Shy Guitarist Steve Harris Passes Away From Brain Tumor

Shy Guitarist Steve Harris Passes Away From Brain Tumor

October 28, 2011

In a statement at the members of Shy said, “It is with great regret and sadness that we have to announce the passing of our beloved Steve Harris, guitarist and creative genius behind Shy. Steve was a very private man and had battled a brain tumor sine June 2009 and only those closest to the family knew. A full statement will be issued shortly.”

Shy released their self-titled comeback album on October 7th, 2011 through Escape Music. Shy and Steve Harris have also released such albums as 1983’s ‘Once Bitten…Twice Shy’, 1985’s ‘Brave the Storm’, 1987’s ‘Excess All Areas’ (which peaked at #193 on the Billboard charts), 1989’s ‘Misspent Youth’, 1994’s ‘Welcome to the Madhouse’, 1999’s ‘Regeneration’, 1999’s ‘Let the Hammer Fall’, 2002’s ‘Unfinished Business’ and 2005’s ‘Sunset and Vine’.

Shy have been a mainstay in the melodic rock scene right back to the mid 1980s. But one fundamental difference separates Shy and the rest, they have stood the test of time and come shining through time and time again.

Crowned by the success of Def Leppard, Bon Jovi and Europe, the 80s were the golden era of AOR and for a while every record company craved its own poodle-haired, tight-trousered offspring. Shy made albums for two different major labels and for a while seemed in with a genuine shot at glory, but like all the above ended up biting the dust. Before adopting the name of Shy, their roots lay in the altogether heavier, twin-guitar metal of Trojan. However, even in 1982 they sensed the decade’s wind of change and set out to leave pub-metal behind. They received an offer to make an album for Hull-based independent Ebony Records on the day after a helium-voiced ball of energy called Tony Mills was sacked by his own ex-band. Their debut album ‘Once Bitten… Twice Shy’ was described by Kerrang! as perhaps the greatest English pomp rock album of all time.

Already having gigged with UFO, Magnum, Twisted Sister and Pallas, the band then added high profile supports with Bon Jovi, Meat Loaf and Gary Moore.

Before undertaking their all-important third album, 1987’s ‘Excess All Areas’, RCA relocated Shy to Los Angeles to soak up the Californian hard rock radio vibe. Such was the quality of ‘Excess All Areas’ that just like FM’s ‘Tough It Out’ and ‘Native Sons’ by Strangeways, its inability to make stars of its creators now seems almost unfeasible. “In any genre, there will only ever be a couple of winners,” reflected Steve Harris. “But it’s surprising how many people talk of that album in hushed tones and don’t actually own a copy – or only bought the reissue.” In the following years a lot of changes occurred and Shy went through many changes.

A settled line-up completed by keyboard player Joe Basketts and drummer Bob Richards more recently played one of the sets of the day at the second Firefest show in Nottingham alongside the likes of House Of Lords, Danger Danger and Harem Scarem. The event’s packed attendance confirmed that AOR still has a fiercely devoted niche following in Britain, though strangely Shy claim to still be discovered by new followers.

Frontman Tony Mills left the band for Norwegians TNT, and Lee Small (Phenomena / Surveillance) took the mike stand. Shy lost none of their appeal and their latest CD is a burst of fresh air, they sound at their very best and this self titled release is a crowning achievement that will set the standard for all others.

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