Wednesday, December 31, 2008

April Wine

Although they've pretty much always been considered a Canadian Band, April Wine actually formed in Nova Scotia back in 1969. After relocating to Montreal, Canada, the following year, the group first burst on the U.S. scene in 1972 with their Top 40 Hit You Could Have Been A Lady. (#27, Cash Box; #32 Billboard; and a #7 Hit here in Chicago! Their website says it topped the charts in Canada ... but my CHUM Book shows it peaking at #6.)

They wouldn't have their next U.S. Top 40 Hit for seven years, when Roller went to #34 in Billboard in 1979. In 1981, they cracked The American Top 20 for the first (and last) time with their biggest hit, the power ballad Just Between You And Me, which went all the way to #9 here in Chi-Town!

The group line-up at the time of their break-through single consisted of Lead Vocalist and Guitarist Myles Goodwyn, Guitarist David Henman and his brother Ritchie Henman on drums, and Bassist Jimmy Clench (who had just recently replaced their cousin, Jimmy Henman, and would later go on to perform with Canadian Rock Sensations Bachman-Turner Overdrive and Loverboy.) Over the years, the band's line up changed a number of times, at one point even expanding to a sextet ... later members included Bassists Steve Lang and Breen LeBoeuf. Guitarists Brian Greenway, Gary Moffet, Steve Seagal and Carl Dixon and former Mashmakhan member Jerry Mercer on the Drums.

Ironically, their 1972 break-through hit was actually a cover of a song written and first recorded by the British band Hot Chocolate, who wouldn't hit the charts here Stateside for another three years!

Two other "personal favorite" tracks previously featured in Forgotten Hits include their slowed down version of The Beatles' "A Hard Day's Night" classic Tell Me Why and the banned-for-obvious-reasons If You See Kay.

Goodwyn, who retains the legal rights to the band's name, has reformed the group a number of times over the past several years ... in fact, you can check out all of their most current tour information here:
Click here: April Wine - Tour Dates

DIDJAKNOW???: In 1977, a concert was announced at The El Mocambo Club in Toronto, Canada, featuring April Wine as the headliners. Their warm-up band that evening was to be an unknown rock group called The Cochroaches. However, the whole event was a ruse ... The Cochroaches were, in fact, The Rolling Stones, who recorded their Love You Live album there that night! (April Wine's release, the Live At The El Mocambo Club LP, didn't fare quite as well!!! lol) The gamble paid off, however ... April Wine would go on to tour as the opening act for The Stones, Rush, Journey, Styx and Nazareth into the early '80's.

THIS JUST IN: From Ron Smith's web page: Myles Goodwin, the 60 year-old lead singer of April Wine, was hospitalized Friday (November 28) after collapsing at the Montreal airport and striking his head. The group was on its way to a concert in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where they were to have reunited with two other original members.