Rick Springfield

Wed
03
Feb

RICK SPRINGFIELD Premiere's New Song 'Miss Mayhem'

 
"Tad Kubler is an Indie artist and he has a band called The Hold Steady, which is very popular with the kids. He lives in Brooklyn and has guitars, recording equipment, and a desire to write with me, so off I go to Brooklyn, harboring unrealistic dreams of maybe becoming a respected and legitimate Indie artist. Writing with someone new is always a scary and potentially embarrassing proposition. (Case in point: the Todd Rundgren story I tell in my Stripped Down Solo Show. BUT I LOVE Todd. So it’s all good!)
"Anyway, we hook up (Tad, not Todd, and I) and go at it.  I’ve never met Tad before, and it’s a weird thing getting together with a stranger and proceeding to try to create a little magic and wizardry in the nebulous arena of songwriting. It’s all so hit-and-miss—the creative writing thing. No writer really understands where the music comes from (unless it's subconscious plagiarism of an old Beatles or Rolling Stones tune.) You just pick up an instrument, face each other and hope for the best.
 
"Well fortunately for both Tad and me, Tad came up with a cool guitar line that I put some chords behind, we recorded it and I left Brooklyn with some potential Indie credibility and a good riff that eventually found its way into the chorus of a song Matt Bissonette and I wrote called 'Miss Mayhem' (*Actually, not an Indie-sounding song in the slightest.)

"'Mayhem' was going to be the original title of this album/CD/free-download. (But if you download it for free you won’t be able to read all these stunning literary gems. Wait, but if you did download it for free you wouldn’t know you were missing them so that kind of negates the whole ‘Ha ha, you suck for stealing my music’ thing. Okay, never mind.) Anyway, I thought the title 'Mayhem' made the album sound like it might be by some thrash metal band instead of a one-dimensional pop star/soap opera geek. And I do so prize my one-dimensional pop star/soap opera geek status.
 
"So, 'Miss Mayhem.' Yes we have all met her/him at some point in our romantic past. A burning hot, amazing-in-bed, beautiful/handsome, f**king whack-job!! Aren’t they the BEST!!! I brought my Dobro guitar (an old bluesy instrument) to Matt's house one day and started playing this riff and Matt yelled, 'Yes, yes, keep playing that!' And before I could say 'Keep playing what?' we had a song.  And we called her 'Miss Mayhem.' Enjoy. It has occasional elements of an Indie/thrash metal tune."
 

 
Categories: 
 
Tue
02
Feb

RICK SPRINGFIELD Launches 'Rocket Science' Live in Nashville

 
Mark your calendar as we'll be streaming live from Nashville, TN on Friday, February 12th beginning at 9pm CT via Yahoo Music! Catch Rick Springfield live in concert at: https://bit.ly/1KrzxjR or via the Yahoo app on mobile (iOS & Android) and connected devices (Apple TV, Roku, Xbox). Rick will be performing select songs from his new album "Rocket Science" along with the smash hits and fan favorites!
Categories: 
 
Wed
20
Jan

RICK SPRINGFIELD Previews 'Let Me In' from 'Rocket Science'

From Billboard.com, where you can also read more from Rick: http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/6844178/rick-springfield-let-me-i...
 
Rick Springfield Returns With New Song 'Let Me In' From Upcoming Album 'Rocket Science': Exclusive Song Premiere
 
Rick Springfield calls his upcoming disc,Rocket Science, "probably the most positive album I've ever written." And it's not just because he expects big sales or lots of attention for it.
"I was just wanting to change my attitude," Springfield tells Billboard. "Pissing and moaning about something and dooms-daying is not gonna help anything. I've always been a big one to do that, pissing and moaning. So I wanted to have some solutions for once rather than just moaning. I've been having a better mindset lately and focused on different things. I'm always fighting the depression -- that's taught for me -- but the way I deal with that mainly is just to write, and feeling that I'm doing something creative really helps my mood."
That said, "Let Me In" -- the first song Springfield wrote for Rocket Science, which comes out Feb. 19 -- was drawn from darker circumstances in his life. "I was having issues with my primary relationship, and it came out of that," explains Springfield, who's been married to wife Barbara since 1984. "The best songs come from a moment of truth for me, and that was an issue I was having a really tough time with, so it came from that. I'm very guilty of creating conflict to get the emotions stirred up and be able to write. There's deeper stuff in conflict; That's the only time you stop and think is when things aren't going well. When things are going well you're kind of full steam ahead, and I don't really write much when I'm happy."
Billboard is exclusively premiering "Let Me In" below, as well as Springfield performing an acoustic version of the track and a behind-the-scenes video about the song.   

 

Categories: 
 
Fri
11
Dec

RICK SPRINGFIELD Announces Full 'Rocket Science' Details

 
GRAMMY' WINNER, ACTOR, BEST SELLING AUTHOR RICK SPRINGFIELD
TO RELEASE 18TH STUDIO ALBUM
ON FRONTIERS MUSIC SRL ON FEBRUARY 19, 2016
 
 
FIRST SINGLE, 'LIGHT THIS PARTY UP', OUT NOW
 
Rick Springfield is bringing new music to his fans with a brand new studio album, Rocket Science. Springfield's 18th studio album will be released globally on Frontiers Music Srl on February 19th. Yesterday, December 9, USA Today hosted the world premiere of the first song from the album, 'Light This Party Up'. The song can be enjoyed here:
 
 
The album is available for pre-order now via Amazon.com (CD & MP3) here: http://radi.al/RickSpringfieldAmazon and Apple Music/iTunes here: http://radi.al/RickSpringfieldiTunes All MP3 pre-orders include an instant download of  'Light This Party Up'.
 
With 25 million records sold, Rick Springfield has withstood the test of time far better than most critics would ever have imagined, performing nearly 100 concerts around the world every year.  He has written and performed some of the best-crafted power pop anthems of the past 40 years, including 17 U.S. top 40 hits; among them, 'Don't Talk to Strangers', 'An Affair of the Heart', 'I've Done Everything for You', 'Love Somebody', and 'Human Touch', as well as the 1981 Grammy' Best Male Rock Vocal winning No. 1 single, 'Jessie's Girl'. Springfield has even more to say on his latest release, Rocket Science.
 
The new album features classic Springfield compositions like the crowd pumping 'Light This Party Up', the sensitive ballad 'Let Me In', the anthemic 'All Hands On Deck,' and the blues infused rocker 'Miss Mayhem', on which he collaborated with indie artist Tad Kubler of the band The Hold Steady. Rick also wrote 'Down' 'in the middle of an ice storm on a stranded tour bus'with Rascal Flatts' Jay DeMarcus.
 
Springfield says 'Rocket Science is my 18th studio album. It swears a bit and doesn't respect authority, but it does look after its invalid mother. It has some of the country elements I love, but as much as I understand we should all be sucking up to Nashville, it's still a wide ranging pop/rock record. I hope you dig it!'
 
Frontiers Music Srl President Serafino Perugino states 'Rocket Science is the fourth album that Frontiers is releasing with Rick Springfield, the first one that also involves the US territory. It's always been a pleasure to be at Rick's service, he's a true musical legend and his albums are always top notch. Rocket Science is no exception, and once again this will be a true delight for all his fans, myself included!'
 
Rocket Science is a pop/country blend fused with Springfield's signature songwriting and performance style, and features much of Springfield's touring band joined by some guest players. The album was mixed by veteran Justin Niebank, who gave the project it's tight feel. Other featured players include iconic guitarist and longtime Springfield collaborator Tim Pierce, plus songwriting partner and album co-producer, Elton John bass player Matt Bissonette.
 
In addition to collaborating and starring in the Dave Grohl documentary 'Sound City' and penning two New York Times best selling books, Springfield played opposite Academy Award' winner Meryl Streep in Jonathan Demme's 'Ricki & The Flash', plus a multi episode arc in the HBO series 'True Detective'. He also appears opposite Orange Is The New Black's Pablo Schreiber and actress Sosie Bacon in the forthcoming film, 'Traces'. 
 
Pre-orders for Rocket Science are available now on Apple Music/iTunes and Amazon.com. Those who pre-order the MP3 version of 'Rocket Science'' will instantly receive the first single, 'Light This Party Up', with additional tracks made available in the forthcoming weeks prior to release. As an added feature, digital versions of the album will feature a bonus track, 'Beautiful Inside'.
 
Rick Springfield: Rocket Science
 
01. Light This Party Up
02. Down
03. That One
04. The Best Damn Thing
05. Miss Mayhem
06. Pay It Forward
07. Found
08. Crowded Solitude
09. Let Me In
10. All Hands On Deck
11. We Connect
12. (I Wish I Has A) Concrete Heart
13. Earth To Angel
14.  Beautiful Inside (Digital Bonus Track)
 
Pre-order your copy of Rocket Science:
 
Categories: 
 
Thu
10
Dec

Rick Springfield "Light This Party Up" (Official Audio)

 
Rocket Science as a whole was influenced by Springfield's longstanding affection for country music, and his collaborators include J.T. Harding and Rascal Flatts' Jay DeMarcus. "It isn't a country album, " he notes. "But I like all the elements of country. Honestly, Nashville is where pop music has gone -- that's where all the great playing is and all the great hooks are coming from. And these are players that grew up listening to me and people like me, so there's mutual love."
 
Wed
02
Dec

RICK SPRINGFIELD Delivers Songwriting Masterclass with 'Rocket Science'

 
“On an island made of sand
In a sea of our frustrations
We rebuild the same wasteland
And its dark effect
Touch our lips to bloodstained hands
And we pray for our salvation
As we dream of promised lands
Where we connect…”
 
~ We Connect
 
Extraordinary…
 
He’s done it again folks, he’s done it again!
 
Another masterpiece is set for delivery February 19. Take a bow RICK SPRINGFIELD.
 
Rock Science is another crazy ride for long time fans of Rick’s. This is filled with some of the catchiest tunes of his career and has the energy of a 19 year old just breaking into the business.
 
Once again Rick delves deep to deliver some brilliant lyrics, but all in all, this is a pretty happy record. And there are some quite extraordinary songs featured here.
In fact, there’s one tune that just might be the most infectiously happy song ever recorded in the history of the world.
 
This is Rick as you’ve never heard before! This is going to throw some fans completely off balance. First listen I was shocked. Second I was uncertain. Third I was hooked. And from there is just gets better and better as these songs cling to your brain like a new born koala grips its mother’s back. I’m 2 weeks in and can’t stop playing this, just as was the case with Venus In Overdrive and Songs For…
 
The production and mix is simply perfect, as is the flow of the album and the contagious uptempo ride fans are about to go on.
 
So just what has Rick done this time?
 
Rick has taken the sonic template of Songs For The End Of The World, the same modern melodic rock songwriting style and production quality, the same band and added violins, fiddles, banjos, mandolins, steel guitar and harmonica to create something extraordinary.
 
Yes, he’s gone Nashville, but this is still 100% Rick Springfield. It’s Songs For The End Of The World meets Keith Urban. But don’t let that paint the full picture of this album. Far from it.
 
At the end of the day though, it’s the songs. This is genius stuff folks. I hope the change in direction is not any hindrance to discovering just how good these songs are, the amazing vocals and just how damn good this record sounds.

 

Categories: 
Release Year: 
2015
 
Sun
23
Aug

RICK SPRINGFIELD Titles New Album 'Rocket Science' & Plays New Song 'Down'

 
RICK SPRINGFIELD has debut a new song 'Down' at this weekend's appearance in Hershey, PA.
 
He has announced the new studio album will be called 'Rocket Science' and is to be released in January, 2016.
 
Check out the new song in the clip.
 

More from Hershey, PA
Categories: 
Release Year: 
2016
RELEASE MONTH: 
01
 
Wed
22
Apr

RICK SPRINGFIELD To Tour With LOVERBOY & THE ROMANTICS

 
RICK SPRINGFIELD will be on tour this summer along with special guests LOVERBOY and THE ROMANTICS
 
8/29 – Delta Classic Chastain Park – Atlanta, GA
8/30 – St. Augustine Amphitheatre – St. Augustine, FL
9/2 – Hard Rock Live – Hollywood, FL
9/4 – Red Hat Amphitheater – Raleigh, NC
9/5 – Uptown Amphitheatre – Charlotte, NC
9/10 – First Merit Bank at Northerly Island – Chicago, IL
9/11 – Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica – Cleveland, OH*
9/12 – Borgata Event Center – Atlantic City, NJ
9/13 – PNC Bank Arts Center – Holmdel, NJ
9/16 – NYCB Theater at Westbury – Westbury, NY
9/17 – Sands Event Center – Bethlehem, PA
9/18 – Freedom Hill – Detroit, MI
9/20 – PNC Pavilion – Cincinnati, OH
9/22 – Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion – Houston, TX
9/23 – Zoo Amphitheatre – Oklahoma City, OK**
 
* Rick Springfield, Loverboy, Donnie Iris and The Cruisers
** Rick Springfield, Loverboy
 
Loverboy Press Release:
 
Time to haul out those iconic red leather pants and bandanas from mothballs, because Canadian hard-rocking legends Loverboy are ready for a full slate of summer touring, including a run of dates with fellow '80s hitmakers Rick Springfield and The Romantics for one of the season's must-see tripleheader concert events. Loverboy are currently enjoying a cultural renaissance, with major companies such as Taco Bell and RadioShack using the band's image and music to promote their products to the '80s generation which grew up on the group, and others who are just being introduced to their anthems. These days, Loverboy's not just "Working for the Weekend," but "Lovin' Every Minute of It," too, performing for those fans who "Get Lucky" enough to catch one of their shows.
 
Loverboy's tour starts with headline dates in April 25 in Pompano Beach, FL at the Pompano Beach Seafood Festival, and runs through October 1 at the Central Washington State Fair in Yakima, WA. The band will be joined by Springfield and The Romantics for dates starting August 29 at Atlanta's Chastain Amphitheater, running through September 23 in Oklahoma City, OK. The band will also be playing two shows in the Los Angeles area for the first time in years, including The Canyon Club in Agoura Hills, CA (September 25) and the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills (September 26). A full listing of dates is below.
 
Loverboy have been delighting audiences around the world since forming back in 1979 when vocalist Mike Reno was introduced to local guitar hot shot Paul Dean in Calgary. The group has four multi-platinum albums, including the four-million-selling Get Lucky, and a trio of double-platinum releases in their self-titled 1980 debut, 1983's Keep It Up and 1985's Lovin' Every Minute of It. Their string of hits includes, in addition to the arena-rock anthem "Working for the Weekend," such staples as "Lovin' Every Minute of It," "This Could Be the Night," "Hot Girls in Love," "The Kid is Hot Tonite," "Turn Me Loose," "When It's Over," "Heaven In Your Eyes" and "Queen of the Broken Hearts." Last July, the band released  Unfinished Business, their first collection of previously unreleased material in seven years.

Their summer tour dates are as follows (headliners unless noted) More dates TBA:

** w/ Rick Springfield and The Romantics
* w/ Rick Springfield and Donnie Iris
^ w/ Styx

April 25 - Pompano Beach Seafood Festival - Pompano Beach, FL
June 13 - Sandy Corley Memorial Run - Rothbury, MI
June 20 - PrairieFest - Oswego, IL
June 27 - Lakes Jam - Brainerd, MN
July 3 - 4th Fest - Coralville, IA
July 4 - Heritage Park - Junction City, KS
July 10 - Three Rivers Festival - Ft. Wayne, IN
July 18 - Summerwinds Family Music Festival - Victoria Beach, MB
July 25 - Timberwood Amphitheater - Hot Springs, AR
August 1 - Kenora Harbourfest - Kenora, ON
August 8 - Rock N August - St. Albert, AB
August 9 - Pinewood Bowl Theater - Lincoln, NE ^
August 14 - Pictou County Wellness Centre - New Glasgow, NS
August 15 - Lunenburg County Lifestyle Centre - Bridgewater, NS
August 22 - Fallon County Fair - Baker, MT
August 29 - Chastain Amphitheater - Atlanta, GA **
August 30 - St. Augustine Amphitheater - St. Augustine, FL **
September 2 - Hard Rock Casino - Hollywood, FL **
September 4 - Red Hat - Raleigh, NC **
September 5 - Uptown Amphitheater - Charlotte, NC **
September 10 - Northerly Island - Chicago, IL **
September 11 - Jacobs Pavilion - Cleveland, OH *
September 12 - Borgata - Atlantic City, NJ **
September 13 - PNC - Holmdel, NJ **
September 16 - Music Theater - Westbury, NY **
September 17 - Event Center - Bethlehem, PA **
September 18 - Freedom Hill - Detroit, MI **
September 20 - PNC Pavilion at Riverbend - Cincinnati, OH **
September 22 - Cynthia Woods Pavilion - Houston, TX **
September 23 - Zoo Amphitheater - Oklahoma City, OK **
September 25 - Canyon Club - Agoura Hills, CA
September 26 - Saban Theater - Beverly Hills, CA
September 27 - Coach House - San Juan Capistrano, CA
September 29 - Kern County Fair - Bakersfield, CA
October 1 - Central Washington State Fair - Yakima, WA

 
Categories: 
 
Thu
16
Apr

RICK SPRINGFIELD Upcoming Studio Album 'Best Ever'?

 
RICK SPRINGFIELD's upcoming new studio album - a follow up to 2012's masterpiece 'Songs For The End Of The World' will possibly feature as many as 16 tracks.
 
The singer/songwriter recently stated in an interview that: "It is the best album I have ever made and it will be out in a few months. Recorded in my studio 'The Black Lagoon', it is 16 new songs with big choruses, great grooves..."
 
On hearing that I had to of course ask Rick about such a bold statement! His reply - "Hahahaha...shameless self promotion!"
 
Big expectations folks!
 
Rick has a huge 2015 stillto come, with the new album plus a TV role on True Detective Season 2 and a major movie with Meryl Streep 'Ricki & The Flash'
 

 

Categories: 
 
Mon
23
Feb

Guitarist CHRIS HEATH Taps RICK SPRINGFIELD For Debut Single

 
Craig Heath is set to release his new single, ‘All Because of You’ early next year and it isn’t short of an all-star gathering..
 
All Because of You was co-written by Australian-born, U.S based, country music legend, Keith Urban, Heath and Monty Powell, the Australian-born country superstar’s regular collaborator, with Rick Springfield stepping in as guest vocalist.
 
Drawing on personal experiences that forced Heath to get back up again and not accept defeat, All Because of You channels the pain felt during a number of emotional challenges.
 
“All Because of You is rooted in hope and determination it’s about dusting yourself off and getting back up on your feet again,” says Heath.
 
“No matter what stage you’re at in your life, there will be times and situations that emotionally challenge you but with the right amount of self-belief and motivation, it’s possible to overcome those challenges and move forward. All Because of You is about the personal journey I encountered during some of the more difficult times in my life.”
The Melbourne-based singer-songwriter has recorded under various guides, including Velvet City and is now back working with his manager, Glenn Wheatley, whom he last worked with in 2006.
 
All Because of You is the result of Heath coming through the other side, which has made him a stronger and better artist.
 
“If someone else is going to benefit from the happiness, joy or emotion in the song I’m performing, and that does something for them, that’s a bonus for me. If I can feel the energy in return, that’s great. For me, it’s all about connecting with people through shared experiences.”
 
Heath pitched the track to US based Springfield chhart topper and Grammy winner with Jessie’s Girl in the early 1980’s and both were blown away by how well ttheir voices sounded together.
 
“I did a guide vocal fro Springfield and he love it it was an natural fit, one that didn’t need to bbe forced. The connection was there from the beginning”
 
Heath has had music in his blood since he was a youngster, soaking up melodies and harmonies of Abba, and later, the Doors the heavierr-edged sounds of Nirvana, Metallica, Guns ‘N’ Roses and Three Days Grace, followed shortly after. He’s got Jimi Hendrix and Howling Wolf in his DNA and can swing the axe with the best of them.
 
Independently driven, Heath has taken charge of his career with the launch of his own label, Global Records – All Because Of You is the first release through the label.
 
“I want people to relate to me and my experiences and I think All Because of You sums it up nicely,” adds Heath.
 
All Because of You is set for release in March 2015, with the release of the album following later in the year.
 
Categories: 
 
Tue
23
Dec

RICK SPRINGFIELD To Release 'Stripped Down' Package

 
Loud & Proud Records will release a CD/DVD combo of RICK SPRINGFIELD Stripped Down on February 10.
 
With all of his accomplishments as an actor, best-selling author and documentary subject, Rick Springfield s first love has always been music, a passion he s harbored since first picking up the guitar at the age of 12 in his native Australia.

During Rick Springfield s 40+ year career, the artist has amassed 17 Top 40 hits, including four Top 10 s as well as achieving an iconic cultural moment with the Number One hit Jessie s Girl, for which he won a 1981 Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance. And after 25 million records sold, Springfield shows no signs of slowing down. I put everything I've got into making records, he says. Sometimes people may think they have you pegged but I trust the music to speak for itself.

Over the last two years, Rick has been treating fans to a special ongoing series of intimate solo performances of his vast repertoire. Rick also spends time in between songs telling stories, explaining lyrics and generally connecting with his always-loyal fan base. This CD/DVD set documents highlights of those performances with compelling video on the DVD, plus 14 Springfield songs recorded live, including dynamic covers of the classics Oh Well,Rollin' & Tumblin' and Baby Blue plus one brand new song, the clever If Wishes Were Fishes.


Track Listing:
 
1. Affair Of The Heart 
2. Love Is Alright Tonite 
3. I've Done Everything For You 
4. Painted Girl 
5. Oh Well 
6. Love Somebody 
7. Baby Blue 
8. Rollin & Tumblin 
9. If Wishes Were Fishes 
10. Don't Talk To Strangers 
11. April 24th, 1981 / My Father's Chair 
12. Me & Johnny 
13. Human Touch 
14. Jessie's Girl  
 
Categories: 
 
Wed
19
Nov

RICK SPRINGFIELD 'Stripped Down' Heading For CD/DVD

 
RICK SPRINGFIELD is set to release a CD and DVD of his recent live 'Stripped Down' tour.
The releases are due February 10, 2015 and will feature 14 tracks.
 
One recent Stripped Down setlist featured the following songs:
 
I Get Excited
Affair of the Heart
Me & Johnny
Oh Well (Fleetwood Mac cover)
Love is Alright Tonite
Rollin’ & Tumblin’
Honeymoon in Beruit
Don’t Talk to Strangers
Baby Blue
Painted Girl
My Father’s Chair
I’ve Done Everything for You
If Wishes Were Fishes
Love Somebody
Written in Rock
Jessie’s Girl
Categories: 
 
Fri
08
Aug

Rick Springfield Australian Tour Cancelled

UPDATE: Rick Springfield kindly replied to my email stating that the tour WILL be rescueduled, they are working on that right now.
 
 
Lennard Promotions regrettably announces today the cancellation of the Rick Springfield October 2014 Australian tour.

On advice from Rick Springfield’s management, Rick has secured a co-starring role in the movie “Ricki And The Flash” alongside Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline.

Production begins in New York in mid September with Oscar winning director Jonathan Demme (“The Silence Of The Lambs”). The movie’s script was written by another Oscar winner, Diablo Cody (“Juno”). Meryl Streep has received 18 Academy Awards nominations and three awards. She has also won two Australian Film Institute awards.

“Sorry to all my Aussie fans,” writes Springfield. “ I was so looking forward to playing for you for the first time in 30 years. I promise to make it up to you next year. In the meantime, this movie is a great opportunity. It's not every day that Meryl Streep and Jonathan Demme come calling.”

Fans should keep an eye out for the possibility of a 2015 tour being announced in due course.

All tickets will be refunded in full and ticket holders should go to their place of purchase for the refund.

Lennard Promotions will be announcing the winner tonight for the Rick Springfield Competition and we will be awarding the winner with an amazing prize! Details of the prize are being finalised and the full prize will be published on the Lennard Promotions Facebook page within the next several days.

 

Categories: 
 
Thu
12
Jun

RICK SPRINGFIELD - THE VENUS IN OVERDRIVE INTERVIEW

 

Rick Springfield: Back In Overdrive

Rick Springfield doesn't rush his albums out, so when a new one arrives there is always an air of anticipation. With Venus In Overdrive, Rick steps back into the power pop domain he owned in the early 80s, while adding a strong contemporary twist that makes this material some of his most classic and most catchy in a long time.
I spoke with Rick a week or so back about the new album, the upcoming tribute album and what keeps him fit and ticking after all these years in the business.

Good Morning, Rick! How are ya?
I'm good. How ya doing?

That's good. I'm ok… You will have to excuse my rough voice though; it's 5 in the morning.
Oi. (laughs)

But, here we are.
Thank you so for the opportunity with Venus in Overdrive with Angelmilk in Europe…we'll do the very best job that we can.

Great. I'm actually really excited about this.

So why Europe now? Or, why not before? I know you are very proud of this record.
Yeah, I think because of this record, the strength of the record and also we're touring so much and the live show is really, really great and we've had a lot of people coming in from England and Europe to see shows over here.
So I know there's still interest over there and it just seemed like the right record to start it off over there.

Absolutely. Your reputation for live performances precedes you; it's been with you all your career but especially in the last 5 or 6 years. Has that been an important part of continuing your career?
Yeah, the live show has been really getting better and better and the audiences have been responding which is-- it's a very high energy show. I think number one is to go out there always be current and always look to the future, which is why I keep recording.
We do new songs as well as all the old stuff. And, we tour in a way that keeps it very fresh. We can go out for a couple of days and then go home for a rest or do other things. We all have studios and other things; I'm doing the acting thing, too. It's a great way to tour. I do a lot of flying but it's worth it.

I know a couple of other bands, like Night Ranger...Jack Blades, is a great friend of mine and they kind of do the same thing these days because he's a family man as well and it's just great that you can do that these days.
I mean obviously if we went to Europe it would be a little longer but I just went to Australia for 3 weeks and I can handle that. That is always fun being in a new country anyway because we tour America so much that it's great to go out 3 or 4 days and go home.

I like it. There's obviously a lot of ground to cover in Europe and part of our deal with you was encouraging the touring aspect of it. So, is it's something you'd like to do and you plan on doing?
Yes, very much. I think this is the record to do it with it. It's time now and we're gonna go back there and do it.

Great! Have you set a time? I know that you're busy through the rest of the year with the album in America. Early next year perhaps?
Yeah, that would be great timing actually.

We'll look forward to that. This is an extraordinary album, mate. I'm just so thrilled to be working on getting it to as many people as possible.
Thank you.

I guess no more thrilled than you are getting it released!
(laughs)

Why is this such a special album to you? You know, you could say that for every release but there's just something about this one, isn't there?
I don't know. It's just, the music comes when it comes, you know. I think its back to more a band, I think. We recorded it in like 30 days which precluded any fussing around with it…and changing stuff just because I was bored.
So, I think it's was a very honest record and I like all the things that it says. You know, there are things that are going on, in our heads right now, and it's just one of those records that I can listen to all the way through which I can't usually do on my own records. I'm usually so sick of them by the time they come out just because it took such a short time, that it is still fun to listen to.

Cool. And I guess fun to play as well?
Yeah, yeah…we're playing a couple of those songs live already and they sound great live because they are such band songs. They are real easy to do live without a lot of production or anything.

You said that songs come when they come, but that hasn't always come easily has it?
No. You know I go through a lot of dry spells and when I collect enough ideas, I start writing. And so, you know, you can't force it. I mean, that's why I really haven't, so far, written for other people - I only have enough songs for myself.

That's an interesting take, because your songs have been covered over the years but you haven't necessarily written for other people, have you?
Not for other people, no.

What sparked the creative thing here? Was it the partnership with Matt, or something driven by personal circumstance?
That's something that helped move it along [working with Matt], but the actual getting the idea for the song and coming up with the subject…I don't know, it just happens.
And like I said, it's not something you can force but certainly, for the first time writing with Matt, we were kind of in competition with each other, you know, to write the best part of the song (laughs).
That was really fun and you are almost writing for an audience right away. If you are writing with someone else, you send them a piece and they are like” yeah” and then they try to write something better. So, it was a great process, very fun process-the most fun I've had writing in a long time. I'm usually writing and it's a bit tortuous for me and it's very lonely kind of experience and this is more fun.

You've said that before and it's really interesting because you always pour your heart out into your songs.
On Venus In Overdrive I can hear classic elements of your own song writing from the past and I can hear some new things. Are the new things Matt's influence or were you experimenting as well?

I don't know. There's a bit of both. Matt came up with stuff that sounded like, you know, more along the lines of my old stuff and I'm usually the one that kind of wants to change things and be different.

I mean, thinking back, you've never really recorded the same album twice, EVER, have you?
No, (laughs) it's safe to say, for better or for worse, I've never recorded the same album twice!! (laughing)

Well now, you're always moving forward. I remember, hearing Tao…and then, a couple of years later, Rock Of Life was like….'Wow, who is this artist?? Who is this guy?
(laughs)
 

I adore Rock Of Life, I think it's fantastic and a real personal statement. Venus in Overdrive is the first time I've had that feeling that reminded me of the shift that was Rock Of Life.
It's pretty big change, certainly from the last one. I have a lot of influences and a lot of things I like. I'm influenced by what I hear and what goes on in my life and, I think you know, I was in a pretty dark place when I wrote Shock Denial Anger Acceptance and I think that shows. And, I'm in a much better place in my head with Venus in Overdrive.

It seems to reflect a more positive mind set.
Yes, definitely. There's sad stuff in there but it's approached from the perspective, you know, that life goes on.

I definitely feel a positive undercurrent. What songs especially mean something for you?
On the new record?

On the new one, yes. Is there anything that sort of stands out? Obviously, the Sahara songs…
Certainly, Sahara has really special meaning for me. The daughter of a friend of mine who I got to know really well since she was 5. She got cancer and passed away at 13…
That was just a gigantic blow for everybody who loved her. She shows up in a couple of songs. She's named Sahara and she's part of the source of Oblivious. And also, she is God Blinked.

Yeah.
She had a pretty big influence on me: her life, certainly her past…there's positive takes on it.

How hard is it to celebrate the life of Sahara when faced with witnessing the injustice of what no child should ever have to go through?
I think just celebrating who she really was helps everybody - that's the point of the song. The pain is in there, sure. When Sahara died, her mom said if I was gonna write a song, make it a celebration.
And I've tried to do that. I certainly do with God Blinked. I wanted to write her a song towards the end of the album.

That song is a real left turn on the album.
Yeah, (laughs) I know.

Another reminder of Rock of Life for me – like If You Think You're Groovy
It makes really interesting listening. I love Saint Sahara, too, and then closing the album with that is a really uplifting way to close out the album.

Yeah, it's the only song we fade. I'm not a big fan of song's fading out; I always think it's kind of weird you know, gradually getting softer. We always like to end songs, so everything ends except for that one. We couldn't think of an appropriate ending and the fade thing is really a spiritual thing to do, you know, with the kids singing along in the background.

Yes, that works in a big way.
I'll tell you what – I'll Miss That Someday is absolutely mind blowing. I still can't believe how good that song is.

Well, great. That was the whole thing of loving someone so much that sometimes you just want to beat the shit out of them. (laughs)
And, like when my dad died, the things I missed the most about him were those little human failings, things I didn't think I would miss. It's kind of what's it's about.

Would you officially call that a song for your dad or is it just part of the makeup?
Well, it's more a song...Matt started it, around his dad—the issues he was having with his dad, and we both had the same sensibility about it. We know that, when they go, you're going to regret all the things that you said in anger and wanted to bite my tongue about.

(laughs) There's some great lines there I love the play on words moving between lines.
Oh! (laughs)

Very subtle!
Yes! (laughing).

And I must admit, listening to Venus in Overdrive—that's such a commercial groove. I can almost hear that on R&B radio.
It was another kind of left turn, that one. I heard some song, some iPod one, and I was influenced by kind of getting that feel. And then, the song kind of came from that. The title - I had it floating around in my head for a while. I don't know where it came from but I don't quite know what I thought but I knew what I meant. It turned out to be about someone really heavy, bringing love to the table and changing you because of that aspect rather than the negative aspect.

And the ballad Oblivious – lush!
Yes, We put an extra little bit of strings on that as background. I think it warranted it.

You're singing a little bit of falsetto through the album for the first time in a while.
Haha! Yeah.

Just because the mood caught you? It works really well.
I don't know how that stuff comes up. It seemed appropriate; the best place to go with the melody. I mean, I don't really know how to dissect that kind of thing. It's just one of those things where it just comes from…I don't really know where that is.

(laughs) You've been a huge Beatles fan ever since the beginning really, haven't you.
Yes.

Was She your little tribute to the guys?
Definitely. And also, 3 Warning Shots. Not so much a sonic tribute, although it sounds kind of Beatle-y at the start. It's about John Lennon's death.
But She is very much Beatle-y.
 

Do you, at this point in your life, afford yourself the luxury to look back over where you've come from?
Not really. I have always looked to the future, which has been a good thing, and also a bit of a failing. I don't really dwell on the past much. I've never been one for putting up platinum records and awards, stuff like that. They are out in some shed, gathering mold, slowly turning to dust. (laughs)
I've been at people's houses where that stuff is all over the place. It kind of makes you feel uncomfortable.

It's just not your style?
Well, it just like looking at something you've already done. I don't know what the point of that is because it's done. I mean, I have always been thinking about the next song. So, once the album's done, I'm thinking about the next thing I wanna do. You know, and it's a bit of a pain in the ass, sometimes, because it's hard for me to relax.
(laughs) But, I also feel that it is a part of my drive, too.

How do you relax? In the down time?
I think the only time I truly relax is when I'm sleeping and sometimes not even then or when I'm on an airplane. I fly a lot and there, I can't move.

You're forced into just sitting there.
I heard Ray Davies liked to fly too because he can get time to, or he used to anyway, take that time to write.

Right.
It's really forced relaxation, as long as you are ok with flying, which I am.

Well, you would have had plenty of time to relax during the flight to Australia then.
I had a LOT of time - a real lot of time. The longest flights in the world.

It's a shocker. Getting from here to the UK and back is a nightmare.
That's a big one. I think Australia to the UK is bigger flight than to the states.

It's like 30 hours by the time you get there.
Thank God for the iPod and for the iTouch. That's what I definitely rely on. It's the only time I ever watch movies or any television is on my iTouch. It's a big screen iPod.

Technology is definitely…there's more toys out there than ever, isn't there?
It has enabled me to travel. It was miserable before the cell phone but now I can call home whenever I want to instead of having to wait to get to the hotel, or to the gig or whatever.
The cell phone has made traveling a much more happy experience for me. And, then, the iPod, having it there, having videos on the small sized screen. All that stuff.

In your trip to Australia, doing the mini-headlining set for the Countdown Spectacular [a 12 minute set!], how did you feel when you threw that nice little medley of songs there at the end, but how did you feel, having to throw Speak to the Sky into the mix?
(laughs) I actually suggested that myself.

Did you really?
The emphasis was Speak to the Sky and it can back, “yeah yeah, definitely”. And it certainly didn't really fit musically but it was one of those things that I just had to do. It was my start; it was my first single as a solo artist. It was a big hit in Australia. And, it was an audience that remembered it.

It was a pretty receptive audience, wasn't it?
They sure were.

Did you find a difference in each city or were they just enthusiastic wherever?
They were all pretty much up for it. It was great to see. Sydney and Melbourne were like big cities everywhere - they are always a little crazier. But, everyone seemed to enjoy it.

It's an interesting concept for a show, isn't it?
Very interesting.

I'm not sure the quirkiness of it could work in the states.
No. It's a little too….uh….well, you know maybe not. I mean, I can't really… probably, the closest thing to it would be like a Hullaballoo tour.
They had a bunch of actors in that. I don't know if any of those guys are still alive.

(laughs) Maybe not.
I think, fortunately, because of good Australian genetics, we're all still here.

We are!! You are doing pretty well, aren't you?
Yeah! (laughs)

It kind of is the kind of country that affords people that. How do you keep fit? Your stage show is so energetic and whatever. How do you keep fit? Is it all down to just good genetics?
I love what I do and, like I said, you know, forward looking is the right state of mind when you play. And I never accept it, when although I know that everyone wants to hear the old things, I never accept it as just that, which is why I put in new stuff and keep it interesting and forward looking for me too.
You know, working and playing is a workout. I come off pretty drenched and it's a great aerobic workout. I've always been a real watchful eater. I'm not a dieter as I don't think that'd work. But I've always…when my dad first got sick, when I was 21, I started to think about what I put in my body. That's usually a wakeup call for a lot of guys, you know, whatever happens to your dad. I was very connected to my dad. He had a huge effect on me.

Of course!
I started looking into eating problems.

I could be a dad myself today if all goes to plan.
When?

Today!!
No shit!! (laughs) Aww, dude! Congratulations!

Thank you, mate. I've got two small boys, 2 and 5, but
Yeah, I know, I know.

Yeah, number 3.
Oh, that's awesome! Wow! Due date is today? No wonder you are up early.

Number three is actually due today.
Wow!! That's fabulous. What's that make him, a Leo?

I don't know. My wife's a Leo and she's July 28, so…
You know I think it's later in July, actually. I'm a Leo. Well, congratulations.
A new kid is about to walk on stage.

Absolutely. My wife so over it. She is just, like, come on already. (laughs)
(laughs) No shit. (laughs) Oh God. Well, have a great one then, and I hope it goes great and…

Thank you.
Let me know what you have and what you name it.
 

I sure will. What do you think of the tribute album that we're also going to do in Europe?
Oh, I thought it was great. I love some of the approaches. Actually, the version of Speak to the Sky—I thought it was much better than mine. (laughs)

It's kind of quirky, isn't it?
Yeah.

The tunes have a great live feel…
Very, very cool. I'm very happy with it.

I really appreciate getting the ok to use Right Planet Wrong World. I've always loved that song.
That's a good song. There's a couple of good songs I wrote with Jeff [Silverman].
I wrote Dream in Color off of Rock Of Life with Jeff. And Religion of the Heart off Karma with him, too. So, I've always had a long relationship with Jeff.

Great songs and he's a really good guy. Why did that song perhaps not fit anywhere earlier on?
I think by the time, I think that was around the time of Karma that we wrote that, and I didn't really think it fit. There's a lot of leaving songs off so it fits the whole concept. I don't always stick just every song I think is good on it; I try to make a concept out of the album, a kind of feel…

Absolutely.
...a musical statement. And if it doesn't fit, it doesn't fit, and I didn't think that one did. But I've always liked the song. I've liked everything I've written. There's a great song called Hey Eileen—it's about my mom.

Oh, that's right!
It was on a fan thing that I did [SDAA Special Edition]

I've got that song and you're right, it didn't really fit anything but it was a great stand alone song.
I still to this day absolutely adore Lust from the Sahara Snow release.

I may rerecord that one someday because I like that song so much.

That was a great, great song. Really great vibe.
I was actually thinking about it for this album but we had so many songs for this album that…maybe the next one.

Interesting. I could hear that on this one.
Where to from here? I guess hit the road and the promotional trail and the usual?

Yeah, we're going to New York for a week and do TV and press and stuff. We're doing a song for the rock guy I play on General Hospital. We're doing What's Victoria's Secret on the day that the record ships.

Right.
And we're going to radio and doing all the promo, and then the tour. And then, we do the cruise in November.

Oh yeah, that's a unique kind of idea, isn't it?
It's gonna be fun.

And John Waite's tagging along with you - he's another great talent.
Yeah, John is coming on it. A couple of actor friends of mine are coming on for Q and A.

That's good. And, could that become an annual thing or a more regular thing?
This one's sold out already. So, we'll see how it goes, see if everyone enjoys it, if I enjoy it. If it all goes well, we'll do it again.

Fantastic. You've got a great band with you. Are the usual guys going out on the road with you?
Absolutely. They all played on the record, too. They are such a great band; I don't need to replace anybody.

No! No, it sounds like a great live record.
Anything you would like to add – especially perhaps to the folks in Europe that we are targeting with this release?

I don't know why we haven't been back to Europe before this.

Well, now's a perfect opportunity. And we've got some radio play in Sweden there already, if Rob told you, I'm not sure.
Yeah, that's great.
 

Are you coming back down to Oz for your own tour?
Yea, nothing is planned yet but I would think that that would certainly be in the offering. I'd love to that. It's all about coming home.

How's your mum doing?
She's great. She's kicking butt down there.

If you don't mind my asking, how old is she now because my nan is in her 90s so it's good genetics again.
Almost 88. I'm amazed. She's driving all her friends around to doctors visits and stuff because she's still mobile. (laughs)

(laughs) that sounds great. Mine goes to shopping trips to Melbourne on the plane.
Does she? That's cool. She still does her own messages. She calls them. She got her little wicker basket over her arm.

It's great to see. It gives you something to look forward to, doesn't it?
Yeah, our family home is there.

And how are your kids, Rick?
Great! They're both home on holiday at the moment…finding their way in the world.

Are they in the business at all?
My eldest son, Liam, is an actor. And he's going to do a play reading for some writers. He's looking for an agent now. He's going up on general meetings with TV shows, things like that.

Great!
Yeah, so he's just starting to get into it.

Are they into the music at all?
Aw, very much so. They both are big, huge fans.

What's your favorite music? But, there's one question that I want to ask you; what's your favorite new bands and music?
I really liked the new Mute Math album - I thought that was great. And I'm a big Queens of Stone Age fan. I like some of the heavier stuff like Tool, and Def Tones.

I did want to ask you, do you feel the craft of record making is in danger of dying away, when the promotion of iTunes and just downloading one song is so prevalent at the moment?
No, I think album music is always going to be there. They still want it; they are just getting it in a different format. I think certainly music won't go but the art of the album cover, the whole album graphic, is fast disappearing.
People aren't interested in that anymore. They couldn't really care less about the cover or any information about who wrote what, or who played what, or who did what or where it was recorded. I still love all that kind of stuff.

Oh, me too.
I offered a record to a kid the other day, the daughter of a friend of ours, and she said she didn't want it. She said, it's ok - I just download my music for free.

Oh!!!
It's pretty scary. She didn't want the album. I was trying to give it to her. I guess it wasn't a band that she liked.

What do we do to educate people that it's NOT free?
I don't know. I don't think you can educate them. Don't download for free - that's like trying to keep people from drinking—prohibition didn't work. Once they discover it, it's there. I think we'll have to find ways to encode stuff and get people to have to pay for it because it's not fair to steal artwork. You don't go to the gas pump and pump for free. But, it's become accepted. Free music. It's part of the game.

It's a very big problem.
Yup.

Well, look, I'll let you go, mate. You're busy and, certainly, I could use a bit more sleep before things go south here.
(laughs) I'll bet you will want that…in just a few hours.

Absolutely. But, thanks for your time.
Thanks, Andrew, anytime. Good luck today.

Thanks, Rick, I'll let you know.
Alright. Bye, bye.

 

c. 2008 MelodicRock.com / Interview by Andrew McNeice March 2008
 
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