31 years ago this evening you would have found, had you been looking, nine year old me and a couple of family members in the audience at the new Beban Park Auditorium in our old home town town of Nanaimo, B.C. Also there that night was a man who just happened to be hosting a popular half-hour Canadian TV program that year, Rolf Harris. Yep, that kangaroo-tyin'-down, didgeridoo-playin', Stylophone-shillin', artist and musician himself.
The Australian-born, U.K-based entertainer was spending a lot of time in Canada during this period and I well remember the mixture of songs, live giant-sized art, and stories that his variety show featured. I'm assuming his concert performances consisted of the like, since I can only remember a snippet or two - mainly his classic Jake The Peg routine. I do remember I enjoyed myself, and so was happy to run across the above newspaper ad in a copy of the Nanaimo Daily Free Press from December 1977.
Rolf was never as popular in the States as he was in Canada, and his Canadian popularity never approached the success he's had in the U.K. Although fading from Canadian television screens and most people's consciousness as the 80s proceeded (along with fellow international 70s stars with large Canadian fan-bases such as Roger Whittaker and Nana Mouskouri) the talented Mr. Harris' popularity has continued in Britain. Despite a recent slip-up in the press, Rolf's still going strong at 78.