[twitter]Canadian music legend, Stompin’ Tom Connors passed away at the age of 77. Now, as is expected when a 77 year old musician passes away, the internet is asking “Who is Stompin’ Tom Connors?”
I’m pretty sure I’m the only white Canadian who doesn’t know who Stompin’ Tom Connors is
— Mike Vincent (@vinnymac57) March 7, 2013
who is stompin tom and why has my facebook newsfeed been infected with spammy messages about his death
— erika (@meatlessrawsugr) March 7, 2013
Ah, Twitter, you’re so cute. And disappointing.
Oh, and that Hockey Song too.
So you don’t know who Stompin Tom Connors is? Chances are you actually do, you just don’t know you do.Stompin Tom Connors is a legend in Canadian country and folk music. At the age of 15 he left his adoptive family to hitchhike across Canada, a journey that consumed the next 13 years of his life as he travelled between various part-time jobs while writing songs on his guitar.
Why was he called Stompin’ Tom?
He had a habit of stomping the heel of his left boot to keep rhythm earned him the nickname “that stompin’ guy”, or “Stomper”. It wasn’t until Canada’s 100th birthday, July 1, 1967, that the name Stompin’ Tom Connors was first used, when Boyd MacDonald, a waiter at the King George Tavern in Peterborough, Ontario introduced him as “Stompin’ Tom” on stage.
After numerous complaints about damaged stage floors, Tom began to carry a piece of plywood that he stomped even more vigorously than before. The stompin’ board has since become one of his trademarks. After stomping a hole in the wood, he would pick it up and show it to the audience (accompanied by a joke about the quality of the local lumber) before calling for a new one. [wikipedia]
Stompin Tom Connors wrote more than 300 songs on four dozen albums, with total sales of nearly 4 million copies. He died at his home of natural causes on March 6, 2013. Before he died, he knew the end was near and wrote this for Canadians:
“It was a long hard bumpy road, but this great country kept me inspired with it’s beauty, character, and spirit, driving me to keep marching on and devoted to sing about its people and places that make Canada the greatest country in the world.”
“I must now pass the torch, to all of you, to help keep the Maple Leaf flying high, and be the Patriot Canada needs now and in the future.”
“I humbly thank you all, one last time, for allowing me in your homes, I hope I continue to bring a little bit of cheer into your lives from the work I have done.”
Your Friend always,
Stompin’ Tom Connors
Who is Stompin Tom Connors? He was charged with expressing the soul of our country, in song.