Calgary singer/songwriter Tim Hus never intended to follow in the footsteps of Canadian music legend Stompin’ Tom Connors. It just sort of turned out that way.
Now Hus is playing a tribute show in honour of Connors’ 75th birthday on Feb.4 at The Stop in Black Diamond.
Like the man with the stomp, Hus has built a reputation as a champion of many things Canadian. It’s not a role he planned on having. It came to him naturally.
“I always liked the country storytelling songs,” Hus said. “So when I started writing my own music I did up a song dealing with a logging camp. Then I went out to the coast and had a job on a salmon boat and I wrote a song about it. Everything just sort of grew from there.”
Evidence of how fully Hus has evolved into the “Canadiana Cowboy”, as his web site (www.timhus.ca) proclaims him, can be found on his fifth and most recent album “Hockeytown”. The disc not only has a title track that praises our national game but it also has songs covering everything from Saskatchewan gophers to the blue Atlantic shore.
In 2009 Hus learned his music had caught the attention of the original Canadian country troubadour.
“A couple of years ago I was playing a little hotel out in the prairies of Manitoba and Stompin’ Tom called me up,” he said. “He told me he appreciated all the songs I was writing about Canada because that had been his thing for a long time. He also appreciated how hard I was working to bring my show all across the country. Then he invited me to come out on the road with him. So that’s what we did.”
Hus opened for Connors on both his 2009 and 2010 Canadian tours during which time the pair formed a friendship. Hus revealed that often during these shows the elder headliner would heap praise on the younger performer.
“He told me I was the best fit as an opener he’d had in his 45-year career,” Hus said. “Every night he would tell the audience how long he’d been looking for someone writing songs in my vein and how he’d like to hand his torch out west to me someday.”
Connors turns 75 on Feb. 9 and he invited Hus to attend his upcoming birthday party at his home near Georgetown, ON but the Calgary entertainer is unable to attend due to concert dates here in Alberta.
Instead Hus and violinist Billy MacInnis decided to team up and put on a birthday tribute concert for the entertainer they both know and respect. MacInnis, a native of PEI who is currently visiting our province, has been the fiddle player in Connors’ band for the past seven years.
Neither of the men wanted to let Stompin’ Tom’s milestone birthday pass by without marking the occasion.
“We thought we should do something for his 75th,” Hus said “He’s a legend and a Canadian icon. We thought why don’t we do a show and sing a bunch of his songs.”
The Feb. 4 concert at The Stop will begin at 8 p.m. and feature such Connors’ classics as “Bud the Spud”, “The Hockey Song”, and “Sudbury Saturday Night”. Hus will also be performing some of his own Canadian themed material. Tickets for the show are $15 in advance and $18 at the door and are available at The Stop on Government Road in Black Diamond.