Arts-Culture #37 (Sun Mar 10, 2013) the late great Stompin Tom, comment by Tim Hus

This week on the programme, a look at one of Canada's best loved singer-songwriters.

Tom Connors died this week of natural causes at age 77. After a hard start to life, and almost at the bottom, he got a strange break..a chance to sing for his beer. From there he went on to write songs about working Canadians, their lives, the towns and the cities they knew. 

For many, this "Canadianism" was something that had long been lacking. Although the music industry and media, marginalized him, he slowly became the people's hero.

This week, some of his songs, and a conversation with country singer Tim Hus, who was the last performer to go on a coast to coast tour with Stompin Tom Connors.

I hope you enjoy the show, and as always, I welcome your comments.  There are a few photos if you click on "More"
Though he eventually became a huge star who could fill a concert hall, Tom Connors had no qualms about playing in small bars, Legion Halls, or community centres.  Stompin Tom got his nickname from his habit of banging his boot heel on the floor in time to the music. After complaints by hall owners that he was damaging their floors, he would bring a piece of plywood with him and stand on that.

(cbc vid grab) Stompin Tom wa a man of the people and always loved meeting his fans on a personal level

Stompin Tom was prouc of Canada's military and the soldiers were big fans of him. He enjoyed performing on military bases and on overseas tours where Canadian soldiers had been sent, either on peacekeeping dutires or in conflict zones.

He also wrote songs that were about Canada and about Canadians and lives that the people lived, and though the media marginilized him and his snogs as not being sophisticated, he was in fact extremely well-read about world affairs, and millions bought his records even though radio stations hardly played his songs.  In spite of being ignored by mainstream music, he had several number 1 albums based on sales.

(cbc vid grab) Proud of Canada's military, and popular with the soldiers,he wrote a song called the Blue Berets,

Literally millions of people were deeply saddened to hear of his passing.

Members of Canada's Parliament took a break to sing some of his songs in the hallways of the Parliament building and on social media and websites people have been sending messages of thanks for giving them many songs that spoke to them personally.

(cbc vid grab) Stompin Tom, overwhelved by the reaction from an appreciative audience

Tim HUS website here



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