TALES FROM THE ROAD: The Grapes of Wrath

Tom Hooper of the Grapes of Wrath remembers one hair-raising gig

Tom Hooper is the frontman of iconic Canadian rock band The Grapes of Wrath. He lives on Salt Spring Island

Tom Hooper is the frontman of iconic Canadian rock band The Grapes of Wrath. He lives on Salt Spring Island

We played our hometown of Kelowna a few years back, it was a dinner theatre kind of gig. In the dressing room, there was a skull candle – like, a life-sized skull.

I thought it would be cool to put it on top of my amp on stage, so I put it there and lit the candle and we started the show.

Halfway through the show, everything was getting louder (as usual) so I went over to turn up my amp. I had to lean over to turn the dial up, forgetting – or not paying attention to – the skull candle and my hair dangling over it. After turning it up, I turned around to face the audience and continued to rock but suddenly I heard someone scream, “YOUR HAIR IS ON FIRE!” and in microseconds, I started to desperately pat out the fire on my head!

Suddenly, there were ashes of hair slowly falling to the ground and the stage smelled like burning steak. I looked over at the audience and it was just a sea of horror and disbelief on their faces.

Luckily, I did put the fire out quickly, regained my composure, walked over to the mic and asked if anyone had a Pepsi …

– Tom Hooper (The Grapes Of Wrath).

See Tom Hooper in Victoria at the Bard and Banker July 3-4 and 16, at the Irish Times, July 17 and at the Treehouse Cafe on Saltspring Island July 5.

 

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