ROB CAGGIANO ON WHY HE LEFT ANTHRAX: “MY HEART SIMPLY WASN’T IN IT ANYMORE”

robcaggiano400Kelleigh Welch of ProSound News spoke with former Anthrax guitarist Rob Caggiano about why he left the band to become a producer. Parts of the interview appear below.

Q: The big question: Why did you decide to leave Anthrax?

A: That was a very tough decision to make and it’s also a tough question to answer. There are a number of reasons why I left the band. Some of them are very personal to me but I ultimately have no problem being open about these things.

If you were to ask me to give you the absolute main reason why I decided to leave Anthrax, I would tell you that I left because my heart simply wasn’t in it anymore. I had a blast playing with those guys and they will always be family to me, but outside of my guitar solos and production work, Anthrax was never a creative outlet for me (musically). That wasn’t by any choice of my own by the way; it’s just the way it is. But at the same time I was committed 100 percent to the band and the relentless touring schedule, etc.

It’s been a blast playing with those guys. I love them dearly and I wouldn’t change a thing about the last 12 years, but I guess it just got to the point where I started asking myself: “What the hell am I doing? I’m a musician; this is who I am. Being creative is simply food for my soul. Why am I devoting all of my time and energy into a band where being creative is impossible for me?” It simply stopped making sense a while ago and I ended up feeling very unhappy and unfulfilled. It started feeling like I was just going through the motions and that’s not what music is about to me at all. As soon as I realized that my heart was not into it anymore, I knew I needed to make a major change in order to make things right for myself.

Q: So what are your plans moving forward as a producer?

A: It’s been in the back of my head that I wanted to get back into producing records because that is my other passion. I’ve always been enamored with recording studios and the whole recording process. Producing records can be a very cathartic and rewarding experience or it can be the most stressful thing you’ve ever done in your life. I say that with a smile on my face because I’ve experienced both scenarios many times over the years.

I have some amazing memories and I’ve seen things go down in a recording studio that most people wouldn’t even believe. Making records is a lot of hard work and to be honest, I usually can’t even listen to an album I’ve worked on when I’m done with it. It’s the smiles and excitement people have when they listen to it that make it worthwhile for me. I’m actually in Denmark right now producing the new Volbeat album for Universal and I’m extremely amped up about this one. It’s the best thing that could have happened to me at the best possible time, and so far, I think it’s my best work to date. Leaving Anthrax was an emotional decision, but it was also extremely liberating at the same time. I definitely feel like I made the right choice.

Q: Given your background in metal, is that the genre you prefer to record, or are you open to working all types of artists?

A: My musical taste is very wide and varied, so I don’t really have a favorite genre, to be honest. Of course, I made a name for myself in the world of heavy metal, but I feel like that’s just the tip of the iceberg really. I would really love to start doing some cutting-edge pop stuff. I usually hate formulaic music, but some truly great records have been coming out recently and it’s definitely been inspiring. The Fun album is a perfect example of what I’m talking about. It’s straight-up pop music, but there is no “formula” really. You’ll hear crazy tempo changes and arrangements that definitely push the envelope of what modern pop music has been about in recent times. It actually reminds me of how records were made years ago—David Bowie, Queen, Beach Boys, etcetera. So basically what I’m saying is that pop music has been seriously regressing over the years.

Q: So will we hear you on guitar again someday? Do you think you will miss playing with Anthrax?

A: I already do, but at the same time I’m very excited to see what the future has in store for me. I’m absolutely not giving up my guitar! I’m not giving up touring anytime soon either. I love the stage and I love touring. It’s in my blood and it’s who I am. I just needed to step off the machine to reevaluate things. Sometimes it’s good to do that and with change comes growth. I have a lot to say musically and I’m ready to scream!

Read the entire interview at ProSound.

source: prosoundnetwork.com

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GEEZER BUTLER SAYS BLACK SABBATH’S NEW MUSIC HAS “THE FEEL OF THE FIRST THREE ALBUMS”

blackSabbath

Black Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler says the band’s reunion album with Ozzy Osbourne is the most professional studio project they’ve done together because they are all sober and he’s revealed that the record might not be called 13 despite official announcements stating that would be the title.

Butler tells KCALfm, “None of us have been drinking or doing drugs or anything. It’s a bit more professional in that way. We stuck to a schedule: every day we’d go in at one o’clock and finished at six. Five hours a day and that’s it. It’s got the feel of the first three albums, back to the basic rawness. The lyrics are about life, death, doom and everything else. You get Prozac with each album…”

Of the title he explains, “It was sort of a temporary name, so we had something to refer to. It kinda stuck – but I don’t know whether that’s going to be the final title or not.”

The number didn’t just come up because of the year, “Originally we were going to put 13 tracks on the album,” Butler says. “We ended up doing 16, but I’m not sure what’s going to be on the album or what isn’t.”

With the absence of original Sabbath drummer Bill Ward, the band hired Rage Against The Machine’s Brad Wilk for the recording-a move that surprised some fans. The bassist says it was producer Rick Rubin’s suggestion, “He didn’t want a typical heavy metal drummer on the album because it’s not really a heavy metal album. It’s more heavy rock. Rick suggested Brad because he’s more in the vein of Bill Ward. We jammed with him and he sounded great with the stuff, so we went with that. We’re sort of back to the way we used to be in the 70s and that’s Brad’s feel – a sort of jazzy, bluesy feel.” No word on whether or not Wilk will join the band on tour.

Meanwhile, Butler says guitarist Tony Iommi is continuing to respond well to cancer treatment after 14 months – and the bassist reports Ozzy is getting better after being injured in a house fire last week, “He burnt his hand when he was putting the fire [out]. He’s got it in a plaster cast. He’ll be alright.”

Black Sabbath’s 19th studio album is due out in June.

additional source: classicrockmagazine.com

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DRUMMER TOMMY ALDRIDGE BACK IN WHITESNAKE

Tommy-Aldridge

Whitesnake are delighted to welcome back the one, the only, Mr. Thinder & Lightning… The Strombringer! That’s right, Tommy Aldridge is once again Whitesnake’s drummer, replacing the recently departed Brian Tichy.

Says Whitesnake frontman David Coverdale, “When I asked all the band members to put together their wish-list of potential drummers for us… every one, without exception, had Tommy Aldridge the top of the list. Also, most of the fans who communicated their suggestions on WS.com wanted Tommy back in the band. So, without further ado, we are delighted to welcome him back with us. It seems it is our destiny to work together. This is going to be so much fun. Welcome back, TA!”

“I can’t express how honored and grateful I am to be back in the Snake fold,” states Aldridge. “Working with David Coverdale and Co. has always been a labor of love. SO stoked to be back and finish what we started!”

Whitesnake would like to thank all the amazing musicians who honored them by applying for the position of drummer. The band were blown away by so much incredible talent and wish each and every one the very best in their lives and careers.

Two weeks ago Brian Tichy announced his departure from Whitesnake to concentrate on his new Sass Jordan fronted project S.U.N. At the time Tichy said, ” I’d like to think we (S.U.N.) made a record that is a solid piece of rock that will hold its own next to anything. How will I know if I am right or wrong if I just “talk talk talk” about it? I’ve got live it and let this band have a fair shot, or else I might as well just call it “a cute little project I do if I have free time.” That is boring and goofy. We’ve worked hard and we will work hard. “I can’t give it its fair shot if I am giving Whitesnake 100%.”

Tommy Aldrudge orginally joined Whitesnake back in 1987 and appeared on the Slip Of The Tongue album and continued drumming for the band until their break-up in 1991. Aldridge rejoined Whitesnake in 2002 for their 25th Anniversary tour before departing in 2007.

additional source: sleazeroxx.com

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THE STATION FIRE MEMORIAL FOUNDATION MAY RECEIVE DONATIONS FROM JACK RUSSELL AFTER ALL

jackRussell

The Station Fire Memorial Foundation, who refused to accept a charitable donation from Great White singer Jack Russell, will receive some of the money after all.

Last week Russell announced he’d perform an acoustic show to mark the 10th anniversary of the night club blaze which killed 100, including guitarist Ty Longley, but the foundation said they didn’t want the money.

Now the singer, who parted ways with the rest of Great White last year, has revealed he’ll send the proceeds to Longley’s nine-year-old son. And young Acey, who never met his father, says he’ll pass some of the money to the foundation.

The boy comments, “Thank you to Great White (the Jack one) for donating to my charity, BEATS – Bringing Everyone A Tremendous Smile – to help bring iTunes cards, drumsticks and Legos to children in hospitals, in memory of my father. I bring smiles to kids in two hospitals in Illinois. I also plan to give some of it to the Station Fire Memorial Foundation to help build a permanent site for all the angels, including my dad.”

Acey reveals he’s never met any member of either Great White lineup, adding, “God says to love everybody, so I do. Taking the donation from Jack does not mean we only love Jack and his Great White, because me and my mom love both Great White bands.”

Both bands’ drummers have assisted with Acey’s charity work, he says. “Audie and Derrick both donated drumsticks and Audie also sent a practice pad, autographed pictures and Legos for me to help the kids. When my dad died I wasn’t even born. Now I’m nine and missing having my dad that everyone knew but me. It’s important to me to make sure my dad is remembered by everyone and all of the angels because they went off to heaven together. I hope to make my dad proud by making the world a better place and bringing happiness to sick kids in hospitals. I hope everyone understands, and doesn’t fight, and helps me.”

additional source: classicrockmagazine.com

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GEOFF TATE’S QUEENSRYCHE SIGNS WITH CLEOPATRA RECORDS, ANNOUNCES LINE UP CHANGES

GeoffTate'sQueensryce

Geoff Tate’s version of Queensryche have just signed a worldwide record deal with Los Angeles-based independent label Cleopatra Records.

Although a line-up was originally announced in the fall of 2012, things have changed. The band will now feature Tate along with bassist Rudy Sarzo (Ozzy Osbourne, Dio, Whitesnake, Quiet Riot), guitarist Kelly Gray (Queensryche 1998-2001), keyboardist Randy Gane (Myth), drummer Bobby Blotzer (Ratt) stellar new additions, guitarist Robert Sarzo (Quiet Riot, Hurricane) and drummer Simon Wright (AC/DC, Dio, Rhino Bucket). Wright will be in the studio and on the road with the band, while Blotzer will be primarily utilized in the studio.

Queensryche, with all members cited above, will soon be entering the studio for the first Cleopatra effort due out later this year. The recording will mark the band’s thirteenth studio album and its first with this particular line-up. Legendary guitar slinger K.K. Downing of Judas Priest fame will be making a special guest appearance on the forthcoming CD.

“I try to surround myself with the best players available and feel our longtime fans deserve nothing less,” states Geoff Tate. “I expect the forthcoming effort to be one of our best yet.”

New member Simon Wright expressed his excitement by stating, “I’m very much looking forward to being involved in the Queensryche project with Geoff. I’ve always admired his singing and songwriting and working with Rudy Sarzo again is going to be cool! Between this and my other project, Dio Disciples, I look forward to a very busy year!”

Beginning in early April, Queensryche will be hitting the road to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the band’s epic 1988 release, Operation: Mindcrime, performing all fifteen songs from the album (including Revolution Calling, Operation: Mindcrime, I Don’t Believe In Love and Eyes Of A Stranger) along with other well-known hits and rarities from the catalog they’ve compiled over the past 30 years.

Last November, Tate released his first solo CD in over a decade titled, Kings & Thieves (InsideOut Music), and toured with his solo band in support of the CD, which included dates with the legendary Alice Cooper.

25th Anniversary Operation:Mindcrime tour dates:

April 6 Peppermill Casino – West Wendover, Nevada
April 9 Belly Up – Aspen, Colorado
April 11 Paramount Theatre – Denver, Colorado
April 12 Hard Rock Hotel & Casino – Albuquerque, New Mexico
April 13 Chrome – Las Vegas, Nevada
April 14 Marquee Theater – Tempe, Arizona
April 16 Rialto Theatre – Tucson, Arizona
April 17 The Coach House – San Juan Capistrano, California
April 18 The Canyon Club – Agoura, California
April 19 Belly Up Tavern – Solana Beach, California
April 20 Club Nokia – Los Angeles, California
April 21 Fillmore – San Francisco, California
April 22 Ace of Spades – Sacramento, California

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SEBASTIAN BACH’S “ABACHALYSE NOW” TO BE RELEASED ON MARCH 26TH

sebastianbachapoch

Former Skid Row vocalist Sebastian Bach’s brand new CD/DVD, ABachalypse Now, will be released on March 26th through Frontiers Records

ABachalypse Now includes never-before-seen footage from the Graspop Metal Meeting festival in Dessel, Belgium, the full never-before-seen Hellfest set from France and the fully-remixed and remastered Nokia show from Los Angeles (originally broadcast on AXS TV), as well as bonus music videos.

ABachalypse Now track listing:

DVD:

* Live at Hellfest in Clisson, France on June 16th, 2012
* Live at Club Nokia in Los Angeles, California on August 2nd, 2012
* Live at Graspop Metal Meeting in Dessel, Belgium on June 24th, 2012
* Bonus music videos: Kicking & Screaming, TunnelVision, I’m Alive

CD1 – Live At Hellfest in Clisson, France, 2012

CD2 – Live at Club Nokia in Los Angeles, California 2012

Setlists:

Live at Hellfest in Clisson, France on June 16th, 2012

1. Slave To The Grind
2. Kicking & Screaming
3. Here I Am
4. Big Guns
5. Piece Of Me
6. 18 & Life
7. American Metalhead
8. Monkey Business
9. I Remember You
10. Youth Gone Wild

Live at Club Nokia in Los Angeles, California on August 2nd, 2012:

1. Big Guns
2. (Love Is) A Bitchslap
3. Piece Of Me
4. 18 & Life
5. American Metalhead
6. Monkey Business
7. I Remember You
8. TunnelVision
9. Youth Gone Wild

Live at Graspop Metal Meeting in Dessel, Belgium on June 24th, 2012:

1. Kicking & Screaming
2. Dirty Power
3. Here I Am
4. Big Guns
5. 18 & Life
6. American Metalhead
7. Monkey Business
8. I Remember You
9. TunnelVision


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