Canadian country music once made it onto the bridge of the starship Enterprise (NCC-1701-D). The story begins 71 years ago today with the birth of Billy Cowsill. In the 1960’s he was part of the pop group The Cowsills, singing lead on their huge 1967 hit “The Rain, The Park and Other Things.” The group was the inspiration for TV’s “The Partridge Family.” After their breakup, Billy moved to Canada in the mid-1970’s and by the early ‘90’s, his musical journey led him being a founding member of an alt-country group called The Blue Shadows. On December 1, 1993, they played at the University of Guelph and I went to the show. Introducing myself before they played, Billy later joined me at my table during their intermission. I told him how much I enjoyed the band’s music, loved their album “On the Floor of Heaven” and was intrigued by the group photo. It showed Billy wearing a Star Trek communicator badge from “The Next Generation” TV series. He told me he had actually been in California on a tour of the set for the show and was on the bridge when one of the show’s stars, Marina Sirtis came on the set wearing her Counsellor Troi costume. Cowsill told me she took off her communicator badge and gave it to him. And that’s how it ended up on The Blue Shadows band photo. Billy died in 2006 at the age of 58 after years of declining health. His last residence in Calgary (1723 9th Street SW) was officially designated of heritage significance due to his residency there as well as being the place where he died.