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Counting Crows 

  • Danny clinch

Adam Duritz reckons you have a 50 to 60 percent chance of hearing “Round Here” or “Mr. Jones” at tonight’s show. The Counting Crows leader reveals the seven-piece has nearly 90 songs in rotation on its cross-Canada tour, ending this weekend in St. John’s, so deep cuts are just as likely as the hits to be on the setlist.M

“I feel an obligation to play a great concert,” he says from his home in New York on a rainy afternoon. “People pay a lot of money, and you owe them your full concentration, all the passion you can muster, and never phoning it in. I do not think you owe them a particular setlist. And you gotta remember—when you make an album, they’re all songs that are important to you. What becomes a radio single was not a more important song to you, it’s what the record label thinks can get on the radio, which is a different set of conditions. Often it just has to do with what’s short.”

The Crows’ latest, Somewhere Under Wonderland, is nine songs but knocks on 45 minutes long. Duritz apologizes for nothing. “Just because something becomes a hit doesn’t mean you like it any more than anything else,” he says. “I love ‘Mr. Jones,’ but I don’t necessarily love it more than ‘Round Here,’ ‘Sullivan Street,’ or ‘Angels of the Silences’ or any of 100 other songs. They’re all important to you for different reasons, or they wouldn’t be on a record.”

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