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Kim Mitchell to the Max

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‘A good time and a good sweat without the pain’

Who: Kim Mitchell and WDC

Where: Buffalo Bill’s

When: Thursday, Aug. 21

It must be hard living up to titles like "Canadian Icon" or "National Living Treasure" and even "King of the Hosers" but for the Great White North’s own rock ’n’ roll royal, Kim Mitchell, they are "words you can’t take too seriously".

And you’d better believe him because this guy has seen it all. From the hard partying, hard playing days as Max Webster’s front man to the solo sensei of the summertime scene in the ’80s and ’90s, Mitchell explains his own legacy: "You know, I think we’re all the same in this country and have the same stuff we have to struggle with, need the same stuff to make us laugh and let our hair down and we all have a job to do. Mine just happens to be on stage.

"I look at the labels the press come up with for me and look at it all in a humorous way. When they say I’m an icon, I say it’s more like I just won’t go away. I’m like an apple in a bucket of water that you push down and it just keeps bobbing up for more action," he laughed down the phone from the guitar room at the back of his travelling tour bus.

With more than 20 years of touring, 14 albums, three Junos and countless gold and platinum hits under his lean and fit-for-over-40 belt, Mitchell is still doing what he does best. Playing kick-ass rock ’n’ roll. A consummate road warrior, Mitchell and his band of seasoned musicians regularly take off for stops not only in the major cities but to every easily forgettable suburb in between to say thanks to the fans who never want to let go.

"I have people who have been out to see my show, no joke, 30 or 40 times," he said. "I have one guy in London, Ont. who has seen me play 63 times, so that’s quite an honour for a performer to have that sort of lifetime loyalty."

Mitchell makes sure he gives the fans what they want every time, including many of the hits that made him so famous. Patio Lanterns, Go For Soda, All We Are and Rock N Roll Duty are as rapturously received today by the crowds as they were at Mitchell’s peak, and they are hits he still enjoys performing.

"I never tire of them because every night I’m out there I feel like I’m in rock ’n’ roll wonderland with a great band beside me," he said.

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