It’s difficult enough being a headlining band from Canada, but imagine being booked as the co-headliner for a concert with an unknown group called the Cockroaches.
April Wine was formed in the late sixties in Nova Scotia. In 1972 they had a successful single that reached #2 in Canada and #32 in the US (You Could Have Been A Lady).
Along the way, the group shared a bill with an unknown group called the Cockroaches at a charity concert in Toronto. The unknown group turned out to be the Rolling Stones performing under an alias without advance notice to the public. April Wine’s live performance at that concert was released as an album. On the strength of that release, the group was able to tour the US as a warm-up act for the Stones, Rush, and Styx.
Perhaps that tour was enough to finally get them on radio’s radar. The group had twelve more top forty records in Canada during the rest of the seventies but failed to reach the US charts again until Roller got as high as #34 in 1979.
The group’s last successful single in the US was Just Between You And Me in 1981. This was the only time the group had a single that was more successful in the US than it was in Canada. Final score: US 21 to Canada 22. A typical performance of the song live was recorded in Iowa in 1982.
A few more albums followed and after a Farewell tour in 1984, the group disbanded. In 1992 four of the members from the mid-seventies reformed the group and they had some moderate success in 1993…but only in Canada.