That time Robin Trower told me that most of the pop music in England was “rubbish”

By Steve Newton

Robin Trower is one of my fave guitarists of all time. His string of wicked albums in the seventies–in particular Twice Removed from Yesterday, Bridge of Sighs, and For Earth Below–were a major part of the soundtrack to my teenage existence.

He’s never gotten the cred he deserves, partly due to the fact that some view him as too much of a Jimi Hendrix clone. The Hendrix influence never bothered me, though. I always thought Trower was an amazing artist in his own right. So much so that I inducted him into Newt’s Rock Hall in 2016–along with UFO, Blue Oyster Cult, Mott the Hoople, and Ten Years After. (For the uninitiated, Newt’s Rock Hall is my place for deserving artists who’ve never been chosen for that other Rock Hall in Cleveland.)

For one reason or another, Robin Trower has rarely played my home base of Vancouver, Canada. It wasn’t until 1990, when he played a show here at Drew Burns’ fabled Commodore Ballroom, that I finally got to interview him.

At one point in the conversation I asked Trower what the music scene in his home country of England was like at the time, and he didn’t have much good to say about it.

Have a listen:

To hear my full interview with Robin Trower, subscribe to my Patreon page, where you can also hear my interviews with such guitar greats as:

Tony Iommi of Heaven and Hell, 2007
James Hetfield of Metallica, 1986
Rick Richards of the Georgia Satellites, 1988
Stevie Ray Vaughan, 1990
Slash of Guns N’ Roses, 1994
Brian May from Queen, 1993
Dickey Betts of the Allman Brothers, 1991
Jake E. Lee of Badlands, 1992
Rickey Medlocke of Lynyrd Skynyrd, 1997
John Fogerty, 1997
Joe Perry of Aerosmith, 1987
Rick Derringer, 1999
Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, 1994
Mick Ronson, 1988
Buck Dharma of Blue Oyster Cult, 1997
Michael Schenker, 1992
Carlos Santana, 2001
Guthrie Govan of the Aristocrats, 2015
Walter Trout, 2003
Mark Farner of Grand Funk, 1991
Jennifer Batten, 2002
Leo Kottke, 2002
Link Wray, 1997
Buddy Guy, 1991
Gary Rossington of Lynyrd Skynyrd, 1986
Rik Emmett of Triumph, 1985
Sonny Landreth, 2016
Tosin Abasi of Animals as Leaders, 2016
Jeff Beck, 2001
Albert King, 1990
Johnny Ramone of the Ramones, 1992
Peter Frampton, 1987
Otis Rush, 1997
Leslie West of Mountain, 2002
Uli Jon Roth, 2016
Poison Ivy of the Cramps, 1990
Stevie Ray Vaughan, 1985
Malcolm Young of AC/DC, 1983
Steve Clark of Def Leppard, 1988
Roy Buchanan, 1986
Gary Moore, 1984
Ronnie Montrose, 1994
Danny Gatton, 1993
Alex Lifeson of Rush, 1992
J.J. Cale, 1990
Yngwie Malmsteen, 2014
Allan Holdsworth, 1983
Kim Mitchell, 1984
Warren Haynes of Allman Brothers, 1994
Derek Trucks, 1998
Susan Tedeschi, 1998
Joe Satriani, 2018
B.B. King, 1984
Albert Collins, 1985
Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath, 1984
Dick Dale, 2000
Dickey Betts, 2001
…with hundreds more to come


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