Maurice Richard broadcasts an appeal for calm Photo: courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame

Evening, March 18, 1955. Maurice Richard broadcasts an appeal for calm, promising to return the next year "to help the team". There is no more unrest.


After the Riot: Hero and Villain

Montrealers praise Richard and condemn Campbell in two recorded songs rushed to market on 78 discs. They can also buy specially canned "Rocket" tomato soup instead of "Campbell's".


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Oscar Thiffaut's Le Rocket Richard
Oscar Thiffaut's "Le Rocket Richard"
Courtesy of the Sound and Video Recording Collection, Music Division, Library and Archives Canada
Audio - Oscar Thiffaut's Le Rocket RichardAudio

Oscar Thiffaut's "Le Rocket Richard", set to a tune reminiscent of the traditional chanson à répondre (call and response song) "C'est l'aviron", isn't so much an account of the Riot as a hymn of praise to Richard. The song refers only in passing to the fight in Boston (v. 5), stressing instead the victorious future return of The Rocket, and hammering home its message of support in the refrain. "Tricolores" is a nickname for the Canadiens, taken from their blue-white-and-red uniform (the team is often referred to as "le bleu-blanc-rouge").

Bobby Hill's
The Saga of Rocket Richard
Bobby Hill's "
The Saga of Rocket Richard"
Courtesy of the Sound and Video Recording Collection, Music Division, Library and Archives Canada

Audio - Bobby Hill's The Saga of Rocket RichardAudio

Bobby Hill's "The Saga of Rocket Richard," set to the tune of Percy French's comical battle epic, "Abdul Abulbul Ameer", tells the entire story in good-humoured detail, praising (and excusing) Richard while condemning Campbell as the villain of the piece.

Maurice Rocket Richard Tomato Soup
Photo: Harry Foster CMC 2003.100.03
Maurice "Rocket" Richard Tomato Soup (condensed)