That time Jakob Dylan told me that his dad wasn’t a lightweight

By Steve Newton I interviewed 23-year-old Jakob Dylan back in February of 1993, five months after the release of the Wallflowers' self-titled debut album. That was three years before his band struck it rich with the quadruple-platinum Bringing Down the Horse CD and number-one hit "One Headlight". At one point in the conversation I said … Continue reading That time Jakob Dylan told me that his dad wasn’t a lightweight

That time Dave Brock told me that Hawkwind wasn’t influenced by anybody

By Steve Newton Back in December of 1990 I interviewed Hawkwind guitarist and founding member Dave Brock. I called him up in Cleveland, where his space-rock band was touring behind its latest album, Space Bandits. At one point in the conversation I asked Brock if Hawkwind was influenced by prog groups like Pink Floyd and … Continue reading That time Dave Brock told me that Hawkwind wasn’t influenced by anybody

That time Lee Rocker told me that the Stray Cats instantly connected with people, even in the early days

By Steve Newton Lee Rocker is best known as the bassist for the Stray Cats, but he also made some great music with a band called Phantom, Rocker & Slick, which included guitar great Earl Slick and Stray Cats drummer Slim Jim Phantom. When I interviewed Rocker in March of 2007 he was touring behind … Continue reading That time Lee Rocker told me that the Stray Cats instantly connected with people, even in the early days

That time I asked Roger Hodgson why he left Supertramp anyway

By Steve Newton Like most kids growing up in the seventies who were into prog rock, I liked Supertramp. Probably not as much as my sisters did, though. They were crazy about Supertramp. I interviewed one of the band's two main guys, singer-songwriter-guitarist Roger Hodgson, in March of 1998, long after he'd quit the group … Continue reading That time I asked Roger Hodgson why he left Supertramp anyway

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 Heart’s Ann Wilson told me that the only movie scripts she ever got were for hard-drinking, Janis Joplin-type roles

By Steve Newton Heart were one of the first great rock bands I ever saw. Back in the early seventies they would play gigs in my hometown of Chilliwack, showcasing wicked tunes like "White Lightning and Wine" and "Magic Man" that would eventually appear on their 1975 debut album, Dreamboat Annie. I didn't get to … Continue reading That time Heart’s Ann Wilson told me that the only movie scripts she ever got were for hard-drinking, Janis Joplin-type roles

That time Joe Jackson told me that Duke Ellington was wrong: there’s actually three kinds of music

By Steve Newton I interviewed Joe Jackson in August of 2003, when he had reunited with his original band for its 25th anniversary, and to record the album Volume 4. That's the same band--guitarist Gary Sanford, bassist Graham Maby, drummer David Houghton, and Jackson on vocals and piano--that played on his awesome 1979 albums, Look … Continue reading That time Joe Jackson told me that Duke Ellington was wrong: there’s actually three kinds of music

That time Ronnie James Dio told me that Black Sabbath’s “Heaven and Hell” was his favourite song out of all the things he’d done

By Steve Newton Way the funk back in 1985 I did my one and only interview with Ronnie James Dio. He was touring behind Dio's Sacred Heart album, and he got tickets and backstage passes to the show in Vancouver at the Pacific Coliseum. I'll never forget how kind and generous he was when we … Continue reading That time Ronnie James Dio told me that Black Sabbath’s “Heaven and Hell” was his favourite song out of all the things he’d done

That time David Lee Roth told me that a reunion with Van Halen was possible as long as he could “bang that high note like a freebie from a Vegas call girl”

By Steve Newton Back in June of 2003 I did my second interview with David Lee Roth. At the time he was touring behind his most recent solo album, Diamond Dave, but of course I had to ask him about the possibility of getting back together with Van Halen, which had been on hiatus for … Continue reading That time David Lee Roth told me that a reunion with Van Halen was possible as long as he could “bang that high note like a freebie from a Vegas call girl”

That time I asked Gregg Allman how it was different touring solo than with the Allman Brothers

By Steve Newton I did my only interview with Gregg Allman on February 5, 1998. The legendary Allman Brothers Band singer, keyboardist, and occasional guitarist was 50 years old, and was touring behind his sixth solo album, Searching for Simplicity. At one point in the conversation I asked him how it was different touring as … Continue reading That time I asked Gregg Allman how it was different touring solo than with the Allman Brothers

That time I took a limo from Vancouver to Seattle to see Van Halen’s Monsters of Rock Tour

@shotbykevin By Steve Newton I haven't taken many limousine rides during my lifetime. It's a little hoity-toity for my liking. But there were a couple of times when I actually enjoyed that lifestyle of the rich and famous. The first time was back in 1986, when I got flown out to Berkeley, California to review … Continue reading That time I took a limo from Vancouver to Seattle to see Van Halen’s Monsters of Rock Tour

That time Ronnie James Dio told me that he thought Black Sabbath’s Mob Rules was a better album than Heaven and Hell

By Steve Newton Black Sabbath impressed a lot of people in April of 1980 when it released Heaven and Hell, its first album with Ronnie James Dio on vocals. I was one of those people. So I was pretty surprised when, while I was interviewing him in 1985, Dio told me that he thought Sabbath's … Continue reading That time Ronnie James Dio told me that he thought Black Sabbath’s Mob Rules was a better album than Heaven and Hell

Huey Lewis plugs new LP Sports, says he learned to play harp by imagining he was Paul Butterfield

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 25, 1983 By Steve Newton "We just stopped at a bus stop on tour last year and got Hank Williams' Greatest Hits," explains Huey Lewis over the phone from San Francisco. Two days prior to the start of his North American tour, Lewis is commenting on the inclusion … Continue reading Huey Lewis plugs new LP Sports, says he learned to play harp by imagining he was Paul Butterfield

Michael Hutchence says INXS hopes to fill up the space between Men at Work and the Birthday Party

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 27, 1983 By Steve Newton INXS (pronounced 'in excess') are a six-piece modern rock band from Sydney, Australia. The group's third album, Shabooh Shoobah, was released last year and hit Top Five in Australia, becoming the group's third gold album Down Under. The members of INXS are vocalist … Continue reading Michael Hutchence says INXS hopes to fill up the space between Men at Work and the Birthday Party

That time Joe Perry called and I let my friend answer it ’cause she was a big Aerosmith fan with a crush

By Steve Newton Sometimes you forget things you did back in the nineties. When I was digitizing my 1993 interview with Aerosmith's Joe Perry so I could post it on my Patreon page today, I realized I'd done something I'd never done before (or since) when talking to rockers. I let somebody else answer the … Continue reading That time Joe Perry called and I let my friend answer it ’cause she was a big Aerosmith fan with a crush

Bon Jovi tours behind debut album, frontman Jon Bon Jovi claims it’s “not your typical opening act”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 27, 1984 By Steve Newton "Before the album came out we'd play anywhere with anyone at any time," says Jon Bon Jovi. "We were just happy to be playing. But now that we're out in support of a hit record it's a lot nicer--and a lot more luxurious … Continue reading Bon Jovi tours behind debut album, frontman Jon Bon Jovi claims it’s “not your typical opening act”

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

John Kay says he couldn’t hope to leave a Steppenwolf concert alive without playing “Born to Be Wild”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 27, 1984 By Steve Newton Back in the summer of 1968 you could hardly turn on the radio without hearing the surging power chords and menacing vocals of "Born to Be Wild", a song that became an anthem for the carefree life and a harbinger of seventies hard-rock. … Continue reading John Kay says he couldn’t hope to leave a Steppenwolf concert alive without playing “Born to Be Wild”