...and a few hundred other people.

We went to see Jim Cuddy (of Blue Rodeo) last night. Justin Rutledge was the opener. What a fantastic night!!!

Our friends, who had our tickets, arrived a half hour late. The bouncer at the door was kind enough to let us wait inside the lobby where it was nice and warm. Justin Rutledge took the stage around 9:15 and although we could hear him, we couldnít yet see him. But he sounded great! Starting off with my favourite tunes off of his album, The Devil On A Bench In Stanley Park. Our friends finally arrived about three songs into his set and we made our way into a club that was so crowded, I canít believe that fire codes werenít being violated.

Justin completed a half hour set. Although most people in the crowd had probably never heard of him (our friends included), they loved him. He played a great set and it was the perfect music style to warm the crowd up for Jim Cuddy. Bazil Donovan (also from Blue Rodeo) played bass for Justin, which certainly didnít hurt the warming up of the crowd.

After about a 45 minute break, who shows up on stage to introduce Jim Cuddy, but Greg Keeler! Greg lets the crowd know that this is Jimís birthday and leads everyone in singing Happy Birthday as Jim makes his way (right past us, shaking hands with one of our friends!) through the crowd to the stage.

Greg joins the crowd to watch the show, while Jim and his band proceed to rock the house with solo tunes and about a half dozen Blue Rodeo songs. About halfway through the show Jim invites Justin Rutledge back on stage and they play about four songs together as a duet. This wasnít just Jim having Justin on stage, this was Jim sharing the spotlight and making sure that the crowd knew exactly who Justin was. I heard the woman beside me comment that she was gonna go "buy the kidís CDĒ. It was a very cool thing for Jim to do.

After about an hour and half, the band left the stage for a short break and then came back for the encore. Greg Keeler came out for one song. So Greg, Jim and Bazil were on stage playing a Blue Rodeo tune and I was in Blue Rodeo heaven. Greg made his way back into the crowd, a couple more songs from Jim, a grand finale with Justin back on stage and the show was over.

We were standing near the door where the band entered and exited the green room (or wherever they go). We stuck around chatting while the crowd thinned out and then Greg and Bazil came down and stood around the door hanging out for a few minutes. I was cursing myself for not throwing Jimís and Justinís CDs in my purse as Iím sure that I could have gotten them autographed.

All in all it was a great show and a really fun evening.