Al Tuck The Carleton, Halifax NS, October 24

Al Tuck The Carleton, Halifax NS, October 24
Photo: Vish Khanna
8
"This is my first one of the day people," Al Tuck said, motioning to a glass of hard liquor in his hand. "It's not like everyone says." There was so much history in Tuck's defensive introduction: he is considered one of the greatest songwriters to have ever called Halifax home, yet, for some, his is a cautionary tale of how to conduct one's music career. Tuck can play the greatest show you've ever seen one night and on his worst nights, there's still something great happening but it can be uncomfortable as he pauses to determine his next move, talking to himself as much as his audience. Sometimes it's the drink that gets to him, sometimes the moments just get spooky.

At the Carleton, he was in fine form, engaging the audience in a funny, welcoming way, and even rolling out some of his most beloved, crowd-pleasing songs like "Five-O," "One Day the Warner," and "Brother From Another Mother." His audience knows him so well, one gentlemen shouting requests like "Buddha" and "February's Snow" finally received the latter after promising to buy Tuck a drink. Tuck lives in the place of his birth, Charlottetown, but a careful observer could tell that being home in Halifax was significant for him. He took the guy's drink, sure, but he also played one of his best songs as beautifully as he could. All told, it was a set worth dropping all the uptight judgment and raising a glass for.