Fireworks

Bruce E.J. Atkinson

Fireworks & Rocktopia Contributing Writer
Bruce E.J.  Atkinson

Bruce was raised in an area of Canada noted for its rich history and staunch loyalty to the British Crown. Atlantic Canada is fertile ground for culture, tradition and music and Bruce absorbed all of it, from childhood on, favouring the Arts over Sports. Immersed in these influences, the lad started writing at a young age, producing multi-paged essays from grade four onwards.

His interests are varied, from Geology to History, and of course music: all types of music! As a child, he listened to and played along with Traditional Folk Music, Scottish Highland music and of course was turned on to Rock n’ Roll by the likes of The Animals, The Rolling Stones, and The Dave Clark Five. Of course, Bruce was smitten by ‘The Beatles – but tended to go more for Rock, hence his favourite Artists growing up were ‘the Stones, Eric Burdon and the like.

Taking guitar lessons at an early age, Bruce switched to drums, and became a self-taught drummer at the age of twelve. He did play some sports, mainly baseball – but totally immersed himself in music, playing with various Junior High School outfits – his first being a five-piece with four guitar players and him on drums. Sounds normal doesn’t it? Just one catch – all the guitar players played acoustic guitar, while Bruce was wailing on his first full drum kit! They couldn’t figure out why one could hardly hear those lovely guitars!! Through his walk of life, Bruce developed in to a “Powerhouse” drummer, continued his studies and developed an affinity for television, at the time, a relative new media that made impact upon the Canadian public throughout the fifties and sixties. This wasn’t just simply an interest - in say- acting; no, this was more of a keen interest in how things were done, the production side and the marketing side of television. And in Atlantic Canada, this was the time that British Television was considered Canadian, so the opportunity of being exposed to such programming actually cemented the already strong influence of Great Britain within this young man’s mind and way of life. Entering into his teens, Bruce continued his drumming and studies, supported by his family and started to play semi-professionally in his late teens. By then, he was living in Western Canada, and developing his percussive style from listening to the likes of Deep Purple, Aerosmith, the Stones, and Alice Cooper. Although becoming more of a Hard Rock/Heavy drummer, all styles of music had the ability of moving this young man’s soul!

Indeed, music really moves this man, and his favourite Artists represent a wide spectrum of musical styles. A few of his favourites are of course Queen…and then there is Ian Hunter – one of the twentieth century’s most prolific Songwriters and Singers. In this vast list would have to be added Cream, The Guess Who, Loverboy, The Stones, Black Sabbath and of course Yes! There are actually many more and of course really too many to mention here – but you get the picture! His favourite album list is as long as his favourite Artist list, and is ever growing! However, some of his all time favoured albums are: Mott The Hoople: ‘The Hoople’ and ‘Mott’; everything from Queen, even ‘Hot Space’; the game changer that was ‘Deep Purple’s ‘Machine Head’; and the very first self-titled Rush album!

Bruce did turn professional on the music side of things for a brief period of time, and also developed a couple business ventures in the recording side of the music business. All the while, he also took to post secondary institutions to prepare for a back-up career—in Broadcasting. So, when the time came for his road habits to end, he entered the field of television production, utilising his writings for, at first, becoming a copy writer for television – then the whole gamut of production. From camera-work to editing, and also ‘front-of-camera’ talent, Bruce navigated his media career through-out the years to include highlights such as: one of the first Music Magazine series that actually pre-dated Music Speciality channels. His interest in other media and arts were also represented by other television productions that dealt with education, science and investigative news.

Now, semi-retired, Bruce keeps his studies up in History, some Science, Current Affairs and Demographic Marketing…plus with all of that, he is still driven by music, and although he has laid those sticks down, he spends his time consulting, researching and writing as well as operating a small business in FBA International. His writing has taken him on to the international scene: Under “Bruce E.J. Atkinson”, Bruce is internationally published through Frontiers Records bi-monthly music magazine, Melodic Rock, and the UK’s glossy bi-monthly periodical ‘Fireworks’ magazine, plus a Weekly Column; ‘Under The Lights’ published by Castanet.net out of Kelowna, B.C. As a Music Journalist, Bruce is best known for his insightful and colourful Reviews of Artists’ musical works. He has received accolades from the Artist themselves, in both his style of Interviewing and his honesty and respect of his Reviews.

This is what his Team Members of Castanet in Canada say about this aging Rocker: “We call him the Professor of Rock. With a career in music, television and media arts spanning 30 plus years, Atkinson knows music. He's travelled as a professional musician and he loves Rock 'N Roll. He is a music journalist who writes internationally and owns FBA International a multifaceted management, consulting, promotional entity.”

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