Album review: Various Artists, Guitar Speak (1988)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 9, 1998 By Steve Newton The lineup of incredible guitarists on this all-instrumental string-fest says it all: Alvin Lee, Randy California, Eric Johnson, Leslie West, Ronnie Montrose, Steve Howe, Paul Manzanera, Rick Derringer, Pete Haycock, Steve Hunter, Hank Marvin, and Robby Krieger. Each player does one song, and … Continue reading Album review: Various Artists, Guitar Speak (1988)

Album review: Various Artists, Axe Masters–Legends of Rock Guitar

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 19, 1985 By Steve Newton Now this is more like it--heavy metal with class. But then any album that features the playing of metal martyr Randy Rhoads can't lose. Rhoads is included via Ozzy Osbourne's first solo hit "Crazy Train". And he's in good company. "Axe masters" K.K Downing … Continue reading Album review: Various Artists, Axe Masters–Legends of Rock Guitar

Album review: Rick Derringer, Good Dirty Fun (1983)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 28, 1983 By Steve Newton Party-time tunes of young lust ("Lesson Learned") and the rock and roll life ("Party at the Hotel") predominate on Rick Derringer's latest LP, Good Dirty Fun. But the subject matter of his songs is not really important. As usual, Derringer's flashy guitar histrionics are the … Continue reading Album review: Rick Derringer, Good Dirty Fun (1983)

Newt’s Rock Hall inducts Warren Zevon, Rick Derringer, Albert Collins, Ronnie Montrose, Gary Moore, and Jethro Tull

By Steve Newton So the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame did it again. Today the poorly-named musical dumping ground in Cleveland inducted six acts into its fold, including folkie Joan Baez and rapper Tupac Shakur. Sure, they're both great at what they do, but are they rock 'n' roll? Kinda doubt it. The other … Continue reading Newt’s Rock Hall inducts Warren Zevon, Rick Derringer, Albert Collins, Ronnie Montrose, Gary Moore, and Jethro Tull

Johnny Winter is hot, white, and blue in Vancouver

On September 1, 1989, Johnny Winter played the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver. The chance to witness the underrated Texas guitar legend in the confines of one of VanCity's finest concert venues (for the second time) was not one I was about to pass up. Besides, at the time I was really grooving on his latest album, … Continue reading Johnny Winter is hot, white, and blue in Vancouver

Guitar legend Rick Derringer has soloed for everyone from Alice Cooper to Air Supply

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 22, 1999 By Steve Newton When most people hear the name Rick Derringer, they probably think of his ’70s hit “Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo”, which typified the randy guitar-boogie of the free-love era. Others may remember him for “Hang On Sloopy”, the 1965 sing-along number Derringer did … Continue reading Guitar legend Rick Derringer has soloed for everyone from Alice Cooper to Air Supply

Bass legend Tommy Shannon has jammed with all the greats–except Hendrix

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 6, 1998 By Steve Newton Blues-rock bassist Tommy Shannon is best-known for playing with Stevie Ray Vaughan in Double Trouble, but his résumé hardly stops there. The veteran musician has performed with so many other guitar legends that you’d be hard-pressed to find one he hasn’t accompanied somewhere … Continue reading Bass legend Tommy Shannon has jammed with all the greats–except Hendrix

Rick Derringer is still alive and well in Vancouver in 1993

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 15, 1993 By Steve Newton The first time I saw Rick Derringer play live was back in ’73 or something, when me and a bunch of high-school pals from Chilliwack loaded into a van and drove to the Pacific Coliseum to see the Edgar Winter Group and opening … Continue reading Rick Derringer is still alive and well in Vancouver in 1993

Ear of Newt’s Top 30 Rock Albums of 1977

Cheap Trick and David Bowie led the way in '77 with two albums each, and the blues was represented by Johnny Winter, Muddy Waters, and Roy Buchanan. Aja: Steely Dan ("Peg", "Deacon Blues", "Josie") American Stars n' Bars: Neil Young ("Hey Babe", "Will to Love", "Like a Hurricane") Bad Reputation: Thin Lizzy ("Opium Trail", "Bad Reputation", … Continue reading Ear of Newt’s Top 30 Rock Albums of 1977

Edgar Winter strives to break down senseless musical barriers

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JULY 28, 2005 By Steve Newton Most rock bands from the '70s aren't making waves on the sales charts these days, but not every musician who thrived 30 years ago has been barred from Billboard in recent years. Edgar Winter had the chorus from his 1971 song "Dying to Live" used … Continue reading Edgar Winter strives to break down senseless musical barriers

“Frankenstein” drummer Chuck Ruff from the Edgar Winter Group dies

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, OCT. 18, 2011 Chuck Ruff--the guy with the coolest name ever who also played drums with the Edgar Winter Group during its mid-'70s heyday--passed away in San Francisco last Friday (October 14) after a long illness. He was 60 years old. Ruff is best known for his shit-hot drumming on the … Continue reading “Frankenstein” drummer Chuck Ruff from the Edgar Winter Group dies