Nfld. & Labrador·Opinion

The time Rod Stewart came to town, and then threw us under the bus

Rod Stewart tried on a seal jacket, borrowed fur shawls for his backup band, and gave a shout-out onstage to the store he later threw under the bus, writes Melissa Royle.

Store owner says singer was aware coat he tried on was sealskin

Store owner on Rod Stewart sealskin controversy

8 years ago
Duration 4:28
Always in Vogue store owner Darren Halloran discusses what happened when the rock star visited his store

If anyone should know the value of a seal coat, it's Rod StewartSure, he had a first-hand viewing of thousands of froze-to-death Newfoundlanders huddled together in July stuttering their way through H-h-h-hot Legs while wearing snow pants.

Any man who goes onstage with that haircut can't be embarrassed about much.

If I was him I would have taken off the coat and put on a seal hat. If he should be enraged at anyone it should be his barber.

Rod Stewart in St. John's

8 years ago
Duration 3:05
Rod Stewart, the Goo Goo Dolls and Sass Jordan at the Confederation Hill Music festival. BC's Jeremy Eaton was there

And what did he think buddy would do with the picture? Take it to his darkroom and develop it in Sepia?

I'm not a celebrity, but if a friend takes a drunk selfie with me I expect it to surface online.

Rod says he had no idea what he was wearing. I can't say I blame him. I mean who would have thought they'd have fur at Vogue Furriers?

Oh that's right, they're called "Always in Vogue" now. Kinda like how "Kentucky Fried Chicken" became KFC.

Nice coat, Rod

Whatever the name, everyone knows the Colonel is not selling buckets of carrots. I mean, the front window of Vogue looks like somebody set off a couple of grenades at the Teddy Bear's Picnic.

The shawls that Vogue lent to Rod's backup singers clearly had fur on them.

Stewart's band and backup dancers pose with Darren Halloran after being fitting for cashmere capes. (Always In Vogue/Facebook )

There are plenty of photos of Rod wearing fur coats. I guess he figures the mink and rabbit and fox graciously volunteered their pelts for the honour of gracing Rod's bod, only to regrow their fur and scurry off back into the woods with the elves and fairies.

By distinguishing between animals and expressing his unfounded outrage, he's falling into the same PR machine trap as other celebs.

First Paul McCartney, now Rod — if Elton John or Bob Dylan comes handy to the place, somebody club me!

Sir Paul didn't know where he was.

Pam Anderson didn't know how to divide a million dollars between thousands of sealers.

And now Rod doesn't know what he was wearing.

So, let's get this straight... 

These are the people who know all about an industry they are thousands of miles and even more socio-economic classes removed from.

We all remember Danny Williams taking on Paul McCartney on Larry King Live. Paul Davis was at the Rod Stewart concert. I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was at Confederation Hill.

Let's get this straight:

Rod used Vogue to lend him coats, and then Vogue used Rod to get publicity, then Paul Watson used the picture to rile up the anti-sealing crowd who use the hunt to generate profits, and Rod used the opportunity to throw Vogue under the bus.

I don't know what's uglier — blood spilled on ice or blood spilled in the media.

So Rod claims he didn't know anything about the seal hunt and certainly didn't support it. If you don't know anything about it, how can you not support it?

Well, to be honest, I'm 27. I didn't know many Rod Stewart songs but I still went to the concert and now I wish I never supported that either.

Rod already destroyed the Grand Falls-Windsor Salmon Festival — does he really have to take the seal hunt down too?

Next year he's coming back to destroy Gander and mummers.

Rod Stewart tried on a seal jacket, borrowed fur shawls for his backup band, and gave a shout out to the furrier store onstage, all to great applause from his Newfoundland audience.

But as soon as that ship sailed, and Paul Watson commandeered the message, the singer changed his tune.

The seals that make jackets are leathery, grey, and often washed up, which is probably why Rod relates to them. But unlike Rod, at least seals have backbones.


Melissa Royle is a lawyer and political junkie. She lives in St. John's.


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