According to a January 26th article in the Des Moines Register, singer Peter Noone of Herman’ Hermits fame has admitted to smashing a picture frame at a local music venue and tossing the photo it held into the trash. Noone says he did so because it was a publicity photo for a band that performs as Herman’s Hermits and which is led by their original drummer. The incident, which was recorded by a security camera, occurred when Noone was performing a New Year’s Eve show at the historic Val-Air Ballroom in West Des Moines, Iowa. Apparently, Noone was upset because he and the other band have been involved in legal disputes over who owns the rights to the Herman’s Hermits name.
For his part, Noone is unrepentant and was somewhat amused when told by reporters that the venue’s management had reported the incident to the police. Claiming that he has never been in trouble with the law, he’s quoted as joking, “It’s not the stuff rebels are made of…I can understand if it was Roy Orbison or some valuable picture, but it had zero value.” He added, “They had a picture that was advertising Herman’s Hermits, but it wasn’t a picture of me. It was another band out there called Herman’s Hermits starring Barry Whitwam.” While Noone’s actions are classified as criminal mischief, no charges have been filed so far, and Noone has offered to pay for the broken picture frame and to donate a gold album to the Val-Air Ballroom for its Wall of Fame. The article didn’t mention if the Val-Air’s management is willing to accept his offer, but it seems like it would be hard to turn down.