Canadian rock legends TRIUMPH were inducted into Canada's Walk Of Fame during an event in Toronto on Saturday, November 23.
The 21st annual ceremony and gala took place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, where there was a celebration of Canadians who have achieved excellence in their respective fields on both national and international stages. The show will be broadcast in December on CTV.
STYX frontman Lawrence Gowan paid tribute to TRIUMPH by performing a medley of the band's best-known songs with a nine-piece Rock Army.
The Walk Of Fame event was held exactly a week after drummer Gil Moore, guitarist Rik Emmett, and bassist Mike Levine played together publicly at an invite-only event to approx 300 "superfans" at MetalWorks studio in Mississauga (a suburb of Toronto), Ontario, Canada. The three-song set — which was taped for the forthcoming documentary "Triumph: Lay It On The Line" — was not only TRIUMPH's first performance in 11 years, but also its first as a pure three-piece power trio in 31 years. The tracks played were "When The Lights Go Down", "Lay It On The Line" and "Magic Power".
Asked by ET Canada on the red carpet of the Walk Of Fame how it felt for TRIUMPH to perform again, Levine said (see video below): "That was just so much fun. It was a lot of hard work, because we hadn't played together as a three-piece in forever — almost. But we worked hard at it, and when the fans saw us, they just went crazy. And we played pretty good. We had a great time doing it."
Moore talked about TRIUMPH's decision to make "Lay It On The Line", explaining that "it kind of came together over time, over stages. But we really developed the narrative with the director, Sam Dunn, which was to kind of find a way to embrace the fans that had embraced us for all those years. And that became the theme of every nuance that they went down. So it was a phenomenal experience. [It was] very emotional to meet them. There was a lot of tears. There wasn't really a dry eye in the house, to be honest. It was very touching."
Asked if there are any plans for TRIUMPH to perform again in the future, Emmett said: "I think we're gonna try and do it every 11 years or so. That's the length of time it had been since we did a reunion in Sweden. And [Canadian comedian] Rick Mercer says, 'Yeah, TRIUMPH does a reunion and they do it in Sweden. That's great.' So, we did that. Then we did Oklahoma, I think, or Rocklahoma. That was in July of 2008. Now we did this thing. So, like I say, every decade or so."
Moore, Levine, and Emmett formed TRIUMPH in 1975, and their blend of heavy riff-rockers with progressive odysseys, peppered with thoughtful, inspiring lyrics and virtuosic guitar playing quickly made them a household name in Canada. Anthems like "Lay It On The Line", "Magic Power" and "Fight The Good Fight" broke them in the USA, and they amassed a legion of fiercely passionate fans. But, as a band that suddenly split at the zenith of their popularity, TRIUMPH missed out on an opportunity to say thank you to those loyal and devoted fans, a base that is still active today, three decades later.
"Triumph: Lay It On The Line" is produced by Banger Films in association with Revolver Films, Bell Media's Crave, Live Nation Productions and NBC Universal Canada. It is produced with the participation of the Rogers Documentary Fund and Slaight Communications Inc. International distribution by Round Hill Music.
Due in 2020, the film will be right at home in the Banger Films catalogue, among such esteemed rock docs as "Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage", "Super Duper Alice Cooper", "Iron Maiden: Flight 666", and, most recently, "ZZ Top: That Little Ol' Band From Texas".