MAY 13, 2006

Photos by Anne Mitchell,
Kiri Nichol, Kent Sherrard,
Marie Mazur

Text by Anne Michell and Marie Mazur

When I went down to the event at Indigo, I was expecting to hear Anjani sing, and to maybe, if I was lucky, hear Leonard read a poem. Actually, I was expecting that he would just introduce Anjani. It had been quite a trying day, standing outside and waiting for the Event. I don't think I realized how difficult it actually was to do. But I met some nice people, and I was pleased to see how many younger folks that were there. The show began with Ron Sexsmith and his interpretation of Heart With No Companion, followed by another song by Barenaked Ladies. After a short break Leonard read lyrics to a song not yet released and then he introduced Anjani. Anjani sang from her album and during her set she talked about how much she loved Toronto. She sang four of the songs from the new album (Thanks For The Dance, Innermost Door, Half The Perfect World, No One After You) and then she announced that Leonard would be JOINING her for the next song! It was great! He came out and they sang 'Never Got To Love You' (by far my favourite song on the album, btw). The crowd went wild. Also, screaming thank you, Leonard! (We are so Canadian!) He then went on to sing So Long Marianne and Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye! I just couldn't believe it! It was so amazing! His voice sounded great, in really good form. The whole crowd was so happy. Leonard and Anjani both seemed to have a wonderful time. The rain held off just until the show ended. It was amazing. A few raindrops hit me just when it was time to go home.


Ron Sexsmith and Leonard

Leonard and Anjani backed by "The Barenaked Ladies"

I was blessed to be able to spend some time with Anjani and Leonard during their stay in Toronto for the Indigo event on May 13. There were a 1000 moments, big and small, I will forever cherish about that weekend. The concert is very high on that list. To hear Anjani and Leonard sing live was magical. It is easy to be mesmerized by the beauty of the songs when listening to the album. In person, the songs have new life. Anjani is charming. You can’t help but smile when you watch her. Her joy in singing these songs was contagious. And when she and Leonard shared the stage, you were welcomed into their world. You could feel the creative energy and commitment that infuses “Never Got To Love You.” Time has not faded Leonard’s voice or his passion. When he sang “So Long, Marianne” and “Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye,” Leonard was exuberant and the audience electrified. I was privileged to sing along on the choruses with 6000 “angels.” And afterwards, to be part of the crowd’s excited afterglow of high praise and tears was a thrill of a lifetime, and one I hope everyone will get to share soon.

It is difficult not to be awe struck by these two when you see and hear them in concert, when you remember the extraordinary body of work they’ve created and the genius of the music and performance. Yet, only a couple hours before they took the stage, I stood on a street corner with Anjani and Leonard eating the best hot dog in Toronto (and probably in the world). These two are extraordinary in their ordinariness, just a guy and gal stopping for a hot dog at a corner vendor. And their entourage of a management liaison, record company liaison, musician, driver and fan were just friends enjoying the amusing quest for a great dog. Anjani and Leonard created many wonderful moments for me, but what I will hold most dear is how fortunate I was to connect with them in this down to earth and easy manner.

I was more than a little nervous prior to meeting Anjani and Leonard. But obviously, I had nothing to worry about. I could not have been made to feel more comfortable in their presence or more welcomed or more cherished. They included me in everything and made me feel so much a part of the experience. And amazingly, Anjani and Leonard surround themselves with people who are just as generous of spirit. I might have thought that I died and went to heaven to live out this fan’s ultimate fantasy, but then I remember the hot dog and I know that sometimes we are lucky enough to experience a little heaven here on earth.

Marie (megan2c2b@aol.com)

A complete report of my excellent adventure can be found
in the News section at www.anjani-music.com

Leonard and musician extraordinaire Julian Coryell
anticipating their dog at Mike's Hot Dog stand in Toronto

Click here for more photos!

Photos © Anne Mitchell except three last concert photos © Kiri Nichol
Book signing photos © Kent Sherrard. Hot dog photo © Marie Mazur