Al Tuck was a quotable guy at his Halifax Pop show at the Carleton. The Prince Edward Island native walked on stage promptly at 11:30 p.m. with his harmonicist and drummer and asked, "Is it the first day of the festival?"
It was indeed the first day of the festival, and he was there to headline at the exceedingly intimate venue. So intimate, in fact, that in between one of the songs a man sitting at one of the tables that was pushed right up against the stage asked Tuck if he'd like another whiskey. He did. "Wiser's," Tuck answered. "Not too much ice!"
It took Tuck a while to get into the music, once joking between rambling thoughts about this "newfangled folk comedy thing" he was trying out. He opened the night with, according to him, "the slowest song ever recorded," which was a beautiful, bluesy ballad accentuated by harmonica.
He then meandered his way through a song about Stompin' Tom Connors dot com, "Hitting on Louise," "There Is a God" and a Rick James cover. The crowd cheered and sang along to his last song, "Paid in the Middle of the Night."
It was clear Tuck was having a good time on stage, and the good times transferred well to the crowd.
To see Exclaim!'s Halifax Pop Explosion photo gallery, courtesy of Lindsay Duncan, head here.