Joe Satriani on the intricacies of amplification and producer Mike Fraser’s “perfect set of ears”

By Steve Newton When Joe Satriani phones from his home in the San Francisco Bay Area, he apologizes right away for being a few minutes late with the scheduled call. He explains that he was playing his guitar, composing a song, and lost track of time. That’s when it’s my turn to feel regretful, because … Continue reading Joe Satriani on the intricacies of amplification and producer Mike Fraser’s “perfect set of ears”

Album review: Hughes/Thrall Band, Hughes/Thrall (1982)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 19, 1982 By Steve Newton The formation of the Hughes/Thrall band is somewhat of a marriage made in heaven for heavy-rock fanatics. Glenn Hughes, it will be remembered, was an essential driving force to the latter-day Deep Purple. His bass and vocal abilities highlighted the red-hot Burn and Stormbringer albums, … Continue reading Album review: Hughes/Thrall Band, Hughes/Thrall (1982)

Whitesnake’s Purple Tour offers equal servings of Burn and Stormbringer, one bite of Come Taste the Band

By Steve Newton I was never that crazy about Whitesnake during it's mid-'80s heyday, when it went the power-ballad route with hits like "Is This Love". Sure, I enjoyed ogling Tawny Kitaen on the hood of a car as much as the next guy, but I much preferred Whitesnake in the late '70s/early '80s, when … Continue reading Whitesnake’s Purple Tour offers equal servings of Burn and Stormbringer, one bite of Come Taste the Band

Tommy Bolin’s spirit revived with rerelease of Come Taste the Band

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 16, 2010 By Steve Newton Seventies-rock fans who remember guitar great Tommy Bolin will be pleased to know that the only album he recorded with Deep Purple before his drug-overdose death in 1976 will be rereleased in North America on November 2. 1975's Come Taste the Band, which was conceived, written, … Continue reading Tommy Bolin’s spirit revived with rerelease of Come Taste the Band

The stars came out for Gov’t Mule’s Shout!

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 23, 2013 By Steve Newton What do Elvis Costello, Ben Harper, Dr. John, Grace Potter, Steve Winwood, and Dave Matthews have in common? Well, apart from the fact that they’re all certified rock stars in their own right, they each sang lead on a track on Shout!, the new album from … Continue reading The stars came out for Gov’t Mule’s Shout!

Pat Travers in 1983: “I’m a good enough guitarist. We don’t need another one.”

By Steve Newton On January 21, 1983, Canadian rock-guitar hero Pat Travers played Vancouver, opening for a Joe Perry-less Aerosmith at the Pacific Coliseum. Ear of Newt was there, of course. There was no way I was gonna miss two of my fave acts from the '70s. Besides, it was a Friday night. I don't remember … Continue reading Pat Travers in 1983: “I’m a good enough guitarist. We don’t need another one.”