Thank you to all of our fans that brought Love + Fury to life through PledgeMusic. But, in case you were wondering, we are not done yet!
Because of the experience that YOU gave US, we would like to do this all again.
strong>Help us make another album – click this link to get involved!
Hugh, Trent, Tim, Dale.
GUELPH – December 19, 2013
Guelph, ON – Guelph Concert Theatre
Tickets on sale Oct 24th 10:00am EST
OTTAWA – December 20, 2013
Ottawa, ON – Mavericks
Tickets on sale Oct 26h 12:00pm EST
OTTAWA – December 21, 2013
Ottawa, ON – Mavericks
Tickets on sale Oct 2nd 12:00pm EST
LONDON – December 26, 2013
London, ON – London Concert Theatre
Tickets on sale Oct 24 10:00am EST
TORONTO – December 27, 2013
Toronto, ON – Danforth Music Hall
Tickets on sale Oct 4th 10:00am EST
KINGSTON – December 28, 2013
Kingston, ON – K-Rock Centre
Tickets on sale Oct 25th 10:00am EST
NIAGARA FALLS, NY – Special New Year’s Eve Performance – December 31, 2013
Niagara Falls, New York – Rapids Theatre
Tickets on sale Oct 4th 10:00am EST
Age: All Ages with licensed 21+
To our Pledge Music Fan For Life laminate holders: Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday, December 10, to let us know that you will be attending either of these shows. We must be notified by this date in order for you to gain entry with your FFL pass.
Hugh Dillon was in Toronto from his home in Los Angeles earlier this summer to talk about Love + Fury, a new album from the Headstones after the punk-hard-rock band re-united 11 years after calling it quits.
But the 50-year-old singer-songwriter wasn’t able to contain the discussion to the subject of his music or his successful acting career (The Killing, Durham County) boosted by the five-year run of CTV’s police drama, Flashpoint. This was a conversation that could have been called Darkness + Pain = Redemption + Light. And the lessons he wants to impart can be explained in this equation: Patience + Kindness + Generosity = Possibility + Hope.
The simplicity of the math belies the complexity of the journey, though, which roils behind his eyes, ready to be channelled into an intense, on-screen character. What it required – the conversation, that is – was the forbearance of his publicist, who sat in an adjacent booth, and several times raised a hand of warning for him to stop, which Dillon gleefully ignored. He flirted with his past as a boy with a crush, recounting the worst bits off-the-record like deliciously sordid sex scenes, all of them delivered in whispered confession between bites of expensive salad.
“Darkness and existential angst,” he explains at one point, holding his fork in mid-air, when asked about his troubled youth spent in Kingston, Ont., the youngest in a family of three children. He was restless and malcontent, rebelling against his conservative upbringing with a mother who was a teacher and a father who worked for a large multinational.
“I had a great acting teacher in high school. But I didn’t like acting because it took too many people to get the job done.” At this observation comes a snort of laughter before he continues: “You have to talk to too many people and listen to others’ opinions. With music, you get a few friends together and just make it.” His parents sent him off to Ashbury, a private boys’ school in Ottawa to try to discipline him.
Did that work? “Are you kidding?” he replies with boyish impishness. He finished high school and set off for Queens University, where he lasted a year. “I took sociology, history and the study of drugs,” he deadpans with a devilish smile. He almost landed in jail. His parents were frightened, so his mother sent him packing: he wasn’t allowed to come back to Kingston for five years. She gave him a passport and $1,000. Off he went to London, England, where he lived in a squat and busked on the street, performing his own songs. When he returned to Canada a year later, he faced two truths. He knew he could make music, but he couldn’t afford to. His parents refused to help him unless he returned to university. He lived in a cheap Toronto apartment and worked in factories stacking boxes and later, for five years, as an orderly at the Hospital for Sick Kids. Finally, he saved enough money to record a demo tape, which led to a record deal.
“You’re young, you like to drink beer, smoke a little pot, you get a record deal and incrementally three or four years into it, you drink too much, your nerves were shot, so you take Valium. It kind of slows you down a bit, and then you’re like, ‘Hey, what does heroin do? Cool!’ And you think you’re the smartest guy in the room. You drink all night, take a little heroin, which takes the edge off, and you have all these people expecting to see you perform, so it works. Heroin prolongs your drinking until it gets you, too.” That little passage was delivered as melodically, as seamlessly, as the lyrics of a song he has performed a thousand times.
But then he throws his shiny bald head back and booms with laughter. The romance with his addiction was going to end with something worse than a STD. “Oh, I would have died!” he points out with unexpected enthusiasm. Here’s another bit of math: 20 detox attempts + 5 rehab stints = 0. “I had to turn my back on [the band],” he says, explaining that each time he went on tour, he would relapse.
“I went up north and was cutting trees down. It wasn’t romantic and cool. It was $4.10 an hour and I was 40.” A voice-over job for a Chrysler came along. Then, an award-winning movie, Down to the Bone. (He had been given his first acting opportunity by Bruce MacDonald in 1994 in Dance Me Outside.) He wouldn’t have spearheaded a reunion of The Headstones if it weren’t for an out-of-the-blue phone call from Randy Kwan, a friend from high school who had co-written some of his early songs. They had gone separate ways. But Kwan called to tell him two things: he was husband and father, and he was dying from cancer. (He died six months later.) Dillon offered to help by getting the band back together to play a few gigs. “And because we spent so much together, we wrote a song, BinThisWayForYears.” They decided to fund an album through pledges from their fans. (Universal later distributed it.) “It was great because we were not interested in doing it for vanity.”
He has been clean and sober for eight years, a period his parents, now in their 80s, have been able to witness. “I am confident in who I am,” he states. And of course, there’s his wife of 25 years, Midori Fujiwara. “I’m here because of her. She didn’t give up on me when everyone else did and I had given up on myself.”
And there’s another woman he credits: Anne Marie La Traverse, the executive producer of Flashpoint, who gave him his breakout role of Ed Lane. “What it comes down to, from that Flashpoint experience, is a kindness and generosity and a work ethic that I have taken away with me.”
No more struggles with meaninglessness?
“Check it out!” he exclaims. “I have a car waiting for me. My wife is waiting for me. I’m going to Muskoka. I’m talking to The Globe and Mail. I’m connecting to people. And I’m at a restaurant ordering salad! I love it!”
It’s about what you add up, and what you choose to subtract. “Life is too short to spend in negativity,” he says. “So I have made a conscious effort to not be where I don’t want to be.”
Introducing Custom designed Headstones shoes by Woody’s. Choose from designs of Love + Fury, Smile & Wave and Picture of Health.
Actor, rocker, and front man of The Headstones, Hugh Dillon, stopped by Studio Q to chat about his band’s new record Love + Fury. It’s their first album in 11 years, and Dillon says time and tragedy have turned the musicians into a different kind of band.
The younger version of himself would sooner spit into the crowd than rehearse for a show, but he now says that Dillon can “eat it.”
“This band could beat the hell out of that band, because the raw talent was there but not the work ethic,” he said.
But this reunion album, which was sparked by a death close to the band, is no cash cow. Take a listen to the interview to hear that story and how the album became the band’s first ever top ten record.
By Nick Patch, The Canadian Press | The Canadian Press – Wed, 22 May, 2013 6:45 PM EDT from yahoo.com
TORONTO – Headstones snarler Hugh Dillon has never been particularly gentle with fans — after all, his habit of spitting indiscriminately into the audience during the band’s notoriously fiery performances has become a key part of the group’s mythology.
But now that the Kingston, Ont., band’s first album in over a decade was made possible by the contributions of their devoted faithful, who in 1,597 separate contributions poured in more than 295 per cent of the band’s budget goal via PledgeMusic.com?
Well, Dillon certainly feels the love — and pressure.
“It makes you want to work harder,” the 49-year-old said in a recent telephone interview. “If we’re getting a shot at this, we’re going to give it 150 per cent. We’re going to give it a million per cent. We’re giving it ten bazillion million per cent! It’s like, these people are going out of their way to help you. They’re putting their money where their mouth is, they’re going, ‘We believe in this thing. We believe you guys can do it.’
“It just makes you go: Holy (crap), these people are really expecting something,” he added with a laugh. “It was our baby. This was it. There was one chance. And these people had invested so much and believed in us. It’s like, you can’t disappoint. Disappointment is not an option.”
And, in the eyes of the always-candid Dillon, the Headstones didn’t disappoint. With “Love + Fury,” out now, he says they’ve made the best record of a career that stretches back more than 25 years.
The band — known for no-nonsense serrated hard rock — had its greatest success in the ’90s, with a stretch of commercially successful records beginning with 1993′s platinum-selling debut “Picture of Health” followed by consecutive gold records with 1995′s “Teeth and Tissue” and 1997′s “Smile and Wave.” After two more albums, the band went on indefinite hiatus following 2002′s “The Oracle of Hi-Fi.”
There were many reasons for the breakup — a one-time heroin addict, Dillon relapsed before checking himself into rehab and disbanding the group — but they had also become drained by the constant push for airplay and record sales.
“You get the (crap) kicked out of you on the road and playing in a band for a long time, and especially in Canada,” he said. “There were a couple years, a couple decades, that weren’t that … hot.”
They reformed in 2011, brought back together in an effort to help past contributor and longtime friend Randy Kwan, who was dying of cancer and didn’t have insurance. Quickly, the quartet assembled for a tour that generated some money for the cause.
“Out of that tragedy, came nothing but an incredible, positive and creative experience,” Dillon said.
Despite its heartbreaking overtones, the cross-country trek reminded Dillon and co. how much they’d missed one another.
“It’s like lightning in a bottle — it’s just that natural chemistry,” he said. “It’s explosive when we hang out. Your senses are just heightened. We laugh a lot. Life just seems exciting, you know?
“It’s very much like a family,” he added. “We’re like brothers. You know, they have very little patience for anything that isn’t 100 per cent honest.”
When it came time to start crafting a new record, they started fresh, not bothering with most of the sketches or ideas that had built up during their break. Co-producing with his friend Chris Osti, Dillon endeavoured to claw back the layers of polish that were typically applied to the band’s white-knuckle rock and roll (he says such older records were so “weirdly polished or weirdly enhanced” that he “would always be vaguely disappointed with the final” product).
Album opener “Change My Ways” establishes the record’s Rottweiler growl, while first single “longwaytoneverland” finds Dillon spewing stylishly over a hard-charging riff. The album rarely lets up the guitar-driven intensity, though stark album closer “Midnight of this Life” is something else entirely, a piano dirge that finds Dillon softly singing some revealing lines: “It’s just the midnight of this life has proven to be the hardest to bear.”
He’s not looking for external validation this time out, he says. The Headstones had the support of their fans, and the band is happy with their album.
“I no longer look at numbers or business,” he said. “That was what killed us — we didn’t even realize we were on the treadmill. We were running so fast, and then, bam.
“Life is too short,” he added. “If you can find great people that you like to be around, and a great project that you’re really honestly passionate about and interested in and not wasting your time and not doing (it) for money, your life is infinitely happier.”
And there’s a certain pride Dillon takes in the Headstones’ unwillingness to rest in peace.
“We’re that little pitbull that gets up and survives through decades and through illness and death and destruction and everything else,” he said. “We really love where we’re at right now.”
Of course, during Dillon’s hiatus from the Headstones he established himself as an in-demand actor, having landed regular roles on “Flashpoint” and “Durham County.” Soon, he’ll be featured as a regular player in the third season of the AMC mystery “The Killing,” while he also landed an arc on the sci-fi series “Continuum.”
He’s also about to turn 50, a milestone that he approaches with some enthusiasm.
“I’m lucky to be here,” he said. “I love every second of it. I’m turning 50, I’m shooting two television shows … and I’ve got the best rock ‘n’ roll record I’ve ever made with the guys I’ve grown up with. It’s a testament to great, really exceptional relationships and great friends.”