Tag Archive | "guitar hero"

Activision To Unleash Guitar Hero® Live In Fall of 2015!

Activision To Unleash Guitar Hero® Live In Fall of 2015!


Guitar Hero Live

Guitar Hero Live

Guitar Hero, the pop culture phenomenon that exploded onto the scene and brought a new way to interact with music, is back, with true, breakthrough innovation that will re-ignite your dreams of becoming a rock star. Activision Publishing, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Activision Blizzard, Inc. today announced Guitar Hero Live, introducing a brand new generation to Guitar Hero, which upon its release became the quickest console franchise in video game history to reach one billion dollars in sales in North America and Europe, and was played by over 40 million players. Developed by FreeStyleGames, the studio behind the critically-acclaimed DJ Hero and DJ Hero 2, Guitar Hero Live introduces two powerful ways to play, including GH Live, a first-person point of view where you are up on stage as the star of the show. A quantum leap forward in immersion and realism, GH Live is a live-action experience that delivers the full emotional roller coaster of being on stage and performing in a real band, in front of real crowds, who dynamically react in real-time to how well or poorly you play. As the lead guitarist, you play an array of songs that span the changing musical landscape, in a variety of venues, from the smallest club stage in front of a hundred people, to the massive main stage of an outdoor festival in front of a hundred thousand people.


Guitar Hero Live also introduces GHTV, the world’s first playable live music video network. GHTV is a 24-hour mode that lets fans play along to a continually-updated collection of official music videos – across a wide variety of genres – from the newest releases to favorite hits. Fans can pick from multiple channels and themed shows, discovering new songs as they play, and can also choose songs to play on-demand. In GHTV, fans can also play with their friends in the same room and against players from around the world to see who has the highest score on a given song, while completing challenges along the way. GHTV is a living, breathing platform that serves as an ever-growing source for new music discovery while further bringing the party atmosphere back to the living room.

The breakthrough innovations in Guitar Hero Live also extend to mobile. Both GH Live and GHTV arefully playable both on consoles as well as tablets and mobile phones. More exciting details will be announced in the near future.

“Guitar Hero is a franchise that so many people love. Figuring out how to bring it back with true breakthrough innovation has been years in the making, and a labor of love,” said Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing, Inc. “Guitar Hero Live lets people rock real crowds with real reactions. Our goal was literally to give people stage fright. And with GHTV, we have created the world’s first live, playable music video network. All of it is playable on consoles, or mobile devices. Guitar Hero is back and better than ever.”

Guitar Hero Live enhances the gameplay experience by introducing a modern, redesigned guitar controller, featuring two rows of three buttons that better reflects the way people naturally play. The new format ensures fun for players of all abilities. For beginners, you can feel like a rock star by mastering play with just the bottom three buttons. Medium-level players don’t have to stretch their fingers down the neck of the guitar controller anymore and can instead skillfully play two-row combinations that mimic real chords. Experienced players have a new challenge in creating complex chord-like shapes and finger combinations that will bring new thrills to veterans. This simple innovation makes it easier for beginners to play and harder for veterans to master.


Music variety is at the heart of the game. Guitar Hero Live takes the approach of the modern music festival, with rock, folk, EDM, hip-hop, country and pop acts sharing the same stage. The game will feature hundreds of playable songs from a diverse array of artists, including The Black Keys, Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance, Gary Clark, Jr., Green Day, Ed Sheeran, The War on Drugs, The Killers, Skrillex, The Rolling Stones, The Lumineers, Carrie Underwood, Pierce the Veil and Blitz Kids, with many more bands to be announced in the coming months.

“We are pleased to support the launch of Guitar Hero Live, building on one of the most successful music video-game franchises of all time, and providing our artists with a fun and interactive experience for their fans,” said Bruce Resnikoff, President of Universal Music Enterprises.

Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy and Gerard Way from My Chemical Romance are joining Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg and Jamie Jackson, Creative Director and Co-Head of FreeStyleGames, on-stage at the Best Buy Theatre on April 14th to showcase their songs featured in Guitar Hero Live and celebrate the reveal of the game.

“Guitar Hero changed the game – literally,” said Chris Koller, Vice President of Gaming for Best Buy. “And we are excited to bring Guitar Hero Live to consumers on April 18th at Best Buy stores in New York City and Torrance, California, where fans will be able to play the new game for the first time in North America.”

Eager fans can test out their skills at the following Best Buy locations:

April 14, 2015: Best Buy Theatre, New York City, 6pm – 9pm

April 18, 2015: Best Buy Store, Union Square, New York City, 1pm – 5pm

April 18, 2015: Best Buy Store, Torrance, CA, 1pm – 5pm

Guitar Hero Live will be available Fall 2015 on PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®3 computer entertainment systems, Xbox One, the all-in-one games and entertainment system, Xbox 360 games and entertainment system from Microsoft, the Wii U™ console and select mobile devices to be announced soon.

Starting today, fans can begin pre-ordering their copy of Guitar Hero Live at select retailers worldwide.

For more information, please visit:


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Anthrax, Megadeth and Slayer Rock The Midwest On The 2010 Jagermeister Tour

Anthrax, Megadeth and Slayer Rock The Midwest On The 2010 Jagermeister Tour

Jagermeister Tour featuring Anthrax, Megadeth, and Slayer
War Memorial Coliseum – Fort Wayne, Indiana October 20th, 2010

It’s summer of 1990, a glorious time for metal heads in America.  Heavy metal has reached the height of popularity.  It seems not a week goes by without some metal band performing in or around your town, no matter how rural your particular town is.  MTV has a new show devoted to metal called Headbangers Ball, metal magazines adorn every news stand, and the grunge movement (heralded by Nirvana’s album Nevermind) is two years away from knocking heavy metal off of its pedestal.  Yes….it’s a great time to be a metal head.

Spearheading the concert tour season of 1990 is a metal extravaganza called ‘Clash of the Titans’ featuring three of the most popular thrash metal bands of the day:  Anthrax, Megadeth, and Slayer (with a then-little-known band called Alice In Chains as the opener).  The Clash of the Titans show, mainly held in outdoor arenas, was barely-controlled mayhem.  Spontaneous mosh pits were commonplace, bonfires were started, grass and sod flew through the air.  It was the best of the best in metal land….and the audiences flocked to witness.

Flash forward twenty years.  Metal isn’t quite the be-all, end-all it once was, but the three bands that headlined the original Clash of the Titans are still touring and releasing albums, although with a loss of an original band member here and there.  Anthrax, Megadeth, and Slayer each still have their die-hard fans from the old days, and perhaps it was these people they hoped to cater to when the bands toured together once again on the ‘Jagermeister Tour’ of 2010.  Alcoholic beverage advertising overkill aside, the Jagermeister Tour was a chance for the diehard fans to once again see three of the most popular thrash bands of all time on the same stage…but with a twist.  This time, two of the bands would be playing an entire album from their catalog: Megadeth playing ‘Rust In Peace’ in its entirety and Slayer playing ‘Seasons in the Abyss’ from start to finish.  Would these guys still have what it takes?  Can they still command crowds like they did in their heyday?  Will they be taken seriously or seen as a ‘nostalgia act’?  Read on, O metal minions….

The Jagermeister Tour at the Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne, Indiana started out as being…well….pretty underwhelming.  I and my fellow metal heads arrived 20 minutes early to avoid the crowds, but the question we had upon arriving was, “Where the hell IS everybody?”  It was literally the easiest time I’ve ever had getting into a concert hall ever.  But…brushing the apparent lack of public interest in the show aside, I took my place on the floor and waited for the opening act Anthrax to take the stage.  As a warm-up act, Jim Florentine (who is touring as the official MC apparently) of That Metal Show took the stage.  Now, I’m a big admirer of That Metal Show, but Florentine’s act didn’t impress me at all.  I wasn’t sure if he was honing his comedy act to fit what he perceived as “Fort Wayne-ian” humor or what, but the crux of his act was saying “Obama hates white people”, leading a chant of “F**k Obama”, and then going on to tell a few ‘fat jokes’.  If I wanted to hear laugh-a-minute comedy, I’d tune in to the local talk radio channel.

Scott Ian

Despite the lame comedy, Florentine did get the crowd riled up for when Anthrax finally hit the stage.  This tour is special for Anthrax in that it sees the return of original vocalist Joey Belladonna.  He may not be the most aggressive singer in metal….but the man can still SING!  He was also very adept at working the crowd and getting them into the show.  Belladonna was singing his heart out like it was 1990, and at the same time moshing around the stage for ‘Caught in a Mosh’, doing a war dance (complete with Indian headdress) during the Anthrax classic, ‘Indians’, and even belting out a tune from their first album called ‘Metal Thrashing Mad’.  Guitarists Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano were in fine form as were Frank Bello on bass and Charlie Benante on drums.  Except for Rob Caggiano, who replaced Dan Spitz back in 2001, this was the Anthrax I grew up on.  This was the classic Anthrax.  And after ending their 45 minute set with ‘I Am the Law’, I looked around and…you know what?  There were a lot more people there than I thought.  The place was still 1/3 empty, but the people there were enjoying every minute.  It still wasn’t as intense an experience as back in 1990, but the show was just warming up.

After another unfunny interlude with Jim Florentine, it was time for Megadeth to come on.  Dave Mustaine and co. really know how to make an entrance, let me tell you.  The fog machines were set to ‘high’, the guitar riff from the classic Sabbath song, ‘Black Sabbath’ was put on repeat, and an intense Jello Biafra rant about martial law screamed through the speakers.  You’d have to see it, but it was a great way to build an intro!  Then the guys took the stage starting out with ‘Holy Wars…the Punishment Due’, and working their way through the entire Rust In Peace album (their best, in this reviewer’s opinion).  Mustaine’s voice seemed a tad weak that night, but you don’t listen to Megadeth for the beautiful vocals….it’s the guitars, man!  The twin guitar attack of Mustaine and newcomer Chris Broderick didn’t fail to impress.  They absolutely ripped.  One of the highlights for me was the appearance of ol’ Vic Rattlehead on stage during the Dave Ellefson showcase, ‘Dawn Patrol’.  Kinda cheesy…but I couldn’t help but smile and pump my fist in the air anyway.

As soon as the last note of the last song on ‘Rust In Peace’ was played, Mustaine announced, “…and that was ‘Rust In Peace’!”…then proceeded to play some of their more recent and radio-friendly tunes like ‘Trust’ and ‘Headcrusher’.  Maybe a little bit of an anti-climax, but when they closed their set with “Peace Sells…but Who’s Buying?”….the heads were banging again.  It was the perfect song to close out the set.   Mustaine and the guys seemed genuinely thankful for the good crowd reaction, thanking the crowd several times with huge smiles on their faces.  Good show!

Tom Araya

Now, if there was ever a band with a rabid fan base, it would be Slayer.  They’re unrelentingly heavy and brutal…and their fans love them for it.  By the time Slayer was onstage, people were packed on the floor and attentively standing in the seats.  This was Slayer…time to freaking pay attention!  The band was obscured at first by a curtain at the front of the stage with lighting effects depicting pentagrams while the first slow notes of ‘World Painted Blood’ permeated the air.  Then…BOOM!  The curtain falls and Slayer started thrashing.  The lineup was the original and classic Slayer lineup, Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman on guitar, Dave Lombardo on drums (one of the best drummers in the business if you ask me!), and Tom Araya on bass and vocal duties.  Araya has had recent back surgery due to his years of intense head banging, so he wasn’t very active, but he’s still got enough presence and vocal stamina to carry the show through.  Despite this minor little difference, the band still thrashed as hard as they ever did, tearing through the entire ‘Season in the Abyss’ album…then playing a few of their classic fan faves like ‘South of Heaven’, Guitar Hero track ‘Raining Blood’, ‘Aggressive Perfector’ (off of their debut album!), and closing their set with their signature tune, ‘Angel of Death’.  Mosh pits, crowd surfing, head banging….it was ALL going on when Slayer hit the stage!  I’ve seen Slayer in concert quite a few times, and I’m happy to say that it was in no way a ‘nostalgia act’.  They’re a little older, they’ve had their ups and downs…their surgeries.  Yet that night at the Coliseum in Fort Wayne may as well have been 1990.  If I have one little bitch, it’s something the bands had no control over at all.  There were actually signs posted in the venue saying, “No Moshing”…and people were being forcibly evicted for doing it.  I understand safety rules, liability, yadda yadda.  But c’mon.  This is Anthrax, Megadeth, and freaking SLAYER we’re talking about.  If you’re going to be hardass about some metal heads trying to have a good time, then maybe the Coliseum isn’t the place for these bands, as much as it pains me to say it.  Nobody ever got evicted from a venue for moshing back when I was of “moshing age” and it’s ridiculous to do it now.  Other than that little gripe……it was 1990 all over again.  Metal still rules!

Anthrax set list:

Caught In a Mosh





Metal Thrashing Mad

I Am the Law

Megadeth set list:

Holy Wars…the Punishment Due

Hangar 18

Take No Prisoners

Five magicks

Poison Was the Cure


Tornado of Souls

Dawn Patrol

Rust In Peace…Polaris


How the Story Ends


Symphony of Destruction

Peace Sells

Slayer set list:

World Painted Blood

Hate Worldwide

War Ensemble

Blood Red

Spirit In Black

Expendable Youth

Dead Skin Mask

Hallowed Point

Skeletons of Society


Born of Fire

Seasons In the Abyss

South of Heaven

Raining Blood

Aggressive Perfector

Angel of Death

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Guitar Hero®: Warriors of Rock’s Full Rockin’ Setlist Revealed!

Guitar Hero®: Warriors of Rock’s Full Rockin’ Setlist Revealed!

Bringing the ultimate set list to furious finger-fretting rockaholics around the world this September, Activision Publishing, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) revealed today the entire Guitar Hero®: Warriors of Rock on-disc lineup.  With more than 90 tracks focusing on guitar shredding hits, Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock is headlined by some of the largests bands in rock and features original tracks written and composed by AAA talent, special re-records by famous artists, and bands that are making their Guitar Hero® debut.

“We engaged our fans to find out what they really wanted and then hand-picked over 90 tracks that deliver the ultimate rock experience,” said Tim Riley, Vice President of Music Affairs for Guitar Hero.  “From the new guitar controller to the gameplay to the on-disc set list, Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock is truly a return to rock.”

When Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock ships on September 28, gamers will join the quest to save rock and strive to keep up with the blistering solo’s and intense rifts as they shred their way through the largest Guitar Hero set list to date.  The full track list includes:

  • A Perfect Circle – “The Outsider”
  • Aerosmith – “Cryin’”
  • AFI – “Dancing Through Sunday”
  • Alice Cooper – “No More Mr. Nice Guy”
  • Alter Bridge – “Ties That Bind”
  • Anberlin – “The Feel Good Drag”
  • Anthrax – “Indians”
  • Arch Enemy – “Nemesis”
  • Atreyu            – “Ravenous”
  • Avenged Sevenfold – “Bat Country”
  • Bad Brains – “Re-Ignition (Live)”
  • Band Of Skulls – “I Know What I Am”
  • Black Sabbath – “Children Of The Grave”
  • Blind Melon – “Tones Of Home”
  • Blue Öyster Cult – “Burnin’ For You”
  • Bush – “Machinehead”
  • Buzzcocks – “What Do I Get?”
  • Children Of Bodom – “If You Want Peace… Prepare For War”
  • Creedence Clearwater Revival – “Fortunate Son”
  • The Cure – “Fascination Street”
  • Deep Purple – “Burn”
  • Def Leppard – “Pour Some Sugar On Me (Live)”
  • Dethklok – “Bloodlines”
  • The Dillinger Escape Plan – “Setting Fire To Sleeping Giants”
  • Dire Straits – “Money For Nothing”
  • DragonForce – “Fury of the Storm”
  • Drowning Pool – “Bodies”
  • Edgar Winter– “Free Ride”
  • Fall Out Boy – “Dance, Dance”
  • Five Finger Death Punch – “Hard To See”
  • Flyleaf – “Again”
  • Foo Fighters – “No Way Back”
  • Foreigner – “Feels Like The First Time”
  • George Thorogood and The Destroyers – “Move It On Over (Live)”
  • The Hives – “Tick Tick Boom”
  • Interpol – “Slow Hands”
  • Jane’s Addiction – “Been Caught Stealing”
  • Jethro Tull – “Aqualung”
  • John 5 – “Black Widow Of La Porte”
  • KISS – “Love Gun”
  • Linkin Park – “Bleed It Out”
  • Lynyrd Skynyrd – “Call Me The Breeze (Live)”
  • Megadeth – “Sudden Death”
  • Megadeth – “Holy Wars… The Punishment Due”
  • Megadeth – “This Day We Fight!”
  • Metallica & Ozzy Osbourne – “Paranoid (Live)”
  • Muse – “Uprising”
  • My Chemical Romance – “I’m Not Okay (I Promise)”
  • Neil Young – “Rockin’ In The Free World”
  • Nickelback – “How You Remind Me”
  • Night Ranger – “(You Can Still) Rock In America”
  • Nine Inch Nails – “Wish”
  • The Offspring – “Self Esteem”
  • Orianthi – “Suffocated”
  • Pantera – “I’m Broken”
  • Phoenix – “Lasso”
  • Poison – “Unskinny Bop”
  • Queen – “Bohemian Rhapsody”
  • Queensrÿche – “Jet City Woman”
  • Rammstein – “Waidmanns Heil”
  • The Ramones – “Theme From Spiderman”
  • Red Rider – “Lunatic Fringe”
  • R.E.M. – “Losing My Religion”
  • Rise Against – “Savior”
  • The Rolling Stones – “Stray Cat Blues”
  • The Runaways – “Cherry Bomb”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 1 – Overture”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 2 – The Temples Of Syrinx”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 3 – Discovery”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 4 – Presentation”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 5 – Oracle: The Dream”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 6 – Soliloquy”
  • Rush – “2112 Pt. 7 – Grand Finale”
  • RX Bandits – “It’s Only Another Parsec…”
  • Silversun Pickups – “There’s No Secrets This Year”
  • Slash featuring Ian Astbury – “Ghost”
  • Slayer – “Chemical Warfare”
  • Slipknot – “Psychosocial”
  • Snot – “Deadfall”
  • Soundgarden – “Black Rain”
  • Steve Vai – “Speeding” (Vault Version)
  • Stone Temple Pilots – “Interstate Love Song”
  • Strung Out – “Calling”
  • Styx – “Renegade”
  • Sum 41 – “Motivation”
  • Tesla – “Modern Day Cowboy”
  • Them Crooked Vultures – “Scumbag Blues”
  • Third Eye Blind – “Graduate”
  • Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – “Listen To Her Heart”
  • Twisted Sister – “We’re Not Gonna Take It”
  • The Vines – “Get Free”
  • The White Stripes – “Seven Nation Army”
  • ZZ Top – “Sharp Dressed Man (Live)”

In Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock, join with friends on an epic rock journey to save rock.  Featuring an impressive 90+ track set list and a host of all-new gameplay features, living room legends and their friends can strum, drum and wail in the most immersive music videogame experience to date.  Delivering the quintessential rock music collection that focuses on guitar shredding hits from bands such as Black Sabbath, Slipknot and Megadeth and larger-than-life band anthems from Queen, Muse and KISS, players can unleash more rewards and unlockable content than ever before in Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock’s Quest Mode, the franchise’s first ever story-based mode, and Quickplay+, which invites challenge-starved fanatics to test their rock skills.  Running on the powerful Guitar Hero engine that has been expanded and refined and with encores from the critically-acclaimed and fan favorite gameplay features that made Guitar Hero one of the most popular franchises of all-time – such as Party Play, Competitive modes and any combination of up to four instruments – the game offers a complete interactive and connected experience bringing friends and foes to the stage in the ultimate rock music experience.

Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock is being developed by Neversoft Entertainment for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and by Vicarious Visions for the Wii™ system from Nintendo.  The game is rated “T” (Teen – Lyrics, Mild Fantasy Violence and Mild Suggestive Themes) by the ESRB.  For more information about Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock, please visit GuitarHero.com.

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Foo Fighters To Debut Two New Tracks On “Greatest Hits” Collection

Foo Fighters To Debut Two New Tracks On “Greatest Hits” Collection

dave_grohlFoo Fighters have revealed the songs on their forthcoming singles collection ‘Greatest Hits’. The career spanning tracks will also be accompany by two new tracks,’Wheels’ and ‘Word Forward’, will be included on the album.

A deluxe edition of ‘Greatest Hits’ will be released that will come with a 28 page book of exclusive photograph’s plus a DVD including highlights of the bands shows at Wembley Stadium and Hyde Park in London.

‘Greatest Hits’ Tracklisiting:

‘All My Life’
‘Best Of You’
‘The Pretender’
‘My Hero’
‘Learn To Fly’
‘Times Like These’
‘Monkey Wrench’
‘Big Me’
‘Long Road To Ruin’
‘This is a Call’
‘Skin and Bones’
‘Word Forward’
‘Everlong’ (acoustic)

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Robert Zemeckis Eyes Remake Of The Beatles ‘Yellow Submarine’

Robert Zemeckis Eyes Remake Of The Beatles ‘Yellow Submarine’

album_The-Beatles-Yellow-SubmarineRobert Zemeckis is reportedly in negotiations to direct a remake of ‘Yellow Submarine’ for Disney, reports Variety. The film would presented to audiences in Digital 3D and also utilize the same performance capture technology that Zemeckis has created for his upcoming holiday film, ‘A Christmas Carol’.

The original film “Yellow Submarine” was a 1968 animated feature based on music by the Beatles. The Beatles appeared only in the film’s closing live-action scene. Actors provided the voices for the animated incarnations of Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr.

The key to the deal is for Zemeckis and company to have access to classic Beatles songs featured in the film, such as “Yellow Sunmarine,” “All Together Now,” “Baby You’re a Rich Man,” “All You Need Is Love,” “When I’m 64,” “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” and “Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band.”

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‘The Beatles: Rock Band’ Tracklisting Revealed!

‘The Beatles: Rock Band’ Tracklisting Revealed!


The tracklisting for ‘The Beatles: Rock Band’ has been revealed! Check out the list of amazing tunes below!

The game will allow users to play as all four Beatles and will include 45 songs from across the band’s career. As an extra, players can download the entirety of the Abbey Road album after launching the game. Also, for the first time in a “Rock Band” game, you’ll be able to plug in three mics at once and sing three-part harmony. The game is set to launch on September 9, 2009.

For more info visit www.thebeatlesrockband.com.

The tracklisting is as follows:

I Want To Hold Your Hand
I Feel Fine
Day Tripper
Paperback Writer
Don’t Let Me Down

Please Please Me (1963)
I Saw Her Standing There
Do You Want To Know A Secret
Twist and Shout

With the Beatles (1963)
I Wanna Be Your Man

A Hard Day’s Night (1964)
A Hard Day’s Night
Can’t Buy Me Love

Beatles For Sale (1964)
Eight Days a Week

Help! (1965)
Ticket To Ride

Rubber Soul (1965)
Drive My Car
I’m Looking Through You
If I Needed Someone

Revolver (1966)
Yellow Submarine
And Your Bird Can Sing

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967)
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band/With a Little Help From My Friends
Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
Getting Better
Good Morning Good Morning

Magical Mystery Tour (1967)
I Am The Walrus
Hello Goodbye

The White Album (1968)

Dear Prudence
Back In the U.S.S.R.
While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Helter Skelter

Yellow Submarine (1969)
Hey Bulldog

Abbey Road (1969)
Come Together
Octopus’s Garden
I Want You (She’s So Heavy)
Here Comes the Sun

Let It Be (1970)
Dig a Pony
I Me Mine
I Got a Feeling
Get Back

Love (2006)
Within You Without You/ Tomorrow Never Knows

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Slash Issues Update On Upcoming Solo Record, Tour

Slash Issues Update On Upcoming Solo Record, Tour


Legendary guitarist Slash has issued an update about his new solo album, the status of the ongoing Velvet Revolver singer search and his upcoming solo tour.

Here is what he had to say about the highly anticipated project:

I don’t know how I’m supposed to wait until next year to put out this record! It is so fucking cool & I am so anxious to get it out already. We start mixing soon and that will be that, ready to go. But, I have to wait, there’s no way around it, for all kinds of logistic reasons and that’s the reality.


But, my VR band-mates and I had a meeting a couple of weeks ago and although the search for a singer will continue, I am going to tour on my solo record most likely through next summer starting in March or April. We (VR) will keep the word of mouth system going and listening to submissions from singers and checking out different singer’s sites etc, we know the right guy is out there somewhere. It’s possible somebody could turn up before I do my tour and we could start working on new material sooner than later, in a perfect world.

As far as my tour is concerned, I have already started to put together ideas for a kick-ass band and the plan is to perform some new stuff, Snakepit, VR and Guns stuff. The new album is really great and deserves that I should support it. Plus, I’m really looking forward to getting out there and doing some gigs, its been more than a year since I was on a proper tour and all these one off jams are basically just a tease.

So, there’s the update for now, I’m still tinkering away on the solo record but there really isn’t much left to do on it but mix it, which starts in September.

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The Beatles: Rock Band – New Tracks Revealed!

The Beatles: Rock Band – New Tracks Revealed!


‘The Beatles: Rock Band’ has revealed 15 new songs bringing the announced track list to 25 for the game, which is set to launch on September 9, 2009.

The game will allow users to play as all four Beatles and will include 45 songs from across the band’s career. As an extra, players can download the entirety of the Abbey Road album after launching the game. Also, for the first time in a “Rock Band” game, you’ll be able to plug in three mics at once and sing three-part harmony.

Twist And Shout / Cavern Club
Do You Want To Know A Secret / Cavern Club
Can’t Buy Me Love / Ed Sullivan Theater
I Wanna Be Your Man / Ed Sullivan Theater
Eight Days A Week / Shea Stadium
Paperback Writer / Budokan
And Your Bird Can Sing / Budokan
Yellow Submarine / Abbey Road Dreamscape
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band* / Abbey Road Dreamscape
With a Little Help from My Friends* / Abbey Road Dreamscape
Within You Without You / Tomorrow Never Knows / Abbey Road Dreamscape
Revolution / Abbey Road Dreamscape
Birthday / Abbey Road Dreamscape
Dig A Pony / Rooftop Concert
I’ve Got A Feeling / Rooftop Concert

For more info visit www.thebeatlesrockband.com.

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Gilby Clarke: The Original Guitar Hero

Gilby Clarke: The Original Guitar Hero

Gilby Clarke: The Original Guitar Hero

Gilby Clarke: The Original Guitar Hero

In his youth, Gilby Clarke was not that different from you or me. He was a kid with a dream and a undying love for rock n’ roll. When Clarke was 17 years old, he decided to make that dream a reality. He left his home in Cleveland, Ohio with his sights set on California and never looked back. Almost three decades later, he has amassed quite a resume to say the least. He has played guitar alongside such musical legends as MC5, Nancy Sinatra, Heart and even a little band called Guns N’ Roses. Never content to be pigeon holed as a guitarist, Clarke has thrown his hat in the ring as producer for The Bronx, L.A. Guns, The Alarm and Alice Cooper. As if that weren’t enough to keep him busy, he has even produced his own critically acclaimed solo efforts. Not shabby for a mid-western kid with just a guitar and a dream. Jason Price of Live-Metal.Net recently got a chance to sit down with Gilby Clarke to discuss musical roots, his upcoming musical endeavors, his new role as a “Rock N’ Roll Fantasy Camp Counselor” and even a little Chinese Democracy.

Live-Metal.Net: How did music first come into your life?

Gilby Clarke: Well, when I was a teenager, music was always around. I saw a poster of Jimi Hendrix and that is what really got me going. I wanted to become a guitar player. I just started discovering music through that. I was listening to some early Jimi Hendrix and then I got into some current stuff which at the time was Led Zeppelin, KISS, Aerosmith and stuff like that from the mid-seventies that was popular at the time.

What drove you to make music your career?

I’ve got to tell you that I didn’t ever really make a decision, it just kinda happened. When I was in high school, I was playing in bands that were playing high school dances and things like that. I just always knew that I wanted to play guitar in a band, so when everybody else went on from high school to go to college or whatever, I just kept playing music. I went to Hollywood and got a gig with a band and it just kinda kept going. It was more determination than anything.

What has kept you inspired through the years?

Well, it’s tough! [laughs] I think that what is great about music is the variety, I like all kinds of music. I like hard rock, I don’t know that I can say that I like Top 40 rock, but I like classical music and I like blues. I seem to be able to find good about a lot of different types of music. If I hear a good song or a good band that definitely inspires me a little bit.

How do you think you have evolved as an artist since starting out?

I think as an artist, that my craft has evolved. I think I have become a better guitar player over the years. More than anything, I never accept my playing as being “finished.” I still see other guitar players and learn from them. I might see them do something and go “Wow! I’ve never tried that!” So as a musician, I feel like it’s a work in progress and that it is always evolving. I am always trying to learn something new, to get better or find a different style that you like. As far as music that I like, it really hasn’t changed too much. I really like the classic definition of rock n’ roll, something that is really loose and you hear the drum beat go with it.

You have put a lot of music over the years and even put out a retrospective album last year. Looking back on your career so far, did you think that you would be still going strong all these years later?

Well, I gotta tell ya, I never thought I wouldn’t be! [laughs] The thing about a music career is that it is all hills and valleys. You can’t be on top all of the time. You just have to find ways of making the downtime fun and that is what I do. I can’t sit around and wait for every arena tour to come around once every five to eight years or so. I try to find other things to do that I think are fun like taking up a residency at a club where I can just play music once a week to keep me fresh. So, yeah, I guess I did think I would be going strong. No one ever thinks that they are going to be on top forever but you just have to hang in.

Are you currently working on material for a new Gilby Clarke solo record?

I am always writing. I am always writing songs because I don’t really know what they are going to be for. Where the songs will be, I don’t know. Is it going to be a new band? Or will it be a solo record? Usually I don’t make a decision until I have a good records worth of tunes. If I have ten tunes that I am happy with, then I have to decide to either do a solo record or to seek out a band, so writing is always a process.

What is the typical songwriting process like for you?

For me it always starts on guitar when I am sitting around noodling, playing or if I am just at a sound check and I come up with something that I haven’t heard before, whether it is a riff or just a chord change that I haven’t tried before. It usually starts that way. Very rarely does it start lyrically. I think as I have gotten older it has been starting lyrically a little bit more, if I have different ideas that I want to write down, but usually it does start with guitar first.

Your recently produced an album with Crash Kelly, what was that experience like for you?

Actually, last year I did four back to back records! I did a Crash Kelly record, I did a Silent Rage record, a band called Motochrist’s record and I just mixed The Alarm’s record. So I always producing. If I am not performing live then I am producing. A young band like Crash Kelly, at this point they are definitely seasoned musicians and they know how to play. It is more about getting to the arrangements or the songs. With Sean (Kelly), who is the lead singer and guitarist, it is more about making sure he is hearing back what he has.

Is there anyone else that you are currently working with that we should be on the lookout for?

Like I said, the Silent Rage record, which was a band from the mid to late eighties just put out a record. That record just came out, and I am really proud of the work with the band The Alarm. That record also just came out and I am finishing up their next record. It’s like that late seventies Clash, Sex Pistols rock n’ roll. It is some really good songwriting and it is a record that I would buy even if I had nothing to do with it.

Rock Star: Supernova reunited back in May of 2008 for a benefit. Is there any chance we might see you all back together again sometime soon?

It is kind of funny because we never officially pulled the plug on it. It was a project and Tommy (Lee) and I will always be friends. I just don’t think it is anyone’s priority at this point. I think we gave it our best shot and there were some things that were successful about it and some things that weren’t. I don’t think it will ever really go away but over time we may forget about it. At this point, you never really know what will come up.

Currently you are on tour as a counselor for the Rock N’ Roll Fantasy Camp, how did you become involved with the program?

Actually a bunch of my friends have always been a part of it. Teddy Andreadis who used to play keyboards for Guns N’ Roses, and Bruce Kulick have done it. Whenever they talk about it they always have great things to say about it and how it not only gives back to people who aren’t professional musicians and the way it gives back to the musicians themselves. They get a sense of accomplishment working with people. I went down to Los Angeles to audition and I had a great time! I thought that the people were really fun and I just really enjoyed the whole process.

gilbyclarke3Obviously this is a little different from a tour you would normally be involved with, how are you adjusting to life as a “camp counselor” this summer?

I actually just did my first one yesterday. It was a really good experience. You are working with people who have followed your career, they are excited to be in the room with you and you get to play some music together. So, yeah, I had a great experience.

I would imagine that having experience on the production side of things probably lends itself pretty well to this project by putting all your expertise to work in a classroom setting.

Yeah it definitely is a good experience for everyone involved.

gilbyclarke2What are you looking forward to the most about the Rock N’ Roll Fantasy Camp tour?

It is mostly about just talking to people. As a musician, you surround yourself with other musicians, so it is very easy to lose touch. What is really great about this is that you are one-on-one with people and get to hear what they are inspired by. I have never been one of those musicians that follows a trend. It always bothers me when I hear other artists saying “Do this for the fans. Give them what they want.” I just don’t think that is really an artist. Being an artist is creating something original and you get fans from that. So it is always nice to get a little feedback, some honest feedback. That is another thing that is really great about this.

Being in the music industry as long as you have, are there still surprises?

Yeah! [laughs] There are definitely still surprises out there. I mean, the people that survive are the people that adapt. You definitely have to learn to adapt because times are much different.

What do you consider the defining moment of your career so far?

I think that joining Guns N’ Roses was my defining moment. It was an extremely successful band at that time and I really believed in it. As a guitar player, it was exactly what I was looking for. It ending up not lasting as long as I would have hoped and I didn’t get to do any writing with the band. So it was definitely a defining moment but certainly not the final defining moment.

You have worked with a wealth of really terrific artists over the years and probably have a tale or two to tell. Will we ever get an autobiography out of you to share any of those stories?

Yeah, I think that I definitely have an opinion and a Guns N’ Roses opinion. I think that would make an interesting book, so it is something that I am definitely thinking about a lot more lately.

Are you still in touch with any of those guys from your days in Guns N’ Roses?

I think the only one that I currently talk to is Duff (McKagan). We live right down the street from each other and have kids that go to the same school. We hang out a little more than the other guys. The other guys like Matt and Slash, I don’t really see that much.

What is the best piece of advice you could give to those who are just starting out and considering making a career in the music industry?

Yeah, I think “originality” more than anything. Music is art and I think that has been getting lost over the past ten years. If you have something to contribute and something to say, I think that you can make a great career. I think that bands like the Sex Pistols are working bands. Everybody has something to say and you don’t have to be the best guitar player or the best drummer in the world to say something.

You have dabble in the world of reality TV before with Rockstar Supernova and you have been happily married for a long time now so we won’t be seeing Rock of Love: Gilby Clarke!

Yeah. [laughs]

I was just curious if you had been approached for any other reality projects… perhaps something based on your producing or home life. Would that be something you would be interested in?

Actually, my wife and I have been approached quite a few times about reality shows. It’s just not for us. We really don’t need to air our life on TV just to make a little money. We are in a bunch of current production things for television shows but it is not really about our lives. TV is a new avenue of marketing and you have to use it. If The Beatles would have had TV like this, they would have used it too. It is just like radio was, a new tool.

gilbyclarke4What does a lifelong guitar player like yourself think of the Guitar Hero and Rock Band video game craze we are currently having?

I haven’t played Rock Band yet but I have played Guitar Hero. I have a fourteen year old daughter that smokes me on it! [laughs] I think it is great. I think that it is great that it is turning a whole new generation on to some great music. My daughter came up to me and asked if I had a Rage Against The Machine record. I think it is really, really wonderful that these kids are getting to hear some classic songs that inspired a different generation.

Has the digital revolution of music (downloading, iPods, iTunes, etc.) been positive or negative for someone like yourself?

I view it in a positive way. My recording studio is all Pro Tools now and it has certainly made it a lot easier. I can’t say that it has made it more productive but it has made easier. I don’t think that we can judge it really, not quite yet, what it has done to music. I think it is still in the beginning stages right now. It’s going to be interesting to see how much it changes and more than anything, what kind of quality music that we are going to get from this new digital age. Right now, for me, the jury is still out on it.

Music runs in your family. What was it like when your daughter took the stage with you for the first time?

The first time that she performed with me was actually in London. We had such a great time! My wife was in tears watching it. I think it is fun when your children have the same dreams that you had. With my daughter, her being a girl, we don’t have as many things in common from a father/daughter relationship. So having music as something in common gives us a language of our own, that her and my wife don’t have. It is a really special relationship.

After this tour, what?s next for you?

Just getting back to some writing. I have been in the studio producing last year and then this summer, I have been doing a lot of performing. I think more than anything I just really need to get back to the studio, start writing and get some songs cataloged.

I have a habit of throwing this one in here. When do you think that Chinese Democracy will be released?

There was point there, I have to tell you, that I was absolutely sure it was coming out but at this point I have no idea. I am just like every other person and I am a fan of GNR’s music but I have no idea. I have heard a couple songs just like everybody else and I am just as curious as everybody else. I am really curious to see what kind of music you break up a really good band for.

Is there anything else you want to add?

I think that is about it. I think there is a really interesting vibe right now, we just have to be patient and hopefully we will get some good records out of it.

Thank you very much for your time Gilby!

Thanks man, I really appreciate it!


Related Links:
www.gilbyclarke.com – The Official Site of Gilby Clarke
www.myspace.com/gilbyclarke – The Official Myspace Page of Gilby Clarke
The?Gilby Clarke Forum – The Official Gilby Clarke Forum
Here Today?Gone To Hell – An Unofficial Guns N’ Roses site
GNR Source – An Unofficial Guns N’ Roses site
Frankie B. – The Official Site of Frankie B. Premium Denim Jeans (Fashion by Daniella Clarke)
Redrum Recording – The Official Site of Gilby Clarke‘s Redrum Recording
Guns n’ Roses?Online
– The Official Site of Guns N’ Roses
Rock N’ Roll Fantasy Camp – The Official Site of Rock N’ Roll Fantasy Camp

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In Search of … Bumblefoot: An Interview with Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal

In Search of … Bumblefoot: An Interview with Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal

Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal of Guns N' Roses

Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal of Guns N' Roses

Who or what is a Bumblefoot, you ask? At first glance, your trusty dictionary will describe it as “Ulcerative Pododermatitis: an infection found on the feet of birds of prey and rodents.” Well class, throw those textbooks out the window because the Bumblefoot we will be discussing today is much more complex than that. Bumblefoot is none other than Ron Thal, an accomplished guitarist, solo artist, writer, producer, engineer, hot sauce connoisseur and guitarist for a little band called Guns N’ Roses. With a resume like this, one might wonder, “Is there anything this man can’t do?” Jason Price and Steve Johnson of Live-Metal.Net struck out on a mission to meet up with this man of mystery, find out what makes him tick and observe him in his natural habitat, New Jersey. The results of this grand experiment are below, as we go “In Search of … Bumblefoot.”

Live-Metal.Net: What inspired you to get into music and to go this route?

Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal: Oh man, this goes way back to when I was about 5 years old. All the older kids in my neighborhood were into KISS. Then I heard the KISS Alive album for the first time and it just blew my mind! I wanted to be a drummer and so did my brother. So we got into this contest where whoever had the faster drum roll got to be the drummer. Me being 5 and him being 8, he was a little bit faster, so he ended up being the drums. So I was like, “OK, I want to be a bass player because Gene Simmons is badass with the fire, the blood and the high shoes!” Bad shoes! [laughs] So, I went to a place to start taking bass lessons and at this point I was about 6. The bass was taller than I was and the strings were thicker than my fingers, so that wasn’t going to happen. So they lied to me at the music store and told me that by law you have to play acoustic guitar for two years before you can switch to bass. So I was like, “OK, if that is what I need to do I will do my time, man! I am gonna take it like a man, like a 6 year old man, and do it!” So I got into it and just stuck with it and forgot that I was supposed to switch to bass. Twenty years and I forgot! But I do play bass now too, but I play it like shit because I never did get those bass lessons when I was 6. So it all kinda worked out and I have gotten to do everything, although I am the world’s shittest drummer. So it is a good thing that I didn’t take the drum lessons!

How did you brother do with the drums?

He did well with it, but he is probably the world’s shittest guitar player!

For those not familiar with you or your music quite yet, how did the name Bumblefoot come about?

From her! [points to his wife Jen Thal aka Mrs. Foot] My wife was in veterinary school many, many years ago and she is a veterinarian now, she passed! Thanks to my help, of course! I was helping her study and one of the diseases was called Bumblefoot and I was like, “What the fuck is that? That is so stupid!” So I am reading about it and it said that turkeys get this disease and that one way to treat it is to rub hemorrhoid cream on their foot. I was thinking, “This is so idiotic! I am naming my band Bumblefoot!” It sorta became my nickname, which worked out to not being the best thing in the world. Especially following someone named “Buckethead” in a band. You get all the jokes like “Buckethead and now Bumblefoot? What’s next, Bumperdick?” Everyone has something to say, but whatever! At the time I guess I was more in a Monty Python state of mind where I thought being named after a giant fucked up foot might be funny and good for the rest of my life. So I wake up one morning and I am taking myself a little more serious or I should say that other people are taking me more seriously and the name is, I wouldn’t say a detriment, but it makes you scratch your head.

Is the name something you think that you will need to separate at some point or are you not taking it too seriously?

I think I should just see what happens. If I have legal troubles, I can always come up with a symbol and do that whole thing. “The Artist Formerly Known as Bumblefoot” and then people will be asking what the fuck is this symbol and what the fuck is a Bumblefoot, just to make it worse! But who knows, I may wake up one morning and decide that I am changing my name to Bumblefuck and just do that. I almost considered doing that by putting out a press release saying that I have changed my name to “Bumblef**k” and then from there I can just shorten it to “Fuck”!

Who and what were some of the influences that have helped shape you, the musician, that we know today?

Oh Jesus! Ummm … No, not Jesus, well maybe a little bit! Yeah, whatever! [laughs] Drinking hot sauce has been a major thing, whichI really need to stop doing! I have been drinking too much of it and it is way too hot! I got this stuff that is as hot as commercial grade pepper spray and can be used as a weapon. I put it on my food. You are supposed to put one drop in a four-quart vat of chili and I am using one drop on a forkful of chicken! It has reached the point now where I am basically taking a shot of hot sauce and putting a piece of chicken in my mouth! If I keep doing that, I am probably going to die! I will probably get up one day and shit out all my organs and they will all be liquified. So I need to quit that, but I definitely think that helped shaped what I am today. What else? My mom and dad, I got their genes so they are partly to blame. Oh wait, did you mean musically?

Guitar-wise, I was always into Hendrix and Eddie Van Halen really opened my mind up to a different way of looking at things. For the most part, I really played a lot like Angus [Young] when I was a kid and was totally into that vibe. When I heard Eddie Van Halen for the first time, I was like, “What? What the fuck is he doing?” and that kinda changed the road that I was on.

Who were some of the other guitarists that top your list as “the greats?”

Well definitely Eddie. Hendrix is there, for that feel and he had such a fucking vibe to him. It is so hard to say. Even Yngwie [Malmsteen] because, to me, I think of the ones that had such an impact on music or guitar players, or both. People started shredding because of him. He’s to blame for that because he inspired a lot of people that went on to take what he did and add it to their schooled, jazz approach that they had to things and suddenly you have all the shrapnel artist for next 10 years. So he has to be given a lot of credit for being a major inspiration for a lot of people. I could even throw in some people that you wouldn’t expect like Elliot Easton from The Cars because he was so fucking tasty in what he played. If you want to go down that road, you could even say Ace [Frehley]. You can sing his guitar parts more than you can even sing the vocal to a KISS song. You could go on forever, people were great for so many different reasons either by what they contributed or by how something hits you individually.

What is the biggest misconception about yourself?

I would say that one misconception is that everything I do is a big fucking joke, that I don’t take it seriously and all I want to do is make people laugh. Maybe I put out a song with a funny title, but the 11 other songs on the album touch on some serious personal shit. Maybe I talk about it in a light hearted way because I am not trying to drag anybody down, but it is still serious shit nonetheless. I think that and being called “Bumblefuck,” when you put those two elements together and I think that people may think I am not serious about music. So that is one misconception, but ya know, I am just being myself. I have an obnoxious sense of humor and sometimes it comes out in whatever I am doing. Sometimes I say the wrong thing at the wrong time because I know it’s the wrong thing at the wrong time and that is why I just fucking have to say it. So I do it. Maybe I am like that a little bit musically too.

What else? Hmmmm, that I am tall! I’m not and I am not afraid to admit that! [laughs]

It was recently revealed that your new album will be called Abnormal.

Yeah, because the world was really waiting to know! [laughs]

So what can you tell us about the album?

Well, back up one step to Normal. That was pretty autobiographical about what was going on. I guess in a sense, everything anyone writes is autobiographical whether it is about an event that happened in their life or about the way they perceive it. Usually an artist is trying to get you to see something through their eyes not that I am an artist, I’m a “Bumblefuck”! [laughs] Normal was trying to tell the story of where shit was at, where I was beaten, battered and bumblefucked! I went on some mind-altering medication before I put a bullet in my head and that got me through that. The side effect of that is that on those kind of meds, you can’t really get creative anymore. They block a lot of the bad shit you use to create. So it was a whole time period of weighing what was better: to be happy and silent, or a head case but be able to give something. So in the end, music always wins! Otherwise there would be no musicians. If you ask half of them they are like, “Why the hell am I doing this?” It’s because you have to. You have no choice in the matter. It was assigned to you and it is not your choice. You have to do it and if you try not to, you feel like your holding your breath. You have to breathe and you have to make the music.

So, with Abnormal, the meds wore off. I’m a fucking head case again! [laughs] Ask her! [motions to his wife] So same old shit, a lot of love songs. Sure! [laughs] From everyone that has heard it, they say it reminds them of the Sex Pistols but with this Queen musical thing that is going on. There are moments where there is a little bit of opera and I did have opera singers come in and sing on it. I think guitar-wise, my head was in a different place with this album. I wouldn’t even say that I cared more about everything. I think I cared less about everything and that allowed me to do something a little more natural because I wasn’t guided by the idea of “this is what people want to hear” and “this is what I should or shouldn’t be doing.” I was just like, “Fuck it!” I just have to do whatever. In the end, I think a lot more melodic shit came out. The crazy shit was crazier and the pretty shit was prettier because when you let go of something and let it run free, it’s like taking the intensity knob and turning it up a couple of notches! So I am pretty happy with this album. It’s in the same direction as Normal was as far as songs with noodley-noodley over it, but I feel like I have stepped it up in every way. The sound quality, I put so much more time into the tone of everything. It just hit me over the head one day that it doesn’t matter what you play if your final tone is not pleasing. So I really put extra into that. I don’t know if it helped, but I tried! [laughs]

So Abnormal, it’s not as freaky as the name. Well, it’s got it’s moments. You know how I had that song, “Guitars Suck”? Well, now I have a song called “Guitars Still Suck” and it’s a little crazier than the last one! It was actually inspired by my friend Guthrie Govan, who is a wonderful friend of mine and an old friend of mine going back 20 years, lives in England. I was a guest on one of his songs that had a kinda country vibe to it and I wanted to make a song that was an answer back to him.

So a battle of sorts?

In a sense or more like a reply. I would call it that because it’s not like a challenge or that kinda vibe. It’s almost like swapping porn! Here’s one and here’s one back to you!

Mrs. Foot: It’s like they are having a conversation with guitars. Sometimes it will go on for an hour. They will come up with the most ridiculous things.

RT: Yeah! There are times when Guthrie and I will jam for an hour and a half straight of going back and forth. As we are trading off, we might even throw in the theme to some cartoon and stuff like that. We always have a great time. I love the guy, he is wonderful!

When do you think you will be releasing Abnormal?

Well, I would like to get it out there as soon possible. It’s a plus and a minus that I am doing things all by myself. It’s a plus in the sense that I don’t have to organize and wait and work it out. I can just put it out as it comes out, which is also a minus because there is no big bang when it comes out. Suddenly it is just there, but I kinda like that. So I am just making it available as I can and hopefully people will discover it and they have the option of deciding whether they like it ot not when it is there.

You are also known for having quite a few signature guitars and you held a year-long contest accepting submissions for a new design. When can we look forward to that new design seeing the light of day?

Vigier is working on it as we speak. They’ve been sending me photos and schematics as it’s coming together, working out any modifications that might be needed. Workin’ out the kinks, making sure the hand can fit comfortably between the necks, making sure the weight is distributed properly, stuff like that. Kinks.

You just announced that you will be creating an “all-star band” for the 2008 Rock Against Diabetes charity concert. How did you get involved with the charity?

Darrin Buchanan, a wonderful guy, this is his baby. He is putting it together and he has been doing it for a couple of years. Diabetes has been kicking his butt a little bit, lost a few toes, lost a foot. So obviously he has personal passion about this, as any of us would. He is putting all together and he contacted me and asked if I wanted to play. I told him that I could play it, but I thought we should do something bigger than that. I don’t know who is going to be available and what the end result will be, but I am sure everyone would love to do it if they could. Time will tell and I hope that I live up to the expectations of what this could be.

A lot of people might have become familiar with you by way of Guns N’ Roses. How did your involvement with the band come about?

It was about four years ago that we started talking. Joe Satriani recommended me and then I got a funny email from Chris Pitman, the keyboard player, and we all just started talking. It took a minute for us to get it together but we started touring in 2006. We just started jammin’ and the next thing you know we are doing it in front of people, then we are doing it in all different places, then I am laying guitar tracks on the album and then here we are in New Jersey!

Did you know any of the others in the band before joining?

Pretty sure most of the guys had a previous relationship, except for me, haha. Tommy [Stinson] and Richard [Fortus] worked with Frank [Ferrer], things like that. Funny thing about Frank is that we had all these mutual friends, going back 20 years, but Frank and I had never met. Or maybe we did but just didn’t realize it. So relationships developed. Frank and I get together whenever we can.

How did you react to the news that Robin Finck was leaving Guns N’ Roses to rejoin Nine Inch Nails?

He’s playing the 27th of August up at The Meadowlands, which I will always call it. I don’t give a fuck if they are calling it Izod Theater or Continental or whatever they want to fucking call it. It’s the Meadowlands! Bring the name back, dammit! [laughs] That’s all I’m saying, haha.

Do you ever tire of being asked what is slowly turning into the Million Dollar Rock Journalism Question, “When is Chinese Democracy going to be released?”

How can you not ask that question? It’s like, “Doesn’t anyone notice that elephant in the room?!” We have new management and they are good guys, and it’s in negotiations.

It has to be exciting for you, since Chinese Democracy is becoming such a piece of rock history. Do you know what your contribution to the album is?

I played on every song. Yeah, it is exciting, but I can’t get that excited without thinking of the other guys. I am more excited for them because their journey with this is so much longer than mine. For me, it has been two years of seriously being active and there are guys who have been doing this for 10 years and I am just so fucking happy for them.

Ever had a Spinal Tap moment on stage?

When haven’t I? [laughs] On stage, off stage, that movie rings more true all the time. A great Spinal Tap moment was when we were playing in England two years ago. We’re doing “Rocket Queen” and as we are doing the intro we see a bunch of guys bringing out these little, foot-high platforms behind us. As they are bringing them out, we are looking at each other like, “What the hell is going on?” and we go into the song and they quickly take them away. We had no idea what that was about. We found out later that we were going to have a bunch of “little people” dancing on these platforms for an extended intro to “Rocket Queen,” but we were never told, so we had no clue. So we are arguing about the communication breakdown after the show, so I of course in the middle of it have one question to ask in a British accent, “Will we be doing ‘Rocket Queen’ tomorrow night? [instead of “Stonehenge”] And one of the guys says back [in an English voice], “No, we won’t be doing fucking ‘Rocket Queen’!” So that was a Spinal Tap moment. Little things like that can happen and when they do you just have to laugh. We try and make a rule of not mentioning anything from Spinal Tap before a show because it will jinx the show. It’s all in good fun.

What does a guitar virtuoso like yourself think of Guitar Hero? Is it fun or is it like when those little kids are watching Marty McFly play Wild Gunman in Back To The Future 2? “That’s like a baby’s toy!”

It’s a fun game. I like playin’ it. It’s like asking a race car driver how he feels about a racing game. They are two separate things, but it is a fun game. [laughs]

Being in the music industry as long as you have, are there still surprises?

The changes that happen in the industry now happen at an exponential rate, where the growth that would happen in 10 years now happens in a year. I guess technology is moving so fast, everything has to restructure to keep up with it. So there are always surprises but it boils down to it being the only form of legal slavery still allowed in America. I am not speaking on Guns behalf, I am speaking from my own personal experiences. I have had to remedy situations with baseball bats or hire hitmen to kill the owners of labels. [laughs]

How do you feel about the current state of rock music?

Well, with any kind of music, there are gonna be a million people that love it and 10 million people who hate it. It’s not for everybody. Whatever that is out now that you don’t like is not for you, it is for the people who do. That’s just how it is. My music is for the 10 people that like it, for everyone else, it’s not for them. So fuck ’em! [laughs]


Related Links:
www.bumblefoot.com – Official Site of Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal
www.myspace.com/bumblefoot – Official Myspace Page of Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal
Rock Against Diabetes – Live from Las Vegas on August 23, 2008
Rock Against Diabetes on Myspace – Befriend This Worthy Cause on Myspace
www.gunsnroses.com – Official Site of Guns N’ Roses
Here Today…Gone To Hell – An Unofficial Guns N’ Roses site
GNRSource.com – An Unofficial Guns N’ Roses site

Bumblefoot Fun Fact:
Ron Thal once played Guns N’ Roses covers in a band called Leonard Nimoy.

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