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 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 Allman Brothers guitarist Warren Haynes told me who his biggest influences were on slide

By Steve Newton Oh man, I freakin' love the sound of slide guitar. And I especially love it when it's being created by somebody like Warren Haynes. In case you didn't know, Haynes is the player who took over the slide duties when the Allman Brothers reunited back in 1989. I did my first interview … Continue reading That time Allman Brothers guitarist Warren Haynes told me who his biggest influences were on slide

Album review: Lynyrd Skynyrd, Endangered Species (1994)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 13, 1994 By Steve Newton It’ll be 17 years this month since Lynyrd Skynyrd’s chartered plane went down in the Mississippi woods, killing—among others—vocalist Ronnie Van Zant and guitarist Steve Gaines. Ten years after the crash, the group’s survivors decided to honour the music of the lost rockers … Continue reading Album review: Lynyrd Skynyrd, Endangered Species (1994)

Album review: Sonny Landreth, Outward Bound (1992)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 10, 1992 By Steve Newton Sometimes when I hear a particularly snazzy slide guitar lick, I get a shiver up my spine, as if that cold piece of glass or metal stroking the strings were making a move up and down my own backbone. It doesn’t happen too … Continue reading Album review: Sonny Landreth, Outward Bound (1992)

That time I asked Dickey Betts if it was tough picking tunes for the Allman Brothers’ live album of ’92

kirk west photo By Steve Newton If you're a dedicated fan of the Allman Brothers Band, you no doubt own a copy of their historic 1971 live album, At Fillmore East. Of course, that double disc was highlighted by the amazing slide-guitar talents of Duane Allman, who died in a motorcycle crash three months after its … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts if it was tough picking tunes for the Allman Brothers’ live album of ’92

That time I asked Dickey Betts what song Duane Allman and the Skynyrd boys might be playing in heaven

By Steve Newton If you think I got into journalism at the age of 23--first at my hometown's Chilliwack Progress and then, for the last 34 years, at Vancouver's Georgia Straight--mainly so I could interview guitar heroes like Dickey Betts, you're damn rights. I've loved Dickey ever since I heard him and Duane on Eat a … Continue reading That time I asked Dickey Betts what song Duane Allman and the Skynyrd boys might be playing in heaven

Ever wonder why the Allman Brothers look so damn happy on the cover of At Fillmore East?

By Steve Newton The Allman Brothers' At Fillmore East is widely recognized as one of the greatest live albums in rock history. And you won't get any arguments about that from me. The band was at its peak, guitarists Duane Allman and Dickey Betts trading the type of inspired licks that would make future ABB … Continue reading Ever wonder why the Allman Brothers look so damn happy on the cover of At Fillmore East?

Susan Tedeschi thinks Derek Trucks is “a little burnt out” from the Allman Brothers Band

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Susan Tedeschi recently, in advance of the Tedeschi Trucks show in Vancouver this month, I asked her what she'd been listening to in her spare time. She replied that her and hubby Derek Trucks had been really enjoying the latest Wood Brothers album Paradise--which they played on one track … Continue reading Susan Tedeschi thinks Derek Trucks is “a little burnt out” from the Allman Brothers Band

Clapton captured live in the ’70s on vinyl-only box set

By Steve Newton Eric Clapton freaks who think the legendary guitarist did his best work in the seventies--on vinyl!--will be happy to know that a six-piece vinyl-only box set, The Live Album Collection 1970-1980, will hit stores March 25. Universal Music Canada announced the package today, describing it as a companion piece to the nine-piece … Continue reading Clapton captured live in the ’70s on vinyl-only box set

20-year-old slide-guitar ace Derek Trucks wants to jam with B.B. King

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 2, 1999 By Steve Newton Teenage blues-rocker Kenny Wayne Shepherd has a great story about how he got inspired to take up guitar. It has something to do with him, as a little kid, watching Stevie Ray Vaughan perform from atop one of the Texas guitar legend’s amp … Continue reading 20-year-old slide-guitar ace Derek Trucks wants to jam with B.B. King

At 50, southern-rock legend Gregg Allman is Searching for Simplicity

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 12, 1998 By Steve Newton Gregg Allman has released six solo albums over the years, but he never wanders too far away from the southern-rock sound he helped popularize as a founding member of the Allman Brothers. On his latest CD, Searching for Simplicity, Allman doesn’t even try … Continue reading At 50, southern-rock legend Gregg Allman is Searching for Simplicity

Ronnie Earl makes dedication to Peter Green on new Tom Dowd-helmed CD

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JAN. 22, 1998 By Steve Newton Blues guitarist Ronnie Earl really takes the Beatles’ “All you need is love” credo to heart. On the phone from his Boston home, Earl comes off as an artist driven as much by compassion for others as by a personal joy in making … Continue reading Ronnie Earl makes dedication to Peter Green on new Tom Dowd-helmed CD

Sister Hazel’s meat-and-potatoes rock is alright by the Allman Brothers

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 28, 1997 As bands sometimes do, Florida guitar-rockers Sister Hazel included snapshots from their youth in the booklet for their latest CD, …Somewhere More Familiar. There are photos of four little kids playing piano, violin, guitar (with a Neil Young headband!), and drums—and one of a smiling tyke … Continue reading Sister Hazel’s meat-and-potatoes rock is alright by the Allman Brothers

Yee-haw! Allman Brothers to release southern-rock masterpiece At Fillmore East as box set

By Steve Newton Southern-rock fans saddened by word that the Allman Brothers will perform their final concerts this year should brighten at the news that an historic deluxe-edition box set is on its way. Yesterday the band announced on its website that a six-disc package titled The 1971 Fillmore East Recordings will be released by … Continue reading Yee-haw! Allman Brothers to release southern-rock masterpiece At Fillmore East as box set

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 figures Duane Allman is playing “Dreams” in heaven with Hendrix and the guys from Skynyrd

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 8, 1991 By Steve Newton Back in the halcyon days of the early ’70s, there was a choice collection of albums that one gang of air-guitar-playing Chilliwack Junior High rockheads used to foam over. There was Deep Purple’s Machine Head, J. Geils’ Full House, Alice Cooper’s Billion Dollar Babies, … Continue reading Dickey Betts figures Duane Allman is playing “Dreams” in heaven with Hendrix and the guys from Skynyrd

Dickey Betts rambles into 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 rambles into Vancouver with a “wicked” Warren Haynes on slide

Foaming at the mouth over Duane Allman Skydog retrospective

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 28, 2013 By Steve Newton If there's one thing that brings instant joy to the Ear of Newt it's the sweet, sweet tone of Duane Allman's slide guitar. And fellow Allman freaks can hear an awful lot of it--129 tracks' worth, to be precise--when Rounder Records releases Skydog: The Duane Allman … Continue reading Foaming at the mouth over Duane Allman Skydog retrospective

Johnny Winter box set to rival last year’s stunning Duane Allman package

By Steve Newton Last year's top prize for old-school guitar freaks was undoubtedly Skydog: The Duane Allman Retrospective, the seven-disc box set issued on the Rounder label. And now it looks like the biggest "oh-god-I-gotta-have-it!" item in the same category will be True to the Blues: The Johnny Winter Story, which arrives via Sony's Legacy … Continue reading Johnny Winter box set to rival last year’s stunning Duane Allman package

Warren Haynes says Dickey Betts and Derek Trucks are “two distinctly different personalities”

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 10, 2004 By Steve Newton When original Gov't Mule bassist Allen Woody died of a heart attack in August of 2000, he left a sizable pair of shoes that have taken bandmates Warren Haynes and Matt Abst more than three years to fill. At first, the two remaining members didn't … Continue reading Warren Haynes says Dickey Betts and Derek Trucks are “two distinctly different personalities”

Sonny Landreth hoped some of Albert King’s cosmic dust would rub off on him

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 25, 2004 By Steve Newton Unless your an avid follower of guitar players--and slide-guitar specialists, in particular--you may not have heard of Sonny Landreth. According to Eric Clapton, he is "probably the most underestimated musician on the planet". But that didn't stop Landreth from earning a Grammy nomination for his … Continue reading Sonny Landreth hoped some of Albert King’s cosmic dust would rub off on him

Duane Allman’s slide was one of the first sounds Derek Trucks remembers

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JUNE 13, 2012 By Steve Newton Derek Trucks might not be the most recognizable name in the world as far as guitar heroes go, but the 33-year-old picker in the Tedeschi Trucks Band is doing all right lately in the accolade department. His group’s debut album, Revelator, won a Grammy this year … Continue reading Duane Allman’s slide was one of the first sounds Derek Trucks remembers

Taj Mahal wasn’t so much shocked as pissed off by Jesse Ed Davis’s death

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, APRIL 24, 2013 By Steve Newton When music legend Taj Mahal calls from a tour stop in Phoenix, it’s been just a few days since he played Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival at Madison Square Garden in New York. He’d been asked to play the event before, and never had the … Continue reading Taj Mahal wasn’t so much shocked as pissed off by Jesse Ed Davis’s death