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Gordon Lightfoot will bring half a century of songs and stories to concert at Eisenhower Auditorium

by on March 29, 2018 3:59 PM

One of Canada’s greatest and most prolific singer-songwriters will perform his music in concert Saturday, June 16, at Penn State.

An Evening with Gordon Lightfoot at Eisenhower Auditorium will feature songs selected from the singer-songwriter’s 20 albums, ranging from hits to deep album cuts for die-hard fans. Lightfoot will tie together the songs with behind-the-scenes stories from a career that has spanned more than 50 years.

His impressive catalog includes memorable songs such as “Early Morning Rain,” “If You Could Read My Mind,” “Carefree Highway,” “Sundown,” “(That’s What You Get) For Lovin’ Me,” “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald,” “Canadian Railroad Trilogy,” “Ribbon of Darkness,” “Beautiful,” “Song for a Winter’s Night,” and “Rainy Day People.”

“Lightfoot became a mentor for a long time,” Bob Dylan recalls. “I think he probably still is to this day. I can’t think of any Gordon Lightfoot song I don’t like. Every time I hear a song of his, I wish it would last forever.”

Lightfoot has made a name for himself among music legends with half a century of hit song-making and international album sales in the multi-millions. He has earned five Grammy Award nominations, five number-one hits in the United States, and 17 Juno Awards (Canada’s equivalent to the Grammy).

“Gordon Lightfoot has created some of the most beautiful and lasting music of our time,” says country singer-songwriter Kris Kristofferson.

In recognition of his prominent role in helping to define the folk-pop sound of the 1960s and 1970s, Lightfoot was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2012.

His songs have been recorded by a who’s who of folk, pop, and country artists, including Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Sarah McLachlan, Judy Collins, Anne Murray, Olivia Newton-John, Barbra Streisand, Jane’s Addiction, Glen Campbell, and Toby Keith.

“If You Could Read My Mind,” his 1970 breakout hit in the United States, has been covered by some 300 singers.

“I’ve always been trying to write songs like Lightfoot,” says easygoing hit-maker Jimmy Buffett. “A song of mine like ‘Come Monday’ is a direct result of me trying to write a Gordon Lightfoot song.”

In Lightfoot, a 2017 biography, author Nicholas Jennings describes the singer-songwriter as a gifted musician who transcends troubles with women and alcohol to find peace and sobriety in his golden years.

“In Lightfoot’s songcraft, still waters run deep, or at least deeper than you’d expect for someone who became branded an easy-listening artist,” writes Don McLeese in his review of the book for the Washington Post. “… Lightfoot wasn’t an artist who followed formulas or trends; he was a significant artist with a singular sound.”

Greenhouse Productions presents the concert. For tickets or information, visit or phone (814) 863-0255. Tickets are also available at Eisenhower Auditorium, Penn State Tickets Downtown, and Bryce Jordan Center.

John Mark Rafacz is the editorial manager of the Center for the Performing Arts.




John Mark Rafacz is the editorial manager of the Center for the Performing Arts at Penn State.
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