Tedeschi Trucks Band lays the soul on heavy in Vancouver

There was a whole lotta soul rolling off of the Vogue Theatre stage last night. That’s what happens when you’ve got a hugely talented 11-piece band joyfully letting go with bluesy, heartfelt, and sometimes funky-as-hell rock music. That’s also what happens whenever bottleneck-guitar master Derek Trucks’ glass slide grazes the strings of his trusty red … Continue reading Tedeschi Trucks Band lays the soul on heavy in Vancouver

Susan Tedeschi thinks Derek Trucks is “a little burnt out” from the Allman Brothers Band

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Susan Tedeschi recently, in advance of the Tedeschi Trucks show in Vancouver this month, I asked her what she’d been listening to in her spare time. She replied that her and hubby Derek Trucks had been really enjoying the latest Wood Brothers album Paradise–which they played on one track … Continue reading Susan Tedeschi thinks Derek Trucks is “a little burnt out” from the Allman Brothers Band

That time Sean Costello told me about recording with Susan Tedeschi at 17 and playing with Derek Trucks at 12

anthony pepitone photo By Steve Newton Sean Costello is one of those guitarists who blows you away with his amazing talent and then you look around and he’s gone. The fast-rising blues guitarist and singer-songwriter –who suffered from bipolar disorder–died of an overdose 16 months after I interviewed him in December of 2006. He was … Continue reading That time Sean Costello told me about recording with Susan Tedeschi at 17 and playing with Derek Trucks at 12

That time Joe Elliott told me that Def Leppard wasn’t a big-hair band, and didn’t belong in “the Winger/Warrant/Ratt category”

By Steve Newton Joe Elliott is the fourth Def Leppard member I’ve interviewed. I started off with bassist Rick Savage in 1983, hooked up with guitarist Steve Clark in ’88, and chatted with VIvian Campbell–the guy who took Clark’s place after he died–in 1992. I didn’t get around to talking with Elliott until 2003, when … Continue reading That time Joe Elliott told me that Def Leppard wasn’t a big-hair band, and didn’t belong in “the Winger/Warrant/Ratt category”

That time Derek Trucks told me that Duane Allman’s slide was one of the first sounds he ever heard

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Derek Trucks three times so far, including back in 1998 when he was 18 years old. Our second conversation happened 14 years later, when he was touring with his wife Susan and their 11-piece band, Tedeschi Trucks. Four months before that the group had been awarded the Grammy for Best … Continue reading That time Derek Trucks told me that Duane Allman’s slide was one of the first sounds he ever heard

That time Derek Trucks told me about watching a hip Barack Obama mouth Howlin’ Wolf lyrics

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed slide-guitar master Derek Trucks three times so far, including back in 1999 when he was only 20 years old. We had our second conversation 13 years later, when he was touring with his wife Susan and their 11-piece band, Tedeschi Trucks. Four months earlier Trucks had performed for Barack Obama … Continue reading That time Derek Trucks told me about watching a hip Barack Obama mouth Howlin’ Wolf lyrics

That time I asked Guns N’ Roses keyboardist Dizzy Reed if Metallica ever blew his band off the stage

By Steve Newton I interviewed Guns N’ Roses keyboardist Dizzy Reed on August 5, 1992, while his band was in the midst of a coheadlining stadium tour with Metallica. The tour was scheduled to hit Vancouver’s BC Place Stadium on August 17–with openers Faith No More–but three days after this chat James Hetfield got badly … Continue reading That time I asked Guns N’ Roses keyboardist Dizzy Reed if Metallica ever blew his band off the stage

That time back in ’88 when Jeff Keith told me why his band took its name from Nicola Tesla

By Steve Newton Back in June of 1988–which was a pretty rockin’ summer, if I recall correctly–I did an interview with Jeff Keith, the lead singer of a Sacramento band called Tesla that was making waves with its platinum debut album, Mechanical Resonance. The band was headed to Vancouver on tour with Def Leppard, which … Continue reading That time back in ’88 when Jeff Keith told me why his band took its name from Nicola Tesla

That time future Trailer Park Boy Mike Smith told me about his band Sandbox snubbing Bon Jovi

By Steve Newton Before he became famous for his role as googley-eyed goofball “Bubbles” on The Trailer Park Boys, Mike Smith was a member of Canadian ’90s alt-rock band Sandbox. One day back in March of 1996 I interviewed him in advance of a Sandbox show at a Vancouver bar called the Starfish Room. At … Continue reading That time future Trailer Park Boy Mike Smith told me about his band Sandbox snubbing Bon Jovi

That time I asked Dewey Bunnell why his band named itself America

By Steve Newton If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you might have figured out that I’m not the world’s biggest soft-rock fan. But when it’s time to take a break from the Blue Oyster Cult and Thin Lizzy I’ve got nothing against throwing on America’s Greatest Hits and mellowing out with easygoing … Continue reading That time I asked Dewey Bunnell why his band named itself America

That time the Cult’s Billy Duffy told me that Thin Lizzy was his number-one “teenie band”, and that it all boils down to the Les Paul

By Steve Newton Way back on April 7 of 1989 I interviewed the Cult guitarist Billy Duffy. That was three days before the band released its fourth album, the Bob Rock-produced Sonic Temple, which would go platinum on the strength of tunes like “Fire Woman”, “Sweet Soul Sister”, and “Edie (Ciao Baby)”. At one point … Continue reading That time the Cult’s Billy Duffy told me that Thin Lizzy was his number-one “teenie band”, and that it all boils down to the Les Paul

That time Jason Isbell told me he was in a Ford Econoline E350 van and his band cracked up at that

FSimani photo By Steve Newton The Drive-By Truckers are probably my favourite band right now. They were also my favourite band back when Jason Isbell was in the lineup. I did my first interview with him in 2007, after he’d left the DBTs and was promoting his debut solo album, Sirens of the Ditch. I … Continue reading That time Jason Isbell told me he was in a Ford Econoline E350 van and his band cracked up at that

That time Alice Cooper told me that he would blow “clone bands” like Ratt and Mötley Crüe off the stage

me ‘n the coop. @shotbykevin By Steve Newton When I was a teenager in the early ’70s, Alice Cooper was god. I couldn’t get enough of his nasty image and the killer guitar-rock on albums Love It to Death, Killer, School’s Out, Billion Dollar Babies, and Muscle of Love. I lost interest somewhat after he … Continue reading That time Alice Cooper told me that he would blow “clone bands” like Ratt and Mötley Crüe off the stage

That time Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell told me how he got into Tom Petty’s band

By Steve Newton Tom Petty is one of my favourite rockers, and I’m really bummed that I never got to interview him. But I did get to do the next best thing, which was chat with his forever guitarist, Mike Campbell. I interviewed Campbell in August of 1999, before Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers played … Continue reading That time Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell told me how he got into Tom Petty’s band

That time Allan Holdsworth told me that a lotta people love the things that he hates…like his old band U.K.

By Steve Newton Since I got “temporarily” laid off from work yesterday–after 35 years with the Georgia Straight newspaper in Vancouver–I’ve been wondering which of my hundreds of old interviews I should digitize next. Then I figured that the one with guitar legend Allan Holdsworth from 1983 should take precedence because apparently cassette tapes don’t … Continue reading That time Allan Holdsworth told me that a lotta people love the things that he hates…like his old band U.K.

That time John Mayall told me that his Bluesbreakers of 1988 were the best band he ever had

By Steve Newton The first time I interviewed blues legend John Mayall was in December of 1988, shortly after he’d released his Chicago Line album, which featured smokin’ guitarists Walter Trout and Carlos Montoya. Mayall has always surrounded himself with the finest pickers–including guys like Mick Taylor, Eric Clapton, and Peter Green–so at one point … Continue reading That time John Mayall told me that his Bluesbreakers of 1988 were the best band he ever had

Iron Maiden was the world’s best metal band in Vancouver last night

all photos by Jeff Sutherland By Steve Newton Your first concert is a big deal–or that’s what my nephew Jeff says, anyway. Thirty-five years ago I took him to his very first rock show, at the Pacific Coliseum. It was Iron Maiden on the Powerslave tour. He was 14. It ruled. Last night (Sept. 3) … Continue reading Iron Maiden was the world’s best metal band in Vancouver last night

That time I asked 28-year-old Susan Tedeschi if she had a favourite tune on Just Won’t Burn

By Steve Newton I love listening to Susan Tedeschi sing and play guitar. I mean, who doesn’t? I love interviewing her too, because she’s not just a wicked musician, but a total sweetie as well. The first time I chatted with her was back in 1998, when she was just 28, and touring behind her … Continue reading That time I asked 28-year-old Susan Tedeschi if she had a favourite tune on Just Won’t Burn