In Loving Memory of
25th July 1959 - 17th December 2022
Our dear and greatly missed friend, Steve, was a founder member of Beer Valley Drifters, who passed away after a mercifully brief fight with cancer. Steve had one of those open, friendly faces that just invited conversation at a bar , so when Steve and I found ourselves, pints in hand, leaning either side of a marquee pole at the Bures Music Festival in July 2016, the inevitable conversation that ensued led to the formation of the band. Steve played a significant role in so many aspects of Beer Valley Drifters’ development, whether it was in discussions that led us to settle on Americana as our predominant genre, or choosing material – it was Steve who introduced us to Gretchen Wilson, Alan Jackson and Steve Earle, amongst others.
Mutual encouragement meant that we would often be able to get a song from zero to gig-ready in 3 or 4 play-throughs and again, Steve was a major influence in that. He would quickly master solos (or harmonica parts) through a combination of dedicated practice and the support of his guitar teacher and Youtube videos on ‘t’internet’, as he used to call it.
Steve’s musical style illustrated one of his many endearing characteristics – generosity, not just materially, but also in terms of time. For example, he would never, ever short-change his audience in a guitar solo by playing only 16 bars, when he could get away with playing 32!
And so, folks, next time you’re out walking in the country air, or gazing reflectively over a stretch of water, listen carefully to the breeze… you may just catch the strains of a blistering Tom Petty guitar solo, now that Steve (a Pink Floyd fan) has joined The Great Gig In The Sky… and this time, he doesn’t need to stop after 32 bars…
Fred Goymour – Excerpt from Eulogy to Steve, 16th January 2023
(by kind permission of Anita Horsnell)