ALAN FREW

Musician. Author. Speaker.

#iwearmysunglassesatnight SO YOU... #dontforgetmewhenimgone

 By now some of you may know ( and if ya don’t then here it comes) that 80’s idol and heart-throb, Cory Hart is doing a nation-wide tour next summer, beginning in St.John’s NFLD, May 31st, ( ssshhhh, that’s his birthday 😉) and ending in Vancouver, BC, June 25th. And by now, if you do indeed know that Corey is touring next summer, then ya probably know also, that Glass Tiger is joining him on this one, for a little bit of Canadian, music, history in the making.

YESSSSS, it’s really happening. 

YESSSSS, it’s really happening. 

Video Hits, MTV, Good Rockin’ Tonight, and of course, Canada’s much-beloved MuchMusic, who can forget the birth of the video age, and how it took over the world. I look back on that time with fondness and nostalgia, as I am sure many of you do also. It was a glorious time for music....period.

What a time.... 

What a time.... 

Yes, it had lots of  “schmaltzy” moments and hokey, and goofy parts to it but it was also a defining period in music’s culture and history, and it will always be remembered as “classic” without a doubt. Say what you want about the hair, the make-up, the shoulder-pads and the head-bands, and of course, the videos, some of the greatest songs in the history of songwriting came from that iconic era known as, “The Eighties.” And with songs such as, ‘Sunglassess At Night,’ ‘Don’t Forget Me ( when I’m gone)’ ‘ Never Surrender’ and ‘Someday’ both Corey and Glass Tiger have left our own, cool, indelible mark, and of that, we are very honoured and proud. 

Ahhhhhh, “The Eighties...”

Ahhhhhh, “The Eighties...”

I cannot tell you how many times in these past decades that people have said to me, “Why don’t you guys and Corey Hart tour together?” Of course it always sounded cool on paper but timing is everything, as you well know but it was just never able to happen. GT took a long hiatus, as I did solo stuff and Corey himself, took an even longer hiatus from it all, BUT NOW!!!!!!!! 😎🐅😎🐅😎🐅😎🐅 YOUR WISH IS OUR COMMAND!!

IMG_1966.JPG

The Corey Hart “Never Surrender Tour” with special guests, Glass Tiger, is happening next year, May 31st-June 25th, starting in St.John’s NFLD and ending in Vancouver. I have already touched bases with Corey and we are both totally stoked and excited about this one.

Borrowed from the Irish, Corey is a name of more than one derivation. It is the transferred use of the surname derived from the Gaelic coire (a cauldron, a pool is water, a hollow): hence, “dweller in or near a hollow.” Alternatively, it is an Anglicized form of the var-ious surnames derived from corra (a spear).

Best known for his hit singles "Sunglasses at Night" and "Never Surrender". He has sold over 16 million records worldwide and scored nine US Billboard Top 40 hits. In Canada, Corey has amassed 30 Top 40 hits, including 11 in the Top 10, over the course of 30 years in the music industry. Nominated for the Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1984, Hart is an inductee of Canada's Walk of Fame and is also a Juno award winner and multiple nominee. 

Yes THAT is what a Juno Award looked like in the 80’s. 

Yes THAT is what a Juno Award looked like in the 80’s. 

FullSizeRender.jpg

Corey was born in Montreal, Quebec, the youngest of five children. His first experience as a performing artist came at age 11, when he sang "Ben" for Tom Jones in Miami. He also recorded songs with Paul Anka in Las Vegas during this time period. In 1980, Corey represented Canada in the World Popular Song Festival in Tokyo, Japan. Also known as the Yamaha Music Festival, it was an international song contest, held from 1970, until 1989. It was organized by The Yamaha Music Foundation and marked Corey’s first public performance of original material. 

One of the most famous music logo’s....Capitol Records.  

One of the most famous music logo’s....Capitol Records.  

Back in the day, Corey and Glass Tiger were “stable-mates.” We were both signed to Capitol Records by Deane Cameron, who was then, the head of A&R ( he would go on to become President). Corey came out of the gate just ahead of us, around 1984 ( whereas we hit in 1986) and I remember going with Deane to see one of Corey’s shows in Hamilton at the Copps Coliseum. It was a zoo! Superstar stuff. And I remember thinking, “ Wow! That’s crazy! I wonder what that would feel like? Being up there on that huge stage with thousands of fans going nuts!” ( Careful what ya wish for Frew 😂) One of the things that stuck with me however, was the fact that I remember thinking that he was the “real deal.” As a vocalist and performer he was completely and totally committed to his performance and to his fans. He left it “all” on the stage and I admire that. I have always prided myself in the fact that I give it my all when the lights go down and it’s just you and your audience. Give it everything you have. Always. It’s that simple. And he does that. I do that. No one goes home feeling let down or disappointed. So now you’ll have that x2!! Can’t wait. 

The boy leaves it “all” on the stage.  

The boy leaves it “all” on the stage.  

By 1986 Glass Tiger & Corey Hart pretty much owned MuchMusic and all the rest of the Canadian music scene, but here’s what is interesting. Even although we were both actively touring and recording AND were signed to the same label here in Canada, we never crossed paths. Throughout the years of being a player in the Canadian and indeed the World Music scene, Glass Tiger has crossed paths with countless Canadian and International acts and indeed shared the stage with lots of them; Tina Turner, Bryan Adams, Tom Cochrane, Burton Cummings, Cheap Trick, Rod Stewart, the list goes on and on, yet, Corey and GT just never ran into each other .....except...that one time......

In 1986, Glass Tiger was touring with the amazing U.S. band, Journey, fronted by the incredible, Steve Perry.

A singer in a smokey room, The smell of wine and cheap perfume. For a smile they can share the night, It goes on and on and on and on.     

A singer in a smokey room, The smell of wine and cheap perfume. For a smile they can share the night, It goes on and on and on and on. 

 

It was an amazing time in our lives, hitting the stage each night, in front of close to 20,000 people for each performance. It was however, gruelling, and there was never a free moment. Either I was performing or I was doing promo. That was it. Yeah, ok maybe a sandwich or two and the occasional pee, but it was serious stuff and promotion, promotion, promotion was the name of the game.

One day i was told that there would be a window between, if memory serves, Baltimore and St. Louis and instead of resting I was told that I had to go to New York to do MTV and Entertainment Tonight. Sounds like fun huh? But believe me when I say it was brutally exhausting and the “Rockstar-ness” was wearing thin and rest and sleep, suddenly seemed much more alluring than anything the drive to fame could offer. But of course there was never any real doubt about what we were doing and why we were doing it and of course you can “sleep when you’re dead right?”

“Have you heard this band? What about...this one? Or this one? This? This? These guys? What about her?” 

“Have you heard this band? What about...this one? Or this one? This? This? These guys? What about her?” 

Management had watched just how hectic it was all becoming for me and in their mighty wisdom, decided to start matching me up with the others in the band beginning with Michael and Sam. So the rule went something like this; Alan and Michael go do blah blah blah ( some big show) while Sam stays behind and does blah blah, ( something local) Then we’d switch and Sam and I would toddle off while Michael stayed behind and the deal was that when Michael and Sam got it down pat, then perhaps I didn’t have to go at all and I could rest. Meanwhile Wayne and Al were also starting to be groomed at doing promo as well. The problem with promo hits however, is that the  “frontman,” the singer, is usually the main target of ALL the main outlets of television, radio and print, and they “insist” on having that frontperson or they don’t want to do the promo piece at all. A drag, but that’s the way it is, and ya just have to get used to it. If you choose to be the band’s “showoff” there is a price to pay 😂 

Sometimes promo trips have their “perks.” I met this guy in 1986 but I forget what band he was in. 

Sometimes promo trips have their “perks.” I met this guy in 1986 but I forget what band he was in. 

On this particular promo trip, it was decided that Sam would accompany me ( much to Michael’s consternation, but that’s another story for another time) and so off we set for ‘The Big Apple’ with all the zest we could muster. We did all of the required promo asked of us that day, ending back at the headquarters of our record label. Now, in Canada, Corey and Glass Tiger were on the same label, Capitol Records, but in the USA, things were just a little different. The EMI family tree had several branches and while Corey was signed to EMI directly, we, Glass Tiger, were signed to Manhattan Records, a sort of “sister” label. Technically though, one big family. Sam and I were sitting around with the staff of Manhattan when one of them said,” Hey! I hear Corey Hart is in the EMI building. He has been doing promo all day. You guys being Canadians must know each other well, right?” Needless to say they were pretty stunned to find out that indeed we did not know each other, nor had we even met each other. Pretty quickly it was arranged that this was a perfect photo-op for both labels to bring their “hot acts” together in one of the boardrooms and that’s precisely what they did. Now here’s the funny part. The staff were all perky, and jazzed, and buzzing at the meeting of these “super-hit” Canadian acts but when Corey, Sam and I got together for the very first time,we looked at each other and our expressions said it all......”Who the fuck is the most tired? Hey man, I’d love to shake your hand if someone would just be kind enough to grab it for me and place it into yours. Do you mind if I just lay down over there on that sink?” 

“I’m tired are you tired? How about you? Me? Yeah you? What? You tired? Oh yeah man, you?  

“I’m tired are you tired? How about you? Me? Yeah you? What? You tired? Oh yeah man, you?  

It was hilarious. We three were having telepathic “zombie-conversations” while all around us was a cacophony of excitement and noise from both staffs of our respective labels. And THAT was it for Corey and GT crossing paths. We went our separate ways  and fate never had us crossing paths again until for me, I was asked to perform at a Canada’s Walk Of Fame event, at the beautiful Casa Loma building, here in Toronto. As I was entering via their red-carpet entrance and doing press, who was there but none other that Corey ( he was being honoured that evening) and also performing. We saw each other right away and immediately ignored what was going on around us to take the time to greet each other. Immediately we reminisced about that sleepy day in New York and had a chuckle together. Man it seems like yesterday but it was 32 years ago!! Time, as they say, “truly stops for no one.”

Canada’s Walk Of Fame performances.  

Canada’s Walk Of Fame performances.  

And so now here we are. Here we are and we are going to make up for lost time. We are going to “rectify” the fact that Glass Tiger and Corey Hart have never crossed paths. Corey’s “Never Surrender Tour” 2019 is coming and we are proud and honoured to join him on it. If you are a fan of both or either acts, if you are a lover of 80’s music, if you would like to witness a touch of Canadian music history in-the-making, then you don’t want to miss this.i know I won’t.

 

That’s it for now guys. Until that time. ~Alan 

IMG_5672.JPG