Possibly 4th Street 22: Broken Social Scene’s Brendan Canning


Rob Trucks’s “Possibly 4th Street” expositions, in which he invites musicians to perform live and impromptu somewhere in New York City, run intermittently here at Sound of the City.

Broken Social Scene returns to the city this Friday, October 24 at the Brooklyn Masonic Temple. The show is sold out.

all photos by Rob Trucks

Possibly 4th Street
Number 22 (Part One)
Broken Social Scene’s Brendan Canning

by Rob Trucks

“It’s a very strange experience for me, I must say.”
—Brendan Canning

Us too.

Siren Festival 2008 is hot and crowded. Not only in front of the stages (and behind the stages) but on the boardwalk and the beach.

In a mere matter of hours Brendan Canning and his Broken Social Scene bandmates will close the Stillwell stage in front of a crowd that stretches from just short of the boardwalk out halfway to Surf Avenue. But playing acoustic guitar on a teeming seaside is not his thing.

So Frankie and Annette we’re not. Though this is the first Possibly 4th Street where both the film crew and the performer stood a good chance of taking home that most unwanted of shore souvenirs, sand in the underwear.

And yet we persevere. Through heat, a mass of half-naked humanity (and not always in a good way), and a certain grittiness where you do not want grittiness.

And so just three days before his first solo album, Broken Social Scene Presents Brendan Canning’s Something For All of Us . . . (if you don’t think branding’s important, just ask Lindsey Buckingham), band co-founder Canning plays a song so new that for today, at least, it’s called “Song at Coney Island.”

Brendan Canning Performs “Song at Coney Island”

Possibly 4th Street
Number 22 (Part Two)
Broken Social Scene’s Brendan Canning


Brand new solo artist Brendan Canning


Saturday, July 19, 2008


Coney Island, baby.

Tell me something you’ve never ever done before in your life.

I’ve never jumped out of a plane.

Tell me something you’ve done once and one time only.

Cross-country skied.

That’s on snow?

On snow.

I guess it’d be kind of difficult to do on water, but I felt like I had to ask. Tell me the name of a book you’ve read at least twice.

I think Saul Bellow’s book Humboldt’s Gift.

And a movie that you’ve seen at least three times.


And for the boat, the trailer and the motor home, who’s your favorite Beatle?

I guess it’s John. That was my grade six speech. The first run of the speech I didn’t quite have my shit together, if you can believe it. So I got up, started to do my speech, then I kind of just told my teacher like, ‘I’m going to need a little more time. I don’t quite have it together today.’

That is quite a level of maturity for such a young man.

Well, you know, there’s only so much bluffing you can do when you’re in front of the class. And so I took it back to the woodshop, woodshed, whatever, and, you know, I think I probably ended out the speech with, ‘It’s not good to kill anyone. Especially John Lennon.’

Brendan Canning on the Beach