From the wild fires of California to the scorched earth of Western Europe to the death panels of Western Australia, we can all bid a fond sayonara to Summer. Pack up the lemonade, kiss Bernie Sanders’ ruddy cheeks, record all conversations and move on.

For our peer group, Summer means live music, and her Mims and I attended plenty of great shows. It all started with the Decemberists. No selfie, but I did get a pretty good interview with opening act, Eleanor Friedberger. The Gabbonesso and I were standing in an aisle talking with Mrs. Patsos Patsos when the former Fiery Furnace burst forth from a side door. The interview ensued:

Me: Eleanor, great set.
EF: (icy stare) (walks away)
Me: Say hi to your mom.

The 12th Monthers were promoting their new long player, “I’ll be Your Girl,” however, they played a nice mix from all of their records. Except for “The Hazards of Love.” Yes, they played crowd favorite, “The Rake’s Song,” but I think that was it. Colin apologized every other song for his scratchy voice, but I thought they sounded fantastic, Captain. They even brought out the whale! Great start to the season.

Next up, Spoon and Grizzly Bear, a mini-festival that made Woodstock look like an amateur night hootenanny. Country Joe and Fish, anyone. Please. Mims and I took young Dylan, named for Nobel Poet Czeslew Milosz. I think. Any way, Britt Daniel and company played the best Spoon set I’ve ever witnessed. The set was so hot that when Britt sang, “Bring me some popsicles” I hoped the crowd would Kraft dinner him. Except with popsicles. We didn’t get to hear all of the Grizz because our young poet needed to get home. Something about a junior license, camp and progressive chord changes. My reaction to experiencing Grizzly Bear live was that they shouldn’t have let Spoon open. Love the new record, though.

Next on the menu were the Canadian superstars (who remain obscure in the States), Sloan. Her Mims sat this one out because, well, Sloan draws about 50 middle-aged men to their shows. Etouffe, Maximum Tom and Unrealtor Dennis and I were treated to some of the best power pop ever produced. As you can see from the set list below, they attempted to play their entire catalog. If you are not familiar with Sloan, and you’re not, all four members write and sing terrific songs. They rotate between lead vocals, instruments, harmonies and ice hockey references. Their new album “12” is a certifiable classic, and should be purchased as a back to school gift for everyone you know. To make the experience especially great, I got to interview Sloan “frontman”, Chris Murphy. Enjoy:

ME: First, I have to ask a Canadian question. What is your favorite Ryan Reynolds movie?

CM: Oh. Ummm. I dunno, eh. Oh, I can’t really think of any. Oh, wait. “La La Land.”

ME: Yeah, that’s Ryan Gosling. Thanks for trying, though. How about “Deadpool?”

CM: I didn’t see those. Are they any good? Are they funny?

ME: Not really. Let’s move on. I always have to ask: Stones or Blur?

CM: What, eh? Why don’t you just ask me peanut butter or mayonaise? I mean, I dunno, eh? I’d say Beatles first, of course. Then probably the Kinks. I don’t really know Blur.

ME: Good answer! Though, I might say Beatles, Zombies and then Kinks. Then Blur.

CM: Oh, I don’t really know the Zombies. I mean, I love “Oracular Spectacular,” eh? But, yeah, I might put the Who above the Stones.

ME: Honestly, I’ve only had one guy say Blur.

CM: Oh, yeah? Who?

ME: Rooney.

CM: Oh, yeah? Which guy?

ME: The singer. Robert.

CM: I’m good friends with Taylor from Rooney. He and Robert don’t always see eye to eye.

ME: Probably because of Blur.

CM: Could be, eh?

ME: Finally. I guess I need to apologize for Trump. Little Brain Man. Sore E.

CM: Oh, hey. We have Doug Ford in Ontario. Jeez. Yeah. Do you remember Rob Ford. It’s his brother. It’s happening everywhere.

ME: Scary. Used to only happen in Germany. Well, good luck in the World Cup.

CM: Ok, thanks. Don’t think we qualified, though, eh?

ME: I meant next time. Next time.

Next came the white whale of all touring bands, Radiohead. They had not performed in Pittsburgh since 1997, and I can only assume it was a Bill Cowher slight that kept them away. Now fans can argue that the set list was a little heavy on their lesser known tracks, and they only played one song from “O.K. Computer” (not okay, computer!), but Her Mims and I were both rocking out for the duration. If I had to complain about anything, and I do, it would be that seeing them in a hockey arena in the summer felt like a virtual reality show. Yeah, they sounded great, but from my vantage point I couldn’t even see Thom Yorke’s squinkie eye. Bummer.

Finally, we conclude with the non-ordained Father John Misty. I don’t consider myself to be a huge fan, but Unrealtor Dennis (not a Beatle) took me to see the Mist. Opening act Bully really impressed with a tight set of Grrrlll Power Pop. I’m expectorating big things from them.

Papi John also had the large crowd wrapped around his sardonic fingers. He spared no expense on back up musicians, including a horn section, multiple keyboards, guitars and beards. All in all, a tremendous way to conclude the hell of seasons, Summer.

So what have we learned. Well, we could have taken a European vacation for what we spent on tickets, t-shirts, drinks, food and more drinks. Please don’t tell Her Mims. Good night, every moon. Coming soon, my review of Kurt Andersen’s “Fantasyland.” A must read? You must!