That time I asked Jeff Healey about his 1989 Grammy nomination and he told me that Jimmy Page would probably win

By Steve Newton On February 16, 1989, I did the second of my three interviews with Canadian guitar hero Jeff Healey. He was only 22 at the time, but holy crap could that guy play! Anyway, this was about five months after the release of his wicked debut album, See the Light, which you may … Continue reading That time I asked Jeff Healey about his 1989 Grammy nomination and he told me that Jimmy Page would probably win

Atlanta guitar hero Tinsley Ellis on covering Leon Russell, adoring Eric Clapton, and listening to Tom Dowd

By Steve Newton The last time yours truly interviewed American blues-rocker Tinsley Ellis was 10 years ago, when he called the Georgia Straight in advance of a gig at the Yale Hotel, Vancouver’s top blues venue for decades. Sadly, the Granville Street joint hasn’t been a real home of the blues for years now, a fact not … Continue reading Atlanta guitar hero Tinsley Ellis on covering Leon Russell, adoring Eric Clapton, and listening to Tom Dowd

Grand Funk gives ’70s rock a bad name on Thirty Years of Funk: 1969-1999

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 9, 1999 By Steve Newton   When I was a teenager, I was obsessed with collecting albums, and all my money went toward that goal. My friends had nice cars; I had nice records. Nowadays, I get most of my music free from record labels, but it’s almost … Continue reading Grand Funk gives ’70s rock a bad name on Thirty Years of Funk: 1969-1999

Eddy Clearwater took Magic lessons on Chicago’s West Side

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 24, 1999 Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater chose a good guy to hang with when he moved to Chicago’s West Side in 1950. As a budding, 15-year-old bluesman, Clearwater became close friends with Magic Sam, the legendary West Side guitarist who died of a heart attack at the age … Continue reading Eddy Clearwater took Magic lessons on Chicago’s West Side

Smokin’ Joe Kubek thanks Jimmie Vaughan for turning him on to barbecued bologna

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 8, 1999 I knew a Smokin’ Joe once. He was a driftin’ country musician who moved into the duplex next door to my party pad on a dead-end street by the railroad tracks in Chilliwack. His name was just Joe at first, but I named him Smokin’ ’cause … Continue reading Smokin’ Joe Kubek thanks Jimmie Vaughan for turning him on to barbecued bologna

Eric Clapton box set features Slowhand trading licks with Freddie King

By Steve Newton Music lovers of a certain age—let's call them "old fogies" for want of a better term—know that 1973 was an incredible year for guitar-based rock. You can read all about it in music historian Michael Walker's great new book, What You Want Is in the Limo, which focuses on the albums and touring … Continue reading Eric Clapton box set features Slowhand trading licks with Freddie King