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Junkhouse performing at the Kitchener Blues Festival
Junkhouse performing at the Kitchener Blues Festival
Background information
OriginHamilton, Ontario, Canada
GenresAlternative rock
Years active1989 (1989)–1998 (1998), ? (?)–present (present)
Associated actsLee Harvey Osmond
MembersTom Wilson

Junkhouse are a Canadian rock band, formed in 1989 in Hamilton, Ontario.


Formed in 1989 in Hamilton, Ontario,[1] the band consisted of vocalist and guitarist Tom Wilson,[2] guitarist Dan Achen, bassist Russ Wilson and drummer Ray Farrugia (despite their shared surname, Tom and Russ Wilson are not related).

The band got its first widespread exposure opening for Crash Vegas on that band's tour to support their debut album, Red Earth. Crash Vegas member Colin Cripps was one of Junkhouse's early mentors and supporters.

In 1993, the band signed to Sony Records, and released a Sony Music publishing demo Here Lies Happiness, which was a collection of their early recordings. In September 1993 they released their official debut, Strays, and promoted the album by touring as an opening act for The Waltons and Soul Asylum. That album was produced by Malcolm Burn, and produced radio hits for the band with "Out of My Head", "Prayin' for the Rain" and "Big Brown Turtle".

The band was also featured on the soundtrack to the television show Due South. Their cover of the song "Oh, What a Feeling" is on the first of the two soundtracks from the Paul Haggis show.

In 1995, they released Birthday Boy, which included a duet with Sarah McLachlan on the song "Burned Out Car".

Russ Wilson left the band in 1996, and was replaced by Grant Marshall.

In 1997 Colin Cripps joined the band after the dissolution of Crash Vegas.[3] Junkhouse released their final album, Fuzz which was primarily written by Wilson and Cripps.[4] Following that album, the band members went their separate ways. Tom Wilson has released two solo albums, Planet Love in 2001 and Dog Years in 2006, and has collaborated with Stephen Fearing and Colin Linden in the supergroup Blackie and the Rodeo Kings.

Although no longer recording, the band still performs together occasionally. They played on a bill with Finger Eleven at a tsunami benefit in Hamilton on February 2, 2005.[1] and reunited on November 7, 2009, to celebrate its 20th anniversary with a concert at Toronto's Horseshoe Tavern.[1]

Dan Achen owned Catherine North Studio in Hamilton. Several internationally known artists have recorded at Catherine North over the past 10 years, including Achen's niece Feist. At a 2008 concert at Hamilton Place, the Grammy-nominated singer held up her favourite red guitar and proudly announced that it was a gift from "Uncle Dan".

In 2008, Achen co-produced a Juno-winning album Bring Me Your Love, a solo project by Dallas Green of the platinum-selling rock band Alexisonfire.

Dan Achen died on March 15, 2010, of a heart attack while playing hockey.[5] On March 20, 2010, Ron McLean profiled Dan Achen and Junkhouse with a segment prior to the Leafs-Canadiens game on Hockey Night in Canada.



Release date Title Chart peaks Album

October 1993 "Out of My Head" 49 Strays
February 1994 "The Sky Is Falling" 50
May 1994 "Praying for the Rain" 41
September 1994 "Gimme the Love"
December 1994 "Big Brown Turtle" 69
August 1995 "Be Someone" 17 Birthday Boy
February 1996 "Brown Shoe" 80 24
April 1996 "Burn for You" 76
September 1997 "Pearly White" 46 6 Fuzz
December 1997 "Shine" 29 9



  1. ^ a b c "Artist: Junkhouse". The Canadian Pop Encyclopedia. Sun Media. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
  2. ^ "Official Web Site: Tom Wilson". Archived from the original on 2006-12-31. Retrieved 2007-01-19.
  3. ^ "Artist: Crash Vegas". The Canadian Pop Encyclopedia. Canoe Inc. Archived from the original on 2013-01-01. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
  4. ^ Leong, Alphonse (October 1997). "A chat with Hamilton's Junkhouse over grilled cheese sandwiches and lemon meringue pie..." Retrieved 2010-03-22.
  5. ^ "Junkhouse guitarist Achen dies playing hockey". CBC News. The Canadian Press. 2010-03-17. Retrieved 2010-03-17.
  6. ^ "Junkhouse Top Singles positions". RPM. Retrieved 2011-03-18.
  7. ^ "Junkhouse Rock/Alternative positions". RPM. Retrieved 2011-03-18.

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