Music

Dallas Green on paying tribute to Gord Downie at the 2018 Junos

"It was such a strange moment to be a part of because you don’t really want to be there doing it," he says.

'It was such a strange moment to be a part of because you don’t really want to be there doing it.'

My Junos Moment: Dallas Green

1 year ago
Duration 5:41
When the Juno Awards were held in 2018, music fans were still coping with the death of Gord Downie the year before. In a touching tribute, singer-songwriter Dallas Green helped fans make sense of it.

When Dallas Green was asked to pay tribute to his friend Gord Downie at the 2018 Juno Awards, he agreed, but with mixed emotions. 

"It was such a crock pot of emotions simmering," he says. "We were picked to honour one of the great, if not the greatest, frontmen, musicians, songwriters in the history of our country.… It was such a strange moment to be a part of because you don't really want to be there doing it."

Green, Sarah Harmer and Kevin Hearn were all part of the two-song tribute to Downie, and upon rewatching it now for My Junos Moment, he says he almost broke down before heading out on stage. 

"And then of course, obviously, when I started singing I was just like, 'OK, I know how to do this, this is what I do," he says. "If I just put my emotions aside for three minutes I could hopefully just honour the memory of Gord and then I could go friggin' cry in the bathroom stall afterwards."

He adds that Downie's impact goes much deeper than just the music, and was more about the man himself. 

"It felt like he cared about whoever was talking to him. I think that was what was endearing about him," he says. "Whenever you meet somebody who you feel like, when you're growing up, is possibly bigger than life itself, and then you meet them and they are just normal, that's always reinforcing that you can maybe achieve what they are."

Watch Green's full My Junos Moment above.

Wherever you are in the world, you can watch the 2021 Juno Awards on Sunday, June 6. You can watch live on CBC TV and CBC Gem, listen on CBC Radio One and CBC Music and stream globally at CBCMusic.ca/junos.

(CBC Music)

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