Meeting Steve Morse June 8, 2006

I had hoped to see Seventh Key at Sweden Rock Festival 2006 but at least Deep Purple was there.
When I arrived at the festival with my four year old son Ted, we picked up the backstage passes. 

Billy Greer had finally reached Steve Morse so Steve had put me and my son on the guestlist.
Since Deep Purple was the headliner and was playing as late as 11.30 pm, Ted had to go to our 
hotel with my parents who had followed to "baby-sit" Ted during the late hours of the festival.

Before the show I went backstage to meet Steve Morse, he was nice but quite busy.
This was a highlight for me so I got a little nervous and didn't remember all the questions that 
I wanted to ask him, but I did ask him a thing that I know Billy Greer would like to know as well.
-Do you think there is a possibility for you to do an appearance on the next Seventh Key album ?
His answer was "I have already been on one, and they didn't use it all", which made me realize 
that there might exist more Seventh Key songs with Morse, that have not yet surfaced.

Then I reminded Steve that he actually had called me in 1998, after I had left him a message at 
his hotel in Stockholm where he was playing later that night, and he answered "Yes I remember, 
it was an expensive call, since it was to a mobile". I didn't really get if he was joking or not.

He signed a couple of things, among others the german bootleg of Monolith with Morse & Greer on the 
cover, that Billy Greer signed "They owe me money!" a couple of years ago. Morse added "Me two !!?".

Since he enjoys listening to Enya, I gave him a CD by a friend of mine, Loreena McKennitt, who also 
is influenced by celtic themes, but who I think is way, way, better. Loreena can sing live as well.
Then Steve's guitar technician rushed me along and the chat was over. 
Hopefully not the last one though. 30 minutes later it was concert time.

Sadly I didn't have a camera to take any photos but I met Steve Morse a short while after the 
show as well together with Roger Glover and Don Airey. 
Steve Morse gave me a couple of picks for my 4-year old son, Ted.

Morse Update, posted on People Of The Southwind, Oct 7, 2006

I just saw the rather new release Live in Baden-Baden Germany March 1990 by Steve Morse Band on DVD. 
It's two TV shows from Germany, one from 1990 with Van Romaine on drums and Dave LaRue on bass. 

The other is from 1984 with Rod Morgenstein on drums and Jerry Peek on bass. 
Both shows features some excellent footage of Steve Morse and his band members. 
Even though it's not a big production it is in fact a simply great DVD. 
Tumeni Notes, for instance is superb. For tracklist, see my website:
It also includes a promo video for Cruise Missile from Steve Morse Band's debut The Introduction. 

For Kansas fans it should be especially interesting since this is filmed right after Steve left 
Kansas and before he came back for that tour in the fall of 1991 when Livgren left. 
Actually the best tracks are from the 1989 Steve Morse album High Tension Wires, 
which he recorded when he was still in Kansas. 

This DVD made me post an update on what is happening on the Morse side of things. 

Steve Morse
Deep Purple are still touring and will be in Eastern Europe in October then 
in France and South America in Nov/Dec and then they do a UK tour in April/May. 

Van Romaine (Drums, Steve Morse Band)
Van Romaine that I saw WITH Kansas in Mexico in 1993 were out on tour with 
Steve Morse in 2005 (West Coast in January, and East Coast in March/April) 
but this year he played with a german singer called Nena in March, June and August.
 Van live with Nena
He has also played with Enrique Iglesias in London, New York and for 150.000 people in Spain, 
plus a private concert in Sardinia, Italy. He has also been in the studio to record drum tracks 
for Nena's new CD. It is a CD of covers and featuring a wide variety of music. David Bowie, 
Joni Mitchell, T Rex, The Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan among others. 
Directly after getting home from that long trip he headed to Spin Studios in Queens to track 
drums on Vinnie Moore's new solo CD. Vinnie's influences are very diverse on this release and 
he's overly excited to hear the final result.
While in Germany he was also recording some of Steve Morse's music. 
Will be interesting to hear what that can include...

Dave LaRue (Bass, Steve Morse Band/Dregs)
Dave LaRue has been busy with the Joe Satriani Super Colossal tour of the USA. 
On April 23 at the House of Blues in Orlando, FL Morse joined for the encore. 
They shot a live DVD in Anaheim towards the end of the tour. Will be out soon. 

Then he played in Europe for almost 2 months. 
Last weekend, he did a benefit for Cliff Culteri with Joe Satriani at the House of Blues in L.A. 
That amazing event featured Steve Vai, Steve Lukather, Scott Henderson and Paul Gilbert, 
among other great guitarists. Bassplayer Billy Sheehan was there, as well. 
Dave will be playing with G3 in both Latin America and Australia this fall. In Australia it will 
be Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, John Petrucci. For the Latin America part, Eric Johnson will replace 
Steve Vai. Dave will be playing bass for both Joe Satriani and John Petrucci and it looks 
like Dave will be doing clinics on days off in Australia. 

Appearantly Dave says there are rumours of a Dregs tour early next year. 

Rod Morgenstein (Drums, Steve Morse Band/Dregs)
Rod also comments this Dregs tour and adds that it will be a West Coast tour in January. 
Lucky people of the West Coast should catch it. 
Rod was on the first three albums with Steve Morse (1984-1989). 
On the 2005 Dixie Dregs/Steve Morse Band tour, Rod was even doing a a two-man 
drum solo (guess you call that a drum duo) with Van Romaine. 
Rod's wife passed away last December so it's been a tough year for him. 
Rod played with his own band in South America in May. 

Rod also appeared on the 1988 debut album for Hard Rock band Winger with singer, bass & keyboardplayer, 
song writer Kip Winger and they have a new Winger CD, first in 13 years, being released on Oct 20. 
It's their 4th. They will even tour and are opening up in a small town in Sweden on October 14. 

Rod and Dave even have a new project called Balance II, that sounds very interesting. 
Melodic, progressive rock. They have 4 soundclips on their website: 

Andy West (Original Bassplayer, Dregs)

T Lavitz (Keyboards, Dregs)

Jerry Goodman (Violin, Dregs)
Website about to open soon

Haven't found any website for 
Jerry Peek (Bass, Steve Morse Band) and Allen Sloan (Violin, Dregs)

Deep Purple, UK Tour 2007 with Styx
April 21 - Newcastle Arena	Newcastle, UK
April 22 - Manchester Arena	Manchester, UK
April 24 - Nottingham Arena	Nottingham, UK		This is on my birthday, I might see this show
April 25 - Cardiff Arena	Cardiff, Wales
April 27 - Bournemouth BIC	Bournemouth, UK
April 28 - Wembley Arena	London, UK
April 29 - Brighton Centre	Brighton, UK
May 1	 - Glasgow Clyde	Glasgow, Scotland
May 2	 - Sheffield Arena	Sheffield, UK
May 3	 - Birmingham NEC	Birmingham, UK

Morse Update, March 12, 2007

This has been a tough time, and it's been a long while since I wrote. I was about to go to the NAMM show for the second day on our Dregs/SMB tour, when my Mom called. I had two choices, to get on the next plane and maybe see my Dad before he died of his brain hemmorhage, or go shake hands and smile for everyone while my Mom processed the sudden loss of her 56 year partner without me.

Janine and I were on the next flight out, dumbfounded that my Dad had just eaten dinner with us before we left on this trip, after he took his normal evening walk with Mom. Just a couple of years ago, I had succeeded in talking them into moving to our place and have really enjoyed having them living next to us. Priceless moments of seeing my Dad reading books to young Cassidy or Shauni. Playing basketball with my boy, Kevin. Getting advice on all things logical and spiritual.

He died with all 3 of his sons and my Mom right there. I couldn't imagine not being there, and if anybody reading this wonders why the last two gigs were cancelled, that's why. The following days are a blur, but I do want to thank all the friends who sent wishes and flowers, and things like that. At his memorial, all 3 pastors from his church gave part of the service. In his short time of being transplanted to the town where I lived, he quickly made friends, whether it be working for charities, preaching sermons when the regular pastors were sick, taking meals to elderly people, or helping older folks with their medicare forms. He loved to help people, and the pastors wanted to point out that it's pretty unusual to have all 3 of them to do a memorial service. Life goes on, but remember to always treat your loved ones as if every day does.

We just played to another fantastic audience in Sicily last night when I found out that Brad Delp died. In a moment of spotlight before Smoke, I managed to play the first minute of "more than a feeling", hoping that people would recognize the connection, and many of them did. Boston was probably biggest in the States, but lots of people around the world know them. I was lucky enough to meet the band, mostly because of my association with Kansas and the fact that Tom Scholz is a super humble, nice guy.. Brad and his wife were very gracious and easy to talk to, and I understand that everybody thought of him as the nicest guy in rock and roll. I think we were even scheduled to perform with Boston, soon........We will definitely miss him.

After I collect my thoughts some more, I'll write more. For now, let me say that the stunning effect of losing your immediate family member have put me out of synch for a little bit. On the positive side, the music I've done with the Dregs, SM Band, and now Purple has been inspiring for me, still. One very memorable point that lifted me out of my depression over Dad was having Rod Morgenstein (our Dregs drummer) invite my son, Kevin and I to see them play a few hours away from our home. To our utter surprise, when Kip Winger walked in the bus right before the set started and invited Kevin to sit in, Kevin didn't hesitate at all to say "Sure!". At the prescribed time at the end of the set, Kev went up, Reb Beach gave him his guitar, John sang and conducted, Kip and Rod locked in with him, and I smiled all the way through the song. They gave him 2 solos, too. Something about watching a teenager reach out and go for a new challenge seemed fitting after experiencing my Father's untimely death. Thanks, Kip, Rod, Reb and John, for giving me that opportunity to smile..
(Steve Morse)

© 2007 Patrik Wikström

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