Steve has defined himself as one of music's most versatile shredders, not only through his work with Deep Purple but also with the Dixie Dregs and the Steve Morse Band, where he has demonstrated his talent for crafting inspiring instrumental fusion and rock guitar songs. So what does it take to write a successful guitar instrumental? Guitar Player Magazine asked, and Steve answered. Read what he had to say here.
Deep Purple will be hitting the road again, continuing their Long Goodbye Tour. First up is a 30+ dates tour in North America, kicking off on September 2 in Riverside, CA, and concluding on October 19 in Minneapolis, MN. Then in December it's back to Europe for shows in Austria, Poland, Czech Republic, Serbia, Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania. For all tour dates, see here or here.
In 1986, Peter Frampton guested on the Steve Morse Band album Stand Up. Now, 33 years later, Steve is returning the favor, featuring as a guest on Peter's upcoming new album All Blues which will be released on June 7. The album consistst of a collection of Peter's favorite blues classics, and was recorded together with his longtime touring band members Adam Lester, Rob Arthur and Dan Wojciechowski. Steve features on the track Going Down Slow. Read more here.
The third Flying Colors album, a long time in the making, is finally nearing completion. Titled Third Degree, with a planned release in September. Apart from the new album, there will be some live stuff as well. The band will do a special performance at Neal Morse's Morsefest in Tennessee in August. Around the time of the release of Third Degree Steve will be on tour with Deep Purple in North America, but he will be sacrificing some nights off to squeeze in a couple Flying Colors shows. A few shows in Europe in December are being planned as well. Last but not least the band will be on board Cruise To The Edge 2020 in the waters between Florida and Honduras in March. Stay tuned for more album news as soon as it's available, and check out the confirmed tour dates sofar here.
A new string jewelry piece has been added to Steve's official store: the Feather Lariat necklace. Like all other jewelry items in the store, this is handmade by Swedish artist Katya Hast-Ekström, from silver and a guitar string played by Steve in concert. Go to the Steve Morse Official Store to view all available items and place your order. All jewelry items come with a certificate of authenticity.
As he does each year in January, Steve attended the annual Winter NAMM convention in Anaheim CA, a trade only event for manufacturers of music equipment, musicians, and other people involved in the music industry. Steve appeared at the booths of Ernie Ball Music Man and Engl Amps, doing signing sessions and interviews. He did some live performances as well, this time with old friend and fellow EBMM artist Albert Lee. In an interview with Lee 'The Captain'Anderton of Anderton's Music Co, he talked about new albums for Flying Colors and Deep Purple, possible new Deep Purple shows, and EBMM working on a new two pickup model of his signature guitar. In an interview with Jack of Peach Guitars, together with Albert Lee, Steve also mentioned a new Deep Purple albums, writing sessions for that in Germany, and the upcoming new Flying Colors album (which should be out later this year). To PJ Zitarosa of Engl Amps he talked about his Engl signature amp and sound.
Not long after NAMM, early in February, Steve and his Flying Colors bandmates set out to sea for Cruise To The Edge 2019. They played Blue Ocean, A Place In Your World, Fool In My Heart and Mask Machine, as part of the Mike Portnoy & Friends set. It has also been confirmed that Flying Colors (pictured here at the end of their CTTE 2019 set) will be on board CTTE 2020! Apart from performing, Steve also was on Eddie Trunk's Sirus XM satellite radio show from a studio on the ship, together with Jordan Rudess.
Two years after starting, Steve and the other guys of Flying Colors finally got together again to finish up work on writing their third album. They now have 10 songs written (not sure yet though if all 10 will make the album) and are aiming/hoping for a late Summer/early Fall 2019 release if all goes well... (and yes, praying the stars align for live shows too!). Take a sneak peak at the guys working in the studio here #FC3.
Steve talked to Craig Garber of the Everyone Loves Guitar podcast, sharing some informative, heartwarming stories, and some harsh reality, all in one amazing conversation. Stories on how the Dixie Dregs got started, how Steve got the gigs with Kansas & Deep Purple, what he learned about audiences, his top 3 musical experiences, his favorite guitars, amps, favorite players and LPs, why he went to work as a commercial pilot and what he learned from this experience, and why he appreciates people and life more than ever now. Listen to their extensive converstation here or here.
The Mutal Admiration Society, the album by Sterling Ball, Jim Cox and John Ferraro which features guest performances from Steve and several other great guitarists, is up for Grammy consideration in the category Best Contemporary Instrumental Album. Check out an interview that Sterling and Steve did about the album here, and listen to Steve playing on the song The In Crowd here. Additionally, Chelsea Constable's debut album track Greasy Creek Breakdown that Steve has guested on is up for Grammy consideration as well, in the Best Instrumental Composition category. Listen to Chelsea and Steve here.
Steve has been keeping busy as usual, and features as a guest on three new albums, two of which are connected to a charity organization. First off is Con Brio, the debut album of Legacy Pilots, a project by Hamburg based musician Frank Us. The album was inspired by the golden era of progressive rock, and apart from Steve features guests such as Marco Minnemann (UK, Steven Wilson, Aristocrats), Todd Sucherman (Styx), Steve Rothery and Mark Kelly (Marillion) and John Mitchell (Arena, Cinema), to name but a few. Steve can be heard on the song Value 8. The album was released on October 15, 2018, and is available in both physical and digital format (iTunes, Spotify, Amazon Digital and others). This project not only offers intense music with top-class artists, but it also supports the children's aid organizationWorld Vision. For more info, soundbites and ordering, check out the Legacy Pilots website and Bandcamp page, and follow them on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
Next is Stay Tuned, a project of Austrian multi-instrumentalist and composer Bernhard Welz. With the help of a lot of wellknown musical friends, Bernhard is about to release a charity album in support of the Linda McCartney Centre. Unlike two earlier versions of this project, the original Stay Tuned album from 2011, and Stay Tuned 1.5 from 2016, which were released in only a very limited number of copies, and with hardly any record label backing, the project now finally is getting a big release by earMusic. The new release is different from the previous versions as well: there are some old tracks newly arranged, mixed and mastered, and some brandnew tracks added. Steve features on the 'old' track Traffic Night, and the new track Jazz Police. Stay Tuned, featuring Deep Purple, Steve Lukather, Steve Hackett, Mark King, Carl Sentance, Jeff Scott Soto, Dan McCafferty, Suzi Quatro, John McLaughin, Bob Daisley and many more, will be released on November 30, 2018.
Last but not least, there is the long awaited new Jason Becker album, Triumphant Hearts. As most of you probably know, Jason is a guitarist and composer who was diagnosed with ALS about 28 years ago. Due to the effects of his incapacitating condition, Jason lost the ability to play guitar, walk, talk, and breathe on his own, and can only move his eyes and lips. But he never lost the will to live and found a way to still compose music, and collaborates with many musical friends to get his music played. His new album was funded by a crowdfunding campaign that raised $ 155,000 to cover recording costs, and features Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Joe Bonamassa, Uli Jon Roth, Guthrie Govan, Steve Morse, Marty Friedman, Paul Gilbert, Neal Schon, Jeff Loomis, Gus G., Trevor Rabin, Michael Lee Firkins, Matthias IA Eklundh, Jake Shimabukuro and many others. Steve, who features on the track River Of Longing, said about his involvement in Jason's project: "Jason has the true spirit of music burning bright inside of him. He inspires anybody who knows him, and it's an honor to be part of this!" Triumphant Hearts will be released on December 7, 2018. More info and tracklisting here, here and here.
Three new jewelry pieces have been added to Steve's official store: the Well Dressed Guitar necklace, the Flight of the Osprey necklace, and the New Moon necklace. Like all other jewelry items in the store, these are all handmade by Swedish artist Katya Hast-Ekström, from silver and guitar strings played by Steve in concert. In addition to the jewelry, there now is a brandnew LED guitar display, created by Dutch artist Roger Diodak of Diodak Ghost Guitars. It is based on Steve's signature #1 guitar, officially authorised by Ernie Ball Music Man, and comes with several cool options. So if you want some special Steve stuff, check out the Steve Morse Official Store to view all available items and place your order. All jewelry items come with a certificate of authenticity.
Progression Magazine issue #74 has the Dixie Dregs on the cover and features not one, but two interviews with Steve. One together with Dregs bandmate Andy West, about the band's latest comeback and sporadic career, and another one about his colorfully varied career, from the Dixie Dregs to Kansas, Deep Purple and Flying Colors. For more info and ordering a copy click here. Ahead of Deep Purple's shows in Japan in October, the September 2018 issue of Young Guitar magazine features a three page interview with Steve. More info and ordering here. Last but not least Let's Rock posted an interview with Steve, in which he chats about the Dregs tour, the Deep Purple/Judas Priest tour, his first jam with DP, his new technique to save his right wrist, image, practicing and much more. Read or listen to the full interview here.
Steve features on an upcoming new tribute album to Gary Moore. Titled 'Moore Blues For Gary - A Tribute To Gary Moore', it is the brainchild of Bob Daisley, who had played bass with Gary since the early eighties, and who was Steve's bandmate in Living Loud. Steve can be heard on the track 'Parisienne Walkways'. The album will be released by earMusic on October 26, 2018. More info and tracklisting here, here and here.
String Theory Radio on KZFR 90.1 FM from Chico, CA, has published an interview with Steve which was recorded on February 16, before the start of the Dixie Dregs tour, and broadcast on April 4, just before the Dregs came to California. Topics discussed include the Dregs tour, the old days of the band, electronic experimental stuff, a comparison between Steve's old Frankenstein guitar and his current signature Music Man, memories of his time at University of Miami, thoughts on changes that come with age (like his ostheoarthritis) and writing for a chamber ensemble, the influence of YouTube, his perception of the tunes on Free Fall, his old job as an airline pilot, having a loyal fan base, and more. Listen to the full interview here. The May 2018 (#305) edition of Total Guitar Magazine from the UK features a rig tour article in which Steve describes his Ernie Ball Music Man guitars, his TC Electronic and Ernie Ball pedals, Keeley compressor and Engl amp, read the online version here. A Polish translation of this article can be found in the June 2018 edition of Magazyn Gitarzysta (online version here), there Steve is featured on the cover as well. While in Russia and the Ukraine with Deep Purple recently, Steve talked to PedalZoo about his gear and stage rig (video here), did a an interview with the Koz Times newspaper (published with the help of machine translation), and was featured in a tv report (interview with voiceover).
Steve has done a guest spot on the new Brian Tarquin album Guitars For Veterans, he features on the track Battalion. This is not the first time Steve has worked with Brian, earlier he guested on Brian's albums Fretworx (2008), Guitars For Wounded Warriors (2014) and Band Of Brothers (2017). Part of the proceeds of Brian's most recent albums go to a charity for military veterans. Steve said earlier about his participation: "I got involved with Brian because he was making music for good causes. During the process, I discovered that he is a great guy to work with and is very versatile at all parts of this music business. Here's to the power of music making positive things happen!" Sofar the album is available on Amazon, iTunes and Spotify, and in high-resolution audio at Pro Studio Masters.
Rock, Roots & Blues - Live interviewed Steve and his bandmates before and during the Dixie Dregs reunion tour Dawn Of The Dregs (see here, here and here), and are now closing out their extensive coverage. The latest edition of their online magazine features a wrap-up interview with Steve, who shares his thoughts on the tour, what it meant to him, his take on the Dixie Dregs in general, and insights into his future endeavors. When asked if there was anything he would like to say directly to the fans that came out to see the show, Steve replied:
"Yes, and I'd tried to say it to each person that I did talk to is, thank you so much for your support because that's what this is all about. We could sit in a rehearsal room and play by ourselves and enjoy the music to that extent and enjoy the challenge of playing it, but having that energy with the audience and to have so many loyal, patient, and generous fans, in every way, including with their realistic expectations, it's what made the tour. Every time we screwed something up and it got me freaked out - there was the audience making everything better. Even after driving for 500 miles overnight and into the afternoon right before the gig, and you're beat and you just can't find any more energy, when you put yourself in front of that kind of audience, suddenly all the energy you need is there. It really is magical and the experience we have with the people that come to our shows is very, very close. I almost shook everyone hand in the audiences. It really was something very cool. Like I said, it was the high school reunion I never had. It was awesome. When I say thank you, that's what I mean. I really want to thank the crew who all volunteered for this and totally took care of us onstage, and Frank, Jake, Rod, and Andy for putting it all together!"
Read the full interview here.
Steve on the now finished, very succesful Dawn Of The Dregs tour: "I have always been one to obsess about trying to get all the parts perfect. But this tour was perfect, in the sense that the audiences made it into such a wonderful, positive, nostalgic get-together. Thanks to our fans, crew, management, and the guys onstage for giving me this indelible 'bucket' list experience!"
Steve is featured on Ernie Ball's recently announced 2018 Slinky 'Back of the Pack' artist list. For more than 55 years, the biggest names in music have used Ernie Ball Slinky guitar strings to write, record and perform some of the most important songs in rock history. Each year an all-star lineup of the company's most influential guitarists, multi-platinum artists, Grammy winners and exciting new voices is featured on the flip side of each pack of Slinky's. Read more and see the full 2018 artist list including Steve here.
In the afternoon before the Dixie Dregs show at the Rio Theatre in Santa Cruz on April 17th, Steve appeared at the Midtown Guitar Company store for a meet & greet. He answered questions, told some great stories, gave advice, made jokes and played a little bit of acoustic guitar. Watch it all here, and see Steve together with the happy store owner here.
Guitar Tech + Recording has published an inteview that Doug Doupler did with Steve a while ago. Topics include what coming back to the original Dixie Dregs lineup means to Steve, advice for players and bands about realizing and developing a trademark sound, which music that Steve listened to in the Free Fall era influenced him the most, favorite Dixie Dregs records, developing his rhythm playing, the impact that the Mahavishnu Orchestra had on him, balancing staying true to his vision as a composer, band leader and visionary while allowing the other band members a voice, messing around with stuff and trying to break new ground, the Frankenstein guitar, Ernie Ball signature guitar and other gear, and more. The interview also contains a bunch of cool vintage Dixie Dregs photos not seen before. Read and see it all here, and check out an interview with Steve's band mate Andy West, with more vintage pictures, here. Interviewer Doug Doppler is a guitarist and songwriter himself, his band Doppler Effect opened for the Dixie Dregs in 1995.
Steve's beautiful Buscarino is safely back with him, the second leg of the Dixie Dregs tour has started, and the interviews keep coming. Steve talked to the Des Moines Register about how the tour is not just a reunion of the band members, but for some of the crew members from back then as well, about rekindling friendships and camaraderie, everyone working hard, and more. Read it all here. Carol from KZSC 88.1 FM radio in Santa Cruz spoke to Steve about the Dregs tour, his early influences, his first experiences in Deep Purple and how this band has retained his interest for 24 years, work ethics, and other things. Listen to their full conversation here.
During the break between the first and second leg of the Dixie Dregs tour, Steve spoke again to Steven Hefter of Rock, Roots & Blues - Live (who interviewed all Dixie Dregs members before the tour,) talking about things like running his farm, being a workaholic by nature, the theft and return of his Buscarino guitar, his #1 and #2 Ernie Ball Music Man guitars, his feelings about the Dregs shows and the other guys, favorite tv shows, musical influences, his wrist issues and more. Read their full conversation here, and check out Steven's great photos of the Washington and New York shows here and here.
Great news! Steve's much loved custom built hand made Buscarino guitar, which was stolen last month during the first leg of the Dixie Dregs tour, has been safely returned to him. Read more about it here and here.
Before the last show of the first leg of the Dixie Dregs tour, Steve spoke to Serge Isakoff of WSBC radio in Chicago. They talked about Ritchie Blackmore and the Deep Purple farewell tour, the Dregs tour being a bucket list thing for Steve, teaching as a backup plan, his main contributions to Deep Purple, aging versus rock 'n' roll, working around limitations, and Steve's stolen guitar. Watch and listen to their chat here. Shortly after coming back home, Steve talked to Scott Medina of Sonic Perspectives. Topics included the amazing reaction of the audience to the Dregs shows sofar, having Andy West back on bass, what goes on inside him while playing, going back out with Deep Purple straight after the Dregs tour and switching gears, the difference between being co-writer in a band versus being in total control, inspiration for songwriting, and more. Listen to the whole conversation here.
More new interviews! Steve was a guest on two recent podcast shows, Amps & Axes and Inside MusiCast. In his conversation with hosts Jeff & Mick of the Amps & Axes Show, Steve went in depth on his history, equipment and much more. With Inside MusiCast hosts Rick & Eddy he discussed all things Dixie Dregs, along with other career highlights and history. Listen to all interesting and insightful things Steve had to say here and here. He also talked to Kara of The Pure Rock Shop on WNJR 91.7 FM radio, about the Dixie Dregs reunion tour being like a 40 year high school reunion and a bucket list thing, and giving advice for kids that are just starting to play the guitar. Listen to it here, and check out Kara's review and photos of the Munhall show here. Last but not least, the latest edition of Guitar Interactive Magazine features a video interview about a multitude of topics, filmed while Steve was in Stockholm with Deep Purple last November. There is an accompanying article and an amazing Tech Session dedicated to Steve as well, all done by Jamie Humphries. Check it all out here in issue 55.
The Dawn of the Dregs tour kicked off in Clearwater, FL on February 28, with Steve and Andy's mothers in the audience. By now the tour is in full swing, and the shows sofar have been received very enthusiastically. In Augusta, GA, where the earliest version of the Dregs was formed, the band was joined on stage by Frank Brittingham and Johnny Carr of Steve and Andy's pre-Dregs band Dixie Grit for a great rendition of The Great Spectacular, and in Charleston, SC, former Dregs member Mark O'Connor guested on The Bash. In Durham, NC, former Steve Morse Band bassist Jerry Peek was in the audience and caught up with Steve and Rod, and in Washington, DC, the band received a nice visit from the mother of late band member T Lavitz. Read an interview that Steve did with the Newton Bee right before the soundcheck on opening night here, and see a great photo report of the Washington show here.
On the down side, Steve's custom built hand made Buscarino acoustic guitar, which he had owned for 30 years, very unfortunately was stolen during load in at the Lincoln Theatre in Washington, DC, on March 7. A reward with no questions asked has been offered for its safe return. Please keep an eye out for it if you can, and spread the word, hopefully it will turn up again.
The long awaited Dixie Dregs reunion tour, also known as Dawn of the Dregs, will start soon, on February 28 in Clearwater, FL. In the mean time, while preparing for this historic tour, Steve did some more interviews about it. He talked to Clay Marshall of Guitar World about how the reunion came about, and to Peter Roche of Axs.com about first getting together again, getting reacquainted with each other and the music, the challenge of relearning the old tunes, and more. To Adam Parker of the Charleston Post and Courier he spoke about his musical background and experiences, approach to songwriting, how he has prepared for this tour and what sort of music he listens to in his downtime, and to Steve Houk of The Zebra Press about how he thinks a bonafide Dregs reunion fits in to the music world in the 21st century. Read it all here, here, here and here. Together with band mates Andy West, Allen Sloan, Rod Morgenstein and Steve Davidowski, Steve did a Q&A with Bravewords.com, opening up about memories from the early days, and their excitement to reunite and perform again. Read it here. For all upcoming Dixie Dregs tour dates click here.
As usual in January, Steve has attended the annual Winter NAMM convention in Anaheim CA, a trade only event for manufacturers of music equipment, musicians, and other people involved in the music industry. Steve appeared at the booths of Ernie Ball Music Man and Engl Amps, doing signature sessions, interviews, demos and live performances, solo and with friends.
In an interview with Lee 'The Captain' Anderton of Anderton's Music Co., he talked about the upcoming Dixie Dregs reunion tour, continuing touring with Deep Purple after the Dregs tour, the prototype of his third signature guitar, and practising every day. He spoke about the Dixie Dregs reunion tour and Deep Purple as well in an interview with David Ward of Musicians On The Record, recanting how the Dixie Dregs were discovered by Chuck Leavell of the Allman Brothers Band way back when. In another interview, with Nate from Guitar Interactive Magazine, he spoke about his old Frankenstein guitar and developing his signature #1 Ernie Ball Music Man guitar, his second signature guitar the Y2D, the new signature model that is still being worked on, needs for sound, having to change his technique and practice regimen due to the ostheoarthritis in his right wrist, and the upcoming Dregs tour with all the original band members from their first studio album Free Fall, which will include tunes never played live before. Together with old friend Sterling Ball he sat down with Australian Musician editor Greg Philips for an interview about Sterling's new album The Mutual Admiration Society, which features John Ferraro and Jim Cox, and has Steve and several other great guitarists as guests. Steve also demonstrated his Engl signature amp to Kristof Barocsi of Thomann Music, and discussed his signature Ernie Ball Music Man guitars for Gear Gods. He tried out a unique guitar made from 50 million years old amber at the Lava Guitars booth, and he had a nice message for his fans in Brazil as well.
Looking for a special gift for that special someone for Valentine's Day? Then check out the brand new heart-themed gift sets now available from Steve's official store and the Flying Colors official store: the Steve Morse Valentine's Day 2018 gift set, consisting of Heart Earrings and Cutout Heart Pick necklace, the Flying Colors Valentine's Day Debut Album gift set, consisting of Heart Earrings and String Bracelet with a heart and decorative pick with debut album cover art, and the Flying Colors Valentine's Day Second Nature gift set, consisting of Heart Earrings and String Bracelet with a heart and decorative pick with artwork from the second album. Like all other jewelry items in the store, these sets are handmade by artist Katya Hast-Ekström, from silver and guitar strings played by Steve in concert. Further details can be found in the item description. The sets are offered at a 35% discount compared to buying the items separately. All jewelry items come with a certificate of authenticity.
A new album featuring Steve and many of his amazing guitar friends, that is especially close to his heart, is out today: The Mutual Admiration Society.
Steve commented: "I think Sterling came up with that name after seeing how much genuine respect we all had for each other when we discussed this project. The way I fit in was that I was a guest with, and toured with, Biff Baby's All Stars. That was Sterling, Jim, John, Albert, and often with Sherwood Ball leading the group. We went to Japan and Australia doing gigs, and a cut down version of the band played in Germany at the Musik Fair. So, when Sterling announced he wanted to have some guests on his next album, I jumped at the opportunity to reunite with my old friends, who are such great musicians. The other guests are absolutely the cream of the crop: John Petrucci, Jay Graydon, Albert Lee, Steve Vai, and Steve Lukather - all did fantastic and humorous selections, leaving me really honored to have been a part of this fun collection."
Joe Bosso of Guitar Player magazine interviewed Steve about the early days of the Dixie Dregs, the band's upcoming reunion tour, the mental and physical challenges of playing with his old band mates again, his time at University of Miami, building his famous FrankenTele, and more. Read it all, in print in the January 2018 edition, or online here.
During Deep Purple's Scandinavia tour last November, TC Electronic caught up with Steve in Copenhagen. They checked out his pedalboard, jam-packed full of epic TC tones, and were treated to possibly the most famous guitar riff in rock music history. Watch Steve's gear run here, and his explanation about the sound of Smoke On The Water here. Learn more about the TC Electronics products that Steve uses here.
Steve has joined a cast of legendary friends on Sterling Ball's upcoming album The Mutual Admiration Society. Thirteen classic songs reimagined by today's most influental guitarists, featuring Sterling himself, Steve Morse, Steve Vai, Steve Lukather, John Petrucci, Albert Lee and Jay Graydon, along with John Ferraro on drums and Jim Cox on keys. Steve said "We had a great time getting together and hearing everybody's contributions to this album. Love these guys, and have been a visiting part of Sterling's band 'Biff Baby's All Stars' ever since I've known him. It's just fun music with a sense of humor, and some fantastic playing!" Check out a video of everyone together here, and watch Sterling and Steve discussing their musical pasts, long-time friendship, and the road that lead to this album coming to fruition here. Click here to listen to Steve's contribution to the album. The Mutual Admiration Society will be out on January 19, 2018, read more about it here and here.
A while back Steve talked to Nathan Cavaleri of The Music Network. Topics included keeping the passion to play and write music alive, staying true to his vision, balancing family with music life, physical and emotional hardships while on the road and far away from home, choosing his own definition of success, dealing with and adapting to health challenges, his philosophy on fear, playing what you love, and much more. Read the full interview here. Nathan is a great guitarist in his own right, watch him take part in an All Star Jam with Steve and a bunch of other guitarists in 1992 when he was just 10 years old here, and playing with Steve and Deep Purple in 2010 here.
Check out this video to see how Steve's used guitar strings are being turned into jewelry by artist and jeweler Katya Hast-Ekström. Some things are still made the old-fashioned way! Find the finished product from the video here.
Back in 2003, talented young guitarist Chelsea Constable, only 13 years old at the time, joined Steve on stage during the All Star Guitar Night featuring Les Paul. Steve said about playing with her: "Chelsea and her Dad invited me, Van Romaine, and Dave LaRue to join her for a song of mine at a guitar extravaganza (Van couldn't be there so Paul Simmons came along). She had been selected because of her ability to play so well at a young age. The amazing part of this was that it was a Gibson sponsored event (Les Paul birthday bash I think?), and Dave and I don't play Gibsons! So, Chelsea and her Dad went to great lengths to get permission to do it. We all did play "Stressfest" together, and she did a fantastic job."
Now, 14 years later, Chelsea is releasing her debut EP, called Part 1, which features guest performances from Steve, Paul Gilbert, Doyle Dykes, Trey Hensley and her younger sister Grace Constable. Steve said: "Chelsea decided to have me sit in on this very energetic bluegrassy tune. She was obviously ready for it, but it was smoking fast for me, so I ended up doing some different patterns (and technique) than I would normally play, simply because of the tempo. It's fast and fun! This style is also quite a jump from the last time we played together playing a live version of my "Stressfest"."
Chelsea herself commented: "Steve Morse is the reason I play guitar and how I play. If you talk of versatility, you are talking about Steve Morse. Stylistically, Steve is the man... He is the guy who can set in with anyone and always sound amazing! Not to mention, one of the nicest people you will ever meet. To have him involved in my project was a dream come true! My song Greasy Creek Breakdown was actually a tribute to Steve. Thanks so much, Steve!" Part 1 is out on December 13, 2017, available from CD Baby, Amazon MP3, Google Play, and iTunes. Learn more about Chelsea on her website.
There's lots of new stuff at Steve's Official Store. Everything from hoodies, t-shirts and hats, to mugs and tote bags. There is new jewelry as well, handmade with guitar strings Steve played in concert. You can check it all out here. There is fast and inexpensive professional shipping from both US and Europe, and gift wrapping is available on jewelry.
Earlier this year, after getting the news of the Dixie Dregs reunion, Steven Hefter of Rock, Roots & Blues - Live interviewed band members Steve Morse, Rod Morgenstein, Andy West and Steve Davidowski (read these interviews here). Steven continues to follow the band during their preparation for and during the upcoming Dawn of the Dregs tour. A while back he followed up with Steve, discussing the upcoming tour, how his style has changed over the years, and what he has learned and how he has grown since the band was formed over forty years ago. He also caught up with fifth band member Allen Sloan, who is quite excited about the tour. Read the new interview with Steve here, and the inteview with Allen here.
Steve's latest show with Deep Purple, on November 23, 2017 in London, took place exactly 23 years since his very first show with Deep Purple on November 23, 1994 in Mexico City. What started with a few 'secret' shows to see how things would work out between Steve and the other guys, turned into a wonderful long-lasting and still continuing musical partnership. Happy anniversary!
Apart from the Steve Morse Official Store launched last year, there now is a Flying Colors Official Store as well. It was launched together with the release of True Colors, the original sound of the band's first album before it was commercially mastered. True Colors contains more dynamics and detail than the original release, and is available as a download, in MP3, WAV and FLAC format. It comes with a beautiful brand-new digital booklet. Read more about True Colors here, and watch the official trailer for it here. The Flying Colors store also contains some exclusive silver jewelry, handmade by Swedish artist Katya Hast-Ekström of Katya Arts. View all available items here.
A while back Steve had an interesting phone conversation with Doug Podell of 94.7 WCSX | Detroit's Classic Rock radio station. Topics that Doug and Steve talked about include Deep Purple's 50th anniversary, the song Hush, band stability and chemistry, joining and fitting in Deep Purple, wise words of advice from Steve's mom, working hard on the music, learning theory, practising a lot and writing in different styles, to fit in any situation, the recording process of the new Deep Purple album inFinite and working with producer Bob Ezrin, the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, Ritchie Blackmore, and the upcoming reunion of the Dixie Dregs Free Fall lineup. Listen to the whole, almost 30 minutes long conversation here. Steve did an interview with Scott Tady of the New Beaver Times in Pennsylvania as well, during which he talked about Deep Purple's farewell, crowd recognition during shows, the songs Smoke On The Water and Hush, paying hommage to Ritchie Blackmore's music, being a team player, Deep Purple being a non-political band, the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, and memories of Pittsburgh. Read the full interview here.
Recently three new interviews were published. Steve spoke to Billboard about the new Deep Purple album inFinite, evolving musically, and about Ritchie Blackmore, who has expressed an interest in playing one last show with his old band. Read Steve's point of view about this here. To the Phoenix New Times he spoke about The Long Goodbye Tour, the writing and recording process for inFinite, technology and musical challenges and influences. Read it all here. An interview with Magazyn Gitarzysta (in Polish, published in print earlier and available online now) in which Steve speaks about Deep Purple winding down, Dixie Dregs reforming, technique and creativity and having lots of music ideas, his experience as a pilot and his Music Man guitars, can be found here, English translation here.
Steven Hefter of Rock, Roots & Blues - Live, who got the news about the Dixie Dregs Free Fall lineup getting back together first, has interviewed band members Steve Morse, Rod Morgenstein, Andy West and Steve Davidowski. Topics include what the guys have been up to in the past 40 years, the plans for the 2018 tour and how it all came about, the origins of the band, and making music and the Free Fall album. Read part 1 of Steven's conversations with the band here, more to come.
Recently a historic audio interview with Dixie Dregs members Steve Morse and Allen Sloan, from way back during the Free Fall days, popped up. The interview was conducted over 40 years ago, on July 9, 1977, the day that the Dixie Dregs opened up for John Mayall at a free concert at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia, PA. This may well be the oldest audio interview with any Dregs band members still in existence. Take a step back into Morse music history, and listen to Steve and Allen talking and playing their instruments. Thanks to Mark Oppenlander for preserving and providing the recording, and to Marije Essink for posting it on YouTube for everyone to enjoy.
The Dixie Dregs are back! The original lineup of Steve Morse, Rod Morgenstein, Andy West, Allen Sloan and Steve Davidowski have reunited. In 1977 they recorded the band's first commercially released album, Free Fall, and now, 40 years after the release of the album, and after jamming together earlier in the year at Steve's place, they are making new tour plans. Steve commented about the reunion:
"We're going to get together for a couple of short tours.....after 40 years?! We got together and played the music from the Free Fall album already, and had a lot of fun. Andy West and Rod Morgenstein are figuring out the songs for the set with some interactive input on the Dregs page. So, go cast your votes for tunes you'd like to hear, and the band will adjust the set accordingly. We're doing this to celebrate over 4 decades since our first album release, and to bring back all the original members from our first album. This is going to be fun!"
Steve is featured on a newly released Brian Tarquin project album called Band Of Brothers. This project is inspired by soldiers who have fought for their country, and part of the proceeds go to a charity for military veterans. Steve said about his participation in this project: "I got involved with Brian because he was making music for good causes. During the process, I discovered that he is a great guy to work with and is very versatile at all parts of this music business. Here's to the power of music making positive things happen!"
Steve has worked with Brian before, guesting on his albums Fretworx (2008) and Guitar For Wounded Warriors (2014). For more info about the new Band Of Brothers project click here, for details about the album and for ordering click here.
In a new interview published by Premier Guitar, Joe Charupakorn talks to Steve about being in Deep Purple longer than Ritchie Blackmore and playing classic Deep Purple material, the importance of rhythm, working with Bob Ezrin again, techniques other than alternate picking, the osteoarthritis in his picking hand and different ways of practicing, two tips for guitarists, and more. Read the full interview here. It's also available in the August 2017 printed edition of the magazine, and in the digital version here.
On a day off in Luxembourg during the current Deep Purple tour, Steve spoke to radio show host Robert Sas of the Rob Sas Rock Show. Topics that Rob and Steve talked about include the new Deep Purple album and tour, favorite new songs to play, the influence of the internet, Steve's guitar rig, things to do during days off, his arthritic right hand, adapting to that and switching techniques, refretting his main guitar, and having to fix lots of things at home, a farm, after he gets back from a tour. Listen to the first hour of the show here (with Steve from 28:52 to 41:46), for the second hour click here (with Steve from 23:55 to 40:46). This actually was the second time that Rob interviewed Steve, his earlier interview, from 2015, can be found here (with Steve from 26:52 to 37:20, 1:05:32 to 1:15:39 and 1:26:25 to 1:43:03).
A while ago, Steve talked to Skinny Devil Magazine. Topics include Flying Colors, writing for a special project together with his son, guitarist Kevin Morse, and drummer Mike Portnoy, the personal meaning of his album High Tension Wires, a gear run-down, early influences and favorite new players, tips for aspiring players, staying fit, balancing incredible technique, soulful approach and high intensity performances, his legacy, artistic responsibility, and future plans. Read the full inteview here.
Gary Graff of For Guitar Players Only talked to Steve about the infinite possibilities of playing in Deep Purple, his evolution in the band, favorite Deep Purple songs, the songwriting process for the band's new album inFinite, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Long Goodbye Tour and other, non-Deep Purple projects. Read the full interview here.
Three new jewelry pieces have been added to Steve's official store: the Cutout Heart Pick necklace, designed by Steve himself, the Signature Silver Pick necklace, and the Stringbender Dreamcatcher necklace. Like all other jewelry items in the store, these are all handmade by artist Katya Hast-Ekström, from silver and guitar strings played by Steve in concert. So if you want some special Steve stuff, head over to the Steve Morse Official Store to view all available items and place your order. All jewelry items come with a certificate of authenticity.
The Steve Morse Fan Page on Facebook has reached 5000 members. When asked for a comment about this milestone, Steve said: "Congratulations on reaching this milestone of participating members. I think content is much more important than any number but in this case I think they are attracted to the number of details that get added here... Thanks to all members for contributing!" Check out and join this great, growing community of people from all around the world connected through Steve and his music here.
"I would like to remember those who died/fought, 73 years ago on June 6, 1944 in Normandy. We thank you and all who served for their sacrifices...."
On May 27, 2017, musician Gregg Allman of the Allman Brothers Band, a band that has been one of Steve's big influences, passed away at the age of 69. About a week later, in the evening of June 3, there was another terrorist attack in the UK, this time in London, sofar killing seven people and injuring many more.
Steve said about these events: "It's been quite a week with Gregg Allman's death. I grew up on the Allman Brothers music and couldn't stop slipping in some of their memorable riffs in our shows. Just after this show in Paris, France, we learned of yet another terrorist attack. Prayers for those no longer with us and their families and a fast recovery for those injured."
Peter Hodgson of Mixdown magazine in Australia talked to Steve about the new Deep Purple album inFinite, balancing the band's enduring legacy with the prospect of creating something new, having Bob Ezrin involved as producer, recording live in the studio, Steve's growing Ernie Ball Music Man guitar line, and his pickup configuration. Read the full interview here.
On May 22, 2017, the Manchester Arena in the UK was hit by a terrorist attack, right after the ending of a concert, killing 22 people and injuring dozens more. Steve and his Deep Purple bandmates, on tour in Europe right now, are of course shocked by this horrible tragedy. Steve said: "We give our prayers and condolences to the victims' families of Manchester. Everybody in Purple is stunned by this. The UK has a history of standing tall in the face of terrorism, and their past has demonstrated that any such attack will ultimately fail."
Ultimate-Guitar.com have just published a new interview with Steve, in which he talks about the new Deep Purple album inFinite, his guitars and amp set up, answers questions from readers and tells a story about an adventure in Russia. Read it all here.
In France, a new interview with Steve is featured in the May/June 2017 edition of Guitare Xtreme magazine. Steve talks about Deep Purple's 20th album inFinite, the role of Bob Ezrin during the recording process, the osteoarthritis in his right wrist, his technique, Deep Purple's Long Goodbye Tour, Flying Colors and the Dixie Dregs. He says about his osteoarthritis that he doesn't see it as a fatality, but as a chance that life is giving him to become a better musician. The May 2017 edition of Guitar Club magazine in Italy, the June 2017 edition of Young Mates Music Player magazine in Japan, the #030 2017 edition of Total Guitar Brasil magazine in Brazil and the #6/2017 edition of Magazyn Gitarzysta in Poland, contain new interviews with Steve as well.
On episode #665 of Talking Metal, Steve talks to host Mark Strigl. Topics include the brand new Deep Purple album inFinite, Bob Ezrin, Deep Purple's final tour, Steve Morse solo music and much more. Some tracks from inFinite are played as well. The interview with Steve starts at 21:30 and ends at 49:20, listen to it here.
In a new interview in the June 2017 edition of Guitar World magazine, Steve talks about the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, Deep Purple's new album inFinite and the Long Goodbye tour, the writing process, his gear and the upcoming 30th anniversary model of his signature #1 Ernie Ball Music Man guitar, Flying Colors, a project with his son and fellow guitarist Kevin, the Dixie Dregs, and amazing things that have happened while on the road. The magazine is available in stores now.
Steve has done an exclusive new interview for the Steve Morse Fan Page on Facebook. The initiative for this Q & A came from the fan page's main admin and researcher, who has created a huge and unique, very comprehensive digital Morse archive. The interview had a somewhat different approach than a lot of regular interviews, with more out-of-the-box questions, covering a lot of ground that has rarely been covered in other interviews before. Steve very kindly provided very thoughtful and insightful answers, offering a great in-depth look into his mind. Read the story behind the interview here, read and download the interview itself here (Facebook account needed). Enjoy!
On April 15, 2017, guitar virtuoso Allan Holdsworth passed away suddenly and unexpectedly, at the age of 70. Steve reflects on Allan's untimely death:
"I've spent the week listening to many of Allan's clips and videos from decades of playing. I can't believe he's gone. He was an amazing player that saw so many harmonic possibilities every time he picked up his guitar. My very best wishes for his family and close friends. He really did become a legend in his own time, and has left an amazing legacy of guitar mastery. We did tour together some, in the good old days, and my friend, Jeff Watson, sent me this picture from online. I'm looking amazed at what he's doing, as usual!"
On April 15, 2017, Steve made a surprise appearance at the 4th annual Brick City Beer & Wine Festival in the town of Ocala in his home state of Florida. Proceeds of this annual festival with beer and wine sampling and live music go to a different local charity each year, this year's recipient is the Kimberly's Center for Child Protection. Steve visited the festival before, in 2015, when Blue Öyster Cult were closing the event, but he didn't play. This year however he got up on stage and joined local band R-Style to play several songs. The band's guitarist John Viola, pictured with Steve here and here, commented that playing with Steve was a dream come true. Watch and listen to R-Style with John and Steve here, here, here and here.
In a new interview with Guitar World, Steve speaks about Rock 'N' Roll Fantasy Camp, Deep Purple and Flying Colors. When asked what he enjoys most about doing these camps, Steve said "One thing I do have is a lot of experience, so I guess it would have to be to legitimately be able to answer any questions and to pass along tips." To read the full interview and see what else Steve has to say, click here. Steve will be at Rock 'N' Roll Fantasy Camp on March 4.
On February 7, Flying Colors made an unannounced surprise appearance at Cruise To The Edge 2017, as part of Mike Portnoy's 50th Birthday Bash. The band performed Infinite Fire, A Place In Your World, Kayla and Mask Machine on the ship's pool stage, the first show of the cruise, not long after departure from Tampa. Watch the whole Flying Colors performance here, see a nice band photo here, and a photo of the guys with Mike and Neal's other band Transatlantic here. Later during the cruise, on February 10, Steve was a guest on Eddie Trunk's live SiriusFM radio show broadcast. See a picture of Steve and Eddie during the show here.
Three different new guitar string jewelry gift sets have been added to Steve's official store. Designed for Valentine's Day by artist Katya Hast-Ekström of Katya Arts, all handmade from silver and guitar strings played by Steve in concert. So if you are looking for a special gift for a special someone, head over to the Steve Morse Official Store to check out what's on offer. Free gift wrapping is available.
As usual in January, Steve has been present at the annual Winter NAMM convention in Anaheim CA, a trade only event for manufacturers of music equipment, musicians, and other people involved in the music industry. Steve has been appearing at the booths of Ernie Ball Music Man and Engl Amps, doing signature sessions, demos and interviews. This year, 2017, marks the 30th anniversary of the Ernie Ball Music Man Steve Morse signature guitar, and the company presented Steve with the #2 guitar of that series, the second one ever made, 30 years old but unused and in perfect shape, unlike Steve's trusty and battered #1 that has been with him everywhere.
In a video interview that Steve did with American Musical Supply, he shows and compares both guitars. He also reveals that Ernie Ball is making a 30th anniversary commemorative guitar, which will come on the market later this year. Watch and hear Steve play #2 for the very first time here and here, and see a photo of Steve with the first prototype of the commemorative guitar here. In another interview with Gear Gods he talks about work on the new Flying Colors album, jamming with the Dixie Dregs Freefall lineup and the Rock 'N' Roll Fantasy Camp. And in an interview with Guitar Interactive Magazine he talks about guitars, soloing and working with Bob Ezrin. More videos: Steve talking about and showing his Ernie Ball Music Man signature models (for Guitar World) here, Steve and fellow Ernie Ball Music Man artist John Petrucci of Dream Theater having a fun conversation at the Reverb booth here, Sterling Ball and Ernie Ball Music Man artists Paul Gilbert, John Petrucci, Steve Lukather and Steve Morse doing an amusing interview for Andertons Music Co here (Steve comes in at 11:10). Some nice photos of Steve at the Engl and Ernie Ball booths here, here and here.
2017 marks the 40th anniversary of the release of the Dixie Dregs album Free Fall, their first official album on Capricorn Records. Early in January the Free Fall lineup, consisting of Steve Morse, Andy West, Rod Morgenstein, Allen Sloan and Steve Davidowski, got together at Steve's studio in Florida to jam on the old tunes for a few days. They really enjoyed it, and agreed that they could put something together that would be presentable to play these songs live again for an audience. There is nothing solid yet, but hopefully it will work out. Andy West wrote a blog post about the reunion, read it here.
"I never thought I would see a calendar say '2017' in my lifetime, but here we are. Time is passing faster and faster, and now that I'm finally wise enough to make some better decisions, many of those opportunities have passed. The one thing that I have no regrets about is spending time with family, having an occupation that has allowed me much freedom of expression, and helping others when possible. More than ever, I see that the most important part of my career should have been trying to be the best example for younger players. The measures of success all fade, compared to somebody being a positive influence on our chaotic culture. Support your local musicians, and Happy New Year!"
In the past week Flying Colors were together at Steve's studio in Florida, writing new music for their third album, with Steve doing double duty both as guitarist and engineer. The guys had a great time and the work went really well, as is evident from some photos posted by Mike Portnoy here, here, here and here, and two nice videos from Neal Morse here and here. One more photo of the band in the studio, joined by executive producer Bill Evans, here. The band will try to reconvene again in a few months to finish up another round of songs, and then begin recording. So stay tuned for #FC3!
On December 5th, 2016, Steve and the other guys of Flying Colors - Dave LaRue, Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy and Casey McPherson - will get together again to start writing for their third album, the follow-up to 2014's Second Nature. When asked how he feels about getting back to work with Flying Colors, Steve said: "I am looking forward to writing with Flying Colors again, because of the way that everybody influences the musical ideas that we bring in. It's sort of like playing a game of chess where everybody is on the same side: We need to think several steps ahead of each move, and constantly revise the plan. I really enjoy the ability to hear an idea get fleshed out quickly, too. Things move fast, but with great results!" To keep track of all things Flying Colors, check out their website, Facebook official page and fan page, and Twitter feed.
Several signed CDs and DVDs have been added to the items available at Steve's official store. Steve signed them all during the latest Deep Purple recording sessions. Even though he didn't have much free time to do it, Steve did insist on drawing the little guitars with his signatures, as he always does, saying that it wasn't a real autograph without them. Check out all carefully signed items at the Steve Morse Official Store!
Swedish artist (and long time fan) Katya Hast-Ekström has teamed up with Steve and his executive producer Bill Evans to create a line of official Steve Morse guitar string jewelry. All Steve Morse jewelry items are hand crafted from strings used by Steve in concert, combined with Sterling 925 silver. Apart from the pieces made with strings, there is also a silver replica of Steve's #1 guitar. All items come with a certificate of authenticity.
Steve said about this jewelry: "This is the first time I have had anything to do with any merchandise being sold online. I want to let you know that any jewelry that uses guitar strings, uses the strings from one of our tours. It always feels strange to throw away old strings, and this feels so much better. Our jewelry maker has figured out a cool way to make art out of the used string. Thanks for your support!" View all available items and place your order at the new Steve Morse Official Store! For more information about Katya and her work, check out her website and Facebook page.
If you are looking for cool Steve Morse merchandise, look no further! There now is a new Steve Morse official store, with very exclusive handmade items, as well as signed items. To see what is on offer now, click here. More items will be added in future, so you will want to keep checking back. And of course it will be Christmas pretty soon, so if you want to get a really special gift, this is the place to be. All items in the store can be gift wrapped, and can include a card in your hand writing. Check it all out at the Steve Morse Official Store!
The thought of playing right alongside your musical hero can be as exciting as it is daunting, but let's face it - for most people such an experience is just a dream. That dream can become reality though, as next March guitar virtuoso Steve Morse will join current and former Deep Purple members Ian Paice and Glenn Hughes in a Rock 'N' Roll Fantasy Camp event dedicated to the legendary group. What should prospective campers expect? How should they prepare for that moment when they're jamming alongside one of their idols? In a chat with Music Aficionado, Steve breaks it all down, and he stresses: Don't worry. You'll be in good hands. To read the full interview and profit from the insight and good advice that Steve provides, click here.
In a newly published article on MusicRadar, Steve reflects on 50 years of guitar playing. He talks about mentally grading himself for his performances, and shares 12 lessons that he learned during his five decades as a guitarist. To read the article and learn from Steve's tips and advice, click here.
"I was recently part of a collaboration to launch The Epic Guitar Solo Challenge for the EJ Whitten Foundation who are dedicated to fighting the issues of prostate cancer and depression. This is a fun way to get guitarists together, and for a worthy cause! I really like all the positive energy of this whole project!"
Find out more about the Epic Guitar Solo contest here and check out the music video that features Steve and many other guitarists, called Don't You Tell Me Not To Play Guitar, here. Read more on the EJ Whitten Foundation here.
On a day off from Deep Purple's current 2016 world tour, Steve Morse joined a podcast show from his hotel room in Antalya, Turkey for a conversation about his early influences, the Dixie Dregs getting signed, Flying Colors, Bob Daisley and Living Loud, performing at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, in addition to much more. Listen to the interview here.
During the recent Deep Purple tour in Japan, last May, Steve was interviewed by music writer Glenn Williams. The interview starts like this: "Aside from constantly being voted in numerous polls as one of the world's top guitarists, Steve Morse is also one of the nicest men you could ever meet. Humble to the core, he approaches interviews and fans with the same gratitude he always has, that of he not really knowing why people want to meet him or shake his hand. The man genuinely doesn't believe he's anything anybody else isn't and his upbringing shows when he politely offers my photographer a seat before sitting down himself (my photographer was a lady). Steve smiles all the way through the interview, constantly wants to explain more about things with insights and you get the feeling that he'd be a wonderful companion to drive a thousand miles across a desert with. Indeed, if I hadn't called time on the interview, we'd probably still be there now." To read the full interview, click here.
Steve's new website, launched on June 23rd 2016, brings a whole new level of information and engagement with the many facets of Steve's ongoing career. Developed by a devoted team at Golden Flamingo, the website will continue to grow and expand as Steve's career continues to, as well. Sharing his thoughts, Steve said, "Thanks to Golden Flamingo, Bill, Tom and Marije for the website remake!"