August 19, 1991. Judas Priest’s final show with Rob Halford for over a decade. Michael Williams caught Darrell Dwarf Millar of the Killer Dwarfs checking out Alice Cooper, Priest, Motorhead and more at Operation Rock and Roll! Darrell discusses working with the very busy Andy Johns for the next Dwarfs record, Method to the Madness, which was set to begin in L.A. in September of that year.
VHS Archives #108: Brighton Rock on the Power Hour ’89
Gerry McGhee and Stevie Skreebs of Brighton Rock dropped by the Power Hour with Michael Williams in early ’89 to showcase their new music video, “Hangin’ High N’ Dry”. World premiere! The brand new album Take A Deep Breath was in stores and the band were on tour. The affable group were questioned about such topics as:
- Playing football with Steve Harris
- Recording Take A Deep Breath with Jack Richardson
- Lightening up or getting the sound they wanted?
- Brighton Rock double live?
- Why Stevie scratched the big VH logo on the hood of his first car25
- Cool “Outlaw” T-shirt giveaway
- The Boston Bruins
- “Live” vs “studio” videos
- The unreleased X-rated version of “Hangin’ High N’ Dry”
VHS Archives #102: Rob Halford Interview ’91 (The day of his last gig with Priest before quitting!)
19 August, 1991. Operation Rock and Roll, featuring Alice Cooper, Judas Priest, Motorhead, Metal Church and Dangerous Toys rolled into Toronto. The last show of the tour. Unfortunately the day lives on in infamy. It was the day Rob Halford hit his head (right on the bridge of the nose) on the drum riser, knocking him out cold! Priest performed “Hell Bent for Leather” as an instrumental while Rob lay unseen in a cloud of artificial fog! On top of that, and unbeknownst at the time, it was Priest’s very last gig with the Metal God for a decade.
This pre-accident Pepsi Power Hour interview by Michael Williams is interesting because Rob discusses their forthcoming compilation Metal Works a full two years before it was out. At that point the plan was to try and write a couple new songs for the compilation, and then go back into the studio to record a brand new Priest album some time in 1992. Needless to say, that did not work out! As the last show of the Painkiller tour, this day was actually the last time Rob even saw his bandmates until they reconciled!
VHS Archives #100: The Final Episode of the Pepsi Power Hour
The final episode of the Pepsi Power Hour aired at the end of the summer of 1991. The man with the sad honour of signing off was veteran Michael Williams. Off and on, Williams hosted the Power Hour since 1986 if not earlier. It was filmed at a welding shop in Calgary, Alberta. Because metal? (Bad, bad idea! Audio engineers, your thoughts on this setting?)
Williams played Metallica’s “One”, and “Hunger Strike” by Temple of the Dog. The shape of things to come.
The episode also features an interview with a new band called The Scream, featuring an up-and-comer named John Corabi. A couple years later, and Corabi would be the new singer in Motley Crue.
The very last band ever played on the Pepsi Power Hour was Van Halen. It was a big interview by Kim Clarke Champniss regarding the new album For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. The very last song ever played was “Runaround”.
The Power Hour was supplanted by the inferior Power 30. It was a significant change. I rarely missed a Power Hour. The Power 30 was rarely worth catching. However, look for the ad for a promising new Saturday show called Start Me Up – three hours of rock!
YouTube has forced me to butcher this video to get it up, so there are no music videos. The Van Halen interview is mutilated. There are some ads and all the talking. It’s history!
Speaking of history: 100 VHS Archives! And counting! I started posting these in 2019 and I still have plenty of files left to upload, and a few more tapes to play. I’ve been taking it easy lately because the software is user-unfriendly and my VCR is making odd noises. But we’re not done. Not by a long shot.
Click here to check out all the VHS Archives!
VHS Archives #97: Fred Coury & Stephen Pearcy of Arcade (July 17 1993)
By 1993, Ratt had broken up and Cinderella split with their drummer. Singer Stephen Pearcy and drummer Fred Coury then joined forces in a new hard rock band called Arcade. Promoting their debut album, Arcade played RPM in Toronto on July 17 1993 — their only Canadian date. They stopped by MuchMusic’s Start Me Up program (one of the only shows still playing rock music) for a quick chat with Michael Williams, who was introducing them on stage later that night.
With former bands never mentioned by name, Arcade discuss their current lineup and the Toronto Grand Prix. Was Pearcy wasted?
VHS Archives #90: Aldo Nova – “Modern World” unplugged live performance and interview! (1991)
By request of the mighty JOHN T. SNOW of 2loud2oldmusic.com!
Canadian rock sensation Aldo Nova made his very first visit to the MuchMusic studios in July of 1991, on the Pepsi Power Hour hosted by Michael Williams. Getting down to business, Aldo plays an unplugged “Modern World” from his brand new album Blood on the Bricks!
This nearly 20 minute segment is Williams and MuchMusic at their finest. Aldo is engaging and frequently demonstrates songs on acoustic. Subjects covered:
- Signing a deal / starting out with “Fantasy”
- Producing early Celine Dion recordings
- “Blaze of Glory”
- His band and working with a singer instead of singing himself
VHS Archives #87: Damn Yankees! Tommy Shaw & Jack Blades (1990)
“If you coulda gotten a camera up in a tree, you mighta been able to talk to Ted.” – Tommy Shaw
Who doesn’t love a bromance? Tommy Shaw and Jack Blades formed a lasting one with Damn Yankees and it’s obvious in this summer 1990 interview. They finish each others’ sentences and talk over each other like excited kids. MuchMusic’s Michael Williams hosts this excellent interview as they discuss:
- Getting signed to a label
- Working with Ron Nevison
- Terrible Ted and the “wimp police”
- Tommy’s “critically acclaimed” solo career. Haha!
You’ll even see Michael’s Ted impression. Check out why live Much interviews were always best.
VHS Archives #82: Tony Iommi & Cozy Powell talk Headless Cross on the Power Hour (1989)
Michael Williams asks some tough questions of Tony Iommi including “Why carry on as Black Sabbath?” You have to remember that in 1989, Black Sabbath was considered irrelevant. Ozzy was all the rage, leaving Sabbath in the dust far behind.
Other topics discussed:
- The Live Aid reunion with Ozzy
- Satanism in Sabbath music or lack thereof
- “Heavy metal”
- Rap artists (Sir Mix-A-Lot) sampling and covering Black Sabbath
- Tony’s favourite version of Black Sabbath
What do you think of Tony and Cozy’s answers?
Then, stay tuned for another separate bonus interview taken from a CNN report!
VHS Archives #78: Ian and Billy from The Cult chat about roots (and U2)
Quick clip from a 1991 interview with Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy. This was recorded off a Cult “Spotlight” on MuchMusic; the interviewer is Michael Williams.
Here, The Cult talk about rediscovering their roots and take a couple shots at U2.
VHS Archives #71: Angus Young of AC/DC – MuchMusic rooftop interview Part I (1988)
MuchMusic’s Michael Williams asked Angus Young about his famous “school suit”. Circa Blow Up Your Video. Much split up the interview into several pieces. When I find them all, I’ll upload them. For now, enjoy Part I.