Five     (Français)

Rowe is one of Montreal’s finest guitarists and the concluding song of the new CD, “La Vie en Blues” is all the proof you need. It’s a tour de force of soloing inventiveness and tone that seems far shorter than its 4:55. For the rest of this new CD he restricts his soloing ability to the necessities of the new songs. There are some gems here too. The opener “Believe I’m Gonna Go Back Home” has some clever lyrics and a solid B3 outing. “The Black Hole” is an after hours club that I don’t think I want to go to from this description. “Little Too Young” is perfect as a snapshot of the young wannabe musician with all the best equipment but not enough maturity to use it properly. “Gone Fishin’” and “Like A Motor” are jazzy new songs with ‘Uncle’ Bob Harrisson sitting in on brushes. “Like A Motor” is a rarity – a song-length analogy with a relationship that bears repeated listening. This appears to be a live-off-the-floor recording and crackles with energy because of it. (John Valenteyn, Toronto Maple Blues, 2008)

Five entered the Top 20 CDs of the Toronto’s Maple Blues Magazine upon its Montreal release. June, 2008.

Montreal’s Steve Rowe has been one of the best-kept secrets in Canada’s blues community, but that should be about to change. The singer-songwriter-guitarist has just released a CD of 15 originals called “Five,” and it is his best and most versatile project to date. From the Memphis-flavoured funky soul of “The Black Hole” to the jazzy licks of “More Grits” to the rollicking shuffle of “Merry-Go-Round Blues,” Rowe and the killer band have created a musical tour de force that stands tall among the best blues albums of 2008.” (Brant Zwicker, At the Crossroads, Vancouver CIFM, CFRI, CFFM)

Steve Rowe does it again with the talent, the drive and the gusto we know and love him for except that this time, our favorite guitar slinging trucker dabs on even more spices and subtle sauces to his already very hot musical gumbo. High “Five” indeed!” (Dan Behrman, Producer/Host, Espace musique / Radio-Canada, 2008)

His masterful guitar-hero talent and road-pro versatility have won Steve Rowe a special place among players on the Quebec scene. With a career now stretching over 25 years, a blues he delivers with rare intensity and buckets full of emotion, and a six-string style that draws flattering comparisons with the British guitar gods of the ’60s, Steve Rowe communicates pleasure through his music and brings it to all who hear him! (The Montreal International Jazz Festival, 2008)

Attention for the fifth and latest release by Montreal bluesman Steve Rowe is well deserved. Boasting 15 original songs, listeners are offered a rich palate of sounds stretching from New Orleans to Memphis to Chicago. Added to the mix is the skilled keyboarding of Peter Mika and the steady timekeeping of drummer Sam Harrison, as well as a guest appearance by veteran drummer Bob Harrison on three tracks. Five is yet another fine example of accomplished work produced by the talented blues musicians found in this city. (Martin Siberok, Ottawa Express, 2008)

Live à Montréal

Steve Rowe – Quebec Guitar Hero. On this recently released album, veteran blues guitarist Rowe delivers 15 tracks of six-beer, juke-joint shuffles, ballads and rockers. (Bernard Perusse, The Montreal Gazette, 2008) LIVE À MONTRÉAL Their show at last summer’s Festival International de Jazz de Montreal is documented in fine fashion here, with Rowe’s guitar prowess Front Rowe Center. Six songs from that last CD get beautifully recorded performances here, with Eric Khayat on sax and Sarah McElcheran on trumpet lending valuable support. As always, Al McElcheran plays bass and shares the vocals and Dominic Legrand is on drums for this show. Rowe sounds great, with a big fat tone, soloing fluidly throughout. Particularly on “Carlos & Me”, I think he out-Santanas his rival. Much the same happens on “Train to Gatton” and “Little Wing”. They don’t just do these tributes, though. Their own songs are well written. 4:00 in the Morning, One Foot Front and Can’t Forgive, Won’t Forget were good songs on the earlier CDs, they’re even better here. A guitar lover’s delight, this one, don’t miss it! (John Valenteyn, Maple Blues, August 2006) FRONT ROWE CENTERMontreal guitar legend Steve Rowe is the star of this outing, joyfully paying homage to some of his many heroes. All in all an up-tempo, energetic set by a blues band that knows what they’re doing; one that you will want to stop by and listen to from time to time. (Bear Claw Bob¹s Picks, 2005)

Front Rowe Center

Rowe is one of those guitar players acknowledged by everyone as one of the best. This third album is once again a very collaborative effort by Rowe; Alec McElcheran, bass and David Paul Neil on drums. They all contribute to the songwriting and Rowe & McElcheran share the vocals. This band excels at these clever instrumentals: “Carlos & Me”, “Train to Gatton”, “Tribute to Freddie” Not many guitarists can sustain a whole album the way this man ca. It just cooks. (John Valenteyn, Maple Blues Magazine, Toronto)

With solid support from bass player Alec McElcheran and drummer David Paul Neil, Montreal bluesman Steve Rowe’s third CD is a showcase for his considerable and versatile skills on the electric guitar. (Mike Regenstreif, The Montreal Gazette, 2005)

No Refund, No Return

The pride of Canada, Steve Rowe, offers his 2nd release No Refund, No Return. His guitar playing is controlled, but takes on a voice of its own with Steve coaxing sounds from it in a manner that only he can do. Highly recommended. (Big Al Watts, PBS 106.7 FM, Melbourne Australia)

Local singer, songwriter, guitar hero, morphs into a modern day interpreter of the blues. Steve’s own unique imprint takes nothing away from the blues and still leaves the listener immersed in the Delta. The sounds that blast out of his Ibanez LR-10 and his ’63 Strat are sometimes fat, sometimes nasty… always wicked. Three cheers for Steve Rowe and No Refund No Return. In this case the sophomore blues couldn’t be better. (Super Dave Reynolds, CHOM en Blues, CHOM 97.7, Montreal, 2003)

Steve Rowe is on the road again with a powerful new album with the good musical content he usually does. Rowe is an splendid singer and guitar player. Steve’s guitar sound is cool and very fine with delightful captivating warm solos. (La Hora del Blues, Spain, 2003)

With Steve Rowe’s long-awaited second CD “No Refund, No Return” this guitar slinger has turned out a strong set of stripped-down blues originals showcasing his songwriting kills as well as his considerable chops. (John Detcheverry, Cha Cha Cha In Blue, CKUT FM, 2003)

Steve Rowe is one of our top modern-day musicians. Amazing guitar, stellar voice, and great showmanship. If you don’t have his latest CD “No Refund, No Return”, it is your obligation to go get it now! (The Upper Room with Joe Kelley, WVOF 88.5 FM in Fairfield, CT, USA)

Steve Rowe’s impressive new CD made our Top 20 list right away, for its strong musicianship and intelligent songwriting. This is a band that really deserves to be much better known to blues fans right across Canada. (Ian Angus, Let the Good Times Roll, CIUT 89.5-FM, Toronto)

Driving the Blues Away

Straight-ahead amiable guitar-drivin’ boogie & blues courtesy of the nimble-fingered Mr. Rowe. (Blues Access, USA)

“Driving’ swings nicely on “Shy Side” updating country blues with “Lost Remote Blues” and soaring high on “Ain’t Nobody’s Business”. (Blues Revue Magazine, USA)

A great player in his prime. (Scene Roots and Blues, 2001)

Montreal Blues Guitar Hero Steve Rowe: a versatile journeyman. (The Montreal Gazette, 2000)

A wailing blues lead guitar is Rowe’s forte. (Dean Cottrill, The Montreal Hour, 2000)