Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Interview with Ron Bumblefoot Thal

If Einstein was a guitarist and lived today, I´m sure he would sound like Bumblefoot. Intelligent and eccentric songwriting and playing, his new album Little Brother Is Watching is very entertaining and unpredictable. Every home should have a copy.
We at Palace of Rock are pleased to present the awesome guitarplayer of Guns N Roses for an interview about his new solo album, the new band Art of Anarchy and that he wouldn´t mind spending the night in the icehotel in Sweden.

Hello Ron, your new solo album Little brother is watching is your first album since The acoustic EP from 2008.  Why did it take 7 years to release a new record?

Ron - Greetings!  7 years, that sure flew by...!  I was putting out an album every year, but then starting touring heavily from 2006 to 2007.  When the touring let up I did the Abnormal album and Barefoot acoustic EP, both released in 2008.  In 2009 I spent the first half of the year doing auditions and rehearsals with GNR, then put a band together for Lita Ford and we toured US & Europe that Summer, right back to GNR rehearsals, hit the road until the end of 2010.  In 2011, I did the digital singles, started producing 3 albums, did some Skype teaching, spent the Summer in physical therapy from a car wreck, then toured again with GNR 'til the end of 2012.  Also began working on an acoustic album with Tony Harnell and through all these years would bust out guest solos on people's albums.  More in 2013, by the second half of 2013 I started doing Bumblefoot tours again and by the end of the year started writing for the new Bumblefoot album.  Toured with GNR 'til June 2014, jumped right into a Bumblefoot tour w/ Yngwie Malmsteen, finished mid-July, and spent the rest of the year finishing the album, done by January 2015, out Feb 2015, and here we are!  Short answer: touring mostly. 

You released a set of singles in 2011, in this music climate of Spotify and Youtube where many artists prefer to release singles than albums.  Will you continue to make LP´s?

Ron - It was a good move to do the song-a-month singles in 2011.  I kept a constant simmer of music throughout the year for as long as I could before it was time to hit the road again – included backing tracks, transcriptions, mix stems with each song...  I don't know if I'll do singles, EPs, LPs, it's all about being most productive in whatever situations are to come.  It's great that we live in a time when so many options are possible.

I think you have created an interesting sound on your new solo album, almost like a punk-ish alternative rock version of Queen. Artistic and crazy but still with plenty of kick ass rock tunes.  Where do you find your biggest inspiration to write songs?

Ron - Thank you  :)   I feel more and more that playing a song is like being a story-teller, telling about your experiences, feelings, what you see through your eyes, and sharing it with people in a way to connect everyone  in all those ways – all sharing the feelings and experiences and visions together.  Inspiration comes from living life, all the things you'd want to tell your best friend about.  And when you put songs out there, you're inviting the world to be part of your life.  It happens – they tell you about their lives, you see everyone face-to-face when you can, we all receive and then pay it forward.

When I listen to Little Brother Is Watching, it sounds like you´re a huge fan of life that loves every new morning you wake up to. Do you see yourself as a positive person?

Ron - I try.  A big part is that I try to be better to myself these days.  By that, I mean I try to protect my spirit and mind and body from all the things that are detrimental.  I have a stronger grasp on time and mortality and what matters to me, and I'm putting even more emphasis and effort into things like teaching, charity, being creative, collaborating, and doing these things with people who have matching philosophy and values.

You have released 10 solo albums, you´re a member of one of the biggest rock n roll band in the world GunsNRoses and have played on albums with guitar heroes like Ty Tabor, Mattias Eklundh and Guthrie Govan.  Is your musical life complete or are you still looking for new challenges? Perhaps be the first artist to play on the moon?

Ron - Haha...    really, there's an infinite road in front of us.  It doesn't matter how far we've gone down any road, we're always just at the beginning with endless possibilities and unknowns in front of us, and it's best to remain open and eager to learn and continue ahead.  What's next in the journey?  I'll be as surprised as you when it comes...

So what is the status on the Art of Anarchy record?  That features not only yourself, but also Disturbed bassist John Moyer, the twin brothers Jon and Vince Votta.  Is Scott Weiland singing on it and when can we look forward to a release?

Ron - Scott wrote and sang every song, yes.  The album is being released in the US on June 2nd and in Europe on June 8th by Century Media, with the first single and video on the way.

How would you describe the sound of Art of Anarchy?

Ron - Grungy metal, slightly experimental, musical inspirations of classic Metallica, with great vocal melodies from Scott.

GNR´s debut album Appetite For Destruction was truly revolutionary that changed the whole music industry back in 87, like the birth of grunge music in the early 90´s.  They brought rebelliousness, reminiscent of The Rolling Stones in the 60´s. Do you think it´s time for a new dangerous rock band to shake up the entire business?

Ron - There's never a bad time for a good old 'shake up'.  Who that would be, what that would sound like, we'll have to see what sounds gear technology brings and what social messages are being sung on our behalf...

What are your thoughts about some of the following things, thumbs up or thumbs down: 

Auto-tune in recording vocals?

Thumbs DOWN.

Ketchup on a plate of pasta bolognese?

Thumbs DOWN.

A pint of Guinness at a local pub in Dublin?

Thumbs UP.

Spending the night at the ice hotel in JukkasjÀrvi, Sweden?

Thumbs UP.

Swim naked in the ocean?

Thumbs up.

Elvis Presley´s On Stage in your headphones during flights?

Thumbs up.

Finally, would you join Kiss and put on the same make up as Ace Frehley´s Spaceman, if you got the offer and Tommy Thayer stepped down?

Ron - NOOOOOOOO.  I enjoy being a listener of Kiss, not looking to change that position and become a band member.  Happy to jam, be a guest, collaborate, but not replace.

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