Crash Test Dummies singer Brad Roberts glad to be back touring

One of the most famous voices in Canadian rock and roll, Brad Roberts, returns to Prince Edward Island on Friday, June 3.

Brad Roberts doing first tour in 5 years

Brad Roberts, lead singer for Crash Test Dummies, is on tour for the first time in 5 years. (crashtestdummies.com)

One of the most famous voices in Canadian rock and roll is returning to Prince Edward Island next week. 

Brad Roberts, lead singer of the hit band Crash Test Dummies, is doing an acoustic tour, his first time on the road in five years.

As he told Mainstreet's Karen Mair, he actually thought he had retired from touring.

"Ellen Reid, who sings back-ups for Crash Test Dummies, she pretty much has had enough of touring for one lifetime," explained Roberts.

"Five years ago, when she and I and Stuart Cameron (John Allen's son) were on the road doing a kind of stripped-down Crash Test Dummies show, at the end of the leg of the tour, she said, 'I've had enough, I'm ready to be done with this.'"

Itchy feet

He said following Reid's decision, he decided to retire as well. 

"Five years later, I had itchy feet, I wanted to get back on the road again."

Despite all the headaches and issues of touring, Roberts said in the end, it's an honour he can't pass up.

"The old saying amongst people who tour is that you have at least an hour and a half every day of great fun, which is when you're on stage," he said.

"For me at least, it's more than worthwhile at the end of the day, when I have the privilege of performing, and people showing up to hear what I've created, that's an enormous privilege."

Crash Test Dummies in the group's 90s heyday. (crashtestdummies.com)

Playing the hits

Roberts knows the songs people most want to hear: iconic hits such as Superman's Song and Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm, from the band's heyday in the early 90s, and he said he doesn't disappoint.

"There absolutely will be a lot of Crash Test Dummies material," he confirmed.

"There are artists who find it tiresome that their old material is their best-loved material, and they are sometimes a little resentful of it. I don't look at it that way. I think that having a hit song is a gift. You don't want to not play your old material for your fans. I do in fact play a whole lot of material particularly from the first two records that were so popular."

The rest of the set, accompanied once again by Cameron, will consist of a "smattering" of songs from his eight subsequent albums, with the possibility of something very new as well.

"For the first time in five years, I'm going to release a song," he said happily. "I'm going to try and get it on the internet today as a matter of fact. I'm quite excited about it."

Where it all started: the video for Superman's Song from 1991. (YouTube)

No Trump fan

Roberts has been living in New York City for several years, but Mair was able to find out that could soon change.

"To be honest, I've had serious conversations with my wife about leaving this country if Donald Trump gets elected," Roberts admitted.

Brad Roberts will perform at Harmony House in Hunter River, P.E.I., on Friday, June 3, accompanied by Stuart Cameron.

From the interview by Karen Mair