Bachman-Turner Overdrive gig draws comparisons to the horror of BTO freak Stephen King

photo by narking/Wikipedia ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 3, 1989 By Steve Newton In the book Kingdom of Fear, a collection of essays on the fiction of Stephen King, the top-selling horror author explained how he came up with the the pseudonym he used on novels like The Running Man and Thinner. Once … Continue reading Bachman-Turner Overdrive gig draws comparisons to the horror of BTO freak Stephen King

Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson bring the best of Mott the Hoople to Vancouver

kevin statham photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 7, 1988 By Steve Newton Two nights after Eric Clapton and Mark Knopfler sailed through town, on September 30, a couple more British rock greats visited. While not as widely known, Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson have a following that is just as devoted, and … Continue reading Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson bring the best of Mott the Hoople to Vancouver

Edgar Winter and Leon Russell knock ’em down and drag ’em out in Vancouver

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 3, 1988 By Steve Newton I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I heard that Edgar Winter and Leon Russell were going to share the same stage, but I did know that I should definitely be there. I was aware that Winter was something of a wildman--prone … Continue reading Edgar Winter and Leon Russell knock ’em down and drag ’em out in Vancouver

Blue Öyster Cult transforms into the “New York Guitar Army” in Vancouver

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 20, 1988 By Steve Newton Blue Öyster Cult is the sort of band you either love or hate. There's no in-betweens. Nobody every says, "Oh, Blue Öyster Cult, they're all right, I guess." It's either "The Cult rules!" or "No thanks, hand me that Hall & Oates album." … Continue reading Blue Öyster Cult transforms into the “New York Guitar Army” in Vancouver

The Alarm shows its Strength and promise in Vancouver

chris cameron photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 18, 1988 By Steve Newton One of my favourite albums of 1985 was Strength by the Alarm. It was a totally inspiring bit of guitar-driven rock that blended the bristling anger of the Clash with the soulful humanity of U2. I predicted back then that these guys would be … Continue reading The Alarm shows its Strength and promise in Vancouver

The Rainmakers bring a Tornado of rockingly righteous sounds to Vancouver

chris cameron photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JAN. 29, 1988 By Steve Newton It didn't have quite the flat-out crash 'n' burn effect of Aerosmith's show five nights earlier, but the Rainmakers' gig at the 86 Street Music Hall last Monday (January 25) did sport a fair amount of energy--most of it coming from the stage, and … Continue reading The Rainmakers bring a Tornado of rockingly righteous sounds to Vancouver

Pseudo Echo rock and rolls all night and turns Vancouver into Funkytown

chris cameron photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 18, 1987 By Steve Newton Like most Aussie rock 'n' roll bands, Pseudo Echo shuns the fancy costume/big hairdo approach on which many British and American acts rely. Like their countrymen AC/DC, Angel City, and Midnight Oil, Pseudo Echo lets its own particular brand of music do the … Continue reading Pseudo Echo rock and rolls all night and turns Vancouver into Funkytown

Steve Earle returns to Vancouver after six months and raises another ruckus

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 27, 1987 By Steve Newton Whenever Steve Earle hits town, you're pretty well guaranteed a hellraisin' good time. It happened at his Vancouver debut last May at the 86 Street Music Hall, and then again last Thursday (November 19) when he and his rip-snortin' band the Dukes returned … Continue reading Steve Earle returns to Vancouver after six months and raises another ruckus

The Beat Farmers’ Country Dick Montana offers tips for men and insight into The Pursuit of Happiness

kevin statham photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 6, 1987 By Steve Newton Devoted fans of serious music should make a point of being as far away as possible from the 86 Street Music Hall this Tuesday (November 10). However, those with less cultivated tastes--and a penchant for rowdy, party-time country rock with … Continue reading The Beat Farmers’ Country Dick Montana offers tips for men and insight into The Pursuit of Happiness

Mason Ruffner was inspired by Jimmy Page to inject fire into his Gypsy Blood

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 31, 1987 By Steve Newton The Fabulous Thunderbirds are from Austin, Texas. Mason Ruffner is from Forth Worth. The Fabulous Thunderbirds hit it big last year with an album produced by Dave Edmunds. Mason Ruffner is hitting it big this year with an album produced by Dave Edmunds. … Continue reading Mason Ruffner was inspired by Jimmy Page to inject fire into his Gypsy Blood

Former Metal Queen Lee Aaron says you can’t build a career on a pretty face

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 24, 1991 By Steve Newton Although Toronto’s Lee Aaron has been a fixture on the Canadian music scene since the early ’80s, her first taste of substantial commercial success didn’t come until her 1990 album, Bodyrock. It’s been a long road, but the 29-year-old singer—who plays 86 Street … Continue reading Former Metal Queen Lee Aaron says you can’t build a career on a pretty face

Sonny Greenwich Jr. thinks that Bootsauce’s Baculis is a better bassist than Flea

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 4, 1990 By Steve Newton Some rock critics will go to any lengths to describe the sound of a band as diverse as Montreal’s Bootsauce. Take Mike Marrone of the Hard Report, who came up with this hearty interpretation: “Captain Beefheart meets The The on Shriekback street beauty.” … Continue reading Sonny Greenwich Jr. thinks that Bootsauce’s Baculis is a better bassist than Flea

Oderus Urungus threatens to cancel GWAR’s Vancouver show just because I called

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 14, 1991 By Steve Newton Sugar and spice and everything nice—that’s definitely not what a concert by Gwar is made of. Simulated decapitation and dismemberment, phony entrails all over the place, fake blood dousing the crowd, and a numbing type of thrash metal that incorporates lyrics even more … Continue reading Oderus Urungus threatens to cancel GWAR’s Vancouver show just because I called

Guitar stars Jimmie Vaughan, Neil Schon, Kim Mitchell, and Colin James shine at CFOX birthday bash

charles campbell photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 20, 1987 By Steve Newton "The Fox rocks" is the motto that local FM station CFOX likes to use whenever possible. And whether you agree with that claim or not, one thing you've go to admit is that The Fox knows how to throw a … Continue reading Guitar stars Jimmie Vaughan, Neil Schon, Kim Mitchell, and Colin James shine at CFOX birthday bash

Backstage at an Arc Angels show with Charlie Sexton, David Gogo, and the blind date I never saw again

By Steve Newton Here's a photo that was taken backstage at the 86 Street Music Hall in Vancouver on July 22, 1992. It was after a show by the Arc Angels, a bluesy band from Austin that featured guitarist-vocalists Charlie Sexton and Doyle Bramhall II along with Stevie Ray Vaughan's old rhythm section, bassist Tommy … Continue reading Backstage at an Arc Angels show with Charlie Sexton, David Gogo, and the blind date I never saw again

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”

Joe Satriani explains how he overcame pain and suffering to fulfill his new Blue Dream

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JAN. 19, 1990 By Steve Newton Just as almost everyone can recall where they were when news broke of John F. Kennedy's assassination, a lot of rock fans can vividly remember that day in 1970 when the news of Jimi Hendrix's death came down. Joe Satriani was in high … Continue reading Joe Satriani explains how he overcame pain and suffering to fulfill his new Blue Dream

Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson tour behind YUI Orta, so the Newt talks to Ronno

By Steve Newton On December 19, 1989, Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson played the 86 Street Music Hall in Vancouver. For me, it didn't get any better than that. I'd been a huge fan of Hunter ever since I first heard his old band, Mott the Hoople, and Ronson...well, if you liked David Bowie in … Continue reading Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson tour behind YUI Orta, so the Newt talks to Ronno

The Hoodoo Gurus’ Brad Shepherd talks Aussie rock and Magnum Cum Louder

By Steve Newton Twenty-five years ago today--on November 5, 1989--the Hoodoo Gurus played the first of two shows at Vancouver's 86 Street Music Hall. I'd been a fan of the Aussie guitar-rockers since their Stoneage Romeos debut album of '84. They wrote catchy, jangley tunes; didn't take themselves too seriously. They were a lotta fun, and apparently … Continue reading The Hoodoo Gurus’ Brad Shepherd talks Aussie rock and Magnum Cum Louder

Meat Loaf plays Vancouver, threatens to kick 900 asses

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 8, 1989 By Steve Newton Meat Loaf was one of the most unusual rock personalities of the '70s. First off, unlike most rock frontmen, Meat Loaf was fat--and I don't mean just chubby--yet he'd spend a good part of his time on stage mauling sexy female vocalists like … Continue reading Meat Loaf plays Vancouver, threatens to kick 900 asses

Gun violence and AIDS misery inspire Concrete Blonde’s dark Bloodletting

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 14, 1990 By Steve Newton If you listened to rock radio at all last year, most likely you came across Concrete Blonde’s hit tune, “God Is a Bullet”, a fuel-injected tirade against the proliferation of guns, particularly in the drug- and gang-infested core of urban L.A. Over a … Continue reading Gun violence and AIDS misery inspire Concrete Blonde’s dark Bloodletting

Anthrax singer John Bush looks back on Armored Saint with no regrets

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 2, 1993 By Steve Newton The metal world got quite a shock when it was announced last year that original Anthrax vocalist Joey Belladonna was leaving the band after 11 successful years. It got even more of a jolt when former Armored Saint vocalist John Bush jumped in … Continue reading Anthrax singer John Bush looks back on Armored Saint with no regrets

Mike Gordon says Phish is happy with the current situation

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 1, 1993 By Steve Newton A lot of bands know how to play to a crowd, but not many bands know how to be played by a crowd. Vermont’s Phish is one of the latter. Band members came up with the idea of throwing beach-balls out into the … Continue reading Mike Gordon says Phish is happy with the current situation

Layne Staley says “No booze for yooz” as Alice in Chains goes all-ages in Vancouver

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DECEMBER 23, 1992 What does it mean when a venue loses its liquor licence and a concert is changed from an all-you-can-drink show to an “all-ages” event? Does it mean that anyone who goes can act like a 16-year-old and get away with it? I guess so. “All right, … Continue reading Layne Staley says “No booze for yooz” as Alice in Chains goes all-ages in Vancouver

Guitar hero Michael Schenker goes acoustic and his fans are fine with it

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 12, 1992 By Steve Newton When Michael Schenker was only 15, he met up with Scorpions singer Klaus Meine. Just a year later, he was laying down the white-hot guitar licks for the Scorpions’ debut album, Lonesome Crow. But Schenker’s early musical accomplishments were not without their price, … Continue reading Guitar hero Michael Schenker goes acoustic and his fans are fine with it

Chicken suits and Mozart tunes are the Scatterbrain way

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 12, 1991 By Steve Newton When a group of musicians perform a composition by an artist as renowned as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, you might expect them to deliver it in a dignified manner, in a way meant to show the utmost respect for the composer. Then again, if … Continue reading Chicken suits and Mozart tunes are the Scatterbrain way

Cadillac Tramps don’t let shady pasts colour their future

photo by Geoff Cordner ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 28, 1991 By Steve Newton Nowadays, the words “L.A. rockers” bring to mind frightful visions of leather, make-up, dyed hair, and half-assed musicianship. But according to Cadillac Tramps lead singer Mike “Gabby” Gaborno, the L.A. glam-rock vision is something of a myth. “MTV kind … Continue reading Cadillac Tramps don’t let shady pasts colour their future