These liner notes to the Two Tones At The Village Corner album from 1962 and co-written by Lightfoot are remarkable in their description of the atmosphere surrounding one of his early club dates, a scene repeated many, many times thereafter as he was soon to go out solo, until he ultimately graduated to the concert stage.
Many of the traits that distinguish Lightfoot in his later career are in evidence even then, things such as respecting his audience and being aware of their impatience as the start is delayed. Lightfoot has always prided himself on being ready to play promptly at concert time. And like his countless concerts since that January night in 1962, he has continued to leave his audience wanting more...
TWO TONES AT THE VILLAGE CORNER - Liner Notes
To those who braved that stormy Saturday night of January 20, 1962 to attend the recording session of the Two Tones at the Village Corner, we dedicate this album.
Toronto was in the process of recovering from one of its famous ice storms, the night we recorded at the Village Corner. There was still ice on the telephone lines, with the gusty wind shaking bits of ice from the trees onto the heads of unsuspecting souls below. Despite the conditions, the after midnight crowd was there waiting for us.
Whoever thought up the name "Village Corner" wasn't far wrong. It is what used to be a house, about the size of a shoebox. Everyone was jammed in like matchwood, waiting for us to begin. It was so dark you could hardly see. The air was hot and sticky, the air conditioner wouldn't work but the coffee machine was working overtime. The smoke hung over everything like fog.
We were upstairs away from the smoke and noise waiting for Newberry to arrive, to begin recording. We could hear the din from downstairs, seeping up through the floorboards. The crowd was getting restless from the delay when we arrived.
We went down the narrow stairwell, which led to the club. We wormed our way through the smoke and crowded tables to the tiny stage at the end of the room. The mikes were all set up when we got to the stage and opened with "We Come Here To Sing". Through the haze we could see Newberry and Snider with head-sets on, twisting dials and watching needles like mad.
The rest of the session speaks for itself herein. The driving bass of Howie Morris was there at all times in the up-tempo stuff, and he played imaginatively throughout. Everyone was clapping and singing and having a ball. By the time we finished the last chorus of "Lord I'm So Weary" we really meant it, which is the way it should be.
They wanted more and we were glad, but we left them wanting.