That time Rob Baker told me that when Paul Langlois joined the Hip he only knew four or five chords

By Steve Newton I did my last Tragically Hip interview in June of 1997, a month after the band had released its concert album Live Between Us. Lead guitarist Rob Baker (I still called him Bobby back then) rang me up from his home in Kingston, and we talked about the live disc and the … Continue reading That time Rob Baker told me that when Paul Langlois joined the Hip he only knew four or five chords

Exclusive excerpt from my new book, Gord Downie, about the late frontman of the Tragically Hip

By Steve Newton The following is the Preface from my new coffeetable book, Gord Downie, published by Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. of New York City and currently available at Indigo, Coles, and Chapters outlets across Canada. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- The first time I spoke to Gord Downie he was a longhaired 25-year-old rocker touring behind his band's first full-length … Continue reading Exclusive excerpt from my new book, Gord Downie, about the late frontman of the Tragically Hip

Bruce Allen’s anti-Hip rants can’t tarnish Canada’s best band

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 3, 1997 By Steve Newton The last time I tuned in to Bruce Allen’s Soundoff show on CFOX, I caught the loudmouthed rock mogul in one of his favourite on-air acts: slagging the Tragically Hip. The band had just released its live album, Live Between Us, and Allen … Continue reading Bruce Allen’s anti-Hip rants can’t tarnish Canada’s best band

Ron Sexsmith’s conversational pop wins over Elvis Costello and Interscope

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 5, 1997 The night before Ron Sexsmith calls from Norway, I’m giving the TV clicker a workout when some tabloid-style show appears, updating the lives of TV child actors who played roles such as the pointy-eared werewolf kid on The Munsters and the six-year-old twins on Family Affair. … Continue reading Ron Sexsmith’s conversational pop wins over Elvis Costello and Interscope

Gordon Downie sees Bruce Allen in a Subway ad at Another Roadside Attraction

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 20, 1995 The Another Roadside Attraction show at Seabird Island two years ago was one of Gordon Downie’s all-time favourite gigs. The Tragically Hip vocalist told the Georgia Straight recently that it was the natural beauty of the Agassiz location—surrounded by nearby mountains and dense woods—that made the … Continue reading Gordon Downie sees Bruce Allen in a Subway ad at Another Roadside Attraction

Matthew Sweet wishes his records were as loose as Neil Young’s

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 6, 1995 By Steve Newton When Matthew Sweet checks in from his L.A. abode for an afternoon chat, I’ve got a fair supply of questions lined up. I want to uncover the acclaimed pop rocker’s thoughts about his place on the Another Roadside Attraction megatour, which comes to … Continue reading Matthew Sweet wishes his records were as loose as Neil Young’s

Gordon Downie says opening for the Rolling Stones is like being a golf caddy

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 6, 1995 By Steve Newton In 1995, it’s as if the Tragically Hip can do no wrong. Late last February, the Ontario guitar-rockers played a Pacific Coliseum gig that sold out in 20 minutes flat. Not long after that, you could have flicked on Saturday Night Live and … Continue reading Gordon Downie says opening for the Rolling Stones is like being a golf caddy

The Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie finds humour in “The Inevitability of Death”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 16, 1995 By Steve Newton The Tragically Hip don’t always do things the way other rock groups do, and maybe that’s why folks love ’em so much. For starters, the band got its road manager, of all people, to write its official MCA Records bio. Instead of the … Continue reading The Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie finds humour in “The Inevitability of Death”

Midnight Oil’s “tree-hugging asshole” kicks ass for Clayoquot Sound

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 22, 1993 By Steve Newton It didn’t take long for Midnight Oil singer/environmental activist Peter Garrett to bring up the contentious issue of logging in Clayoquot Sound during Saturday’s (July 17) Another Roadside Attraction rock festival at Seabird Island in Agassiz. Right after the band’s introductory tune, the … Continue reading Midnight Oil’s “tree-hugging asshole” kicks ass for Clayoquot Sound