Tommy Hunter

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Tommy Hunter
Birth nameThomas James Hunter
Born (1937-03-20) March 20, 1937 (age 86)
OriginLondon, Ontario, Canada
Years active1956–2012 Edit this at Wikidata

Thomas James Hunter, CM, O.Ont (born March 20, 1937) is a Canadian country music performer, known as "Canada's Country Gentleman".


In 1956, he began performing as a rhythm guitarist on the CBC Television show, Country Hoedown. The Tommy Hunter Show began as a CBC Radio program in 1960, replacing the long-running variety show The Happy Gang, and went on to replace Country Hoedown on CBC Television in 1965; Hunter's show was picked up by TNN in 1983 and ran on CBC until 1992. Performers on the show included singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot in the early years of his own musical career.

The book Cue the Elephant by Knowlton Nash (1996, McClelland & Stewart) featured some disparaging remarks from the show's make-up artist. "He could sell himself terrifically but there was no love lost between Tommy and the crew. Some of the guys loathed him ... Everybody made snide remarks behind Tommy's back ... people might say he was the biggest jerk in the world. But that was not my experience. For me, I saw a very easy down-to-earth manner. But Tommy does generate anti as well as pro feelings from people ... he didn't trust people around him, he became a monster to some."

People who performed on The Tommy Hunter Show early in their careers include:

After his show was cancelled by the CBC, Hunter continued to tour with his band, The Travelling Men.[2] He retired after his final tour in 2012.[3]

Awards and recognition[edit]

Hunter was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 1984. In 1986, Hunter was made a Member of the Order of Canada. He has received three Canadian Juno Awards and one Gemini Award. In 1990, he was given a place in the Country Music Hall of Fame's "Walkway of Stars". A street ("Tommy Hunter Way") was also renamed in his honour in his hometown of London, Ontario, in the late 1990s. He became a member of the Order of Ontario in 1996. In 2005 he was honored with a GMA Canada Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is handed out annually by the Gospel Music Association of Canada.

Tommy Hunter received the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002 and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.



Year Album
1964 Tommy Hunter
1968 Travelling with Tommy Hunter
1970 Tommy Hunter
1971 Time Slips Away
1973 Tommy Hunter's Greatest Hits
1975 Tommy
1982 Tommy
1983 Gospel Readings and Recitations
1989 The Anniversary Sessions
1993 Tommy Hunter Sings for You
1995 Timeless Country Treasures
1996 Timeless Country Treasures Vol. 2


Year Single Peak chart positions Album
CAN Country CAN AC US Country
1967 "Cup of Disgrace" 2 Travelling with Tommy Hunter
"The Battle of the Little Bighorn" 2
"Mary in the Morning" 1 66
1968 "Half a World Away" 2
"I Can't Find a Space (To Park My Car)" 13
1969 "Walk With Your Neighbour" 4 Tommy Hunter (1970)
1970 "Wait for Sunday" 3
1971 "Bill Jones General Store" 4 15 Time Slips Away
1974 "The Departure" 33 Tommy (1975)
"Born to Be a Gypsy" 6
1975 "Love of a Good Woman" 32
1978 "The Great Mail Robbery" 33 28
1982 "Dance With Me Molly" 38 Tommy (1982)
"Fool Enough to Fall in Love Again" 34
1989 "The Man of '87" 49 The Anniversary Sessions
1990 "Couldn't See the Gold" (with Janie Fricke) 19
"Name the Place and Time" 64
"—" denotes releases that did not chart


  1. ^ RPM Weekly, Volume 39 No. 7 October 15, 1983 - Page 16 Watch for yet another YVONNE MURRAY guest appearance on the Tommy Hunter Show, October 21st, 8:00 pm EST, CDC.
  2. ^ Saxberg, Lynn (January 27, 2009). "Canada's country gentleman a long way from done". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved January 27, 2009.[dead link]
  3. ^ Dixon, Guy (January 9, 2011). "Tommy Hunter hangs up his guitar". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved February 16, 2023.

External links[edit]