Tuesday, September 17, 2002
Hawk's a star!
Legend to be inducted to Walk of Fame


 Rompin' Ronnie Hawkins, who underwent surgery for pancreatic cancer at
Toronto General Hospital a month ago, will be recognized in Toronto in a big
way on Oct. 4.

"They're giving me a star, the first one on Yonge Street, for the (Canadian)
Walk of Fame," The Hawk, 67, excitedly told The Toronto Sun yesterday
afternoon. "In front of the Le Coq d'Or Tavern, where I played those two


Hawkins said there also will be a large tribute concert at Massey Hall,
sponsored by The Sun, later that night.

There's even talk about him getting the Order of Canada.

Plus The Sun has asked Mayor Mel Lastman to join in on the rompin' and
proclaim Oct. 4 Ronnie Hawkins Day.

The news of Hawkins' big tribute comes after he was feted Sunday night at a
small, private party held in a lavish hotel suite at the Four Seasons.

The guest list included former U.S. president Bill Clinton, Canadian artists
David Foster and Paul Anka, actress Whoopi Goldberg and former Edmonton
Oilers owner Peter Pocklington and singer Paul Simon.

"If I get a job after this, I'm gonna ask for a raise!" joked Hawkins on his
cellphone as he headed down Hwy. 401 en route to his home in Peterborough.
"(It was) one of the finest parties I think I've ever seen. It was laughter
and fun. All them ol' billionaire outlaws of mine from Arkansas came in.

"Ex-president Bill Clinton was there and as sharp as I've ever seen. David
Foster and Paul Anka and president Clinton did their version, with the words
changed, of My Way, and the very last verse of the song, it was Bill's part,
so he says, 'I did it Hillary's way!' That brought the house down."

Hawkins underwent quadruple bypass heart surgery three months before his
cancer operation.

A tumour was partially removed from his pancreas. Doctors said there was no
sign the cancer had spread. When surgery cannot be completed, there is no

"I feel all right," Hawkins said yesterday. "I'm a little sore after all
that laughing (on Sunday). It's only been like three weeks, or something
like that, since that last (surgery) so I'm a little sore. I've got seven
more stitches in me than the Frankenstein monster. I'm just healing now."

Actually, Hawkins says all of his stitches have been removed.

"Hopefully this week I can start walking. I need to start pushing it. 'Cause
see, I had two major operations three months apart. And this old body, it's
like it felt when I used to chase too many girls. I'm a little down. I'm
getting around. I'm not doing any rough sex yet. But as soon as I heal up,
look out!"

Hawkins, who just released a new CD, Still Cruisin', with such guests as
Foster, the Tragically Hip and former Band members Levon Helm and Robbie
Robertson, says he would like to stage a large concert in Arkansas in

"What I've wanted to do, always, and never gotten to do it, is take all the
great talent that I know personally from Canada down to Arkansas -- Little
Rock -- and have them do a big show and a benefit (with) sponsors and
everything, and have the biggest show they've ever done.

"I'll take 30 artists with me, and do that thing for the president where
he's building that library and start a little wing on it. So (Sunday) night,
they said they'd work on it."

Coincidentally, Helm plays at Healey's bar in Toronto this Thursday night.
Hawkins said he won't be able to attend.

"I sure wish I could have gone in and seen him," he said. "I'm going to have
to heal up a few days after this (party). I'm going to go home now to lay

Tickets for the star-studded Oct. 4 tribute will be available through
TicketMaster. The sale date is not yet known.