2009 - Individual Artist
Lyle Steece loved music. He was not a child of means but wanted to explore the passion he felt for songs. In 1968 he bought his first guitar and with no formal training he turned himself into a very accomplished guitarist. This talent led to a life devoted to all aspects of the music industry.
Without a doubt he was influenced by the likes of Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles. He openly states his musical career took on a " Mission " like approach starting on that dark September 18, 1970 date when he learned that his idol Jimi Hendrix had died. He was determined to make a difference with his music. He will also tell you he quit the stage on December 8, 1980 when he learned that one of his other idols, John Lennon was assassinated. Only on special occasions over the past few years has he taken the stage to perform.
On stage he was known as “The Vulcan”, backstage he was known as a hard working promoter. He later became known as the ultimate collector.
Lyle has spent countless hours and gone hundreds and hundreds of miles putting up show posters over many years. He visits all the music stores to give the owners a heads up on what is coming to town. Steece works backstage for set up and take down and has done this for many, many years.
Now….about his “collection”. Steece has accumulated over 3,000 albums and 45’s, a complete staging of amps, soundboards, lights and other necessary equipment. He acquired, over four decades, a fine set of musical instruments. And those posters he was putting up everywhere….he kept one of each of those as well. Steece managed to get many of them autographed while working backstage.
The words roadie, collector, gate-crasher, backstage hand, performer all apply to Lyle Steece. Being devoted to music, he became concerned about the future for his massive collection (that filled a building). A firm believer in the mission of the Iowa RockNRoll Music Association, he donated the entire collection to IRRMA. Many of his treasures are displayed in the museum at Arnolds Park on a rotating basis.
Steece’s Beatles collection is the envy of many. He counts Beatles drummer Pete Best among his friends. He is mourning the loss of another dear friend and 2009 Hall of Fame inductee Ralph Gatton. Together, they produced several of Best’s appearances in Iowa .
Lyle Steece of Spencer, IA enters the Hall of Fame for his musical talent, his passion for the behind the scenes work and for preserving music history through his collection. Welcome to the Class of 2009!