Gordon Downie thanks Bruce Allen for making the Tragically Hip famous in Vancouver

mike chernoff photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 18, 1999 By Steve Newton I’ve always been mightily impressed by the Tragically Hip’s live presentation. It didn’t matter which venue I’d see them in—whether it was the wee Railway Club or sprawling T-Bird Stadium, the classic Commodore or scenic Seabird Island—I always went away … Continue reading Gordon Downie thanks Bruce Allen for making the Tragically Hip famous in Vancouver

Bruce Allen’s anti-Hip rants can’t tarnish Canada’s best band

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 3, 1997 By Steve Newton The last time I tuned in to Bruce Allen’s Soundoff show on CFOX, I caught the loudmouthed rock mogul in one of his favourite on-air acts: slagging the Tragically Hip. The band had just released its live album, Live Between Us, and Allen … Continue reading Bruce Allen’s anti-Hip rants can’t tarnish Canada’s best band

Gordon Downie sees Bruce Allen in a Subway ad at Another Roadside Attraction

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 20, 1995 By Steve Newton The Another Roadside Attraction show at Seabird Island two years ago was one of Gordon Downie’s all-time favourite gigs. The Tragically Hip vocalist told the Georgia Straight recently that it was the natural beauty of the Agassiz location—surrounded by nearby mountains and dense … Continue reading Gordon Downie sees Bruce Allen in a Subway ad at Another Roadside Attraction

Even Bruce Allen would have loved the Tragically Hip in Vancouver on the Road Apples tour

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 18, 1991 By Steve Newton The first time I heard Bruce Allen’s late-night talk show on CFOX, I heard the Big A comment: “Colin James for five nights at the Commodore? Why?” Was Allen jealous because Loverboy might never have had enough over-19 fans to accomplish the feat? Did … Continue reading Even Bruce Allen would have loved the Tragically Hip in Vancouver on the Road Apples tour

Steve Morse says that his biggest challenge in life was playing Hendrix’s “Are You Experienced?” live, with the backwards guitar solo

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN EXPERIENCE HENDRIX MAGAZINE, NOV.-DEC. ISSUE, 1998 By Steve Newton At first glance, Steve Morse might not seem like the ideal guy to take over Ritchie Blackmore’s guitarist spot in Deep Purple. He is undoubtedly a fantastic player, but he’s more noted for technically awesome country-fusion inflections than chunky power chords. But as … Continue reading Steve Morse says that his biggest challenge in life was playing Hendrix’s “Are You Experienced?” live, with the backwards guitar solo

Ten weeks after Randy Rhoads’ death Ozzy told me that the fallen guitar hero could do anything

By Steve Newton I did my first interview with Ozzy Osbourne in early June of 1982, ten weeks after his beloved guitarist, Randy Rhoads, perished in a fiery plane crash at the age of 25. No wonder he sounded bummed out. Rhoads’ place on the Diary of a Madman Tour had been taken first by … Continue reading Ten weeks after Randy Rhoads’ death Ozzy told me that the fallen guitar hero could do anything

That time Colin James told me that playing electric slide-guitar was a challenge for him

By Steve Newton Back in August of 1995 I interviewed Canadian blues-rocker Colin James, who I’d been a fan of since his self-titled 1988 debut album. At the time he was touring behind his fourth album, Bad Habits, which saw him playing quite a bit of slide guitar on tunes like “Real Stuff” and “Walkin’ … Continue reading That time Colin James told me that playing electric slide-guitar was a challenge for him

That time Rickey Medlocke told me that he was hired to play Allen Collins’ guitar parts in Skynyrd

By Steve Newton Back in 1997 Lynyrd Skynyrd was headed to Vancouver for a show with Paul Rodgers and Kenny Wayne Shepherd, so you bet your ass I was gonna go. I was also gonna interview Rickey Medlocke, who had rejoined the band to play guitar alongside founding member Gary Rossington and former Outlaws picker … Continue reading That time Rickey Medlocke told me that he was hired to play Allen Collins’ guitar parts in Skynyrd

Dickey Betts curses the “goddamn heroin” that took Allen Woody and opines the casualties of rock

By Steve Newton On August 20, 2001, I did my fourth interview with guitar legend Dickey Betts. The date can be seen as significant in a couple of ways, because it was one week before the first anniversary of former Allman Brothers bassist Allen Woody’s suspected overdose death, and just 11 days after the bizarre … Continue reading Dickey Betts curses the “goddamn heroin” that took Allen Woody and opines the casualties of rock

That time I asked Steve Clark if he’d thought Def Leppard could carry on after Rick Allen’s accident

By Steve Newton I became a fan of Def Leppard back in 1980, as soon as I scored their debut album, On Through the Night, at a local record store. I bought it because I liked the sound of the band name and because the album-cover art depicted a huge Les Paul being hauled by … Continue reading That time I asked Steve Clark if he’d thought Def Leppard could carry on after Rick Allen’s accident

Bruce Fairbairn: legendary Vancouver rock producer tells all in 1998

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 12, 1998 By Steve Newton It’s been a very long time since Kiss performed at a nightclub in Vancouver. Twenty-four years, actually, since Gene Simmons nearly set the Commodore Ballroom’s red velvet curtains ablaze with his fire-breathing antics. But there they were again two months back, the four … Continue reading Bruce Fairbairn: legendary Vancouver rock producer tells all in 1998

Ozzy Osbourne in ’82: fallen guitar heroes and bitten bats

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 11, 1982 By Steve Newton Over the years, few heavy metal frontmen have proven their stamina and staying power like Ozzy Osbourne. After eight years and eight albums with the legendary Black Sabbath, Osbourne left the group in 1979 and it looked as though he was hanging up … Continue reading Ozzy Osbourne in ’82: fallen guitar heroes and bitten bats

My first and last interview with fallen guitar hero Gary Moore

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 13, 2011 By Steve Newton It was exactly one week ago today that the awful news started to get around: Irish guitar legend Gary Moore had been found dead in a Spanish hotel room. A post-mortem the next day revealed that the 58-year-old rocker had passed away in his sleep, … Continue reading My first and last interview with fallen guitar hero Gary Moore

Bachman-Turner Overdrive gig draws comparisons to the horror of BTO freak Stephen King

photo by narking/Wikipedia ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 3, 1989 By Steve Newton In the book Kingdom of Fear, a collection of essays on the fiction of Stephen King, the top-selling horror author explained how he came up with the the pseudonym he used on novels like The Running Man and Thinner. Once … Continue reading Bachman-Turner Overdrive gig draws comparisons to the horror of BTO freak Stephen King

Rock and Hyde gets a boost from ex-Kick Axe picker “Hitman” Harvey

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 25, 1987 By Steve Newton Since the U.S. release of Rock and Hyde’s Under the Volcano nine months ago, the album has sold more copies stateside than all of the duo’s previous work put together. That’s a fair accomplishment given that Bob Rock and Paul Hyde released four albums … Continue reading Rock and Hyde gets a boost from ex-Kick Axe picker “Hitman” Harvey

Moist releases Creature, opens for Neil Young, and waits for reality to set in

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 17, 1996 By Steve Newton Whenever I feel like getting a rise out of my 16-year-old niece, all it takes is a quick mention of her former fondness for New Kids on the Block. So what if she was only in Grade 3 at the time of the … Continue reading Moist releases Creature, opens for Neil Young, and waits for reality to set in

15 of the best quotes I ever got from Gord Downie

By Steve Newton The big Tragically Hip show in their hometown of Kingston, Ontario, is happening tomorrow, broadcast live on the CBC starting at 5:30 pm Vancouver time. I might not be back from opening day at the PNE in time to watch the gig unfold live, but I sure as shit plan to record … Continue reading 15 of the best quotes I ever got from Gord Downie

Jim Foster gets his “Steely Dan opportunity” at Mushroom Studios in Vancouver

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 4, 1986 By Steve Newton Until the release of the album Power Lines, Jim Foster had not been heard from for many years. It makes one wonder whether the Alberta-raised singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist is on somewhat of a comeback. “Well gosh,” says Foster. “How can you make a comeback when … Continue reading Jim Foster gets his “Steely Dan opportunity” at Mushroom Studios in Vancouver