This book is a backstage pass to the ups, downs, and all-out craziness of arena rock—deep discussions with Rod Stewart, jamming with legends like Mick Jagger and Justin Timberlake, gaining groupies, and striking out solo. Stevie Salas was one of many boys coming of age in the 1980s—when the American dream was rock superstardom. As lead guitarist for a San Diego band, Salas played backyard parties and school dances and even scored the music for the cult classic Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure. When he auditioned for Rod Stewart—where he was the youngest band member by a decade—Salas’s life truly hit a turning point.
Salas pulls no punches to describe the initial skepticism and hazing he faced as the youngest member of Stewart’s band, the night he stood up for himself on the tour plane, and the emotional late-night talk with Rod Stewart that restored the frontman’s faith in his young, untested guitar player and his new group that was struggling to find its groove. Yet they became a band of brothers and formed a camaraderie they share to this day. When We Were the Boys revolves around the year Salas began as an inexperienced musical prodigy and finished as a seasoned rock ’n’ roll veteran—more mature as a man and musician.
Stevie Salas has worked with artists from Rod Stewart to George Clinton and Mick Jagger to Justin Timberlake. He served as the musical director for six American Idols and is executive producer and host of Arbor Live! He is the executive producer of the documentary RUMBLE: Indians Who Rocked the World, a film about Native Americans in pop music history. An artist of Apache descent, Salas has received the Native American Lifetime Achievement Award. His solo albums have sold several million copies. He lives in Austin, Texas.
Robert Yehling is the award-winning author of eleven books. He has worked with many high-profile people as a ghostwriter and collaborator. Yehling has reviewed many concerts and albums, contributed to RollingStone.com, and served as editorial director of American Idol magazine. He lives in Oceanside, California.