Crash Test Dummies pumped for weekend shows in Cambridge Bay

Band will play for trade show on Friday, then for the community on Saturday

From left, Crash Test Dummies band members Ellen Reid, Stuart Cameron, Brad Roberts, Dan Roberts and Mitch Dorge. The band is travelling to Cambridge Bay to play two shows, one on Friday for the Kitikmeot Trade Show and another on Saturday for the community. (Photo courtesy of Crash Test Dummies)

By David Lochead

Crash Test Dummies have toured through a lot of places in the more than 35 years since the Canadian rock band was formed, but the western Arctic isn’t one of them.

They’ll finally get their chance this week when they fly to Cambridge Bay for performances Friday and Saturday.

“I didn’t think I’d ever go that far north,” lead vocalist and guitarist Brad Roberts said in an interview.

“It’s very intriguing for me to do a gig up there.”

The Friday gig is for the Kitikmeot Trade Show, which is happening at the same time. But Saturday’s show will be for the entire community.

Crash Test Dummies formed in Winnipeg in the late 1980s and achieved mainstream success throughout the 1990s with hits such as Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm, The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead and Superman’s Song.

Current band members are Roberts, Mitch Dorge on drums, Dan Roberts on bass, Ellen Reid on keyboard and backup vocals, Stuart Cameron on guitar and a new member in Leith Fleming-Smith on keyboard.

The offer to play Cambridge Bay came at the last second, Roberts said, adding it’s an exciting opportunity to travel to the far North.

“You travel around and you do a lot of shows … and you kind of see the same old places over and over again,” he said.

“This will be an excellent opportunity to see a place I’ve never seen before.”

Roberts said he was initially intrigued by how a place of around 1,500 people would have enough money to book the band. He credited Kitikmeot Trade Show organizers, who offered to bring them up.

Talia Maksagak, executive director of the Kitikmeot Chamber of Commerce and one of the trade show organizers, said the hamlet has helped attract well-known bands to come to the trade show in the past. Last year, they nearly booked the Barenaked Ladies.

“I know a bunch of people who [listen] to them are excited to see them in the North,” Maksagak said of the Crash Test Dummies shows.

“So that’s exciting.”

The Saturday show starts at 7 p.m. and is a free performance open to the community, the chamber of commerce posted on its Facebook page.

While the band is coming north for the first time, Roberts said if the opportunity had arisen earlier the band would have been happy to take it.

“I think we would have done this in the [1990s] just as quickly as we said ‘yes’ in the [2020s],” he said.


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(3) Comments:

  1. Posted by Catherine Lightfoot on

    Dang Brad, Couldn’t swing a concert in Iqaluit and visit an old University of Winnipeg classmate! We could have had some great chats about Professor Ridd and the history of the bible. That was an interesting class!


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