Gordon Lightfoot kept it simple Saturday night at the Greek Theatre. Now approaching his 50th birthday, the songwriter laureate of Canada was well aware that a five-piece band, a few strategically placed spotlights and his own warm baritone voice were all he needed for a pleasant evening of musical reminiscences.
Looking healthy and lean, his self-acknowledged drinking problems of the early 80's well behind him, Lightfoot seemed content to amble through the highlights in his vast catalogue of material. The topical songs - The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald, Christian Island, Alberta Bound - were as atmospherically evocative as ever. Lightfoot was almost as good on the ballads - especially the now-classic If You Could Read My Mind, but also the more recent A Lesson In Love.
There were no announced new songs, and the next scheduled album is a second collection of greatest hits. Though Lightfoot's position as a pop songwriter-performer whose work has transcended both era and style is secure, it was hard not to wonder - amid the concert's persistent waves of nostalgia - if the once-prolific Lightfoot songwriting spring has dried up.