Exclusive excerpt from my new book, Gord Downie, about the late frontman of the Tragically Hip

By Steve Newton The following is the Preface from my new coffeetable book, Gord Downie, published by Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. of New York City and currently available at Indigo, Coles, and Chapters outlets across Canada. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- The first time I spoke to Gord Downie he was a longhaired 25-year-old rocker touring behind his band's first full-length … Continue reading Exclusive excerpt from my new book, Gord Downie, about the late frontman of the Tragically Hip

Pink Floyd’s The Wall gets a redneck makeover by Luther Wright & the Wrongs

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 5, 2001 Luther Wright was 12 or so years old when he first heard Pink Floyd’s The Wall, but it wasn’t until a couple of years ago, while touring with his band Weeping Tile, that he realized the 1979 classic-rock staple was actually a country-bluegrass album in disguise. … Continue reading Pink Floyd’s The Wall gets a redneck makeover by Luther Wright & the Wrongs

Vancouver’s Bughouse 5 taps Darryl Neudorf’s talent on Bull Mercury

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 14, 2000 If you so much as glanced at either of Vancouver’s English-language dailies last year, you probably spotted the frequent front-page coverage of the trial wherein local musician Darryl Neudorf accused Sarah McLachlan of not paying him enough for his creative participation in a number of her … Continue reading Vancouver’s Bughouse 5 taps Darryl Neudorf’s talent on Bull Mercury

Ron Sexsmith’s conversational pop wins over Elvis Costello and Interscope

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 5, 1997 The night before Ron Sexsmith calls from Norway, I’m giving the TV clicker a workout when some tabloid-style show appears, updating the lives of TV child actors who played roles such as the pointy-eared werewolf kid on The Munsters and the six-year-old twins on Family Affair. … Continue reading Ron Sexsmith’s conversational pop wins over Elvis Costello and Interscope

Guy Buttery stretches acoustic-guitar boundaries

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, SEPT. 3, 2013 BY STEVE NEWTON The world is full of great acoustic guitarists, but every now and again one comes along who really blows you away. Vancouver’s own Don Alder—whose percussive, wall-of-sound compositional approach has helped him win major competitions around the world—is one of them. Another is South Africa’s … Continue reading Guy Buttery stretches acoustic-guitar boundaries

Modelos keep their cowboy-surf succinct

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, MARCH 2, 2006 BACK IN THE late '80s, when Modelos guitarists Joe Rotundo and Mike Kenney attended high school together in Fort Erie, Ontario, they couldn't have guessed they'd be playing in a Vancouver cowboy-surf instrumental band one day. At Ridgeway Crystal Beach high school they were more into the Ramones and … Continue reading Modelos keep their cowboy-surf succinct

Like a Martyr’s love of rock started early

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, NOV. 23, 2010 JEREMY ALLINGHAM AND Ben Henthorne like to rock. One listen to As Long As You Don’t Get Caught, the new album by the 28-year-old cousins’ band Like a Martyr, makes that abundantly clear. It’s all raucous, straight-up guitar-bass-drums action, recorded live with fervent vocals and, when needed, a bit of … Continue reading Like a Martyr’s love of rock started early