Tag Archives: Black Sabbath

Can a Heavy Metal Band Make Money in 2017?

By Andrew Catania

Heavy Metal as a genre has been around since the 1970s with “Black Sabbath,” “Judas Priest,” “Metallica,” “Iron Maiden,” and countless others. It became popular because it branched off from Rock and Roll; it was easy for it to become part of the culture back then. Fast Forward to present day, there are a lot less heavy metal bands because it is not the hottest genre right now. Even the bands that were mentioned before are still going on today, which should give people the idea how many heavy metal bands are still forming. In today’s world, it would be hard for a heavy metal band to make money in the music industry because the culture has evolved their tastes in music, however, if a metal band did succeed, it would be worth it for them.

It would be hard for heavy metal to succeed in today’s world because it is today’s world. Heavy metal became popular for a lot of reasons back in the 1970s and 1980s. One them is that it took Rock and Roll to a whole another level regarding sound; it became the music of rebellion for that period. Now, the culture has evolved into something different. The African-American culture has taken the nation by storm with hip-hop, pop, and rap as the front genres. Those are the genres that are popular right now. Take a look at some of the top musicians as of right now, Beyonce, Adele, Drake, Taylor Swift, Lorde, Ed Sheeran, they are all part of the hip hop/ pop genre. Take a look at Taylor Swift; she used to be a country singer; now she evolved herself into more of a pop singer. Even Maroon 5 has changed into pop in recent years, and that band was part of the rock genre back in the 200s. They changed because it would attract more audience. So in the midst of all this, heavy metal would be overlooked by fans in favor of pop singers. Not that is a bad thing; the pop genre has much great music. Regarding heavy metal making money, it would be hard for them to make money because the culture has changed and their fan base would be relatively small.
However, music is all about art and expressing oneself, and heavy metal does that. There is a lot of people out there who love rock, and the sound that it brings, so heavy metal could still make money in today’s industry. To draw a much bigger crowd, an up and coming band could learn to adapt; if a heavy metal band took the genre to a whole new level, they would make more money. Like before, music evolved quite a bit because new types branch off from other ones, taking inspirations from other genres. If a heavy metal band took the sounds of the genre to a whole new level, they could make money. There has been a lot of heavy metal over the years, so the genre has been covered quite a bit. A new band would just be mimicking those older bands. If a new heavy band drew inspiration and developed into something different, like adding new beats to songs, changing the attitude of the genre just enough to draw a new crowd. Heavy metal will also be exciting to people because that’s just the nature of the genre so that it will have its audience; the trick is to make it into making into an art a lot of people can enjoy.
Heavy Metal has been around for almost 40 years. It has its audience, young and old so that they will make money. The trick is to draw a bigger crowd. Since the culture has evolved, and so has music taste, that is challenging part of a heavy metal band. If a heavy metal band was willing to take it to a whole another level for today’s audience to love, then they could make more money. So, yes, a heavy metal band can make money in today’s music industry.

Interview: Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi

By Andrew Catania

An ace lyricist, a virtuosic composer, and a master producer – Tony Iommi is one of those few legendary names in the rock and the heavy metal world that have contributed their optimum effort to innovate the genre and elevate it to a stature where it stands today.

Born on 19th February 1948 in Birmingham, Tony Iommi was bitten by the music bug early in his life. His primary influences were Hank Marin and the Shadows who inspired him to test his mettle in the music sphere. Iommi picked up the guitar in his early teens. By the time he turned 18, he had established meaningful partnerships with some bands, the most notable of which was with Polka Tulk, a band which was later renamed as Earth.

Polka Tulk’s lineup comprised of Bill Ward (drum), Terry ‘Geezer’ Butler (bass), Ozzy Osbourne (singer), and Tony Iommi (guitar). The band was still going through its incubation phase when Tony had to face a major setback that temporarily snatched the guitar from his hands. The tips of the two fingers on his right hand were chopped in a machine at the factory where he used to work.

The accident had a profound impact on his morale. He was on the verge of permanently giving up on his career when he came across Django Reinhardt, who too had lost two fingers in an accident yet still pursued guitar playing. This instilled a new ray of hope in Tony and compelled him to test his musical fate. Slowly resuming his techniques with plastic tips attached to his damaged hand, Tony embarked on his passion.

As he regained momentum, Tony Iommi was invited to join Jethro Tull in 1968. Since he had already bid farewell to Black Sabbath’s precursor Earth, he hesitantly joined Jethro Tull. The association helped him regain his lost confidence and just after a year, he rejoined Earth’s lineup and the group renamed themselves as Black Sabbath, which they are still known as till date.

The band released its debut album titled ‘Black Sabbath’ in 1970. The feat kick-started Tony’s career not only at Black Sabbath’s platform, but also brought along more opportunities, partnerships, and achievements to his claim. Tony also focused on building his solo debut album titled ‘Iommi’ in 2000.

The notable highlights of Tony’s career include cofounding Black Sabbath, his great solo profile featuring Fused and ‘The 1996 DEP Sessions’, and his major associations with Jethro Tull, Heaven and Hell, Velvet Frog and Mythology. Tony Iommi continues to play for Black Sabbath, and the combined efforts of Tony and his associates have bagged immense success for the band. Tony Iommi’s signature style has evolved to gain a branded stature over time. His deep riffs, fine detuning, improvised parameters and unrivaled mastery over chords has made a name that rhymes along and is synonymous with the rock and heavy metal genre of today.

Tony Iommi has been ranked 25th among the ‘Top 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Times’. Celebrating his undisputed axemanship over the genre, Tony Iommi has cast a major influence on the proceeding generations of guitarists worldwide.

Tony, It’s a pleasure speaking with you!  You’ve been an inspiration to many guitarists with your playing.  I’ve always wanted to ask you, how did you get your particular tone at the early beginning of Sabbath?

We played bluesy and jazzy stuff when we first got together with this line-up, and I’d played that stuff with Bill (Ward) before in a band before we got together as Sabbath, and it was one day we just turned it up loud really, and we liked the sound we had. We developed this sound with Geezer and the way he played and the way I played, and it just created that sound with the two guitars. We just worked on the sound that we heard in our heads. I knew I wanted to hear this really big sound in my head and I wanted to make it work from the amplifier, but of course, in them days, the speakers were essential. There was no preamps or anything.

How many guitars do you have on this tour?

I take about 8 – 10 because I have the main ones I use onstage and then I have a backup for each of those you know in case I break a string. But each night there are three main guitars that I use, each with different tunings.

I wanted to ask you about the Epiphone P94 Iommi model, and the humbucker sized P-90 single coil pickups. I’m curious as to why you chose the P-90’s over humbuckers?

You mean my latest Epiphone? Yes, they are the Iommi pickups that I have on the Gibsons, and I came up with those pickups many years ago when I went over to Gibson in Nashville, and we worked for a few weeks on designing these pickups. They’d wire one I’d try it, they’d wire another one, and I’d try it until they found one that I liked, and I’d test them onstage, and you know, I still use them to this day.

Your signature model Tony – the Epiphone Tony Iommi G-400 – with the USA Gibson humbuckers, is that your key guitar and the main one used on stage now?

Well, my main tour guitars are from a company that I’ve used for many years, Jaydee, which until recently came on the road with me. I enjoy the Gibsons and the Epiphones too.  I want to incorporate the Epiphones into the show more, but I only received the new model just before I left England, so I haven’t had the time to work on it, to get it just right.

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Who are your favorite artists these days? Metal or other styles of music?

I listen to a lot of different stuff, and I go through different phases, for example, I might play as silly as it sounds, a Doris Day album for a couple of weeks or Frank Sinatra I play a lot. I like a different amount of things it’s not just all rock or metal stuff. It’s something more relaxing. When you play Sabbath on stage it’s important to have that difference, it’s the spice of life you know.

It’s important to listen to all kinds of music.  With my website, I try and keep “shredding” alive and well.  A lot of the new music tends to forget this sort of music.

You know Andy, I haven’t had much time to listen to current guitarists. I looked at your site, and I like what you’re doing for the instrument. You need that torch to carry on to the next generation.  I mean there’s plenty of great players, but there’s nothing better to me than to hear someone play with great feel. And I think with some of the newer guitar players that are where they’ve missed it a bit, they’ve gone for all this fancy stuff. It comes out more emotionally in the music if you play what you feel. It’s good to have various forms of guitarists showcasing their talent for all to see.

The End tour is not just a goodbye to the fans but also in support of the latest album 13.  Are there any surprises to the setlist that might have Sabbath fans in shock?

Well the setlist is going to be classic Sabbath songs, we’ve brought in a couple of songs that we hadn’t played for many years but it’s mainly the songs that people want to hear, and if you don’t play them people say “well you never played this, you never played that” so you know, the show we put together I think is working really well. I mean we have tried some different things out, but people want to hear the real classics because we can play some tracks off the new album which people like but because it’s the final tour they want the classics that they know, the nostalgia of it all.

Tony thank you for your time!  Thank you for 40 plus years of great music, and I wish you the best for the rest of the Sabbath tour and afterward!

 

Check Tony out @ http://www.iommi.com/

All That Shreds Exclusive! Ozzy Osbourne’s Upcoming Solo Record – Who Should Take Over the Guitar?

By Andrew Catania

Now that the Black Sabbath band has started wrapping up their music career and the final show has been locked in for February 4th, many of us will mourn not having more from the band. However, this is equally pleasing in tandem, that Ozzy Osbourne, the Madman of Black Sabbath who recently turned 68, hasn’t called it a day yet and says that he’s “currently playing around with some song ideas. I have a few things jotted down, and once Black Sabbath is off the road, I will be heading into the studio with my band to get the songs recorded. Once it’s all in the can, you can be sure to see me back on the road again.”

Sounds cool, right!

So now that the big news is out and has enthralled the crazy global fandom of Ozzy – the ultimate Prince of Darkness, apparently, this has become a topic of hot debate about who will play the guitar on his upcoming solo records.

Considering that the Godfather of Metal has a good record of having paired with the top-notch music virtuosos of their time, including Randy Rhoads, Jake E. Lee, Zakk Wylde, Gus G, Joe Holmes and others, it would surely be interesting to see who the ‘picky’ Ozzy would choose to collaborate with this time around. Rumor has it he’s writing with Steve Stevens but won’t touring with him.   If Gus G doesn’t return, who will be his guitarist? Here are our top picks of potential guitarists likely to pair up with Ozzy for his upcoming record.

  1. Rusty Cooley

Acclaimed for his aesthetic and intricately refined techniques, and rendered as one of the fastest guitarists in the US, Rusty Cooley is a virtuosic name in heavy, progressive and power metal genre. Well-known as the king of shreds, Rusty has been casting a spell through his chords since 1985 and has been associated with the Day of Reckoning, Outworld, Austrian Death Machine, the Rings of Saturn and a number of solos and special performances. He has been called as the ‘Leading Light of Post-Malmsteen Shred-volution’ by the Guitar Player magazine. With Cooley heavily influenced by Rhoads, this would be our logical choice.

  1. Jeff Loomis

Famous and applauded for his soulful contribution to ‘Nevermore’, Jeff Loomis is one of the top-notch names that rule the present-age metal genre. Jeff Loomis has proven his mettle as a lyricist, composer, vocalist, bassist and keyboard, drum and guitar player.

Aside from a number of fruitful associations with Arch Enemy, Nevermore, Fear Tech, Sanctuary, Conquering Dystopia, Experiment Fear, System, and 7 Eyes, Jeff Loomis has skillfully proved his virtuosity in a number of solos that make a strong emblem of his unique classic arpeggios and gradually flowing nuances.

  1. Marty Friedman

Famous for his former association with the heavy metal band Megadeth that ruled the music world for the entire decade of the mighty 90s, Marty Friedman has now become a mega music sensation in Japan.

His shredding techniques and style still carry that vibrant and signature ‘Megadeth’ essence, however, his personal preferences and music taste has drifted towards contemporary and Japanese pop. This has influenced him to evolve as an ecstatic fusion of eastern and western music, punctuated and infused with thrash metal, progressive rock, and neoclassic genres.

  1. Vinnie Moore

Having emerged on the 80s music horizon with his incredible performances in Alice Cooper’sHey Stoopid’, Vinnie Moore has managed to attain the stature of the most influential musicians who defined and shaped the dynamics and tending patterns of the music scene of the 80s and 90s.

Vinnie Moore has had an exciting career from 1986 to date, that is punctuated with his associated acts with UFO, Alice Cooper, Red Zone Rider, along with a number of hit solos records to his name. Vinnie Moore’s style stems from neoclassical metal, heavy metal, hard rock, and instrumental rock genre.

  1. Jacky Vincent

Though making the list of prospected senior guitarists joining Ozzy at the young of 27 is itself a validation of extraordinary talent, yet Jacky Vincent has managed to bag a tremendous applause from the audience’s and critic’s camps alike, becoming one of the most sought-after music celebrity with a number of ambassadorships and endorsements to his name. A former member of Falling in Reverse, Jacky Vincent is currently playing for Cry Venom, casting an ecstatic spell through his speed, accuracy, and ferocious techniques.

Interview: The Legacy of Lita Ford

By Andrew Catania

There’s not many guitarists that have had the career and legacy that Lita Ford has had.  Litа wаѕ bоrn оn Sерtеmbеr 19, 1958 in Lоndоn, Englаnd, and grew up in Lоѕ Angеlеѕ. She became the lead guitаriѕt in thе аll-girl hard rосk band Thе Runaways, whose dеbut аlbum wаѕ rеlеаѕеd in 1976. With thеir рunkiѕh ѕоund, рrоvосаtivе ѕtаgе outfits аnd rеbеlliоuѕ lуriсѕ, thе band ѕhосkеd mаnу in thе rосk wоrld, аnd асhiеvеd mild рорulаritу until they brоkе up in 1979. Fоrd then enjoyed a ѕuссеѕѕful ѕоlо саrееr in heavy mеtаl, with ѕuсh hitѕ аѕ “Kiѕѕ Me Dеаdlу” аnd “Close Mу Eуеѕ Fоrеvеr.”

Ford was bоrn Cаrmеlitа Rоѕѕаnnа Fоrd tо a Britiѕh fаthеr, and аn Itаliаn mother in Lоndоn, Englаnd. Shе mоvеd with hеr fаmilу to the Unitеd Stаtеѕ аt аgе 4. Shе bеgаn рlауing thе guitаr at аgе 11. Hеr vосаl rаngе iѕ thаt of a mеzzо-ѕорrаnо.

Aftеr the grоuр ѕрlit in 1979, ѕhе bеgаn a solo career. Hеr firѕt album, Out fоr Blood inсluding thе titlе ѕinglе wаѕ released in 1983 аnd hаd nо luсk оn thе сhаrtѕ. The next effort, Dancin’ оn thе Edgе оf 1984 асhiеvеd mоdеrаtе success. It inсludеd the single “Fire In Mу Hеаrt” whiсh reached thе Tор 10 in ѕеvеrаl соuntriеѕ. The nеxt ѕinglе “Gotta Lеt Gо” wаѕ оnе of Fоrd’ѕ biggеѕt hitѕ. It reached Numbеr One on thе Mainstream Rосk сhаrtѕ.

Fоrd tоurеd еxtеnѕivеlу аnd mаdе ѕеvеrаl guеѕt арреаrаnсеѕ оn TV shows for the next four years, but had nо rеlеаѕеѕ; a fоllоw-uр tо Dаnсin’ On Thе Edgе, titled Thе Bridе Wоrе Blасk, wаѕ abandoned аnd never rеlеаѕеd because Ford did not likе thе production оf thе аlbum аnd this upset the hеаd оf hеr record label, lеаding to Fоrd ѕwitсhing from Mеrсurу RecordsRCA Rесоrdѕ. Thе аrtiѕt hаѕ dеѕсribеd thе аlbum as bеing in “Lаbеl hell! Whо knоwѕ what ѕhеlf thаt iѕ ѕitting оn!”

Bу thе timе Fоrd rеturnеd again, thе lighter рор-mеtаl ѕhе had lоng fаvоrеd hаd brоkеn thrоugh tо mаinѕtrеаm аudiеnсеѕ, which set the ѕtаgе fоr hеr most соmmеrсiаllу successful album, 1988’ѕ Lita. With Shаrоn Oѕbоurnе аѕ her mаnаgеr, аnd again рrоduсеd bу herself, the album fеаturеd fоur commercial hitѕ, including “Kiss Me Dеаdlу“, “Bасk Tо Thе Cаvе“, “Close My Eyes Fоrеvеr“, and “Falling In And Out Of Love” (co-written with Nikki Sixx of Mötley Crüе). The bаllаd “Close Mу Eуеѕ Fоrеvеr“, a duet with Ozzу Osbourne, wаѕ hеr оnlу Tор 10 Billbоаrd Hоt 100 hit, rеасhing #8.

Hеr nеxt release was called Stilеttо. It fеаturеd the ѕinglеѕ “Hungry” and “Liѕа” (the ѕесоnd wаѕ dedicated to hеr mоthеr). Hоwеvеr thiѕ album was nоt as ѕuссеѕѕful аѕ Dаnсin’ On The Edge аnd Litа.

Fоrd’ѕ next rеlеаѕе was Dаngеrоuѕ Curvеѕ, which fеаturеd her lаѕt сhаrting ѕinglе “Shоt Of Pоiѕоn.” Ford’s lаѕt release would be with ZYX Rесоrdѕ and wоuld bе titled Blасk. It failed tо repeat thе ѕuссеѕѕ оf 1991’ѕ Dangerous Curves.

During hеr ѕоlо уеаrѕ, ѕhе wаѕ аn еndоrѕеr оf B.C. Riсh guitаrѕ аnd used Warlock, Eаglе, Mockingbird аnd Biсh ѕinglе аnd dоublе-nесk models. Fоrd арреаrѕ in the 1992 film Highway tо Hell as ‘The Hitchhiker‘. Ford wаѕ аlѕо аѕkеd by VH-1 tо be in thе cast оf The Surrеаl Life fоr itѕ 7th season, in 2007. She dесlinеd.

In Junе 2008, Fоrd аnd hеr nеw ѕоlо bаnd рlауеd ѕеvеrаl warm-up gigs рriоr to Rосklаhоmа undеr thе name Kiѕѕ Me Deadly in thе Nеw Yоrk City аrеа.

In Junе 2009, Litа bеgаn touring the US аnd Eurоре, with a new line-up consisting of Rоn ‘Bumblеfооt’ Thal (Ex Guns N’ Roses) on Guitаr, Dеnniѕ Lееflаng (Bumblеfооt drummer) аnd PJ Fаrlеу оn bаѕѕ (Trixtеr, Ra) аnd Miсhаеl T. Rоѕѕ (Angеl/XYZ).

Fоrd rеlеаѕеd a new аlbum Wicked Wonderland on Oсtоbеr 6, 2009 viа JLRG Entеrtаinmеnt

Thе album wаѕ writtеn аnd produced by Fоrd, ex-huѕbаnd Jim Gillеttе, and Greg Hampton. Litа would tour the US in the Fаll аnd Wintеr оf 2009, inсluding dаtеѕ оn Quееnѕrусhе’ѕ Amеriсаn Soldier Tоur.

Lita would then release a 2012 record titled Living Like a Runaway, a live record in 2014, and her present release called Time Capsule.  Time Capsule is old recordings that Lita had for over 20 years.  She brought them to LA from the Islands where she was living and remastered them.  Time Capsule has several guests on it including Gene Simmons from Kiss.  Regardless of how old these recordings are on Time Capsule, this is some of Lita’s best work of her career.

Lita’s crtically acclaimed 2016 memoir, Living Like a Runaway, details the hardships and sacrifices she had to endure in a mostly male environment coming up the ranks as a musician and guitarist.

If Lita has an attitude, she has every right to have one.  She’s paved the way for female guitarists/musicians that wouldn’t have to be exposed to what she was 30 years ago.  A talented guitarist and musician, I had the pleasure of speaking with Lita on her career.

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Hi Lita!  It is a pleasure to have you here at All That Shreds!

Lita, you have used BC Rich Guitars since the start of your career.  Is there something specific about them you have liked over the years?

Oh yes, the original BC Rich guitars are so different than the 2016 guitars. There is no comparison. They are strong and beefy sounding. Mine are iconic, and have pre-amps built into them, the double neck has a chorus and a flanger switch. They are balls to the walls guitars. LOL…

 

I interviewed Gary Hoey back in June.  Gary said he’s going to be working with you on your new record.  You and Gary have worked together previously.  What should we expect from the new record?

Gary and I have a chemistry together like no other.  For me, it takes chemistry to make your music what you expect it to be. Powerful.

 

Do you write the song first or the lyrics?

I have a lyricist named Michael Dan Ehmig. He is the best I have ever worked with. Together the 3 of us wrote LIVING LIKE A RUNAWAY.  It really doesn’t matter which comes first, the lyric or the music. So long as the finished product is awesome and you are happy with it.

In terms of gear, what are you using at present?  

I use my Marshall DSL 100 amps, they are beefy as all Hell. And I still use my original BC Richs, Double neck Rich Bich, my Warlocks, Mockingbird, my black Hamer Standard which I used in The Runaways days.  It keeps my sound true and very LITA.

Do you change gear every tour?

No.

Who’s inspired you for your lead guitar skills?

I was inspired by many greats; Richie Blackmore was my #1 idol. Sabbath.  Jeff Beck.  Jimmy Page. Johnny WinterGilmore. Hendrix.

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With the recent discussion of how YouTube compensates, or lack thereof, artists do you have an opinion on the matter?

I didn’t come from a YouTube world. I think it’s something you need to grow up with to appreciate.

 

With the number of female guitarists on the rise, and some of them saying you inspired them, is there any one you feel you could “pass the torch on” to?

As far as guitar playing goes, and singing together at the same time, not really anyone can do it right now except Lizzy Hale.  She’s an amazing vocalist and she is a good player. A great talent.   So, if any one of the young woman who are out and about on the music scene today, I’d have to say Lizzy Hale.

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Is there one artist that you’d love to work with, but, haven’t?

I don’t know. We’ll have to see what 2017 brings.

 

I’ve been noticing that bands from the 80’s are prospering more in Europe than the US.  Would you agree?

I have not noticed. It does seem that Europe is more embracing of metal.

 

Do you have any plans of producing? 

I have produced a Canadian band called SAVAGE PLAYGROUND.  A bunch of teenaged, young men, a great band with a lot of potential. I also produced a lot of my own recordings.  I’d love to get into the studio with the right line up. Yes.  I have the experience and would do a great job, I love being in the studio!

 

Your appearance on That Metal Show was great!  Do you think anything more needs to be done to highlight female guitarists? 

Yes,  I suppose it’s a start though. But it’s sad that females must have their own category.  At least woman have their foot in the door now, which is great and all that really matters.  I’d like to think I had a helping hand with that.

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I loved your book, Living Like a Runaway.  It was a powerful portrayal of the highs and lows of your career.  Is there one thing you’d want a reader to take away from reading your book?

One thing?   There are a lot of things, growing up a female guitarist where females were not recognized as musicians, a teen in a man’s world, it was bad ass. The hurdles I had to jump and BS I had to put up with to survive in this world as a musician. But I guess if I had to pick one thing out of my book, it would be how corrupt our family legal system is and how they destroy families and children for money. They are an evil bunch of despicable people who hopefully will be caught at this crime one day.

 

Lastly, do you have any advice for up and coming female guitarists?

That’s hard to say, because everyone is different. But I’d say follow your heart and dreams, don’t let anyone tell you you’re doing something wrong. In Rock N Roll, there are ‘’no rules’’!

 

Be sure to check Lita out at her official site @ http://litafordonline.com/

 

Interview with the Legendary Glenn Hughes

By Andrew Catania

With his signature singing and playing style, the way he intensifies the frequency and fluctuates through extreme ascents and descents, hovering from soothing pitches to earsplitting uproars – Glenn Hughes is the funk rock sensation with an immense capability to mesmerize and enthrall the listeners through his voice and instruments alike.

Born on 21st August 1951 and raised in Staffordshire County, England, Glenn Hughes is a renowned English name in the global music sphere. He is highly acclaimed for his triple-dimensional mastery; having proven his mettle as a bassist, vocalist, and lyricist. Glenn had it in him and that is what convinced him in his younger years; that he was made for the world of music.

It was a firm belief in oneself, coupled with the naturally gifted talent he had, that he took a risky start by bidding farewell to his academics, even before joining high school. He first landed in for The Hooker Lees and The News in 1966-67 to incubate and nurture his in-born talents. However, a better opportunity didn’t take much time to arrive and he joined Finders Keepers, a better band, in 1967. By then, he had become well-versed with the intricacies of hard, funk and progressive rock, pop, blues, and heavy metal.

Not looking back since, he paved ahead to excel at his game. The very next year, he teamed up with Dave Holland on Drums and Mel Galley on guitars to co-found his very own franchise. Impressed by Glenn’s innate talents and convinced that he was definitely going places, Birmingham’s famous music duo, ‘The Moody Blues’, expressed their interest in joining hands with Glenn’s Franchise.

The collaboration had, by then, become a group of 5 ‘stars in the making’ who named themselves as Trapeze. Trapeze released their record hit labels called “Trapeze” (debut label), “Medusa” and “You Are the Music… We’re Just the Band”.

By then, Trapeze had established credibility in the UK and USA. In one of the concert shows promoting their 3rd label, Glen Hughes caught the eye of Ritchie Blackmore and Ian Pace, who offered him to join the reformatted Deep Purple in 1973.

The association turned more promising than anticipated and he managed to influence the Deep Purple legacy through his infusion of funk and accelerated momentum. However, producing Burn, The Starship, Stormbringer, and ‘Come Taste the Band’, the relationship started to turn sour and eventually, in 1976, Glenn parted ways with them. The split came as a shock to many, but Glenn had other plans ready at hand. He reverted to the Trapeze and also worked on his solos on parallel, releasing ‘Play Me Out’ in 1977.

His next big was collaboration was teaming up with Pat Thrall to release their self-titled album ‘Hughes-thrall’ in 1982. The 80s and 90s are marred with numerous guest appearances that polished his forte as a bassist, lyricist, and vocalist. Aside from that, he also partnered with Gary Moore and later, with Black Sabbath, to produce joint records and stage concerts.

Having been in multiple temporary partnerships, he mustered up the courage and formed a brand new band called the California Breed with Andrew Watt and Jason Bonham. Together, they headed on a touring spree to the UK, USA, Russia, and other European countries.

In 2015, Deep Purple was added into the US Rock and Roll’s Hall of Fame, making another cynosure on Glenn Hughes profile.

Since 2015, Glenn Hughes has directed his focus towards making more stints in his solo profile through solo releases, house-full shows, and time-packed rosters of his upcoming concerts. His recently released  solo album is one which is highly anticipated in the music sphere.

Glenn sat in the shred lounge and spoke about his new record Deep Purple, and the HOF.

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I listened to your album.  Wow!  Chad Smith on the drums for two songs. That is really a heavier album than what I’ve heard from you.

Yeah, I think what’s going on Andrew, you know if you know anything about my heritage you know that I was raised in rock.  I am absolutely a big fan of well what was coming out of Detroit as a teenager a lot of people were listening to blues, the Beatles you know from my generation a few people listen to soul music and of course you know I became friends with Stevie Wonder he was kind of like my dream although I am a very much an established rock artist I understand the template that he’s created with the mo-town and soul music.  So, what I did on this album was it’s a rock album absolutely for sure but it has that swagger and soulfulness of who I am.  But this album was written in general the rock fan base of Glenn Hughes.  It’s a return to that home that a lot of people have been waiting for.

I think if I was going to describe it I would describe it as heavy album but it’s got your touch on it.
I think so.  I had to be very focused when I was doing this not to slip back to too much funk.  Look man if I’m making records for a label for Frontiers and their out of Italy and their focused on classic rock and they are serving their worth to magazines that are metal or rock or classic it would be foolish of me not to as a business model to incorporate what I do into that.  Am I upset that I couldn’t make a real funk rock album?  Not at all.  It was time for me to come back.  I say come back home to where it all started

And rightfully you did it sounds very good. You produced this album with your guitarist?  

I did.  I was at his studio and I wrote all the songs and I needed help getting over the line, over the punch line we didn’t have a lot of time and I needed his help to make that happen for me so I chose Soren simply because he’s my right-hand man.  It would be good for him to have his name on this album for him because it’s business for him.  He did a great job he worked hard.  But I knew these songs I wrote them and I knew what needed to be done.  So, all and all it was a great effort from everybody.

Did you do anything differently with this album that you have done with the others?

You know, for the first time on this album Andrew I wanted it to be, because I was writing this album and I was under duress of my double knee replacement.  I was in my home studio for 2 or 3 months in the spring and I was alone because my band were in Europe I said I’m going to write some music here.  After about twelve songs I’m going wait a minute I think I’ve got enough for an album.  So, finished them.  I went to in to Copenhagen and the band had not heard anything. One song at a time I played them everything I had wrote and finished each track until we had twelve tracks and then I said we’re good to go

How did you get Chad Smith on there?  Did he ask you or did you ask him?  Did it just sort of come about?  

Chad’s been on every album I’ve made since 2003.  He’s my best mate and dearest friend and it just so happens Chad was available that weekend and you know he’s been on every record and he loves playing my music and we love having him on my album.  You know all about Chad he’s not only a great drummer he’s a great man funny as all hell

Yes he is a great drummer.

He’s a great drummer but he’s a good kind considerate man in a world where someone has that much profile.  It can get a little bit weird but Chad doesn’t have the traits of someone that has garnished all this material and stuff he’s very much a home bodied father; good husband, you know.  A good guy and I love having him on my work

So considering going back you’ve worked with some of the biggest names you’ve worked with Tony Iommi, Gary Moore, is there anything different working with them working years past than working here producing an album for Frontiers?  

No, I mean it was easy for me because it was what I wanted.  When I’d wrote the songs, I knew what I wanted to do with them.  What I was going to put on each track.  I knew what kind of backing vocals.  I knew it was going to be an organ or a meletron, a paino or a piano, or a cabinet. I knew it was going be a Fender Strat or it was going to be some sort of guitar.  I knew where we were going with this.  As I was writing the songs I could hear the acoustics they were begging for me to do these things.  As a producer for the first time, and I produced many of my albums I had a definitive idea of how it should sound. Obviously, there’s more bass on this album than you heard before, I wanted to ride the level of the bass on the runs.  I wanted those runs to be very prolific.  You know my friendyou could always hear his runs because it’s a challenge sometimes to play those thick cords. With all due respect he’s wasn’t a virtuoso lead guitar player he’s talented and he’s a chunky incredible rhythm Star Wars guitar player and that leaves the bass player to become extrovert and that’s what this album was for me to be able to stretch

glennfinalpurple

The band that you were in back in 2012 with Joe Bonomassa and Jason Bonham, did you guys disband over creative differences? 

In Black Country?  No what happened was Joe has, I’m not sure if you know much about Joe? Joe has a career that took exactly one year in advance so you know it’s like he’s out there.  So, on the first record we didn’t have enough songs so we tour on the back of the second album and then on the third album this is when it went kind of strange.  On the third album Afterglow, which was going to be a Glenn solo album, there was no shows booked.  There was only one in my hometown Roehampton in the back country in England and I said to myself and my manager very graciously I said I can’t be at a career that is just CD or all music related recording.  As you know Andrew, an artist I don’t care if you’re young or old you can’t have a career unless you play live.

I understand.

Joe understood this so I said I’m going to back away from this car and go back to something else that’s when Jason and I formed California Breed.  Which leads me to now Resonate was recorded behind the duress of me having these double knee replacements having the ability to write all this music in the spring to go into the studio and record this album.  It was never a falling out with Joe and I it was just people thinking that was the case.  We got together over the years had lunches and dinners and had many laughs and after we got together after the Hall of Fame in April we said wow maybe it’s time for another one and we were done.

Speaking of the Hall of Fame with Deep Purple where you asked to stay away for the Hall of Fame induction?  How did that all happen? 

We were inducted as you saw but let’s be clear and I’m going to open a can of worms here with all due respect to Gillan, Glover and Paice with all due respect to them they did not invite David Coverdale and I to sing with them on anything.  It could have been a cover song and I knew going into it that we weren’t going to be asked.  I don’t have a relationship with Ian Gillan.  I don’t know him or talk to him.  He runs that show whatever Deep Purple is called these days Mark 10 or whatever it is.  I said to David let’s go out arm and arm accept our awards and we’ll get to do something with Cheap Trick because Robin’s one of my best friends.  At the end of the show, which they asked us to come on, Cheryl Crow and Chicago and my friend Grace Potter so we closed the show.  It was a bit uncomfortable to be honest with you. We weren’t invited but I didn’t give a shit.  You know I was up there, my father had died four hours before I took the stage

I’m sorry to hear that.
It was very , very, very sad.  I didn’t know which end was up.  I was solemn as I walked on the stage.  You could see that I was a little troubled but I was not going to talk about it on the microphone or I was not going to talk about it behind stage.  Only my wife knew about it.  I told David the day after.  It was a difficult – difficult induction but the good news for me I guess is that I struck up a friendship with Shelby Morrison and Greg Harrison the CEO of the Hall of Fame and they asked me to become an ambassador for The Hall of Fame.

Oh, wow!

Yes, I’m the only one that’s been asked to be an ambassador.  I don’t know how that came about but it’s been a nice thing to do you know.

Yes, because I knew you and David Coverdale and they told Joe Lynn Turner to stay away too, I do believe that 

I know it’s like honestly Andrew, I don’t know what Gillan’s thing was.  I doubt he even wanted to show up.  All I can say to you is this it is common knowledge and I don’t say this to be disrespectful because people are going to read this.  I don’t know who Gillan, Glover and Paice are because we’re not friends. I haven’t spent any time with any of those guys except Paice and it’s been 40 something years ago when we were children.  And now I’ve been sober so long my whole life has changed dramatically that I knew going into this, even before my dad was diagnosed he was going to die, it was going to be a difficult evening and everybody knew it going into it.  I’m sure Lars Ulrich would have like to have seen all the members playing.  It was never meant to be.  I have no resentment.  I have no remorse.  I have no nothing but love for the fact David Coverdale and Glenn Hughes were inducted and it was a nice gesture from the committee, it was.  Now you know the Hall of Fame could upset a lot of people.  This guy was inducted; this guy doesn’t play.  You know my friend Matt Sorum, he didn’t get to play when Guns played everybody gets upset but the band members themselves don’t get to call the shots and that’s probably what pisses some people off but it didn’t affect me and David.

glennhughes

Your autobiography came out in 2011.  Were you asked to do it, or did you want to do it yourself?  

I did some of it myself.  That’s funny enough, I did the intro, the first chapter and I did the last chapter and the other part was co-written with Joel McIver who’s done books for Metallica and a lot of people that you know of.  He’s a great guy to have on board.  So, he was with me travelling with me.  I wrote the first edition.  We got talking about my relapses and my father was dying on his death bed and said you must tell people about your relapses which I did.  So, that took about another year to do.  They were so devastatingly awful. You know the hearts attacks and blah blah.  So, I got down to the nitty gritty and I think that saved my life.  Telling people, the real deal about Glenn Hughes about how I wasn’t going to glamorize the grandiosity of cocaine addiction.  There’s no such thing as a winner.    “And the winner of the cocaine award is.”  No! There’s no such thing as winner.  What I don’t want to do is I want to take my foot off the gas of promoting that has anything to do with hard narcotics.   That’s what I did

Right.  Now going back, the Trapeze song, Seafull, was that written for someone specifically?
 
Oh my God Andrew! How smart are you?   

(laughter)

Oh my God!!  Yes, it was.  It was for a girlfriend back in the day you know.  A girl I was dating so but you’re the first person in 46 years to ever ask that question

Well I’ve been listening to you for a long time. 

It’s like yes it’s a love song.  Yes, it’s for a girl and my heart was broken prior this gal.  I was 17 for God’s sake and it’s like nobody ever asked me that.  You know people wrote a love song and it’s drenched in dramatic there’s so much night and shade in that.  It’s so dense and dark and beautiful but it’s a love song

It is! 

I’ll be damned!

Go back in time with you on that one.

I’m kind of blown away by that  

(laughter)

If you had a chance to say something to Tommy Bolan tomorrow face to face what would you tell him?

God it’s quite simple,” Why didn’t you call me that night?  Why didn’t you or somebody call me?”  You know what happened Andrew? Seven people stood around watched him go down and they put him in the fucking tub, they put him in the bed and they left him.  Now as much as back in 1976 I was out of my mind I believe in my heart of heart I don’t think I could have let him walk out of that room.  I would have called 911.  I’m not saying I’m better than anybody else but I can’t believe.  I had words with some people at the funeral about that.  It’s very difficult for me to understand.  They all knew that he’d OD’d and the guy that shot him up he was there too so.  Tommy Bolan, I would say wasn’t deliberately murdered but he was being shot up by some guy from Denver.  That’s the story behind that

Wow!
Do you still get stage freight before you make any appearances or go on stage after all this time?

Yes, only occasionally.  It will come at any given moment whether it’s a small venue or large.  It’s like OK it’s happening again, it sometimes happens that way.

I can’t lie to you and go oh no, I would never get stage freight.  You can’t say that.  Especially when I tell you this everybody I know gets stage freight whether I want to tell you about it, I’m not sure
Your new bass line you’ve got coming out, the new GH basses when are they coming out?

Yes, Yes! It’s all done.  I’ve got a few you can call them prototypes I guess.  I have three Yamaha Glenn Hughes signature it’s like a new shaped VB.  It’s 8 pounds, super thin neck, two knobs instead of three it’s got like a vintage P base and J sound and bass sound so it’s the beauty of between what a J & P sound like.  We’ve gone to great lengths to make sure this bass is the bass and it should be out  when we announce it.

Why did you decide after so long to have a signature bass released? Did Yamaha approach you or did you approach them?

No.  Yamaha approached me 10 years ago.  They made me two basses and they were good.  They were good, they were really good and then I was approached by Bill Nash who was an old friend of mine from the 80’s.  I don’t know if you know anything about Nash guitars and bass but my God the guy can make some serious basses and he made me a half dozen basses and I just fell in love with the feeling of not actually they are Fender basses you know but he puts his spin on it and I just fell in love with the J & P of the Nash you know.  And then Yamaha came back to me and it was another idea of creating a new shape VB body and I could choose whatever was appropriate for me for my own bass.  So, that’s what we did and that’s what we got. We’re still kinking out some of it, it’s almost ready to go

Great! I can’t wait to look forward to it
What does your rig consist of these days when you’re out touring?

It’s Orange amps. It’s been orange for 4 years. AD 200 Bass MKIII, AD200B MK Head 4x10x15 cabs 1X810.  I’ve got an amazing pedal board it’s got a pretty insane overdrive pedal.  Man, I don’t know if you’ve heard my sound or seen it on YouTube
it’s a pretty insane sound.  It’s just insane.  You know and I’ve been looking for that sound since I had that huge fucking rig in deep purple, the rig was 10 feet tall it drags.  This rig is exactly where I should be in this frame of mind playing this kind of music so I’m kind of back where I started.  I wanted to go back to that organicness.  You know when I first started with my friends back in the day when oh God, whatever that is, I’m having some of that and that’s when I went with Aiwa.  Yes, Yamaha is for me right now.

Alright! Sounds good.  Any of the up and coming music these days, what kind of advice would you give to anybody that is up and coming to this music scene

Stay by your instruments.  Live it, breathe it, sleep with your instruments, don’t believe what anybody else tells you.  It’s a gift! Stay where you’re supposed to be. Believe in your art!

You can check Glenn Hughes out on his website, www.glennhughes.com

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