The central lyrics to Neil Young's classic song "Old Man" from 1972's Harvest album go "Old man look at my life, I'm a lot like you were."
City and Colour band leader Dallas Green understands those lyrics in a way few others could because he actually sung "Old Man" right in front of Neil Young at the 2011 Juno Awards.
Green, who's a tremendous Young fan, was performing "Old Man" as part of tribute to Young as part of the televised broadcast of the 40th edition of the awards show. Young was one of the big stories of that year. He was given the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award for his decades of work on Farm Aid, won the Adult Alternative album of the year award for his Le Noise record, and also took home the Artist of the Year award, too, beating out the likes of Justin Bieber and Drake.
Despite performing Young's song with the grunge godfather mere feet away from him, however, Green was never actually introduced to Young.
"No, I didn't meet him," Green tells Huffington Post about that night. "Which I was totally fine with. A lot of people afterwards were like, 'Oh, did you meet him? I did?' I'm like, 'No, but I got to sing one of his songs in front of him.' See what I mean? That to me was more special."
Like Young, Green's musical history has yo-yo'd wildly throughout his career from folk-y acoustic ballads as City and Colour to blistering rock in the broken-up, but-not-done hardcore act Alexisonfire. So Green meeting Young would have been a big deal. He didn't want to spoil his musical moment, though.
"I probably could have got someone to introduce me to him and I could have got a handshake and someone would have went 'Mr. Young, this is Mr. Dallas Green' and it would've been 'Hi, nice to meet ya' and that would've been it," he says.
"Or I could go on with my life not meeting him and loving his music and just sort of having that moment where I got to do that. It's good enough for me."
We'd like to believe that's a lot like how Neil Young would think.