April Wine's repertoire, written for the most part by Goodwyn and characterized by a certain melodic strength, included hard-rock material that worked well in concert, and ballads that were suited to pop radio. The second of April Wine's singles, "You Could Have Been a Lady" (1972) was the band's first No. 1 Canadian hit and was a minor hit internationally, as were the later "Roller" (1979) and "Just Between You and Me" (1981). The band's Canadian hits included a cover of "Bad Side of the Moon" (1972), "Lady Run, Lady Hide" (1973), "I Wouldn't Want to Lose Your Love" and "Oowatanite" (1975), "The Whole World's Going Crazy" (1976), "You Won't Dance with Me" (1977), "Sign of the Gypsy Queen" (1981) and "Enough is Enough" (1982). Among its other songs, "Rock and Roll is a Vicious Game," "Say Hello" and "I Like to Rock" were also popular.
The band's 1975 release, Stand Back, with popular songs such as "Tonight is a Wonderful Time to Fall in Love" and "Oowatanite," was their first album to achieve double platinum status. Their popularity grew and they became the first Canadian band to earn platinum advance sales, for The Whole World's Goin' Crazy, released in 1976. Forever For Now (1977) went platinum and featured their best selling single "You Won't Dance With Me."
April Wine was a leading touring band in Canada during the late 1970s and early 1980s, eventually headlining in arenas and outdoor stadiums (eg, playing for 25 000 at the CNE Grandstand in 1981). The band made its US debut in 1978, initially opening for the Rolling Stones, with whom it had played during a much-celebrated engagement at the El Mocambo in Toronto in 1977 that resulted in the platinum selling album Live at the El Mocambo. April Wine also toured with Rush, Styx, and Journey in the US and Europe during the early 1980s. They released First Glance in 1978 and the album became their first gold record outside of Canada, also achieving double platinum sales in Canada, while their next album, Harder...Faster (1979) reached triple platinum status.
April Wine won Felix awards in 1981 and 1982 as the best-known Quebec artist outside of the province and received eighteen Juno nominations including eight nominations as group the year (1975-83), the latter signalling the remarkable consistency and longevity of the band's popularity.
After releasing three more albums - The Nature of the Beast (1981), Power Play (1982) and Animal Grace (1984) - April Wine disbanded following a national tour in 1984. At that point, only Goodwyn and Greenway were the remaining original members but the band was contractually obligated to Capitol Records for one more album; in 1985 the band released Walking Through Fire. Goodwyn and Greenway pursued solo recording careers; the former had a Canadian hit in 1988 with "My Girl."
In 1992, the group reunited for a Canada-US tour and released a compilation album, Greatest Hits, which achieved double platinum sales. They followed with Attitude (1993) and Frigate (1994), and in 2001 they released Back to the Mansion.
In 2008 April Wine was inducted into the East Coast Music Hall of Fame. April Wine received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame in 2010.
All released by Aquarius, except as noted.
April Wine. 1971. AQR-502
On Record. 1972. AQR-503
Electric Jewels. 1974. AQR-504
Live! 1974. AQR-505
Stand Back. 1975. AQR-506
The Whole World's Goin' Crazy. 1976. AQR-510
Forever, for Now. 1977. AQR-511
Live at the El Mocambo. 1977. AQR-515
First Glance. 1978. AQR-517
Harder... Faster. 1979. AQR-527
The Nature of the Beast. 1981. AQR-530
Power Play. 1982. AQR-533
Animal Grace. 1983. AQR-535
One for the Road. 1984 (1985). AQR-538
Walking Through Fire. 1985. AQR-540
Back to the Mansion. 2001.
Roughly Speaking. 2006.
Several April Wine compilations have also been issued: Greatest Hits (AQR-525) in 1979, The Best of Rock Ballads (AQR-532) in 1981 and, on CD and cassette, Review and Preview (1981), The Hits (Q2-549) and All the Rockers (1987) (Q2-550), We Like to Rock in 1988, Oowatanite (1990), The First Decade (Q2-555) in 1989, The April Wine Collection (1992), Rock Champions (2000), The Best of April Wine (2003) and April Wine Rocks (2006).
Myles Goodwyn: Myles Goodwyn. 1988. AQR-548
Brian Greenway: Serious Business. 1988. Atlantic 78 18271
Melhuish, Martin. "Vintage wine: April Wine," Heart of Gold (Toronto 1983)
MacDonald, Sandy. "Aging like a fine wine: April Wine, which began in a Waverley basement in 1969, is still going strong," Halifax Daily News, 9 Feb 2003
Contemporary Canadian Musicians, Issue 2, Sept 1998
Links to Other Sites
The official website for rock group April Wine. Check out their profiles, discography, and audio clips from their latest recordings.