Thunder Bay

Tragically Hip fans celebrating the songs, says music retailer

One staff member at a Thunder Bay, Ont. music and comic store says customers are celebrating the Tragically Hip as the band approaches the finale of its Man Machine Poem tour.

Todd Shewchuck of Comix Plus and Music Exchange says lots of people are looking for albums

Todd Shewchuck of Comix Plus and Music Exchange in Thunder Bay holds a vinyl copy of the Tragically Hip's Trouble at the Henhouse. The median price for the LP on the online market Discogs is more than $300. (Heather Kitching/CBC)

One staff member at a Thunder Bay, Ont. music and comic store says customers are celebrating the Tragically Hip as the band approaches the finale of its Man Machine Poem tour — and that means fans looking for albums.

"It's a gratitude that we've been able to experience all the music that they've been able to put out, and it's not just [lead singer] Gord [Downie]. The rest of the band are truly amazing," Todd Shewchuck said.

A lot of people have been looking for used Hip albums at the store lately, but few people are parting with their collections, he added.

Shewchuck is a huge fan of the band, and plans to be at the Thunder Bay waterfront Saturday night, when CBC and the City of Thunder Bay screen the group's Kingston concert live on the big screen.

He has seen the Hip in concert around six times, he said.

'Music binds people together as fans'

He fondly recalled a night spent camped outside Fort William Gardens to buy tickets for a Tragically Hip show in November, 1996.

Around 200 fans partied together that night in the cold, he said.

"It was in the age before police would arrest you for that kind of thing," he added.

One of the best moments of his life, he said, occurred at another concert — this one at the Minneapolis Zoo in 2000, which was attended by about 500 people from as far away as Louisiana.

"Me and my friends and a few other Canadians sitting around — to get their first encore we started singing 'O Canada' and then they came back out and that was an amazing moment," he said.

"The Hip's music binds people together as fans," Shewchuck added.

"They never really made it big in the States, and I think we appreciate them more for that. They're ours and we love them for that."

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