Jeff Germain says Regina’s Queen City Kids have to work twice as hard as big city bands

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 18, 1982 By Steve Newton Canada’s prairies are most famous for producing one thing: wheat. But recently a sound has been heard emanating from the nether regions of Canada’s hinterland–the sound of crashing drums and furious guitars. The ‘breadbasket ‘ of the country is no longer a place … Continue reading Jeff Germain says Regina’s Queen City Kids have to work twice as hard as big city bands

That time Steve Hackett told me about hearing Queen’s demo tapes and thinking Genesis’ label should sign them

By Steve Newton Before Queen became one of the top rock bands on the planet, they were just another struggling band trying to score a record deal. That’s how Steve Hackett remembers it, anyway. When I interviewed the former Genesis guitarist back in 1993 I asked him about his relationship with Queen guitarist Brian May, … Continue reading That time Steve Hackett told me about hearing Queen’s demo tapes and thinking Genesis’ label should sign them

That time Steve Stevens told me that he thought Sweet’s “Action” was a Queen song

By Steve Newton I was a pretty big Billy Idol fan back in the ’80s, around the Rebel Yell period, but my attraction to his music had as much to do with his guitarist and cosongwriter as the sneering blonde rocker himself. I thought Steve Stevens was a wicked picker who had his own unique … Continue reading That time Steve Stevens told me that he thought Sweet’s “Action” was a Queen song

That time Geoff Tate told me that making Queensrÿche’s prog-metal masterpiece, Operation: Mindcrime, was a “magical” experience

By Steve Newton Queensrÿche’s Operation: Mindcrime is one of my favourite progressive hard-rock albums of all time. It’s right up there with Rush’s best work, if you ask me. When I did my first interview with Queensrÿche frontman Geoff Tate back in 1991 the band was touring behind its hit Empire album, but playing Mindcrime … Continue reading That time Geoff Tate told me that making Queensrÿche’s prog-metal masterpiece, Operation: Mindcrime, was a “magical” experience

That time I asked Brian May of Queen about that scene in Wayne’s World with “Bohemian Rhapsody” in the car

By Steve Newton I loved Queen in the seventies. When that first album came out in 1973 it was in a steady battle for time on my turntable with other ’73 debuts by Aerosmith, Skynyrd, Montrose, and Trower. I clearly remember playing it on my parents’ living-room stereo (before I got my own) and being … Continue reading That time I asked Brian May of Queen about that scene in Wayne’s World with “Bohemian Rhapsody” in the car

Album review: Various Artists, Dragon Attack: A Tribute to Queen (1997)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 5, 1997 By Steve Newton The folks behind previous Jeff Beck, Ace Frehley, and Stevie Ray Vaughan tribute CDs deliver a fourth laudatory project, which pays its respects to the estimable Queen catalogue while allowing an all-star lineup of hard-rock guitarists to get their fret-hopping jollies. The list … Continue reading Album review: Various Artists, Dragon Attack: A Tribute to Queen (1997)

Album review: Queen, Queen at the BBC (1995)

  ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 23, 1995 By Steve Newton Recorded in February and December of 1973—half before and half after the release of Queen’s self-titled debut album—Queen at the BBC is an intriguing document of the Brit supergroup’s earliest material, which is certainly some of its best. (The band went downhill, … Continue reading Album review: Queen, Queen at the BBC (1995)

Album review: Queensrÿche, Empire (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 4, 1990 By Steve Newton It looks like studio giant Little Mountain Sound might be getting a wee bit of local competition as far as attracting the world’s best bands to this city is concerned. Vancouver Studios was the locale that Seattle hard-rockers Queensryche chose to record their … Continue reading Album review: Queensrÿche, Empire (1990)

Former Metal Queen Lee Aaron says you can’t build a career on a pretty face

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 24, 1991 By Steve Newton Although Toronto’s Lee Aaron has been a fixture on the Canadian music scene since the early ’80s, her first taste of substantial commercial success didn’t come until her 1990 album, Bodyrock. It’s been a long road, but the 29-year-old singer—who plays 86 Street … Continue reading Former Metal Queen Lee Aaron says you can’t build a career on a pretty face

Telecaster queen Sue Foley didn’t pick up a guitar to get chicks–or even guys, for that matter

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 2, 1992 By Steve Newton Talk about the harried, high-pressure life of a travelling blueswoman! In her Phoenix, Arizona hotel room, Sue Foley is getting it from all sides. It’s check-out time, and room service is banging on the door; she’s playing Tucson that night, and her fellow … Continue reading Telecaster queen Sue Foley didn’t pick up a guitar to get chicks–or even guys, for that matter

Queen guitarist Brian May doesn’t have much interest in doing “virtuoso stuff”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 25, 1993 By Steve Newton Ever since Wayne’s World came out, I’ve been considering legal action against writer/star Mike Myers. You know that scene where Wayne and Garth are driving around with their buddies in a purple Pinto, singing along and banging their heads to Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody”? … Continue reading Queen guitarist Brian May doesn’t have much interest in doing “virtuoso stuff”

That time I asked Leslie West about the awesome cowbell on Mountain’s “Mississippi Queen”

By Steve Newton Check out this snapshot of five teenagers on summer vacation in the mid-’70s: That’s me and some buddies from Chilliwack Senior High School, class of 1975, one our way up to the annual piss-up-and-puke-off in the interior of British Columbia, Canada. (I’m the geeky one with the fingers in my face, if … Continue reading That time I asked Leslie West about the awesome cowbell on Mountain’s “Mississippi Queen”

Queen box set out today captures the legendary rockers live in ’75

By Steve Newton Queen freaks who couldn’t quite afford the massive Queen Studio Collection that was released a couple of months ago should know that the legendary British rockers are issuing another box set today (December 18), one that is aimed at fans who adored the band in its mid-’70s, long-hair-on-Mercury heyday. A Night at the Odeon captures … Continue reading Queen box set out today captures the legendary rockers live in ’75

The ultimate Queen fan and vinyl freak just creamed his or her jeans

By Steve Newton There’s been some pretty freakin’ sweet deluxe-edition vinyl box sets released in the last little while, especially if you’re a ’70s-rock fanatic. That John Lennon package from last April–with all his solo albums on LP–was a real treat for Lennon aficianados. And the Roxy Music collection that came out the month before that was a godsend … Continue reading The ultimate Queen fan and vinyl freak just creamed his or her jeans

Comeback queen Tina Turner gives Vancouver “a big kiss” on her Private Dancer tour

mila geran photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 4, 1985 By Steve Newton Tina Turner gave the crowd at the Coliseum last Saturday (September 28) “a big kiss” for supporting the “comeback” that culminated with her 1984 Private Dancer going six-times platinum in Canada. And she thanked them by playing–with the exception of … Continue reading Comeback queen Tina Turner gives Vancouver “a big kiss” on her Private Dancer tour

Koko Taylor, Queen of the Blues, says Willie Dixon was her right arm

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 25, 2003 By Steve Newton When Koko Taylor was a youngster, living with her poverty-stricken family on a sharecropper’s farm in Tennessee, she used to find joy in her meagre existence through the music B. B. King liked to play. It wasn’t King’s own soulful blues that caught … Continue reading Koko Taylor, Queen of the Blues, says Willie Dixon was her right arm

Sorry mulletheads, the only decent April Wine song is “Sign of the Gypsy Queen”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 24, 2001 By Steve Newton Back in high school in the mid-’70s, I knew a lot of people who were big April Wine fans. Heck, even now I know a lot of people who are big April Wine fans. I try to avoid them, but they’re everywhere! You … Continue reading Sorry mulletheads, the only decent April Wine song is “Sign of the Gypsy Queen”

Queensrÿche’s Geoff Tate give kudos to Maiden, Priest, and Sabbath (with Dio)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 14, 2000 By Steve Newton At the big metal show slated for the Pacific Coliseum on Wednesday (September 20), Seattle hard-rockers Queensrÿche will perform between openers Halford—featuring former Judas Priest screamer Rob Halford—and headliners Iron Maiden. You could say that it’s a return to the band’s roots, somewhat, … Continue reading Queensrÿche’s Geoff Tate give kudos to Maiden, Priest, and Sabbath (with Dio)