Album review: Steve Morse, The Introduction (1984)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 2, 1984 By Steve Newton My choice for best instrumental rock album of the year--so far--has got to be this new release by former Dixie Dregs guitarist Steve Morse. With accompaniment from bassist Jerry Peck and drummer Rod Morgenstein, Morse unleashes some of the tastiest riffs imaginable, melding technical genius and spontaneous feel within … Continue reading Album review: Steve Morse, The Introduction (1984)

Album review: Black Sabbath, Past Lives (2002)

  ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 10, 2002 By Steve Newton I like collecting guitar picks. Whenever I’m near the stage and some six-string legend tosses out one of those wee plastic nubs, I’ll do what it takes to nab it. My most highly prized catch is a plain orange Ronnie Montrose pick … Continue reading Album review: Black Sabbath, Past Lives (2002)

Shades 1968-1998 box set delivers all the best colours of Deep Purple

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, DEC. 9, 1999 By Steve Newton   I’ve been a Deep Purple fan for as long as I’ve loved rock. Fireball was among the first LPs I ever purchased and played on my parents’ crappy rec-room stereo from the ’50s. Even today, when “Highway Star” comes on the car … Continue reading Shades 1968-1998 box set delivers all the best colours of Deep Purple

Steve Howe lists his favourite guitarists, calls Steve Morse “phenomenal!”

By Steve Newton I interviewed guitar legend Steve Howe for the third time in 2017, in advance of a Yes show at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver. Near the end of the conversation I asked the 70-year-old fretmaster who he'd been listening to in his spare time, which led to him naming some of his … Continue reading Steve Howe lists his favourite guitarists, calls Steve Morse “phenomenal!”

Triumph’s Rik Emmett on the merits of the power trio and his secret song for Randy Rhoads

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 11, 1983 By Steve Newton Triumph's Rik Emmett is a man of many moods on guitar. Though best known for supplying the driving rhythms and rapid-fire leads that are trademarks of his group's two-fisted sound, Emmett never hesitates delving into the subtle and contemplative realms of classical and jazz … Continue reading Triumph’s Rik Emmett on the merits of the power trio and his secret song for Randy Rhoads

That time Ronnie Montrose told me that the Montrose LP marked his “kindergarten days” as a guitarist

By Steve Newton Very few albums that I bought as a teen in the seventies had as huge an effect on me as Montrose. I mean, from the very first riff of the very first track of the very first Montrose album, I was like "Holy shit!" It was 1973, I was 17 years old, … Continue reading That time Ronnie Montrose told me that the Montrose LP marked his “kindergarten days” as a guitarist

Deep Purple’s overdue induction into Rock Hall means snubbing of Tommy Bolin and Steve Morse

By Steve Newton Now that the millions of Deep Purple fans around the world have finished celebrating the hard-rock legends' shockingly overdue induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, it's time to take the bad news with the good. The names of guitar legends Tommy Bolin and Steve Morse will not be included. … Continue reading Deep Purple’s overdue induction into Rock Hall means snubbing of Tommy Bolin and Steve Morse

Joe Satriani gave Steve Morse his full endorsement to join Deep Purple

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 18, 2000 By Steve Newton I’ve yet to be bitten by the techno bug. You won’t find any discs by the Chemical Brothers or Crystal Method in my collection, or any stashes of Ecstasy in my dresser drawer. But after listening to the new Joe Satriani CD, Engines … Continue reading Joe Satriani gave Steve Morse his full endorsement to join Deep Purple

Remembering the Commodore’s Drew Burns: Best. Promoter. Ever.

By now most everyone who follows the Vancouver music scene has heard the sad news about the passing of local concert-biz legend Drew Burns. The longtime proprietor of the Commodore Ballroom died on Saturday, leaving scores of friends and fans feeling down--until memories of him got them up again. The last time I saw Drew was backstage … Continue reading Remembering the Commodore’s Drew Burns: Best. Promoter. Ever.

Steve Morse transforms into a different kind of person at night

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 6, 1991 By Steve Newton Guitarist Steve Morse might not be one of the best-known instrumental recording artists around; he’s certainly not as familiar to the general record-buying public as someone like Jeff Beck or Joe Satriani—or even the new-found phenomenon Eric Johnson. But the folks that do … Continue reading Steve Morse transforms into a different kind of person at night

Deep Purple’s still smokin’ after all these years

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, FEB. 5, 2004 By Steve Newton British rock veterans Deep Purple sold out their upcoming Orpheum show in one week, which ain't bad for a band that hit its commercial peak 30 years ago. Maybe the strong sales were due to the fact that the group hasn't played Vancouver since the … Continue reading Deep Purple’s still smokin’ after all these years

My first and last interview with guitar hero Ronnie Montrose

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, MARCH 4, 2012 By Steve Newton It may seem kinda crazy to stay up all night transcribing a phone interview I did with Ronnie Montrose 14 years ago, but the news of his death yesterday hit me pretty hard. He was such a wonderful and underrated player that I feel it's … Continue reading My first and last interview with guitar hero Ronnie Montrose