write another poetry book if there’s another pandemic,” he stated. “I’m kind of torn about it. I’d like to, it gave me time to write the other.” “We don’t need any more pandemics,” could be heard from the crowd, leaving Jerry smiling and adding, “Yeah, yeah, well maybe. It might be inspiring. The written word has inspired a few people. It’s good being inspired.” 

As his 45-minute set drew to a close, Jerry raised everybody’s spirits with the popular and uplifting song, “Have You Ever Been Happy.” “We filmed this video in a bowling alley across the street from me during the pandemic and we had a ball,” he added. “We ate pizza. We bowled. We made a video on 16 millimetre [film]. It was a lot of fun, and just begs the question: Have you ever been happy?” 

Set List: 

  1. Nothing Pressing 
  2. Underground Blues 
  3. Sort Me Out 
  4. Troubled Morn 
  5. I Was Right To Doubt Her 
  6. Three Hours Ahead Of Midnight 
  7. How It Ends (Unreleased) 
  8. Kill It With Kindness 
  9. Stay Long  
  10. Wait A Little Longer 
  11. Slow Night In Nowhere Town 
  12. So Strange (sic.) 
  13. Have You Ever Been Happy 

The British guy that crossed the ocean and crash landed in central Pennsylvania (to quote Greg Keelor, “And I wonder what am I doing here?”). As the youngest of four siblings, exposure to music from a very early age nurtured my passion and appreciation for many musical genres. Continuing to discover some amazingly diverse and talented musicians based in Canada, I gravitate to live music experiences and remain devoted to spreading the word about such a vibrant music scene.

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