February 14, 1997 in Seven

April Wine Offers Vintage Music At The Met On Sunday

By The Spokesman-Review
 

According to a local promoter, when April Wine rolled through Spokane two years ago to play The Met, the show marked the band’s only sold-out date on that particular U.S. tour.

Typical.

Music-wise, Spokane is a strange market. You don’t have to be a music marketing marvel to figure that out.

Bands, typically the dinosaurs, that wouldn’t ordinarily fill venues in other towns - we’re talking about the Foghats, the Blue Oyster Cults, the Quiet Riots - will most certainly pack joints in ol’ Spokane.

Some might say Spokane never forgets. Cynics say Spokane is stuck in a time warp.

The point is, just because the mainstream has cast these veteran bands aside, doesn’t mean Spokane has. That is why April Wine, again, will likely draw a massive crowd of retro-rock starved fans at The Met on Sunday.

There’s another explanation why April Wine is still popular here. They hail from Nova Scotia. They made a bigger splash in Canada than the U.S.

And whenever a Canadian band drops by the old Lilac City, a contingent of Canadian fans makes a run for the border and descends upon Spokane.

April Wine formed way back in 1969.

Through the ‘70s and early ‘80s, the band earned a whopping ten gold albums in Canada. April Wine became the first Canadian group to sell 100,000 copies of an English-language album in it’s native country.

It wasn’t until 1981 - 12 years after the band’s inception - that they scored a gold record in the U.S. (500,000 copies sold).

Here, the band is perhaps best known for the hit songs “Just Between You and Me,” “Roller,” “I Like to Rock” and “You Could Have Been a Lady.”

After some internal turmoil, April Wine split in 1984.

The band reformed in 1991 and set out on a 10-date Canadian summer tour in 1992. Based on the success of that tour, band members decided to delve back into music full-time.

In 1993, nearly a decade after the band’s departure, April Wine ventured back into the studio and recorded a ten-song album called “Attitude.”

Tickets are $18 and are available at G&B; outlets or at the door. Music starts at 9:30 p.m.

Elastic funk

In Rubberneck’s press materials, the Portland funk combo, which plays Outback Jack’s tonight, lists the assortment of venues it has frequented during the past couple of years.

The venues are primarily ones in the Northwest and Spain.

Spain?!

Yes, it’s true.

Rubberneck, which started out in Portland, up and relocated to Malaga, Spain, to try to crack the music scene there. The plan, orchestrated by brothers Ricardo (guitars and vocals) and Pablo Ojeda (bass), almost backfired, as half the band members quit.

Rubberneck survived the crisis and moved back to Portland a much-improved band.

Not surprising, Rubberneck’s time spent overseas made a profound impact on the sextet’s music. Rubberneck delves deeply into Latin rhythms, adding further elasticity to its already springy groove.

In 1995, the band entered the studio to record its debut album “Nosotros.” The set flourishes with the a spicy mixture of Latin funk, jazz and R&B.;

The six has an amazing command of its audience, making an instantaneous connection. Coupled with a feverish, evenly-paced live show, Rubberneck has garnered a rabid following in the Northwest.

For years, bands have exploited funk music, sometimes to the point of overkill. Bands like Rubberneck which find new ways to reinvent the genre represent the future.

Spokane veterans Ball of Destruction and Retrofit will warm up the audience.

Music starts at 8:30 p.m. The cover is $4.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email