That time Mark Hollis of Talk Talk told me all about the video-within-a-video called It’s My Life

By Steve Newton You may have heard the sad news making the rounds in the music press today regarding Mark Hollis. The singer-songwriter of Talk Talk, one of the most adventurous and under-rated of '80s pop acts, has died at the age of 64. Now, those who've read my stuff over the last 37 years … Continue reading That time Mark Hollis of Talk Talk told me all about the video-within-a-video called It’s My Life

Sound thief Mike Edwards says perverted samples keep Jesus Jones from getting sued

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 16, 1991 By Steve Newton Mike Edwards is a very talented thief—a thief of sounds, that is. When the 26-year-old Brit hears something he likes, he takes it. And puts it on a Jesus Jones album. And sells a bunch. “When it comes to sampling, I just pick … Continue reading Sound thief Mike Edwards says perverted samples keep Jesus Jones from getting sued

Nick Feldman on how Wang Chung gave To Live and Die in L.A. a deeper dimension

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 13, 1987 By Steve Newton Why would a British commercial pop outfit name themselves Wang Chung? Beats me. Maybe because Duran Duran was already taken. Or it might have something to d0 with the Chinese musical term huang chung, which means perfect pitch. "It means lots of different things," laughs Nick … Continue reading Nick Feldman on how Wang Chung gave To Live and Die in L.A. a deeper dimension

The one-hit wonders behind “I Wanna Be a Cowboy” got Lemmy in their video for a bottle of vodka

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 11, 1986 By Steve Newton When Britain's Boys Don't Cry open for Platinum Blonde at Expo Theatre this Monday and Tuesday (July 14 and 15), it's a sure thing that their current hit "I Wanna Be a Cowboy" will be a highlight of the set. A funky rocker … Continue reading The one-hit wonders behind “I Wanna Be a Cowboy” got Lemmy in their video for a bottle of vodka

That time Kate Bush told me about working with David Gilmour and experiencing the “profound” Pink Floyd

By Steve Newton Back in 1985 I interviewed British art-pop legend Kate Bush, who was promoting her new album Hounds of Love, which you may recall spawned the hit single "Running Up That Hill". At one point in the conversation she told me about working with David Gilmour as a teenager, discovering Pink Floyd, and … Continue reading That time Kate Bush told me about working with David Gilmour and experiencing the “profound” Pink Floyd

That time Kate Bush told me about creating the music video for her new single “Running Up That Hill”

By Steve Newton Back in November of 1985 I did a phone interview with Kate Bush, who was promoting her new album The Hounds of Love at the time. Three months earlier she'd released the single "Running Up That Hill", which I really liked, but I hadn't yet seen the new video for it. So … Continue reading That time Kate Bush told me about creating the music video for her new single “Running Up That Hill”

Marillion moves beyond cult status with Misplaced Childhood and “Kayleigh”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 7, 1986 By Steve Newton Yessongs. Brain Salad Surgery. Selling England By the Pound. Do those album titles ring a bell? They should if you remember back to 1973. At that time, 'progressive' rock was big around the world and its foremost practitioners were British bands such as … Continue reading Marillion moves beyond cult status with Misplaced Childhood and “Kayleigh”

Kate Bush on David Gilmour, Pink Floyd, and the new Hounds of Love

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 6, 1985 By Steve Newton When Kate Bush was 15 years old, she thought it would be nice if she could get some of her songs published. There was a friend of her family who knew someone that was looking for talent to encourage and produce. That someone … Continue reading Kate Bush on David Gilmour, Pink Floyd, and the new Hounds of Love

Dan Hawkins ponders the brilliance of Iron Maiden and whether the Darkness is the last of its kind

By Steve Newton A couple of the famous rockers I've interviewed lately have been raving about the new Iron Maiden album, The Book of Souls. Judas Priest singer Rob Halford, for example, called it "a fantastic achievement" a couple of weeks ago. And the Darkness guitarist Dan Hawkins is mightily impressed as well--especially for a … Continue reading Dan Hawkins ponders the brilliance of Iron Maiden and whether the Darkness is the last of its kind

The Darkness guitarist Dan Hawkins loves Jimmy Page’s wrong notes and Joe Perry’s swagger

the Hawkins brothers pull off their best Robertson/Gorham impression By Steve Newton Fans of rowdy, old-school, Les Paul–driven guitar rock have a band worth worshipping in British noisemakers the Darkness. The Marshall-powered six-string team of 40-year-old Justin Hawkins and his two-years-younger brother, Dan, really do tear up the frets, both on-stage and on record—as evidenced … Continue reading The Darkness guitarist Dan Hawkins loves Jimmy Page’s wrong notes and Joe Perry’s swagger

David Gilmour’s guitar solos embolden Supertramp after loss of Roger Hodgson

By Steve Newton On June 28, 1985, the Georgia Straight newspaper published my interview with Supertramp drummer Bob Seibenberg. That's no big whoop in the grand scheme of things, but at the time the band has just released its first album without original member Roger Hodgson, Brother Where You Bound, so there was interest in how … Continue reading David Gilmour’s guitar solos embolden Supertramp after loss of Roger Hodgson

Squeeze carries on undeterred after Jools Holland opts for his “Mr. Showbiz caper”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 25, 1990 By Steve Newton The liner notes to Squeeze's new live album, A Round and a Bout, contain a precise itinerary of the 892 concerts that the band has performed around the world since forming in '74. There are early shows at the Camden Girls School and … Continue reading Squeeze carries on undeterred after Jools Holland opts for his “Mr. Showbiz caper”

“Our hair was no bigger than Zeppelin or Sabbath,” declares Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 18, 2003 By Steve Newton A lot of bands that were big in the ’80s are now having trouble getting booked into bowling alleys, but Def Leppard’s not one of them. The British melodic-rock quintet—which hit its commercial peak in 1987 with Hysteria, which has sold 16 million … Continue reading “Our hair was no bigger than Zeppelin or Sabbath,” declares Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott

Joe Jackson thinks about 10 percent of music is really good stuff

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 21, 2003 By Steve Newton If you liked catchy, hook-infested pop-rock back in 1979, there’s a good chance you tapped a toe or two to Joe Jackson’s debut album, Look Sharp!. From the cynical hit single “Is She Really Going Out With Him?” to the postpunk rave-up “Got … Continue reading Joe Jackson thinks about 10 percent of music is really good stuff

The Faces-loving London Quireboys still like to have a tipple

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 30, 2001 By Steve Newton When the London Quireboys blasted onto the music scene in 1990 with the swaggering boogie-blues hit “7 O’Clock”, originality wasn’t their stock-in-trade. They took their musical cues directly from Rod Stewart and the Faces, and even looked the part with their scarecrow hairdos … Continue reading The Faces-loving London Quireboys still like to have a tipple

Cy Curnin of the Fixx talks paranoia and censorship in 1984

By Steve Newton Thirty years ago today--on October 13, 1984--British pop-rock/new-wave group the Fixx played Vancouver's Queen Elizabeth Theatre. The previous year the band had had a million-selling album called Reach the Beach, which you may recall for the hit single "One Thing Leads to Another". In advance of the show I interviewed frontman Cy Curnin … Continue reading Cy Curnin of the Fixx talks paranoia and censorship in 1984

Ocean Colour Scene gives shout-out to southern soul with Moseley Shoals

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 28, 1996 Chatting with hungover rock musicians isn’t always a ton o’ fun, but sometimes you can’t blame them for knocking back a few cocktails the night before an interview. When Ocean Colour Scene guitarist Steve Cradock calls from New York one early afternoon, he’s still feeling the … Continue reading Ocean Colour Scene gives shout-out to southern soul with Moseley Shoals

Issues with Bob Rock and Sharon Osbourne leave the Quireboys Bitter Sweet & Twisted

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 27, 1993 After Bob Rock hit the big time by producing Motley Crue’s No. 1 album, Dr. Feelgood—and then accomplished the incredible feat of making former thrash-masters Metallica a mainstream rock-radio fave—it seemed the Vancouver producer could do no wrong. And although Rock’s reputation as a producer with … Continue reading Issues with Bob Rock and Sharon Osbourne leave the Quireboys Bitter Sweet & Twisted

Quireboys pride themselves on “proper” rock ‘n’ roll

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 19, 1990 By Steve Newton There are some bands out there that are just made to play in bars—they have that certain something that demands you sip a frosty cold one while wallowing in their raucous boogie noise. The Beat Farmers are one of those, the Georgia Satellites … Continue reading Quireboys pride themselves on “proper” rock ‘n’ roll

The Answer is proud to hoist the riff-rock torch

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, AUG. 26, 2009 By Steve Newton Bluesy Irish rockers the Answer have been opening for AC/DC for nine months now, living a dream most bands would kill for. As vocalist Cormac Neeson explains during a day off from touring in Grand Rapids, Michigan, it’s all been good—and some of it has … Continue reading The Answer is proud to hoist the riff-rock torch