Peter Green shunned the guitar-hero status of Clapton, Beck, and Page, but Mick Fleetwood says “he was the guy”

Steve Newton Sad news for music fans today. Peter Green, the British guitarist who made a name for himself with his stunning work in the Bluesbreakers and Fleetwood Mac, has passed away at the age of 73. Long before the pop-minded duo of Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham put their radio-friendly stamp on Fleetwood Mac, … Continue reading Peter Green shunned the guitar-hero status of Clapton, Beck, and Page, but Mick Fleetwood says “he was the guy”

That time Jennifer Batten told me that she thought Jeff Beck was the greatest guitarist who ever lived

By Steve Newton Jennifer Batten is an astounding guitar player, as anyone who's seen her perform with Michael Jackson or, later on, Jeff Beck will attest. I interviewed Batten in 2002, a year after seeing her play with Beck at the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver on his You Had It Coming tour. Before that show … Continue reading That time Jennifer Batten told me that she thought Jeff Beck was the greatest guitarist who ever lived

Album review: Gary Moore, Wild Frontier (1987)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 8, 1987 By Steve Newton "What are your favourite bands?" I get asked that a lot, and it's a tough question. For someone who listens to a lot of different records, favourite bands come and go. But for me, probably the most endearing rock group is Thin Lizzy. And it's not just because … Continue reading Album review: Gary Moore, Wild Frontier (1987)

Pandora’s Box conjures vivid memories of Aerosmith in the seventies

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC .12, 1991 By Steve Newton This scribbler’s teenage memories are filled with happy thoughts of Aerosmith, the best thing from Boston since Bobby Orr. There’s the time me and some pals hijacked somebody’s dad’s car and travelled down to Seattle’s Kingdome to join 60,000 other maniacs for a … Continue reading Pandora’s Box conjures vivid memories of Aerosmith in the seventies

That time Tal Wilkenfeld told me about her switching from guitar to bass

By Steve Newton Anyone who's aware of the monstrous talent of Tal Wilkenfeld only knows her for her skills on the bass guitar, which she's used to showcase her abilities with the likes of Jeff Beck, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, and scores of other famous players. But when she first came over to the States from … Continue reading That time Tal Wilkenfeld told me about her switching from guitar to bass

Rolling Stone can piss right off: here’s the 100 Greatest Guitarists (that I’ve interviewed) and 50 that I haven’t (yet)

By Steve Newton Google “100 greatest guitarists” these days and what shows up at the top is a total joke. It’s the high ‘n’ mighty Rolling Stone‘s list of the so-called finest, posted from 2015. And man does it suck. But what do you expect from the same bozos who oversee the Rock and Roll … Continue reading Rolling Stone can piss right off: here’s the 100 Greatest Guitarists (that I’ve interviewed) and 50 that I haven’t (yet)

That time Roy Buchanan told me that Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour was just a bluesman at heart

By Steve Newton I've been getting quite a few hits lately for a blog I posted about Danny Gatton, which included an audio excerpt from the interview I did with the underrated guitar genius back in 1993. So I figured maybe it was time to treat that particular group of Ear of Newt readers--the ones … Continue reading That time Roy Buchanan told me that Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour was just a bluesman at heart

Newt’s Top 10 albums of 2016

By Steve Newton Please, God, don’t let any more of my rock heroes die this year. Jeff Beck Loud Hailer The world’s greatest living rock guitarist isn’t resting on his laurels at the age of 72. With Loud Hailer—another term for “megaphone”—Beck delivers a fresh-sounding blast of intense, politically minded rock. His fretwork has never … Continue reading Newt’s Top 10 albums of 2016

That time Jeff Beck told me that Grammys mean nothing to him–especially when he loses to Santana!

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Jeck Beck back in January of 2001, just before the release of his You Had It Coming album, I asked the world's greatest living rock guitarist if the 2000 Grammy nomination for a track from his previous album, Who Else!, meant anything to him. In typically modest Beck style he … Continue reading That time Jeff Beck told me that Grammys mean nothing to him–especially when he loses to Santana!

Tal Wilkenfeld on life’s defining points, like auditioning for Jeff Beck in an altered state

By Steve Newton Tal Wilkenfeld has accomplished an awful lot since emigrating to the U.S. from Australia in 2002 as a teen. She’s performed with jazz greats Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, and Wayne Shorter, and at the age of 20 recorded her 2007 debut album, the all-instrumental Transformation, which she composed, produced, arranged, and played … Continue reading Tal Wilkenfeld on life’s defining points, like auditioning for Jeff Beck in an altered state

That time I asked bass goddess Tal Wilkenfeld how she got so goddamn good

By Steve Newton Sometimes when I listen to a musician perform I wonder to myself, "How did they get so goddamn good?" And sometimes--if I meet said musician in my capacity as a music writer--I'll just flat out ask them how they got so goddamn good. I did it with guitarist Guthrie Govan in 2015, and … Continue reading That time I asked bass goddess Tal Wilkenfeld how she got so goddamn good

That time Mick Fleetwood told me that Peter Green shunned the guitar-hero status of Clapton, Beck, and Page

By Steve Newton Legendary drummer Mick Fleetwood called me up a couple days ago to plug his upcoming gig at the Hard Rock Casino Vancouver, and I made sure to ask him all about his long-ago bandmate Peter Green. Fleetwood's current outfit, the Mick Fleetwood Blues Band, is performing several Green-penned songs from the early … Continue reading That time Mick Fleetwood told me that Peter Green shunned the guitar-hero status of Clapton, Beck, and Page

Roy Buchanan on being asked to join the Stones, his fave guitarists, and Jeff Beck’s dedication to him

By Steve Newton On January 26, 1986, I did my first interview with guitar legend Roy Buchanan. He was coming to Vancouver for a show at the Town Pump, so I called him up at his hotel in Salt Lake City and got the scoop. In this particular excerpt we talked about him being asked … Continue reading Roy Buchanan on being asked to join the Stones, his fave guitarists, and Jeff Beck’s dedication to him

Back in the ‘Wack Vol. 3: The Vacationers enjoy “doing a couple of Jeff Beck tunes”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE CHILLIWACK PROGRESS, APRIL 8, 1981 By Steve Newton (In the third of a series of stories on local bands, The Progress presents a profile of The Vacationers. Next: Loose Change.) The Vacationers, specialists in hard driving rock and roll, are a Chilliwack group composed of Mike Evans on lead guitar and … Continue reading Back in the ‘Wack Vol. 3: The Vacationers enjoy “doing a couple of Jeff Beck tunes”

Uli Jon Roth makes Vancouver debut, local guitar geeks eat it up

By Steve Newton Masterful rock guitarist Uli Jon Roth made his Vancouver debut last night (March 19), and for local fret freaks, it was well worth the wait. Scrape Records and the Invisible Orange brought Uli Jon Roth's Ultimate Guitar Experience to Venue, and the German axeman displayed his stunning virtuosity on a bill that also … Continue reading Uli Jon Roth makes Vancouver debut, local guitar geeks eat it up

That time Uli Jon Roth told me that he’d most like to jam with David Gilmour, Ritchie Blackmore, and Jeff Beck

By Steve Newton Back in 2016 I interviewed Uli Jon Roth for the first time ever, and made sure to ask him one of the more burning questions guitar-freaks might have for the legendary picker. I knew he'd played with some of the world's greatest guitarists over the years--heck, at the time he was touring … Continue reading That time Uli Jon Roth told me that he’d most like to jam with David Gilmour, Ritchie Blackmore, and Jeff Beck

Roy Buchanan on turning down the Rolling Stones, loving Eddie Van Halen, and being flattered by Jeff Beck

me 'n Roy backstage at the Pump, February 10, 1986 ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 7, 1986 By Steve Newton Not many guitarists can say they were invited to join the Rolling Stones. Not many can say they turned the offer down either. But Roy Buchanan--quite possibly the best white blues guitarist in … Continue reading Roy Buchanan on turning down the Rolling Stones, loving Eddie Van Halen, and being flattered by Jeff Beck

Sonny Landreth ranks Johnny Winter with Clapton and Beck

By Steve Newton I called Louisiana slide guitar-ace Sonny Landreth up at his home in Lafayette yesterday and we chatted for a while, mainly about his latest album, Bound By the Blues, which he'll showcase tunes from in Vancouver on January 17. The album, his ninth studio release, is a paeon to the blues and his … Continue reading Sonny Landreth ranks Johnny Winter with Clapton and Beck