GW – What was the best piece of advice ever given to you as a guitar player?
“Be your own man,” which carries into every aspect of life. Listen to other people, but realize your opinion counts as well. There’s always someone to tell you how bad you are, but not always someone to tell you how good you are. So you have to depend on yourself not to quit. In the words of Body By Jake Steinfeld, “Quitters never win and winners never quit.” Remember, rock n roll was invented for people who can’t play regular music.
Learn from others, but never forget who you are. Don’t let the haters win. As pointed out by C.C. there will always be someone there to tell you how bad you are. C.C. is a perfect example. The Shrapnel Guitarist Elite dished him. Why? It’s because he made to multi platinum status and they didn’t. Rock N Roll was always meant for the outcasts, the ones that where not professional and did not practice 15 hours a day.
GW – What would you like your epitaph to read?
My epitaph would read: “Here lies the music worlds best kept secret.” When I go to bed at night I’m very hurt that people consider us a joke band. We concentrate on writing good pop songs, so I have to be careful not to overplay. I guess one of these days I’ll have to sink to the level of playing a “jack off” solo featuring hammer on pyrotechnics and flying whammy bars. Ain’t Nothing But A Good Time is a brilliant summer song with a good solo. It fits the song very well. That’s what I’m preoccupied with, rather than showing off.
It’s okay to show emotion, to feel hurt when people dish on you. That is expected behaviour. Pretending to be fine is fake behaviour. The gospel is above, CONCENTRATE on writing good songs, play for the song, not for the hype.
GW – Pick the C.C. DeVille “Dead or Alive Dream Band” excluding members of Poison?
John Bonham on drums, obviously. Paul McCartney on bass, because he’d help me write some great songs. I’d live to hear Paul Rogers on vocals and Max Middleton from the old Jeff Beck Group on keys. Jeez, what a weird combination of people. You probably couldn’t even get a jam going, but somehow mentally it works for me. To tell you the truth, I quit thinking about ultimate bands because synergy in rock is a strange thing. Superhero bands like Blind Faith and Asia never seem to work out. On the other hand you can put together several average musicians and create something special. Hell we did our first album in 12 days! It was raw, but there was a chemistry that people seemed to like, and that’s all that matters.
David Coverdale has played with a lot of musicians, but when John Sykes came into the picture, they created hard rock, blues rock / metal history with the Whitesnake 1987 album. Coverdale then wrote Slip of The Tongue with Adrian Vanderberg and got Steve Vai to play it, however he never got the same magic, and within 18 months Whitesnake was no more. That synergy is like lightning in a bottle. The Beatles where four average musicians that created something special, Sabbath was the same, Deep Purple and the list goes on. Ritchie Blackmore found that synergy again with Rainbow, however once Dio left it was all downhill from there. You never know with whom you will have chemistry with.