Hatmaker doffs his lid to Tom Petty
A Petone hat manufacturer has paid tribute to the late Tom Petty by auctioning a special hat, with the proceeds being donated to a musical charity.
When Hills Hats general manager and Tom Petty fan Simon Smuts-Kennedy learned of the rock legend’s death last week, he decided to make the best of a sad situation.
After making himself a ‘‘tribute’’ maroon topper from fur felt, Smuts-Kennedy decided to list an identical hat on Trade Me, which would be made to measure for the winning bidder’s bonce.
The hat is similar to the one worn by Petty in his 1985 video for Don’t Come Around Here No More.
‘‘It’s the one I always think of when I think of him,’’ SmutsKennedy said.
‘‘So many people of my generation, and others, grew up listening to Tom Petty. He’s just so cool.’’
The auction closed with a winning bid of $477.50 on October 7 and had had more than 3000 views since being listed last Wednesday.
All proceeds from the auction are going to the Goodtime Music Academy’s music bus programme, which visits schools around the Wellington region to teach children how to play instruments.
Smuts-Kennedy said he had a lot of admiration for the owners and staff at Goodtime Music Academy, whose passion and enthusiasm was passed on to their many students.
Hills makes hats for various military and brass bands, and also has a following from numerous members of the New Zealand music scene, including Fat Freddy’s Drop, Ladi6, Tiki Taane, The Nudge and Shapeshifter.
Fat Freddy’s Drop advertised Smuts-Kennedy’s auction on their Facebook page.
Hills Hats general manager Simon Smuts-Kennedy with the hat paying tribute to Tom Petty, top left.