Fireworks

Helen Bradley Owers

Fireworks & Rocktopia Contributing Writer
Helen Bradley Owers
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I was born in Cheltenham but moved to the New Forest when I was very young. I knew from an early age my musical taste was 'different' to other girls at school, while they were all listening to the Osmonds and David Cassidy I was listening to Cream, Zep and Purple, I just about managed to avoid being a complete social outcast by my obsession with Cat Stevens and T Rex. Things took off when I got to college and for the first time met similarly music- minded people and started going to gigs. I have no regrets about being an 'old bird' because it meant I saw legends who are no longer with us like Rory Gallagher, Gary Moore, Phil Lynott and Randy Rhoads along with first tours by the likes of Rush and the Scorpions, in the days when supports were bands like UFO and Def Leppard. I will never forget going to see Black Sabbath, watching Van Halen for the first time, or later seeing Randy Rhoads with Ozzy.

In the 80's I moved back to Cheltenham and began a long relationship with a musician from Evesham, which expanded my musical taste into glam and sleaze. In the early 90s I returned South and married another musician but because of family commitments my love of music got put to one side for many years until I got divorced in 2012. In need of a social life I started going to gigs again on my own and took my camera to give me 'something to do.' And suddenly I discovered something I truly love doing. I've been incredibly lucky, a chance meeting with a freelance music journalist at a parent teacher evening has led to taking photos of production set ups of bands like KISS, Muse, Thin Lizzy and Bon Jovi. As a consequence I have made some amazing friends among road crews and they are kind enough to invite me along whenever they're in the country. This and taking photos has taken me to places I never in a million years thought I'd be: such as a whole day with KISS at the London Forum, watching Bon Jovi from side stage at Hyde Park and the Isle of Wight, and watching War of the Worlds in rehearsal. I was asked to write a review of the KISS gig and I've been contributing reviews and interviews for assorted publications ever since, which has meant interviewing and reviewing wonderful musicians and being at the frontline of finding new bands.

My taste in music is varied but Richie Kotzen always has something for every mood and will always be my 'one true love'. The rest of the time I listen to all rock from metal to AOR but I'm a big blues fan too, so I love the point where the two genres collide, and at that point Beth Hart is my girl. My other joy is fetching up at a pub and finding astounding musicians and bands, no deals, no tours, no managers. They're just doing it because they can't help but do it. I love that passion.

I am genuinely grateful every day for what rock music and photography has given me over the years. It's provided the sound track to my life, amazing experiences, friendships and now Fireworks Magazine and Rocktopia. I met contributing photographer James Charlwood in the pit at Skid Row, he recommended me to Dave Scott and hey presto another adventure begins. I can't wait to see what happens next!

HELEN BRADLEY OWERS

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Latest Message: 11 hours, 31 minutes ago
  • Johns Band : Received glossy Fireworks 96 and one of best ever. I am still looking at pictures and "Revisit The Gods AOR Festive" should be great. Probably get download from issue 101 to save on space & it is read to me from audio voice. Already got Robben Ford Instrumental album "Pure" great stuff & Freddy King singing & guitar I love, so Bernie Marsden new album I will have on Amazon Prime. If you are into 70's Rock then new Help Yourself 6 CD Boxset + info will be good for you plus expert to pay no more
  • Berny : Fireworks #96 is out now! :)
  • Berny : @Paul wiv: Pls. check your email!
  • Paul wiv : I have paid for issue 92 but it hasn't downloaded yet.
  • Berny : @Adamson: Bitte kontaktiere mich direkt, meine Mailadresse lautet «email»
  • Adamson : kann man hier auch auf Deutsch schreiben? denn ich hätte eine Frage?
  • KI2000 : Wow, issue #95 has to be the BEST one so far. Congratulations guys!!
  • Hysteria : GREAT MAGAZINE! Keep on rockin' guys!!!
  • Berny : Fireworks Magazine #95 is out now!
  • Berny : @Paul wiv: Many thanks for your purchase, pls. check your mail.
  • Paul wiv : I have bought issue 89 on download but it has not appeared on my account
  • Berny : @pomper: BOTH of your mails were forwarded to the Fireworks Team, please contact me directly at «email» should you still haven’t received a reply.
  • bpomper : trying to confirm my fireworks 94 order with no answer from team rocktopia??
  • bpomper : i ordered fireworks number 94 but never got a conformation other than my paypal receipt. can you confirm it went out. i have transaction id if you need it
  • Berny : @ALL: Should you have any questions about your Fireworks orders, pls. contact me directly at «email»
  • Berny : Hi @Stuey6666: You are using two user names on Rocktopia. All current orders were assigned to your second account, pls. check your mail again.
  • Stuey6666 : Hi Berny - ordered 4 issues last week - still not arrived - have checked spam etc not there. cheers stu
  • Berny : @Adolfo: I've also just sent you the magazine via WeTransfer. But please check you junk mail folder, the mail was definitely sent earlier today.
  • Berny : Hi @Adolfo: Have you already checked your spam folder? If the mail cannot be found, pls. contact me at «email»
  • Adolfo : «email»
  • Adolfo : My e - mail
  • Adolfo : I don't have any e - mail.
  • Berny : @Adolfo: Pls. check your e - mail for download instructions.
  • Adolfo : I have order the #94 but I can't find the download
  • RockingHerb : Thank You Berny.
  • Berny : Hello @snowwolf: Pls. check your mail! Thanks in advance! B.
  • snowwolf : I bought the new issue at noon yesterday and it is now 4am the next day. Any idea when I’ll be able to download it?
  • Berny : @RockingHerb: Many thanks for your purchase. Pls. check your mail.
  • RockingHerb : When will my recent purchase show in my downloads. there is a message saying up to 3 hours is this correct
  • Johns Band : Will videos appear again in watch and listen. Good way for who albums to buy. I have Wrathchild - Live From London on DVD that might have been here. YouTube have averts now.

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“I’m sick to death of people saying we’ve made 11 albums that sound exactly the same. In fact, we’ve made 12 albums that sound exactly the same.” (AC/DC’s Angus Young) - Quotes collected by Dave Ling (www.daveling.co.uk)

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