That time Warren Zevon told me about his cyberpunk-inspired concept album, Transverse City

By Steve Newton As I’ve no doubt mentioned before, I really like Warren Zevon. I only got to interview him once before his cancer death in 2003, but that one conversation–back in 1992–left a big impression on me. He was just such a smart, funny, no-bullshit kinda guy. I admire him so much that I … Continue reading That time Warren Zevon told me about his cyberpunk-inspired concept album, Transverse City

That time Warren Zevon told me about his cool-looking mascot, Old Velvet Nose

By Steve Newton I’ve said it before, and I’ll probly say it again: I wish I could have interviewed Warren Zevon more than once. But as the pesky fates would have it, I only got to the chat with the masterful songwriter and awesome human one time, back in January of 1992, when he was … Continue reading That time Warren Zevon told me about his cool-looking mascot, Old Velvet Nose

That time I asked Warren Zevon what his idea of a great movie soundtrack might be

By Steve Newton I only got to interview Warren Zevon once, back in 1992, when he was touring behind his Mr. Bad Example album. Man, I wish I could have interviewed Warren Zevon a few more times. Anyway, at the time of our chat he’d already composed the music for a TV miniseries (Drug Wars: … Continue reading That time I asked Warren Zevon what his idea of a great movie soundtrack might be

That time I asked Warren Zevon if it was more difficult to compose film scores than to make albums

By Steve Newton As I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, one of the coolest dudes I’ve ever interviewed was Warren Zevon. He was just so damn nice. And smart. And Warren freakin’ Zevon. I talked to him back in ’92 when he was touring with the Odds as his backup band, promoting a fine album called … Continue reading That time I asked Warren Zevon if it was more difficult to compose film scores than to make albums

That time Warren Zevon told me that “Werewolves of London” wasn’t as big a hit as people think

By Steve Newton As we enter a new year I find myself thinking: “Man, there aren’t many singer-songwriters like Warren Zevon around anymore.” That dude was one of a kind, that’s for sure. In my 35-plus years of interviewing musicians, chatting with him has gotta be in my Top 10. Too bad I only got … Continue reading That time Warren Zevon told me that “Werewolves of London” wasn’t as big a hit as people think

Newt’s Rock Hall inducts Warren Zevon, Rick Derringer, Albert Collins, Ronnie Montrose, Gary Moore, and Jethro Tull

By Steve Newton So the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame did it again. Today the poorly-named musical dumping ground in Cleveland inducted six acts into its fold, including folkie Joan Baez and rapper Tupac Shakur. Sure, they’re both great at what they do, but are they rock ‘n’ roll? Kinda doubt it. The other … Continue reading Newt’s Rock Hall inducts Warren Zevon, Rick Derringer, Albert Collins, Ronnie Montrose, Gary Moore, and Jethro Tull

That time Warren Zevon called me from Alabama and said that the Odds had “pretty big feet”

By Steve Newton Back in January of 1992 Warren Zevon called me up from a soundcheck in Alabama. I know what you’re thinkin’: how cool was that? Pretty damn cool. At the time Zevon was touring behind his Waddy Wachtel-produced Mr. Bad Example album, and his road band was the Odds, the Vancouver power-pop quartet who’d … Continue reading That time Warren Zevon called me from Alabama and said that the Odds had “pretty big feet”

Warren Zevon says the Odds have “pretty big feet”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 6, 1992 By Steve Newton Once upon a time, there were four young men who played in a band called Dawn Patrol. At a bar called the Roxy, they’d play fired-up versions of classic rock tunes and intersperse them with zany patter and goofy jokes. Then one day … Continue reading Warren Zevon says the Odds have “pretty big feet”

Stephen King dedicates latest novel to underrated rock genius Warren Zevon

I scored a copy of the new Stephen King novel Doctor Sleep for Christmas, which was great as it continues the story of The Shining, one of my fave works–next to Carrie, The Dead Zone, and The Stand–from King’s ’70s heyday. But before I even got into the further supernatural torments befalling the telepathic Danny Torrance … Continue reading Stephen King dedicates latest novel to underrated rock genius Warren Zevon

That time Warren Haynes told me how he came to record the haunting “John the Revelator” on Gov’t Mule’s Dose

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Warren Haynes six times, because he’s one of my favourite musicians of all time. I can’t get enough of his voice, his guitar, and his songs. And even if they aren’t his actual songs I’m crazy about ’em. Like when Gov’t Mule recorded the traditional gospel-blues tune “John the Revelator” … Continue reading That time Warren Haynes told me how he came to record the haunting “John the Revelator” on Gov’t Mule’s Dose

That time Warren Haynes told me that it felt strange being chosen best slide player over Johnny, Sonny, and Ry (“The Man”)

By Steve Newton Warren Haynes is one helluva slide-guitar player, as anyone who’s heard him will attest. There’s a reason why Dickey Betts brought him along to handle Duane Allman’s slide parts when he rejoined the Allman Brothers back in ’89. When I interviewed Haynes in November of 1998 he’d won the latest Guitar Player … Continue reading That time Warren Haynes told me that it felt strange being chosen best slide player over Johnny, Sonny, and Ry (“The Man”)

That time Warren Haynes told me about leaving the Allman Brothers to ride Gov’t Mule full time

By Steve Newton I did my first interview with Warren Haynes in 1994, when he was a member of the Allman Brothers Band, and I did my second interview with him in 1998, the year after he and bassist Allen Woody had left them. Haynes and Woody had quit the Allmans to put all their … Continue reading That time Warren Haynes told me about leaving the Allman Brothers to ride Gov’t Mule full time

That time I asked Warren Haynes how long he thought the Allman Brothers might stay together

By Steve Newton I wouldn’t say that the Allman Brothers were as great, back in 1994, as they were when Duane was in the band, but holy crap were they still a smokin’ hot band! A lot of that smoke was conjured up by Warren Haynes, who Dickey Betts brought with him when the band … Continue reading That time I asked Warren Haynes how long he thought the Allman Brothers might stay together

That time I asked Warren Haynes if the spirit of southern rock was alive and well in 1994

kirk west photo By Steve Newton The spirit of southern rock was alive and well when I was a music-crazed teenager in the seventies. Skynyrd, Hatchet, Blackfoot, Outlaws, Allmans: I ate it up. Then the eighties came along and the sound of the south took a nosedive, popularity-wise. But back in the early ’90s the … Continue reading That time I asked Warren Haynes if the spirit of southern rock was alive and well in 1994

That time Warren Haynes told me that his Allman Brothers song “Soulshine” was inspired by his dad

By Steve Newton There some tunes that just grab you by the heart with their simple beauty and honesty and, if you’re lucky, maybe a wailing Les Paul guitar. “Soulshine” is one of ’em. When I interviewed Allman Brothers guitarist Warren Haynes for the first time, a quarter-century ago, the band was touring behind its … Continue reading That time Warren Haynes told me that his Allman Brothers song “Soulshine” was inspired by his dad

That time I asked Warren Haynes if he was daunted by the prospect of taking over Duane Allman’s spot opposite Dickey Betts

By Steve Newton The first time I ever saw Warren Haynes perform live was back in 1989, when he was a member of the Dickey Betts Band. The group played Vancouver’s 86 Street Music Hall, touring behind its debut album Pattern Disruptive, and holy crap was Haynes a killer on the slide guitar. Five years … Continue reading That time I asked Warren Haynes if he was daunted by the prospect of taking over Duane Allman’s spot opposite Dickey Betts

Warren Haynes on the Allman Brothers reunion, Dickey Betts’ signature sound, and Where It All Begins

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 27, 1994 By Steve Newton Word on the street is that the Allman Brothers Band is playing some of the finest, most intense gigs of its illustrious career. And according to people who have seen the group recently, it’s not just the best-known members—Dickey Betts and Gregg Allman—who … Continue reading Warren Haynes on the Allman Brothers reunion, Dickey Betts’ signature sound, and Where It All Begins

Dickey Betts plays Vancouver, with a “wicked” Warren Haynes on slide

By Steve Newton On April 2, 1989, southern-rock legend Dickey Betts brought his new band to Vancouver for a show at the 86 Street Music Hall. One of the coolest things about that gig was that it was the Vancouver debut of 28-year-old guitarist Warren Haynes, who would go on to huge acclaim as the driving … Continue reading Dickey Betts plays Vancouver, with a “wicked” Warren Haynes on slide

That time I told Tony Iommi that “Supernaut” was my fave Black Sabbath riff, and he said that it was Zappa’s too

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Tony Iommi, the Riffmaster General, twice: the first time was back in ’84 when the Ian Gillan-fronted Black Sabbath was touring behind the Born Again album, and the last time was in 2007 when he was back with Ronnie James Dio in the Heaven and Hell format. As the second … Continue reading That time I told Tony Iommi that “Supernaut” was my fave Black Sabbath riff, and he said that it was Zappa’s too

That time I asked Yes guitarist Trevor Rabin whether Steve Howe was a hard act to follow

By Steve Newton Way back in April of 1984 I interviewed Trevor Rabin, who at the time was the new guitarist in Yes. The band was on a world tour supporting its latest album, 90125, which had spawned the hit single “Owner of a Lonely Heart” and was topping the charts. At one point in … Continue reading That time I asked Yes guitarist Trevor Rabin whether Steve Howe was a hard act to follow

That time I asked Albert Lee how it was different touring with the Everly Brothers than with Eric Clapton

By Steve Newton I interviewed British guitar legend Albert Lee back in July of 1986, when he was touring with the Everly Brothers as their musical director. After chatting with Albert about how he first got involved with the Everlys, I asked him how it was different touring with them than with Eric Clapton, whose … Continue reading That time I asked Albert Lee how it was different touring with the Everly Brothers than with Eric Clapton

That time Jason Bonham told me that his famous father in Led Zeppelin was “just dad to me”

By Steve Newton When I did my first interview with Jason Bonham back in 1989, I asked him what it was like growing up with a father who was world-famous for being the drummer in Led Zeppelin. Turns out it wasn’t that big of a deal to him. Have a listen: To hear the full … Continue reading That time Jason Bonham told me that his famous father in Led Zeppelin was “just dad to me”

That time Joan Jett told me that it was the power of the people that made “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” a hit

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Joan Jett back in 1992 she was touring behind her Notorious album, which, while not a bad album, wasn’t exactly racing up the charts. Jett explained to me that it didn’t help that the record wasn’t getting much promotional push from Sony, the major label handling distribution. Then she … Continue reading That time Joan Jett told me that it was the power of the people that made “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” a hit

That time I asked Robert Cray if he was surprised that Eric Clapton covered his song “Bad Influence” on August

By Steve Newton I’ve interviewed Robert Cray four times, ’cause I reckon he’s one of the tastiest guitarists who’s ever strapped on a Strat. This was the first time, back in January of 1996, when he was touring behind his Some Rainy Morning album. Ten years earlier Cray had gotten a bit of a boost … Continue reading That time I asked Robert Cray if he was surprised that Eric Clapton covered his song “Bad Influence” on August

That time I asked Edgar Winter about his old pal Rick and his big brother Johnny

By Steve Newton The best musicians always try to surround themselves with the best musicians. For Edgar Winter that wasn’t hard. When he was born he already had a big brother named Johnny waiting at home, and they would become close musical collaborators throughout their lifetimes. Another hugely talented player that Edgar hooked up with … Continue reading That time I asked Edgar Winter about his old pal Rick and his big brother Johnny

That time Tony Carey told me that he thought “The First Day of Summer” was going to break his new album wide open

By Steve Newton Way back in May of 1984 I interviewed Tony Carey, who I’d been a fan of since I heard him playing keyboards on Rainbow’s colossal Rising album of 1976. At the time of our chat he was promoting his new solo album Some Tough City, which was doing well on the charts … Continue reading That time Tony Carey told me that he thought “The First Day of Summer” was going to break his new album wide open

That time Ian Hunter told me that what sells Ian Hunter is Ian Hunter–or what doesn’t sell Ian Hunter is Ian Hunter

By Steve Newton Mott the Hoople is one of my all-time favourite bands, and Ian Hunter is one of my all-time favourite rockers. I interviewed him and Mick Ronson separately on the same day–September 9, 1988–when they were headed to Vancouver for a show in advance of recording their awesome 1989 album YUI Orta. At … Continue reading That time Ian Hunter told me that what sells Ian Hunter is Ian Hunter–or what doesn’t sell Ian Hunter is Ian Hunter