HON­OUR­ING STOMPIN’ TOM

Walk of Fame in­ductee

24 Hours Vancouver - - ENTERTAINMENT - JANE STEVEN­SON

The son of Stompin’ Tom Con­nors thinks his dad, who fa­mously re­turned his six Juno Awards in 1978 be­cause he felt too many “bor­der jumpers” were be­ing hon­oured, would be okay with his Canada’s Walk of Fame in­duc­tion this year.

The black hat-wear­ing coun­try rebel, who died in 2013 at the age of 77, was about as pa­tri­otic as they come in this coun­try de­liv­er­ing such clas­sics as The Hockey Song and Sud­bury Sat­ur­day Night while stomp­ing his foot on trade­mark piece of ply­wood.

“Tom would be the first one to tell you that he doesn’t need to be hon­oured by ev­ery­body all the time,” said Tom Con­nors Jr., 41, now pres­i­dent of Stompin’ Tom Ltd., af­ter start­ing as one of his dad’s road­ies at the age of 14 in 1990.

“He’s had his own prob­lems with awards sys­tems and fight­ing for Canada to be No. 1 in the peo­ple’s hearts that are get­ting these awards. I mean that’s well doc­u­mented at the Junos. But this one, we feel, it’s a good group of in­ductees this year. Tom had a lot of re­spect for (fel­low 2017 in­ductee) David (Suzuki) and the things that David ac­com­plished and the pa­tri­o­tism that he had for his own coun­try. It’s a good year be­ing Canada’s 150 (an­niver­sary) and some new things have hap­pened with the open­ing of the Stompin’ Tom Cen­tre in P.E.I. and the fact that Ole En­ter­tain­ment have now brought Tom to them (as mu­sic dis­trib­u­tor), so I fig­ured, ‘Well, if the Walk Of Fame would like to have Stompin’ Tom in­volved to make it all that more Cana­dian, then we have no prob­lem giv­ing them the op­por­tu­nity to do that.’ ”

This year’s CWOF in­duc­tion takes place Wed­nes­day night (Nov. 15) at a cer­e­mony at Lib­erty Grand and will be broad­cast as an hour-long spe­cial (Global, Dec. 3, 8 p.m. ET/PT) hosted by Emmy-win­ning ac­tor Eric McCor­mack,

We caught up with Con­nors Jr. re­cently on the phone.

Q. Will some­one be per­form­ing one of Stompin’ Tom’s songs at the CWOF event?

A. I’m told there will be a trib­ute sung. I’ve made some re­quests on who it will be. I don’t know the fi­nal an­swer yet.

Q. Who will be rep­re­sent­ing your fam­ily at the CWOF cer­e­mony?

A. (My mother and Stompin’ Tom’s wife) Lena will be with me and my (older, half ) brother Taw, who’s de­cided to now go out and start singing some of our fa­ther’s songs in a trib­ute show around On­tario. So he’ll be mak­ing the 20-hour drive from Nak­ina, Ont. (a lit­tle bush town north of Ger­ald­ton), to come with us and my wife Jes­sica and my son Thomas who’s four now and per­haps maybe one more fam­ily mem­ber. I’ll prob­a­bly give a short lit­tle two or three minute speech maybe to thank ev­ery­body.

Q. How many sib­lings do you have?

A. I have an­other (half ) sis­ter, Karma, from Tom that lives in Stoney Creek and my mother has a daugh­ter, Trudy, in Cal­gary as well. And I had an­other (half ) sis­ter Carol, who passed away re­cently.

Q. How are you and your mom Lena do­ing since Stompin’ Tom passed?

A. I guess our char­ac­ter was strength­ened over the years just as a by-prod­uct of him be­ing such a strong in­di­vid­ual. So I guess we’re just an ex­am­ple of we’re ca­pa­ble of mov­ing on and not get­ting too caught up in the emo­tional as­pect of things be­cause we still have im­por­tant things to ac­com­plish with Stompin’ Tom.

Q. Like what?

A. Some vinyl. It’s quite pop­u­lar again. The Hockey

Song LP and maybe an LP of the new com­pi­la­tion (Ole) did (this past sum­mer) and a few other things. I started an un­re­leased-songs-from-the­vault se­ries when we were (pre­vi­ously) with Univer­sal of the 120 songs that he recorded be­fore he passed away. I’ve kind of put to­gether a 15-year plan to get that stuff out.

Stompin’ Tom Sr., left, and Stompin’ Tom Jr. Right, Stompin’ Tom will be in­ducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame Nov. 15.

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