He came to the band in 1976 filling the big shoes of Jim Clench who had been in April Wine since their second album “On Record” from 1972. Lang was in the group for their most popular period playing bass on the big hits “You Won’t Dance with Me,” giving “Roller,” that extra pop, delivering a great intro to “I Like to Rock.” He was rockin’ the notes as Myles Goodwyn, Brian Greenway and Gary Moffet – that heavenly wall of three guitars tip their hats to the Beatles’ “Day Tripper” and The Stones’ “Satisfaction.” Lang also played bass on their huge album, “Nature of The Beast” from 1981 that featured their biggest U.S. hit “Just Between You and Me.”
He also got to let his inner Greg Lake bass-lines loss on April Wine’s cover of “21st Century Schizoid Man” from the first King Crimson album. We lost Greg in December. That was a tough bass line brilliantly played by Lang.
Greenway who joined April Wine a year after Lang released the following statement today: “It is with great sadness that I let you know that Steve Lang passed away last Saturday. I was in many bands with Steve. Steve was the bassist of April Wine 1975 to 1984. All the big hits. Steve also did very well as a Financial Investor with his own company. He was a friend of 50 years. Steve was 67. My sincere condolences to his family.”
We lost Jim Clench on November 3, 2010. I interviewed Jim and the band in the early 2000’s. I remember telling Jim that I was actually pissed off at Steve Lang for replacing him and his response was simple, he laughed and said, Steve was awesome. Lang got a big welcome in the band via that first album he was on, “The Whole World’s Goin’ Crazy” was the first in Canadian history to have platinum advanced sales orders. It reached #1 in Canada on the RPM national album chart on May 8, 1976.
April Wine’s leader Myles Goodwyn released this statement: “My dear friend Steve Lang passed away this weekend. Steve played bass with AW for years and his musicianship was exceptional. Steve was a very intelligent guy that used his smarts to do well in the music industry as a player/writer, and later, in the world of finance. He was a nice man, a real gentleman. The last conversation I had with Steve was wonderful. I’m so happy that we had the chance to have had it….
My condolences go out to his family. He will sadly be missed by his friends and by fans everywhere.
Donations can be made to Parkinson Canada. http://www.parkinson.ca
Steve Lang was born March 24, 1949 in Montreal, Quebec. He died on February 4, 2017. His daughter Erin is also a musician. – by John Beaudin
John Beaudin has been in major market radio (Edmonton, Vancouver & Calgary) for 33 years and a music journalist since 1989. He graduated from Broadcasting school as a news man so he would have the skills to write about the artists that inspired him since he bought his first album, “Madman Across The Water” by Elton John as a teen. In the 80’s Beaudin was the host of the syndicated radio show “The Cross Canada Report” which had two version (Rock and A/C). Beaudin was also asked to be a judge at the Juno Awards (Canada’s answer to the Grammys) Twice. He has anchored every position in radio including morning and afternoon drive and was a Program and Music Director for The Breeze and California 103 in Calgary. He currently hosts the popular Lovesongs at QM-FM in Vancouver and on iHeartRadio.