Leonard Cohen tour news — Steve Arch, R.I.P.

IMG_2902 copyA few hours ago I was told our former lighting crew chief, Steve Arch, died on Sunday January 26, 2014.

Steve was certainly a character. Misunderstood by many, he had a way with local crew; at times I couldn’t help but laugh at the crazy stuff he would say. I would marvel, thinking, how does he get away with it? He could take the meanest, toughest locals, and by the end of load-in, have them eating out of his hand.

Brash and loud, like a proper roadie, Steve had worked with a ton of acts, didn’t care what people thought of him, and spoke his mind. He loved working with, and personally adored Leonard. I always had a soft spot for Steve, always got on well with him; toward the end of our working relationship, it was easy to see he was bummed that the production couldn’t take him to Australia and New Zealand.

At this time I’m unaware of the circumstances surrounding Steve’s death, and all of us in UHTC are pretty shocked at the moment. If ever there was a pool, taking bets on who would live to 200, I would have put my money on Steve.

Take care Steve, we miss you already.



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  1. always sad to hear that someone left us…..and always too soon ! My thoughts are with all those who knew him well and will miss him .

  2. RIP Steve.

  3. Great guy and friend will be missed by our crew and everyone who New him rip big man from Glasgow stage crew and your pal wishy washy as you would call me gone but not forgotten

  4. I toured with Steve in 1983-4 on The Police Synchronicity tour. You totally nailed the essence of Steve Arch. Thanks for that.

    • Hi Jeff.
      I also knew Steve very well. Was the lighting truck driver on Synchronicity and we would load our truck after every show. He will be missed by all of us.

  5. He passed away in his sleep, presumably from a heart attack. One can only hope he didn’t suffer through it.

  6. all the crew from the glasgow gutted at the watford legend with eyes in his arse an the best sock collection in the world RIP Steve love Fergie

  7. What a great shame. The man will be missed.
    rest in peace Steve.

  8. I worked with Steve many times while I was with Stage Miracles. Steve was an absolute legend, and was happy to show local crew how he wanted stuff done. He was a guy that taught me and everyone he worked with something new every time we met. He will be greatly missed. Loopy

  9. RIP Steve…..you shall be missed.

  10. A great description of Steve, I worked with him on various gigs for Light and Sound Design. It was always good to know he was on the crew. RIP big fella.

  11. RIP mon frère

  12. One of the great characters of our industry. A true legend. He will be missed.

  13. sad news. my heart goes out to all affected by this.

  14. That’s sad News Leif. I just spilled a drop of my drink in his honour.

    Death is always sad but especially so for those who depart early for whatever reason.

    I was confronted with it early – my father’s death (suicide) when I was 9- 2 very close friends both to leukemia in my teens.

    so cheers to Steve’s memory.



  15. I also worked with him on many jobs through Stage Miracles. You could hear him talking from a mile away. He dropped his pants numerous times one night to show us his freshly inked eyes on each butt cheek ….. RIP to one of the good ones

  16. Megan- Phoenix bussing January 28, 2014 — 7:10 am

    My tour bus was always a happier place with Steve on it. He will be remembered and missed by all who knew him.
    Rest in peace S.A. X

  17. R.I.P. Steve! I will never forget you!

  18. Only toured with him once (meatloaf 2010) but a fantastic addition to any road crew

  19. This Summed him up completely. 10 days ago, Alan Hornall and I discussed how much we loved him as a crew chief and a friend. Load in’s will certainly be a quiter place, but maybe not as organized. He was always the Lighting Crew Chief of choice for me, if he was available.
    I saw him 10 days ago in Dublin on Maroon 5, and he said goodbye at the end of the evening.
    I never for a second thought it would be so true. Love you Steve and will miss you so much.
    You are a Legend of our Industry, a great teacher to junior crew, and stage hands alike, and you will be sorely missed. My fondest memory, was when we sat in the square in Cascais in Portugal each night for a week, having a (some) drink(‘s) as the artist we were touring with never turned up for rehearsal.
    We solved all the problems of the world each night, only to wake up and realize it had all been undone by the bastards in the real world that had not been with us, and that it needed to to be re addressed the following night.
    STUNNING EYES: The best eyes I have ever seen, and guaranteed to have you barred from any pub, once you flashed your eyes at the owner or manager!!!
    Great Time’s and incredible Memories.
    Rest in peace my Dear Friend.
    Love you so much.
    Phamous, Phay Mac Mahon. xoxo

  20. Stephen Stretch Armstrong January 28, 2014 — 2:15 pm

    Stephen George Arch – R.I.P. my Friend of 21 years , Soul Singer, Pub & Ale Gourmet, Touring Buddy, you taught me a lot Geeeezzzaaaahhhhhh !!
    Hornets – Hornets – Hornets…. F U , F U C , F U C me walking down the street etc…
    Fine words from Leif indeed….’nut shelled’
    Steve Armstrong

  21. What a horrible start to the day, loved this guy, well until I took him
    to Tottenham v Watford (his team), we were of course expected to
    whoop their asses but sadly that was not the case, Mr Arch tormented
    the life out of me from that day on, a very unforgiving man but such
    a joy to have known and a great lad. Hope I get to see you again Steve,
    not just yet though, lots of love and enjoy the tour up there.
    William Francis
    (Sting Tour Manager)

  22. What a horrible start to the day, loved this guy, well until I took him
    to Tottenham v Watford (his team), we were of course expected to
    whoop their asses but sadly that was not the case, Mr Arch tormented
    the life out of me from that day on, a very unforgiving man but such
    a joy to have known and a great lad. Hope I get to see you again Steve,
    not just yet though, lots of love and enjoy the tour up there.
    William Francis
    (Sting Tour Manager)

  23. Stephen George Arch R.I.P.

    Our Jazz, Soul, Ska, Ale, Hornets, People and Tattoo Loving Friend, we shall miss your wit and Foghorn of a voice ! An absolute privilege and honour to have worked alongside you many times since we met in 21 years ago ……They will hear you coming before they see you at the pearly gates………

    Much Love goes to his loved ones


    Steve Armstrong (Rigger) & Liz (Holden) Armstrong ( Production Coordinator)

  24. I met Mr arch along time ago, he had long hair and a Handelbar mustache,,,
    And was the soooooo loud,, well that bit never changed… got to see him 2013 and im glad I did
    LOVED HIM TO BITS even if sometimes I gave him a slap for being cheaky!!! sherd a love of Ian Dury and the blockheads,,,and Sox. OY! OY! MR ARCH. X

  25. he all was told the story how i allmost drove in to him in his home town he pulld up to give me greef
    but with a big smile he seen it was me and ses your a shit driver you we scotts dog iam 6ft 1 he was a crazy lovely man well miss him on gigs xsad day.
    mic mac

  26. a top top bloke,thanks for the laughs steve,rip brother.

  27. Such a vital part of the UHTC. My condolences to his family and friends. RIP Steve.

  28. Always you will be rembered as one of the real legends . and you were always proud to be your self . so thank you Steve for being you I hope you are in peace and you are looking over lampy world it has been my honour to have know you and having the chance to work with you my friend R.I.P Steve the no 1 crew chief in the world

  29. Never better said.

  30. RIP Steve a legend and a true class act,
    Done shouting……….

  31. RIP Steve a legend and a true class act,
    Done shoutin……………..

  32. R.I.P Steve What a great laugh he was and always a wind up. Only worked with him on Sigur Ros just before Xmas. i`m a massive Pink Floyd fan and he gave me Nick Masons drum sticks when he had worked with them.
    Very kind and very sad that he has gone .
    So shocked when i found out.
    Will always remember you Steve you was a Legend x

  33. wat a guy allways mad you laff and always mad good out of bad and posative mind and allways good to work with him he will be sadely misd and never fogoten

  34. wat a guy sadely youl be misd but never fogoten one love my frend

  35. It is with a sad heart that i am writing these words,my old mate Archie has passed away,have done so many tours with Steve,we always had a special bond,i will miss you mate!
    Rest in peace my son
    love ya!!
    Bill Barclay

  36. Never waqs there any one so full of life, always a joy to work with, much missed. RIP glad to have been a friend.

  37. He would give you the shirt off his back and I just loved his big hugs miss you mate

  38. I spent hours tattooing Archie…

    He became a good friend. I was so so upset by this news and will mourn his loss for a while..

    I was told by a friend once that steve was the sweetest, kindest, most lovely dirty old man she’d ever met.

    We have lost a true character..
    Heres to Steve!


  39. Steve Arch top man big legend! I had the extreme good fortune to work with you a few times and you were what it said on the tin! I just heard today and gutted as a result. You will be sorely missed, the world is a little sadder with your passing. RIP my man, love to those you left behind. Bill Martin

  40. That last line about Steve living to 200… That’s what I thought of him too. Bullet proof. A huge and warm hearted character, never stopped trying to get his old crib partner back in Christine (every time we ran into him) and I reckon he was as happy playing cards as he was on the road. RIP Steve.

  41. may he rest in peace and in our hearts.

  42. Very sad day…. He was an original. RIP my friend…. Memories of our touring antics will keep your legacy alive forever!

  43. For those that wish to attend Steve Arch’s funeral, it will take place at 2pm on Wednesday 12th February at St John sub Castro Church, Abinger Place, Lewes. BN7 2QA. Friends are invited to go to the Black Horse in Western Road, Lewes, afterwards. He will be sadly missed.

  44. I first worked with Steve back in 78/79 gaslight days. I think the Gary Numan Euro tour was the first. Then regularly till about 87.converted me into a Watford supporter as well. As everyone has said,had a stunning way of dealing with local crew, often inviting them to arm wrestle him. No-one ever did!
    He came to my wedding 5 years ago and the eyes made an early appearance.
    Will always be remembered. Hope to get there on the 12th
    Rory O’Carroll

    • Hey I know this is really random and belated, but my mum, Marion was – I think – living with Steve during points of the time you mention and they always kept in touch – Steve was such a massive ledge in our family – always thought he’d be my stepdad at some point tbh!! I remember a time he came over for a bit of a party years ago and myseriously disappeared; I went in search and eventually found him asleep on the loo – just such a chilled bloke, hilarious but strong and unflappable. We all love him. Sadly missed. Such an amazing bloke – really moving there’s so much love for him – he deserves every droplet! L

  45. RIP Steve,
    I’ve toured once back in ’98 with him, unforgettable.
    See @ 1:55 …. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6M0yKddYsgo

  46. Dear Arch … WTF .. I’m complete gutted ..
    Arch .. my dear Arch .. You crazy fucking looney Arch .. looney like a fox .. I will miss you like few others for there are few others like you man.. Gone but never forgotten .. I will miss you brother

  47. Many fond memories from Tasco Tours in the 80’s to Neg’s todate. Big Brash Bold and will greatly miss the big man. I loved him alive and love his memory. R.I.P. so long and thanks for everything you did lighting up my life! Oz Marsh

  48. Love you shtefan. One of a kind

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