Robin Trower’s 20 best songs, from wicked to freakin’ awesome

By Steve Newton Yep, it’s all about Bridge of Sighs. 20. “Back It Up” (Back It Up, 1983) 19. “A Tale Untold” (For Earth Below, 1975) 18. “Man of the World” (Twice Removed from Yesterday, 1973) 17. “Too Rolling Stoned” (Bridge of Sighs, 1974) 16. “Twice Removed from Yesterday” (Twice Removed from Yesterday, 1973) 15. “Victims of the … Continue reading Robin Trower’s 20 best songs, from wicked to freakin’ awesome

Album review: Robin Trower, Take What You Need (1988)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 24, 1988 By Steve Newton Robin Trower has put out some mighty fine albums in the past, like Bridge of Sighs in ’74, Caravan to Midnight in ’78, and B.L.T. (with Jack Bruce) in ’81. I’ve got a total of 11 Trower LPs in my collection, which might seem … Continue reading Album review: Robin Trower, Take What You Need (1988)

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

Album review: Robin Trower, Beyond the Mist (1986)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 7, 1986 By Steve Newton Some people slough Robin Trower off as a Hendrix clone, without realizing that there’s something special and unique about his guitar playing. Trower always seems to inject a whole lotta soul into his songs. Of course, the fact that he’s had bassist/vocalists such as Jack Bruce and … Continue reading Album review: Robin Trower, Beyond the Mist (1986)

Album review: Robin Trower, Back It Up (1983)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 28, 1983 By Steve Newton The best things in music, like the best things in life, often go unnoticed. And Robin Trower is one of them. The British blues-rocker has been putting out exceptional albums for ten years now–the most notable being Bridge of Sighs, Victims of the Fury, … Continue reading Album review: Robin Trower, Back It Up (1983)

Newt’s Rock Hall inducts UFO, Robin Trower, Blue Oyster Cult, Mott the Hoople, and Ten Years After

By Steve Newton Tonight the much-maligned Rock and Roll Hall of Fame officially inducts Deep Purple, Cheap Trick, Steve Miller, Chicago, and, unbelievably, legendary rock ‘n’ rollers N.W.A. Now, this is better work than you commonly expect from the RRHOF, which, back in 2013, had the audacity to induct Cat Stevens instead of fellow nominee Link … Continue reading Newt’s Rock Hall inducts UFO, Robin Trower, Blue Oyster Cult, Mott the Hoople, and Ten Years After

Stratmaster Robin Trower talks Hendrix and blues, says “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 11, 1990 By Steve Newton You know how some recording artists make you think of old times, and help you crystallize visions from the past? Well, when I think of Robin Trower, I picture a mid-’70s high-schooler cruising the main drag of Chilliwack in a wood-grained Monaco station … Continue reading Stratmaster Robin Trower talks Hendrix and blues, says “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”

Shit-hot picker Greg Koch shows off the Robin Trower signature Strat

If you were big fan of guitar-based rock in the ’70s and your head wasn’t too far up your ass you probably listened to Robin Trower, the bluesy British picker who released a string of soulful albums heavy on the Hendrix that went gold on the charts and in my rock-lovin’ heart as well. Now Fender guitars … Continue reading Shit-hot picker Greg Koch shows off the Robin Trower signature Strat

That time Robin Gibb told me that the Bee Gees had never been a disco group

By Steve Newton Back in the ’70s when rock music was having a huge impact on me I was rabidly anti-disco. I didn’t go so far as to wear a “Disco Sucks” t-shirt like one of my high school buddies, but I was with him in spirit. But in 1977, when the blockbuster Saturday Night … Continue reading That time Robin Gibb told me that the Bee Gees had never been a disco group

That time the Bee Gees’ Robin Gibb told me that he thought the Saturday Night Fever movie was “awful”

By Steve Newton I was never a huge fan of the Bee Gees. But that didn’t stop me from interviewing one of its members, Robin Gibb, back in August of 1984. At the time he was promoting a solo album called Secret Agent, which featured nine songs cowritten with his twin brother Maurice Gibb. Their … Continue reading That time the Bee Gees’ Robin Gibb told me that he thought the Saturday Night Fever movie was “awful”

The Black Crowes are from Atlanta, but Chris Robinson never cared for southern rock

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 9, 1990 By Steve Newton Chris Robinson, of Atlanta, Georgia, was nine years old when southern-rock heroes Lynyrd Skynyrd recorded the historic live album One More from the Road at that city’s Fox Theatre. Robinson was a little young for concerts at the time, but even if he’d … Continue reading The Black Crowes are from Atlanta, but Chris Robinson never cared for southern rock

Yngwie Malmsteen shreds on what he once called “a piece of furniture”: the Gibson Les Paul

By Steve Newton One of my most popular posts on Ear of Newt is the one where Yngwie Malmsteen calls Ibanez guitars “a bad copy” of the Strat and says Les Pauls are “furniture”. Well, if you ever wondered what the Swedish Fender freak would sound like shredding on a piece of furniture, here ya … Continue reading Yngwie Malmsteen shreds on what he once called “a piece of furniture”: the Gibson Les Paul

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 J.D. Fortune told me about the pressure of competing in the reality show Rock Star: INXS

By Steve Newton I interviewed INXS vocalist J.D. Fortune in January of 2006, two weeks before the band kicked off a North American Tour in Vancouver. The Canadian singer had earned the frontman position with the Aussie group the year before by winning the 11-week reality-TV competition Rock Star: INXS. So at one point in … Continue reading That time J.D. Fortune told me about the pressure of competing in the reality show Rock Star: INXS

That time Fernando von Arb called and told me that Krokus was kicking Sammy Hagar’s ass on tour

By Steve Newton If you’re old like me you may remember Swiss metal band Krokus for that early-’80s tune “Long Stick Goes Boom” and for the fact that they sounded a lot like AC/DC. I interviewed guitarist Fernando von Arb on November 12, 1984, three months after the release of the group’s Vancouver-made, Bruce Fairbairn-produced … Continue reading That time Fernando von Arb called and told me that Krokus was kicking Sammy Hagar’s ass on tour

That time I told Gary Moore it was the shits that he wasn’t coming to Vancouver with Rush

By Steve Newton It’s Gary Moore‘s birthday today–he would have been 69–so I figured I’d post an audio excerpt from my one and only interview with the Irish guitar legend, one of the finest pickers to ever pick up the instrument. It was May 11, 1984, and Moore was opening for Rush on their Grace … Continue reading That time I told Gary Moore it was the shits that he wasn’t coming to Vancouver with Rush

That time Steve Clark told me why it took Def Leppard so long to follow up Pyromania with Hysteria

By Steve Newton Back in the ’80s, most successful recording bands liked to put an album out every year. Sometimes they’d skip a year, to vacation in the Bahamas or release a live or best-of LP. After three years their fans would start to get a bit worried, and so would their record label–especially if … Continue reading That time Steve Clark told me why it took Def Leppard so long to follow up Pyromania with Hysteria

That time Long John Baldry told me that he inspired Eric Clapton to take up guitar

By Steve Newton Long John Baldry had a huge influence on the British blues scene in the sixties. In fact, when I interviewed Baldry back in 1985, he confirmed that none other than Slowhand himself was urged to take up the guitar after seeing him perform. Have a listen: To hear the full audio of … Continue reading That time Long John Baldry told me that he inspired Eric Clapton to take up guitar