Frontman Zander reveals truck saved band as they fled from collapsing stage – and only serious injury was their driver
Cheap Trick believe they’re lucky to be alive after they managed to escape from a collapsing stage in Canada at the weekend.
The band were performing at Ottawa’s Bluesfest when a freak storm rolled in and destroyed the canopy, supports and lighting rig above them.
They got out of the way just in time – and were only saved from the falling debris because their great truck prevented the structure from reaching the ground.
The vehicle’s driver, first name Sandy, was later revealed to have suffered the only serious injury during the incident in which around a dozen people were hurt.
Frontman Robin Zander has released a phone video he shot moments after the drama unfolded, in which the crewman can be seen receiving medical attention before being taken to hospital with a pierced abdomen and broken pelvis.
Zander asks him: “Hey, man, are you alright?” Sandy jokes: “I’m going to miss load-in.” Zander replies: “That’s okay – I’ll take over for you. I’ll take care of everything.”
Then he explains: “I saw it coming. I went to take the band out in the middle of a song because I saw it coming. We all ran off the stage and it hit so fast I didn’t even get half-way down the stairs before it collapsed, and we just crawled out the side.”
Band manager Dave Frey tells Rolling Stone: “They said we should be looking out for a storm, but it wasn’t that apparent. I was on stage behind the band, taking a few pictures right before it happened.
“The air was still and it was humid – then out of nowhere this huge wind just hit. It blew everything back. Cymbals were flying and everything. Then I heard the rivets in the truss starting to pop, and it just started coming down.
“The roof fell but it hit our truck and that kept it about five feet off the deck. That gave us room to run – and we were running as fast as we could.”
Much of the band’s gear was destroyed in the collapse but they haven’t been allowed to assess the damage yet as the site is the subject of an official accident investigation.