A couple of songs are actually almost 10 years old. I've been performing them live here and there over the years but was never able to get them on tape recorded the way I wanted them to sound. Over and over again I would retry it and retry it and then eventually somehow it all finally worked out. They finally made it on a record. The song "Savannah" is one of the songs I've been performing for years. A couple of them are new songs that we'd written on tour in support of the Anachronism record which is our first CD. The problem with it and maybe one of the reasons there are only five songs on it is that we've toured so much over the last four years that we never took a break to write a record and we realized that we needed to get some new product out. We just had to do that and in the interim to writing what would be the next real record as more of an EP and then the Bret Michaels thing fell into place and that's put a new record behind again. Actually I don't mind because I always come up with new stuff when I have the time. The longer we wait I guess the better it gets.
A lot of bands do put out an EP here and there. Godsmack just did that. It's a cool thing.
Yeah, as long as you can give something new and let everyone know that you're at least doing something, that's all that really matters.
You said "Savannah" was one of the old songs. What was the other old song?
"Anyone But Me".
You have a song on here called "Elvis".
Yes, I do. That's actually a lot of people's favorite song. I actually think that's the best one on the record. I like the production on it and all the bangs. That's probably also one of the deepest things that I've written in my life. Actually I'll tell you, all five songs on Sunset To Sunset are a pretty deep journey into my own personal feelings where on Anachronism, I really preached about writing songs about my life and the world around me. Those songs were more about people and characters in my life where all the songs on Sunset To Sunset are directly me getting my emotions about my own life and myself out. That's the little bit of the difference there and with that "Elvis" is just something where there are emotions in that song that have been striking me since the day he died. The song is more about the relationship about me and my mother and the impact she had when Elvis died and how much it meant to her. I never really realized that until years later how it was affecting our relationship. It's a deep song.
My mom was a big Elvis fan because he was a big deal when she was younger. She brought him into my life and it became a big deal with me. I remember the day he died because it was three days before my birthday. I remember the impact that had on me. That is one guy who will never be forgotten. He will always have an impact on people I think even 100 years from now if the human race is still here.
He turned the world upside down.
He definitely did. It's funny you mentioned Anachronism. When I drive in the car I always like to pop something into the CD player and a few days ago I had that CD in the player and my friends were like who is this band? I told them it was a very cool fucking band. I enjoyed that CD all over again.
Oh, that's good. You revisited it.
Yeah, and there's one song on there that I really like the most and it's the one that goes "I'd do it all over again the same way I did it before."
"Just The Same".
Yeah, and that is my life. If I had it to do all over again, I'd do it the same fucking way.
You give me goosebumps telling me that. When a songwriter can make someone feel the way they felt when they wrote it, that's the goal in real songwriting and so that you got that song and it means something to you, that actually gave me chills.
That song really means something to me. The world is getting so fucked up and the end can come anytime and you think about your past and hell yeah, I'd do it the same way. Damn straight. You guys are Bret Michaels' backing band now. How did that come about?
The last two years that Bret went solo, and let me really reiterate for anyone that reads this, Bret is still in Poison. Poison is still 100 percent. He just loves to play so much that while they take breaks and write new material and work on other things, the guy has just never known anything else and he wants to play live all the time. So the last two years we were his opening act on certain legs of the tour and just got to be buddies. He's from the East coast and we're from the East coast and we would talk and hang out. Over the years, just developed a relationship where we were having a lot of fun with him and we're fans of his. A lot of musicians don't like to go around admitting they're fans of bands that influenced them or things like that and we were always wide open about Poison being one of our biggest influences and that me and the drummer would go see them in concert when we were younger. We would cover their music and stuff when we were first starting out so we were just honest about all that. I think that the thing with the solo band that appealed to him maybe a little bit was to have an entire band instead of a bunch of hired guns and on top of that, have people that were actually enjoying Poison and getting along with him and liking the music that he was writing instead of people just collecting paychecks. Again, I'm not saying that the other guys were doing it like that because we were friends with all those other guys and they were all really nice guys too. I think that because of the influence coming from basically the same area, he grew up in Pennsylvania and we grew up in Virginia, and that whole Virginia/Maryland/Pennsylvania thing all had the same kind of scene. There was Poison and there was a band called Kix and then more of a straight rock type of thing and we all came from that thing. We all just gelled really well and it took off.
I think it's silly when bands don't want to admit they're fans of other bands. Hell, that's what got you into it in the first place.
Right. It's not that they don't like to admit it. It's just that everyone wants to be cool. We have a blast and Bret's treating us like kings. This is a dream, man. When you get to play rock and roll and then you actually get to play it with one of the best songwriters of an era. The guy wrote "Every Rose Has A Thorn" and you can't deny that. Those shows with Bret are amazing because there is a whole new generation of people that are opened up to an era that looked like it was going to get passed by. It's like we're playing these shows that are outdoor festivals in front of 10,000 or 15,000 people and selling them out and half of the people aren't even old enough to drink yet. They're kids and they know every word to "Talk Dirty To Me". Every word of "Every Rose Has A Thorn" and some of the parents that grew up on it and passed it on and it was a little American rock and roll without any hidden messages of hidden agendas. Because of that parents have passed that on to their children and VH-1 and MTV still really support that kind of thing and the American good time rock and roll is back. He was the icon who represented have a good time.
One thing that I see that is lacking in today's music and there are bands that are coming up trying to bring that back like you guys and Kasabian from England, it lacks the fun and party atmosphere. People need to have fun these days. They're too busy worrying about the state of the world and the state of the economy and this and that. You have to be concerned about that but at the same time, you only have one life to live so have some fun. I read some of these CD reviews about "oh yeah, this CD is about getting drunk and partying and having sex" like that's a bad thing. What the hell is wrong with that? Especially sex. Sex is a good thing. If more people engaged in it, they would be a lot happier and we would have world peace.
I agree. That's the theory with our band Evick too. When I first met you, I was telling you that we were that good time bring the party back to rock and roll thing and we were just getting out and spreading the word. Now we go to towns and sell out and people come and drive all over the country with us now for that good time. Actually a year ago today, August 18 today, we pretty much sold out The Whisky in Los Angeles for the debut of some new material. We had hundreds of people fly on a Wednesday night, took off work and flew from the East coast to the West coast to watch us play in Los Angeles and pretty much show L.A. that there's still good time rock and roll. Then the next night we went to Phoenix and straight back to Virginia. We've been all over the country and it's like this little tiny Jimmy Buffet or Grateful Dead thing starting to happen. It's an event where people go everywhere we go.
That means people are tired of being afraid and angry and they want to have some fun. I think that's great. We need more of that damn it.
I'm doing my best between Evick and Bret. That's all of my life just spent trying to make other people have a good time and forget about their worries. I'm actually sitting here at the beach in Ocean City, Maryland staring at the ocean while I'm talking to you. We're about to go on in about 25 minutes for our show tonight.
Where all are you guys going?
We leave here tonight after this and head to the western part of Maryland, almost near Pittsburgh up in the mountains at a place called Deep Creek which is one of our new places to play. We actually do double nights there and Jackyl plays both nights and it's a big, big party. Usually the party doesn't stop. We move it down the road after the venue closes and we just keep going all day up until it's time to play again and then after that, we have a couple of days off. Then we fly out with Bret for a few more days out in Seattle and Vancouver.
Then in the Fall you guys are going to come around here.
That's what he says.
You better come. I want my Heinekens.
You're buying since you're a rich rock and roll star. Any other thoughts or comments?
We a have live DVD out now that has our first video and clips from the Whisky show and one of our homecoming shows and stuff like that.