3songsbonn finds out about life in the 70’s pop charts with Ian Hunter
“Both of those guys (Freddie Mercury & David Bowie) were dedicated to being Rockstars. I was just glad to be out of the factory”
Ian Hunter is rock royalty. The youngsters out there won’t be so familiar with the name, but in the early 1970’s he was hanging out with David Bowie, pictured with Freddie Mercury and even had Queen as a support group. He and band Mott the Hoople were regulars on British TV’s iconic Top Of The Pops. It was a time when shirt collars, trouser bottoms and even mens hair were all worn Big. It was the golden age of Rock n Roll.
Before his one man show at Bonn Harmonie on Sunday, multi Canadian Award winner Steve Hill kindly took the time to talk about life as an electric one man band and the challenges of making those sticks stick.
“It begins in the heart, in the soul,
and then in the fingers.
Everything else comes way after”
– Henrik Freischlader on why Gary Moore was, and remains, his Guitar Hero
We’re outside in the Harmonie beer garden, sitting in the sunshine, and sipping cool drinks, but talking business. Not the atmosphere to talk about The Blues maybe, but for the man sitting opposite me Blues is very much his ‘business’. The recent trio release and tour seemed like a change of direction for Henrik Freischlader, and now there is another change of direction with the release of ‘Blues for Gary’ a Homage to Henrik’s hero Gary Moore – so I kick off my interview by asking Henrik if this is indeed a change similar to the one Gary Moore himself made, back to his Blues roots?
Many thanks to Ryan McGarvey for taking time after his sensational concert at Bonn Harmonie to answer a few questions at very short notice (he agreed, I had five minutes to assemble my thoughts on the back of a 3songs visiting card, and here we are…) Fender or Gibson? Big venues or small? who was behind the foot-pedal wizardry of Purple Haze? and the secrets of that Toggle Switch solo…
“When I want sax, I call Candy” was how Prince once famously described his admiration for the musical abilities of Candy Dulfer. At Bonn Folk Club John Harrison might well say the same for Paolo Pacifico and his Harmonica. The familiar sight of Paolo ambling calmly from his pint at the bar to pull a C harp out of his top pocket and nonchalantly ‘just join in’ is deceptive. I suspected that you can only ‘just join in’ if you really know what you’re doing, so I figured there was a story behind Paolo’s seemingly effortless appearances – and I was right. Here it is. Enjoy!
“When I get up on stage and sing the words “I’m a superhero” I keep on fighting. I’m ready to take on the World and whatever comes my way”– sleevenotes ‘Superhero’ 2009
In January 2008 Candye Kane recorded a concert in Bonn for RUF records and I interviewed her for the local (now defunct) website ‘Bonn English Network’. I still remember her sitting on the big leather sofa backstage at the Harmonie next to a colleague, Manfred Schmitt, who seemed dwarfed by her. Back then Candye was a big woman and proud of it. Drummer Denis Palatin dropped in with a bottle of Jack Daniels, Deborah Coleman put her head round the door but closed it again – when Candye was in a room she ‘owned’ it. Not by demand but by sheer presence. Up and coming Brit Bluesgirl Dani Wilde was also there on probably her first major European tour and Candye, always smiling, happily posed for pictures.
A month after the interview Candye was first diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. The eight years between this diagnosis and her death this week were hard ones but the interview she gave me shows the years before were pretty hard ones too. That Candye Kane will be remembered by so many for not just her music but her smile and her kick-ass attitude to life and what it throws at you is the measure of her talents – as both a very special singer and a very special human-being.
I hope you enjoy my interview with Blues Superhero Candye Kane.
Don’t believe the angelic smiles – these girls had my interview firmly under control!
Despite it being Valentines Day 3songsbonn was hard at work for you, dear readers. Shut away, shortly before concert begin, in a back-room at Bonn Harmonie with only three pretty girls and a microphone for company. The occasion was a chance to interview the ‘Blue Sisters’ as this years RUF Blues Caravan calls itself. Last year the tour featured three ladies with guitars. This year the instrument of choice is a voice – or three to be precise.
Three singers and only one microphone? As it turned out Tasha Taylor, Ina Forsmann and Layla Zoe were all in perfect harmony both on and off stage. Of course it’s very early days on this years RUF Records Blues Caravan and these are three ladies with their own unique styles and expectancy from what the coming months will bring as my interview reveals…