Album review: George Thorogood & the Destroyers, Maverick (1985)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 29, 1985 By Steve Newton George Thorogood hasn't changed much since his first album was released in 1978. On that LP he recorded an eight-minute version of John Lee Hooker's homage to alcohol, "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer". On his new record, Maverick, he begins side two with Carl … Continue reading Album review: George Thorogood & the Destroyers, Maverick (1985)

Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues overflows with deathless blues classics

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 18, 2003 By Steve Newton Many music fans have discovered the beauty of the blues while uncovering the roots of rock, yours truly included. Twenty-some-odd years ago I got set on that course by a pedal-steel guitarist and country-bluegrass performer named Smokin’ Joe Michno. As a dedicated hard-rock … Continue reading Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues overflows with deathless blues classics

Album review: Big Head Todd & the Monsters, Beautiful World (1997)

  ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 3, 1997 By Steve Newton Its previous two albums—1993’s Sister Sweetly and 1995’s Strategem—were sterling examples of well played and wonderfully sung roots-pop, but on Beautiful World, Colorado’s Big Head Todd & the Monsters venture winningly into seriously funky and soulful territory. The title track—featuring former Parliament-Funkadelic … Continue reading Album review: Big Head Todd & the Monsters, Beautiful World (1997)

Dance of the Rainbow Serpent features some of Carlos Santana’s finest moments on guitar

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 14, 1995 By Steve Newton Unlike the recent Tom Petty box, this three-CD package doesn’t contain enough previously unreleased material to make it a must-have, but it does feature some of Carlos Santana’s finest moments on guitar, and you know that can’t be bad. Dance of the Rainbow … Continue reading Dance of the Rainbow Serpent features some of Carlos Santana’s finest moments on guitar

My one and only interview with blues legend Albert Collins, who wanted to meet Clapton real bad

kirk west photo ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 27, 1985 By Steve Newton Musician Magazine calls him "the most powerful blues guitarist in the world." He has won awards from the Montreaux Jazz Festival, the French Academie du Jazz, and the Memphis Blues Foundation, and received three Grammy nominations. He is known as … Continue reading My one and only interview with blues legend Albert Collins, who wanted to meet Clapton real bad

Deborah Coleman switched from bass to guitar after hearing Jimi Hendrix

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 4, 2002 By Steve Newton Deborah Coleman is a captivating soloist in her own right, but on her latest CD, Livin’ on Love, she did fans of impassioned blues guitar a big favour by letting her buddy Jimmy Thackery get his licks in as well. Actually, she might … Continue reading Deborah Coleman switched from bass to guitar after hearing Jimi Hendrix

Deborah Coleman was wowed by the blues grooves of Hooker, Wolf, and Waters

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 20, 2000 There are a helluva lot of lead guitarists in the world, and a tidy portion of them are blues pickers. Increasingly, that category includes females, from veteran slide specialist Bonnie Raitt to 14-year-old blues-rock sensation Shannon Curfman. But for some reason there aren’t many black female … Continue reading Deborah Coleman was wowed by the blues grooves of Hooker, Wolf, and Waters

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

Tab Benoit says there’s only one Stevie Ray Vaughan, and he’s gone

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 3, 1998 The biggest obstacle to conducting a phone interview with a touring musician is pinpointing precisely where the artist will be at a particular time. Which city, which hotel, which room, and—if they’re big shots like Robert Plant—which alias they’re using that day. The promotions arm of … Continue reading Tab Benoit says there’s only one Stevie Ray Vaughan, and he’s gone

John Lee Hooker helps Big Head Todd make a Beautiful World

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 8, 1997 By Steve Newton Big Head Todd & the Monsters’ Beautiful World is one of my most-played CDs these days; I can’t get enough of the Denver trio’s stimulating brand of funky, soulful roots-rock. Strangely enough, some of the disc’s most memorable moments occur in songs that … Continue reading John Lee Hooker helps Big Head Todd make a Beautiful World

George Thorogood wants to rock with McCartney and play the blues with Dylan

I've always enjoy asking guitar heroes which players they'd most like to jam with if they could pick anyone, living or dead. And the last one I interviewed, George Thorogood, had a pretty interesting bucket list. "Well you can't jam with Robert Johnson 'cause he didn't need anybody," replied the 64-year-old blues-rocker. And I can't jam with Elmore … Continue reading George Thorogood wants to rock with McCartney and play the blues with Dylan

Chicago Bluesman Buddy Guy Goes Acoustic

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 19, 2004 By Steve Newton Chicago blues great Buddy Guy has played the Commodore Ballroom many times during his 45-year career, but the next time he visits the historic venue he won't be sporting his trademark black Strat with the big white polka dots. For the first time here, the … Continue reading Chicago Bluesman Buddy Guy Goes Acoustic

Buddy Guy brings fiery Chicago blues to Coquitlam, but can’t outshine opener Jonny Lang

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, SEPT. 29, 2012 Blues legend Buddy Guy brought a taste of Chicago to the wilds of Coquitlam last night (September 28), but the verifiable guitar legend was outshone by a "kid" 45 years younger than himself. Jonny Lang opened the show with an hour-long set that included a showstopping version of … Continue reading Buddy Guy brings fiery Chicago blues to Coquitlam, but can’t outshine opener Jonny Lang

Chicago bluesman Morris Holt, aka “Magic Slim”, dies at 75

   ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 21, 2013 The blues world lost one of its elder statesmen yesterday when Morris Holt--aka "Magic Slim"--passed away at the age of 75 at a hospital in Philadelphia. He had been under medical care since late last month, when breathing problems caused him to suspend a tour with his … Continue reading Chicago bluesman Morris Holt, aka “Magic Slim”, dies at 75