“I had such high hopes for a career in music that it was an absolute godsend to work with those guys. I felt invigorated and inspired by them, plus I had the total confidence that only youth can give,” was what Steve Byrd said to me when I was interviewing him for a ZZEBRA collection. That was very Byrd-like: to praise others and stay away from the spotlight – off-stage, that is. Before the audience, though, Stephen shone no matter what he had to play, be it jazz-rock with the aforementioned group, hard rock with GILLAN – the speedy attack on “Secret Of The Dance” came from Byrd – or pop with the likes of Kim Wilde.
Working with female singers became one of his fortes, Steve co-writing “Another Step (Closer To You)” for Wilde and “Want You to Want Me” for Samantha Fox, and also recorded with Sonja Kristina, while the guitarist’s touring employers included Bonnie Tyler, Ruby Turner and Kim Appleby, yet he also appeared before the audience backing PET SHOP BOYS and ERASURE as well as more sophisticated artists such as A FLOCK OF SEAGULLS and THE BUGGLES. Admirer of fine arts and wonders of nature, Byrd possessed a great sense of humor, so he had much more in common with his lifelong friend John McCoy than just sharing the stage and the studio, and was always fun to communicate with. Sadly, Stephen died on October 3rd, aged 61, while in Munich for Oktoberfest delights. He will be sorely missed.