Chrissy Steele Interview
Throughout rock 'n roll
history, Canada has exported an unusually high percentage of talented performers.
Everybody from Paul Anka to Bryan Adams, to Bachman Turner Overdrive, to Loverboy,
and the list goes on.
Now, from our friendly neighbors to the North, comes another singing sensation —Chrissy
Steele. If ever there was someone destined for stardom, it's Chrissy Steele
She's got .it all.
Chrissy records for E.M I Records
Q: You were working six nights a week in Canadian clubs Live music must
really be popular there.
A: Yeah, it's hurtin' though right now. We're going through a little
bit of a recession, and people aren't spending as much money, so they're
not buying as much beer. A lot of clubs are either going out of business
or they're turning into dance clubs. I kind of think I got out of it
in time. (Laughs).
Q: So, here you were, playing the Club Soda in Vancouver and in walks
Jon Bon Jovi, Paul Dean (Loverboy) and .Joe Elliott (lead singer of Def
Leppard). Was this a showcase club?
A: Yeah, that was a pretty amazing night I must say. All those people
on one stage. It doesn't happen very often in Vancouver. It just happened
to me, that they all came down one night. Def Leppard was doing a concert
that night, I guess. They all showed up there and I was playing there
for the week. Brian MacLeod saw me down there that night. I guess he
must've really liked me, 'cause I'm working with the guy now.
Q: When you first arrived in Vancouver, you said you took some hard
knocks. What happened?
A: Well, it was really very hard for me, cause I wasn't very well known.
I got sent out to Alberta's provinces, which is a heavier scene. They
were more into heavy metal. I was doing covers like Accept’s “Screamin” “For
A Love Bite” and Judas Priest's 'Another Thing Comin' and Dokken's
'Tooth And Nail.' I was opening up with that song. Vancouver at that
time was more into classic rock — Foreigner and Bad Co. I came
back there and hadn't really played the circuit much in Vancouver. So,
I ate a lot of spaghetti and butter for awhile. And, a lot of potatoes.
I finally hooked up with somebody and started playin' again. It took
me a long time to get some notice, that's for sure.
Q: How did you support yourself in those early days in Vancouver?
A: When I got there, I was in the band Reform School, but I was going
out with one of the guys in the band. I got fired from Reform School,
cause I was a girl, believe it or not. That was their reason I didn't
want to do any heavy metal anymore. I wanted to come back to Vancouver,
because that's where it's happening, right? Nobody is gonna see you
in Alberta. 1 wanted to do more stuff by 'Heart' and Pat Benatar. Another
reason I got fired is, nobody fools around with the singer, right?
And of course, we broke that rule? I might add that I’m not going
out with him anymore. So, I got back into a cover band, and played
for awhile, and this thing happened for me.
Q: You say, "music proved to be my savior." What
would have happened to Chrissy Steele if that were not the case?
A: See, that's why music was my savior, 'cause I didn't have any interest
in anything else but music. I've done it all my life. I never really
developed any other talent. People who are musicians, it's just in your
blood. You gotta do it.
Q: You studied both English and Psychology at the University of Victoria?
A: I come from a very well-educated family. (Laughs). And, they're all
teachers. My dad was a principal. The prerequisite once you got out
of high school was, you gotta go to college. I really wasn't into that
part. I really wanted to sing. But, I was really shy, and hadn't been
on stage much, and I was scared to death of being on stage. So, it
was really a big step for me to do that. I went to school, and I found
out it didn't suit me. That was that. I'm doing what I want to do now,
which is not what a lot of people get to do.
Q: You were singing opera at one point Are you still?
A: Yeah. I sing at the Victoria Opera Society.
Q: If someone was to ask what your formula for success is, you would
probably say being in the right place at the right time with the right
A: So true.
Q: Hasn't luck also played a role?
A: Oh, yeah. It's in the stars. I'm sure there’s a lot of singers
out there who blow my doors, but unfortunately, they weren't in the right
place at the right time.
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