Hedley set to play Ontario show after ‘indefinite hiatus’ announcement

BRAMPTON, Ont. — Embattled rockers Hedley will return to the stage tonight for the first in a final string of concerts before going on an “indefinite hiatus” so the band’s members can “take a long hard look in the mirror.”

The two-time Juno winners and former MuchMusic darlings released a joint statement late Wednesday in the wake of unrelenting pressure stemming from sexual misconduct allegations involving young fans.

The group’s members said they were “truly sorry, as individuals and as a band, to anyone who has been negatively affected by our behaviour” and added they decided to continue on with their 15 scheduled concerts for the sake of their crew and others who “depend on this tour for their livelihood.”

Band leader Jacob Hoggard also released his own statement saying he has “never engaged in non-consensual sexual behaviour,” but acknowledged he “behaved in a way that objectified women” and was “reckless and dismissive of their feelings.”

A 24-year-old Ottawa fan of the band alleged to the CBC that she was sexually assaulted by Hoggard after chatting with him on the dating app Tinder and agreeing to meet him at a hotel in Toronto. Hoggard’s lawyer Brian Shiller said in a statement that the woman and the Hedley frontman had “made a mutual plan to get together to have sex and they did just that.”

The band is set to play in this city northwest of Toronto tonight and the last show on the tour is scheduled for March 23 in Kelowna, B.C. A March 11 performance at Windsor, Ont., was cancelled by the venue, Caesars Windsor, on Tuesday.

The group — which also includes members Dave Rosin, Tommy Mac and Jay Benison — has been under fire since sexual misconduct allegations began surfacing online two weeks ago, mostly posted by anonymous social media users.

The band was subsequently dropped by its management team, blacklisted by scores of radio stations, and abandoned by musicians booked as tour openers.

Hedley also withdrew from consideration for three Juno Awards after initially backing out as a performing act for the telecast.

Hedley had been a mainstay at the Junos, racking up 31 nominations dating back to 2006. Hoggard — who rose to fame in 2004 as a charismatic, sexually charged provocateur on the second season of the smash hit “Canadian Idol” — even hosted the awards show in 2015.

“I understand the significant harm that is caused not only to the women I interacted with, but to all women who are degraded by this type of behaviour,” Hoggard said in his statement.

“I have been careless and indifferent and I have no excuse. For this I am truly sorry.”

Just Posted

Photos: Children enjoy petting animals near Red Deer Sunday

Children and families learned about various animals and birds at a petting… Continue reading

Search for missing Tofino boaters scaled back, handed over to RCMP

TOFINO, B.C. — Jae Valentine woke to the sound of wolves howling… Continue reading

Get ready for the ‘internet of cows’: Farmers use technology to shake up agriculture

MONTREAL — Get ready for the “internet of cows.” Generations of farmers… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer cadets conclude year of learning

After a year of hard work, Red Deer’s local Air and Army… Continue reading

WATCH: Central Alberta High School Soccer League champs crowned

Lindsay Thurber girls’ team and Notre Dame boys’ team won Saturday at Edgar Park Field in Red Deer

5 dead as SUV chased by Border Patrol crashes in South Texas

BIG WELLS, Texas — At least five people were killed and several… Continue reading

Ramifications of a trade war: an expert look at the numbers for Canada

OTTAWA — A new analysis of escalating trade disputes involving the United… Continue reading

Deliberate spill: study launched to test crude and bitumen impact on lake life

KENORA, Ont. — Researchers were in northwestern Ontario over the weekend spilling… Continue reading

Two-spirit N.B. First Nation chief says his election points to progress

FREDERICTON — The new leader of a New Brunswick First Nation said… Continue reading

Google diversity report: Black women make up only 1.2 percent of its US workforce

Google released its annual workforce diversity report Thursday, marking only modest changes… Continue reading

Brazil held to 1-1 draw by Switzerland at World Cup

ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia — Brazil joined the list of big teams struggling to… Continue reading

Canada’s Auger-Aliassime wins Sopra Steria title for 2nd straight year

LYON, France — Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime defended his ATP Challenger Sopra Steria… Continue reading

Police: Taxi driver who hit 8 Moscow pedestrians fell asleep

MOSCOW — The suspect in a taxi crash near Red Square that… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month