Canadiens hip check Corey Hart from his grand finale, farewell Montreal concert

Jason Kay
Paul Natkin Archive

Despite his musical vow to never surrender, Corey Hart is indeed relenting. And it’s the Canadiens who are forcing him to stand aside.

The Montreal native, best-known for 1980s’ hits such as “Sunglasses at Night” and “Never Surrender” had a gala farewell concert scheduled for the Bell Centre this Saturday, his proclaimed last stadium show ever on his 52nd birthday.

But the possibility the Habs will need the arena if they force a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference final, has prompted the performer to reluctantly re-book. The new show will be played June 3.

Hart told CBC radio host Jian Ghomeshi on Wednesday that he’s “really gutted” about having to reschedule, because of the inconvenience it will cause some of his fans and because he was hoping to conclude this emotional chapter of his life on his birthday.

“It’s been a really rough 24, 48 hours,” Hart said on the radio program “Q”. “I always wanted May 31 to be the show. When the Canadiens started to advance, we kept our fingers crossed and hoped the gods would keep May 31 clean for me.

“Last night, with the Canadiens winning – and I’ve been a Habs fan my whole life – we had to make a decision to move the date.”

If Montreal wins in New York on Thursday, Game 7 will begin at 8 pm on Saturday at Bell Centre.

According to Wikipedia, Hart, who released a new album this year, has sold 16 million records worldwide and had nine Top 40 Billboard hits in his career. In addition to “Sunglasses” and “Never Surrender”, tracks such as “It Ain’t Enough,” “Everything in My Heart,” and “Can’t Stop Falling in Love” cracked the Top 5.

So, too, did “Boy in the Box”. Considering his twist of fate with the Bell Centre and the Habs, there’s a joke in there somewhere.