That time I asked John Sykes if he thought Thunder and Lightning ranked among the best of the Thin Lizzy albums

By Steve Newton Back in May of 1989 I interviewed British guitar great John Sykes, who was promoting the debut album by his power trio Blue Murder. Six years earlier Sykes had played on Thunder and Lightning, the final studio album by Thin Lizzy. So at one point in the conversation I asked him rather … Continue reading That time I asked John Sykes if he thought Thunder and Lightning ranked among the best of the Thin Lizzy albums

The Mahones’ Finny McConnell on seeing the Pogues in Las Vegas and getting into Thin Lizzy anywhere

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 9, 2006 By Steve Newton When the Straight tracks down Mahones singer-songwriter Finny McConnell on his cellphone in Toronto, he’s at the corner of Bloor and Yonge, on his way to pick up a van for some weekend gigs in Quebec. He’s just back from hanging out with … Continue reading The Mahones’ Finny McConnell on seeing the Pogues in Las Vegas and getting into Thin Lizzy anywhere

Huey Lewis plugs new LP Sports, says he learned to play harp by imagining he was Paul Butterfield

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON NOV. 25, 1983 By Steve Newton "We just stopped at a bus stop on tour last year and got Hank Williams' Greatest Hits," explains Huey Lewis over the phone from San Francisco. Two days prior to the start of his North American tour, Lewis is commenting on the inclusion of Williams' "Hony … Continue reading Huey Lewis plugs new LP Sports, says he learned to play harp by imagining he was Paul Butterfield

That time John Sykes told me how he got Tony Franklin and Carmine Appice to commit to Blue Murder

By Steve Newton If you've been reading my blogs for any length of time you must know that Thin Lizzy is one of my all-time favourite bands. I just love anything to do with them. John Sykes had something to do with Thin Lizzy--like playing on their final studio album, and their last live one … Continue reading That time John Sykes told me how he got Tony Franklin and Carmine Appice to commit to Blue Murder

God bless Snowy White’s guitar licks on his live version of Peter Green’s “Slabo Day”

By Steve Newton I first heard Snowy White when he became the coguitarist in one of my favourite all-time bands, Thin Lizzy. He shared the six-string duties with Scott Gorham on the early-'80s albums Chinatown and Renegade, which weren't my fave Lizzy discs. And I'd actually preferred the guitar-work of previous Lizzy pickers Gary Moore, … Continue reading God bless Snowy White’s guitar licks on his live version of Peter Green’s “Slabo Day”

God bless Scott Gorham’s 60-second guitar solo on Thin Lizzy’s “Romeo and the Lonely Girl”

By Steve Newton I freakin' love guitar solos, where some talented artist carefully chooses the perfect notes and uses vibrato and tremolo and all that other technical shit to come up with something that'll stick with me for decades and be there whenever I want to retrieve it, replay it in my head, and holler: … Continue reading God bless Scott Gorham’s 60-second guitar solo on Thin Lizzy’s “Romeo and the Lonely Girl”

Rock Hall hits rock bottom, inducts Whitney Houston instead of Thin Lizzy

By Steve Newton Just when you think the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame might not necessarily be a total waste of space, they go and screw up big-time again. And this time it's a real doozy. Today the Rock Hall announced the inductees for its class of 2020, and guess what? They had a … Continue reading Rock Hall hits rock bottom, inducts Whitney Houston instead of Thin Lizzy

That time Tommy Aldridge told me that he “wasn’t a fan” of Brian Downey’s drum parts with Thin Lizzy

By Steve Newton As far as seeing concerts goes, I've been very lucky to have been situated in Vancouver since the early '80s. It's a major stopping point for bands touring North America--just a quick scoot across the border from Seattle--and being a music writer meant most of the shows were free. Only a few … Continue reading That time Tommy Aldridge told me that he “wasn’t a fan” of Brian Downey’s drum parts with Thin Lizzy

Album review: Concrete Blonde, Free (1989)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 9, 1989 By Steve Newton "God Is a Bullet" is one of the best singles of the year so far. A raging tirade against the mindless use and dire consequences of firearms, the tune just guns along, propelled by guitarist James Mankey's freewheeling harmonics and Johnette Napolitano's seething, … Continue reading Album review: Concrete Blonde, Free (1989)

The 70 greatest opening tracks of the ’70s

By Steve Newton Remember how you'd set the needle down on the opening track of a new rock album and the first tune would just blow you the funk away? Me too. "(Ain't Nothin' But a) House Party" (Bloodshot, J. Geils Band, 1973) "All the Way From Memphis" (Mott, Mott the Hoople, 1973) "Already Gone" … Continue reading The 70 greatest opening tracks of the ’70s

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)

That time Motörhead’s “Fast” Eddie Clarke told me he just wanted to be a member of a really hot band

By Steve Newton The heavy-metal world is still in mourning after yesterday's news that former Motörhead and Fastway guitarist "Fast" Eddie Clarke has passed away from pneumonia at the age of 67. Clarke was part of the "classic" Motörhead lineup, with also included singer-bassist Lemmy Kilmister and drummer Phil "Philthy Animal" Taylor--both of whom died in … Continue reading That time Motörhead’s “Fast” Eddie Clarke told me he just wanted to be a member of a really hot band

Album review: Thin Lizzy, Life (1983)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JAN. 13, 1984 By Steve Newton While not as well-produced as their first live LP Live and Dangerous, Thin Lizzy's new double album does hold some interesting surprises for fans of boisterous hard rock. Featuring guest appearances by legendary axemen Gary Moore, Eric Bell, and Brian Robertson, Life is culled from various … Continue reading Album review: Thin Lizzy, Life (1983)