Before Gord Downie died of glioblastoma, a rare and incurable brain disease, on October 17, 2017, he was a man on a mission. With limited time remaining, he was determined to get as much done before the end came.
Staring on July 17, 2017, he spend a couple of weeks at the Hip’s studio in Bath, Ontario, outside of Kingston, recording one last batch of songs. The result was twenty recordings that will be released as a double album on October 16, the day before the third anniversary of his death.
The album, entitled Away is Mine, is divided in two. The first half features ten songs performed by a full band. Part two contains those same ten songs in the same order but done acoustically.
- Hotel Worth
- Useless Nights
- I Am Lost
- About Blank
- River Don’t Care
- The Least Impossible
- Traffic Is Magic
- Away Is Mine
- No Solace
- Hotel Worth (Acoustic)
- Useless Nights (Acoustic)
- I Am Lost (Acoustic)
- About Blank (Acoustic)
- River Don’t Care (Acoustic)
- The Least Impossible (Acoustic)
- Traffic Is Magic (Acoustic)
- Away Is Mine (Acoustic)
- No Solace (Acoustic)
- Untitled (Acoustic)
Some facts about the album:
- One of Gord’s oldest friends, guitarist and co-writer Josh Finlayson, helped with the recordings.
- The demos were created in the spring of 2017 using Garageband,
- The record features The Family Band, which includes Travis Good of The Sadies. He plays fiddle, mandolin, and guitars.
- Drums come from Lou Downie (Gord’s son) and Bathhouse employee Dave “Billy Ray” Koster.
- These aren’t two different records. They’re different mixes of the same recordings. “The same lightning, just in different bottles.”
- The artwork was created by Claire and Willow Downie, Gord’s daughters.
- This might be it for Gord’s solo recordings. I quote Josh Finlayson: “This won’t be his last release, but these are the final ten songs Gord sang before he passed away. The last time he ever sang into a mic.” Interesting.
- Unreleased Hip recordings? There are still lots of those. Stand by.