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Stompin' Tom open to licensing 'The Hockey Song' to CBC, says son

TORONTO - The son of Stompin' Tom Connors says his father is open to licensing his famed hockey song to CBC as a replacement for the "Hockey Night In Canada" theme, which was acquired by CTV on Monday.

Tom Connors Jr. said his father's famous tribute to hockey, "The Hockey Song," also known as "The Good Old Hockey Game," is available to replace the "Hockey Night In Canada" song.

"If they want to use 'The Hockey Song,' it's a good song, whether Tom sings it or not," Connors said in an interview Monday from his home in Georgetown, Ont.

"There's other versions out there. Even if they wanted to commission some other band, like a big (current) band if they wanted to do more of a 'Hockey Night' theme, everything is open for negotiations, of course. That's the business we're in."

Last week, CBC lost the rights to the "Hockey Night in Canada" theme song, prompting a public outcry.

CTV announced Monday that it now has the rights to the iconic tune and will use it on NHL broadcasts on TSN, RDS and during the broadcaster's coverage of the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver.

"Music licensing is kind of an everyday thing and we represent 300 songs of Tom's and when he sings about Canada, he's one of the few artists that continues to sing about the country," said Connors.

Connors said his father is slated to open this Thursday's NHL awards show on CBC with "The Hockey Song," which was first recorded in 1973, but enjoyed a renaissance in the late '80s and '90s when played during NHL games.

Connors said the CBC has used "The Hockey Song" dozens of times over the last decade or so for different purposes.

Connors said his father has not been approached by the CBC, which has already announced a $100,000 contest to find a new theme song for "Hockey Night In Canada."

A spokesman for the CBC said Connors is welcome to contact the public broadcaster about using the song but added the contest would go ahead as planned.

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Perry Lefko is a freelance writer based in Mississauga, Ont.

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