Every great songwriter has their great theme, and Stompin' Tom Connors (1936-2013), the most defiantly Canadian musician in the history of the land of the Maple Leaf, was a guy who never grew tired of writing about his homeland. Straddling a fine line between folk and country with his simple but effective melodies, spare guitar-based arrangements, and rugged vocals, Connors loved nothing more than spinning tales of life in the Great White North, from rustic stories of everyday life to whimsical tall tales with a local slant, and A Truly Proud Canadian brings together 20 songs focused on life in the land he loved. Celebrating potatoes from Prince Edward Island, tobacco from Tilsonburg, the hockey game on Saturday night, and k.d. lang winning a Juno award, A Truly Proud Canadian is a solid introduction to Connors, his work, and his singular take on Canada and its people; this music is proudly blue collar, and the flinty populism of his songs reflects a fierce, open-hearted patriotism that's uncommon in Canadian music. Given the span of his recording career, Stompin' Tom Connors certainly deserves a box set to document his body of work, but as a way into his catalog and an overview of his many songs about Canadian life, A Truly Proud Canadian is a well-curated sampler that does this folk hero proud.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Mark Deming