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Posted: 2009 12-07


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YouTube Uploader: The Tragically Hip
The Tragically Hip

Live in Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre, Abbotsford, BC. 08/08/2009

This is the first song of the full concert.

Retrieved from Wikipedia:
New Orleans is Sinking on Wikipedia
"New Orleans Is Sinking"
New Orleans Is Sinking.jpg
Single by The Tragically Hip
from the album Up to Here
ReleasedNovember 1989
GenreRock, Blues-rock
Writer(s)The Tragically Hip
Producer(s)Don Smith
The Tragically Hip singles chronology

"New Orleans Is Sinking" is a song by Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip. It was released in November 1989 as the second single from the band's first full-length studio album, Up to Here. The song reached number-one on the RPM Canadian Content chart.[1]

The song has since become one of the band's signature songs and still receives consistent radio airplay. In 2008, the song was ranked #24 on a CFNY-FM (102.1 "The Edge") list of the Top 200 New Rock Songs of All Time;[2] in 2005, it was named the 16th greatest Canadian song of all time on the CBC Radio One series 50 Tracks: The Canadian Version.


  • 1 Live "workshop"
  • 2 Hurricane Katrina
  • 3 Charts
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links

Live "workshop"

When performed live, the middle section of the song is typically given over to an extended jam in which lead singer Gordon Downie performs a story or another song. The most famous such version, subtitled "Killer Whale Tank", appeared as a B-side on the band's 1991 CD single for "Long Time Running"; in it, Downie improvises an extended story about working as a cleaner in the killer whale tank at an aquarium.[3]

In another well-known version which has been widely circulated as a live bootleg, Downie performs Joni Mitchell's "This Flight Tonight";[3] in the version which appears on the band's 1997 live album Live Between Us, he performs David Bowie's "China Girl" and The Beach Boys' "Don't Worry Baby".

This tradition has also been used by The Hip as a "workshop" to test out and develop new Tragically Hip songs which have not yet been recorded; several of the band's later singles, including "Nautical Disaster" and "Ahead by a Century", began as bridge jams during live performances of "New Orleans Is Sinking".[3]

Hurricane Katrina

In October 2005, several radio stations, including CKQB-FM and CHEZ-FM, temporarily stopped playing the song out of sensitivity to the victims of Hurricane Katrina, which had devastated the city of New Orleans in early September of that year.[4][5][6][7]

This song has been used to protest the idea of building cities below sea level, which was a major factor in the devastation the hurricane caused in New Orleans.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b "Canadian Content (Cancon) - Volume 51, No. 3, November 18, 1989". RPM. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  2. ^ "Top 102 New Rock Songs of All Time". August 31, 2008. 
  3. ^ a b c Michael Barclay, Ian A.D. Jack and Jason Schneider, Have Not Been the Same: The Can-Rock Renaissance 1985-1995. ECW Press. ISBN 978-1-55022-992-9.
  4. ^ MacDougall, David (2005-08-31). "Ottawa Radio Stations Pull Hip Song After Hurricane Tragedy". Chart. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  5. ^ Armstrong, Denis. "Storm sinks Tragically Hip classic". Jam!. Retrieved 2011-04-02. 
  6. ^ The Coast - (The Tragically Hip) lost a ton of royalty money when radio stations pulled...
  7. ^ Archive News, Glasgow Caledonian University - Tragically Hip song pulled from playlists
  8. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 51, No. 8, December 23, 1989". RPM. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  9. ^ "The Tragically Hip - Billboard Singles". allmusic. Retrieved 2010-05-24. 

External links

  • "New Orleans Is Sinking" Official music video on YouTube


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