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Ian Anderson Talks About The Pandemic, Jethro Tull & the Music Business

Posted July 2021

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADuring the seventies, a teen listening to the radio and frequenting record stores were more than just a little aware of the English band, Jethro Tull.

Named after an 18th century agriculturist in the United Kingdom who is credited with perfecting the horse-drawn seed drill in 1700. The lead singer and flutist, Ian Anderson, was often mistakenly identified as the band’s namesake.

Bringing the flute to the rock stage and delivering its melodic notes while standing on one leg, Ian and the band became a bit of an enigma, intriguing teens and adults alike.

Until the pandemic hit, Ian Anderson has kept Jethro Tull’s catalog of music alive and well, often touring to the delight of the band’s loyal fans. Anderson has also continued creating new music and collaborating with a wide range of artists and groups.

Recently, I got wind of a new album in the works by Ian. Over a period of a couple of months, an interview with Ian was arranged. Already known as a highly intelligent person with a broad range of interests in multiple subjects, Anderson also showed himself to be a gracious interviewee.

The interview below is that chat, raw and largely unedited. Please share the link to it with your fellow Jethro Tull/Ian Anderson fans. You can also keep up with Ian Anderson and all things Tull at JethroTull.com.

The Boomerocity Interview With Ian Anderson

Kelly Hansen Is Hot Blooded About Foreigner's 2021 Tour

b419ebea48ffPosted June 2021

As you already know, I’m a HUGE Foreigner fans. Huge. Really huge. I’ve seen the band live three times. Each and every time they gave knock-it-out-of-the-park performances, leaving each crowd yelling for more.

I’m such a huge fan, I’ve had the privilege of interviewing three of the guys from the group. As you may recall, the first person from the group who I interviewed was the band’s founder, Mick Jones (here). That interview took place in January of last year to promote the band’s scheduled performances with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra and Choir. Not only was that one of the best concerts I ever attended, but it was also one of the last couple of shows I caught just before the pandemic shut the world down.

I closed out 2020 interview wise very much like how it started: An interview with one of the guys from Foreigner. This time, it was with the groups lead vocalist, Kelly Hansen (here). The occasion was to help the band raise money to help pay their roadies so that they could feed their families and pay their bills. It was a great cause that ended with great success.

In March of this year, I took advantage of chatting with the bassist for the band, Jeff Pilson (here). Again, a fun chat with lots of insight into the band and the music business in general.

OnTour 03Click Above To Buy Your Tickets!Here we are in the summer of 2021 and concerts are beginning to happen again. Among those concerts is Foreigner tour. Naturally, I wanted to chat with one of the guys about it and Kelly obliged.

As with the chats before, this interview with Kelly is fun, insightful, and interesting. Please check it out and share it with your friends.

Oh, and go to ForeignerOnline.com and buy your tickets to one of their shows near you!

The Boomerocity Interview With Kelly Hansen

 

Eric Gales Talks About His Life and Career

Posted June 2021

EricGales 2018 MathieuBittonL1020595Photo by Mathieu BittonGumbo.

That wouldn’t be the first thing or word that you think of when you are talking about an artist or their music but after you watch this interview with Eric Gales, that is the word you’ll associate with him.

Come to think of it, gumbo is the perfect word to describe Gales’ style and genre. Not necessarily because his music is Cajun zydeco or anything close to it (though, you’ll definitely “smell” that in his musical gumbo). What you will detect is the brilliantly amazing mix of genres that seem to swirl within Eric’s creative juices, out his fingers, and through his guitar.

What is equally amazing about Eric Gales in addition to his musical talent – strike that. What is more important than Eric’s musical talent is this man’s compassionate heart. Gales has withdrawn from the edge of self-destruction via substance abuse to enjoy a brand-new lease on life. While some people may choose to hide that part of their past, Eric shares it in both celebration of his recovery as well as in hopes to encourage and help others who are where he once was.

But it’s Eric Gales’ talent that is his calling card that opens the doors of opportunity to tell his story of hope and recovery. It’s also his talent that has garnered accolades from some other monster talents. People like his good friends Carlos Santana and Joe Bonamassa, to name just two.

Please watch this first Boomerocity interview with Eric Gales. I’m very proud of this interview and look forward to many more chats with him in the years to come. Below the interview is Eric’s bio pulled from his website. After you check it all out, sign up at his website, EricGales.com, to keep up with the latest on him. Also, if you don’t already own his work, buy it today.

The Boomerocity Interview with Eric Gales

 

 

Eric's Official Bio From EricGales.com

81GhmLBa9HL. SX425 Click Above To Order Your CopyEric Gales grew up in a musical family with four brothers, two of them who learned to play the guitar upside down and left-handed in the same fashion that Eric does. Eric released his first record at Age 16 for Elektra records to an amazing response from the media and music fans around the globe. Guitar World Magazine’s Reader’s Poll named Eric as “Best New Talent,” in 1991. After recording a second record for Elektra, all three Eric Gales grew up in a musical family with four brothers, two of them who learned to play the guitar upside down and left-handed in the same fashion that Eric does. Eric released his first record at Age 16 for Elektra records to an amazing response from the media and music fans around the globe. Guitar World Magazine’s Reader’s Poll named Eric as “Best New Talent,” in 1991. After recording a second record for Elektra, all three brothers teamed up for The Gales Bros. “Left Hand Brand” which was recorded for the House of Blues label in 1996.

Through the years, it would not be unusual to look out in the audience and see artists like Carlos Santana, Eric Johnson, B. B. King, and Eric Clapton, looking on with interest as Eric took his guitar and worked crowd after crowd into a frenzy.


The new millennium presented fresh opportunities for Eric. He was signed to a deal with Nightbird Records which was affiliated with the Hendrix family and distributed through MCA/Universal. Under this deal, Eric recorded the critically acclaimed record “That’s What I Am” in 2001 and hit the road, mesmerizing fans around the world with his uncanny connection to his guitar.


In 2006 Eric recorded the CD “Crystal Vision” for Shrapnel Records and set the stage for his Blues Bureau Division follow-up, “The Psychedelic Underground”. In 2010 Eric released the critically successful album "Relentless" following it up with the equally powerful album “Transformation”. In 2014 a spiritually renewed Eric Gales released “Good For Sum thin’”. Released by Cleopatra Records and produced by Raphael Saadiq. His follow up project was the Double Live CD/DVD “A Night on the Sunset Strip” in 2016. From there Eric signed with Mascot Label Group in 2017. He has released two albums on this label, 2018’s “Middle of the Road” and 2019’s “The Bookends” both deeply personal and introspective works.


As both an African American left-handed guitarist of extraordinary ability and an expressive vocalist, it is natural for people to compare Eric to Hendrix. But Eric has developed a unique hybrid blues/rock sound that also draws upon influences as diverse as Albert King and Frank Gambale. A unique amalgam of styles, Eric Gales stands head and shoulders among other guitarists in his genre.

Bob Berryhill Wipes Us Out After Almost 60 Years

Posted June 2021

bob berryhill 001Hahahahahahaha! Wipeout!

If any one of you were a contestant on Name That Tune and heard the first couple of seconds of the iconic tune, safaris001Wipe Out, by the Surfaris, you would most likely know immediately what the song is.

Think about that: A song that was recorded by four California teenagers recorded a song in 1963 – almost SIXTY YEARS AGO – is so indelibly burned into the minds of Americans over the age of, say, 50 or so, that is commands such attention. It’s a song that immediately puts a smile on your face. At least, it does mine.

I also must resist playing the drum beat on my now-ample tummy like I did as a kid.

Don’t judge me.

Those four teenagers made up the Surfaris and originally consisted of Jim Fuller (15) on lead guitar, Ron Wilson (17) on those memorable drums, Pat Connolly (15) on bass, and Bob Berryhill (15) on rhythm guitar. Bob is the only original Surfari bandmember performing the band’s hits today.

While listening to music one recent lazy weekend day, I heard “Wipeout”. After the smile hit my face (and I resistedsafaris001 playing the famous drum riff on my stomach), I tracked down Bob Berryhill to request an interview. He graciously agreed and within a couple of days, we had the chat that you can watch on this page.

After watching it, I know that you’ll agree that Bob is a warm, positive, engaging man with many fascinating stories to share. Please take the time to watch and learn from this fascinating bit of americana. It was an honor and thrill for me to chat with Bob and I know you’ll enjoy what all he has to say.

After watching the interview, please visit TheSurfaris.com and sign up on their mailing list, purchase some of their music, and see where and when they’ll be playing a gig near you.

 

The Boomerocity Interview With Bob Berryhill of the Surfaris

Steve Lukather and Joe Williams Get By With A Little Help From Their Friends

Posted June 2021

Photo taken in Los Angeles on 09/04/20.Long-time readers/listeners/viewers of Boomerocity already know that I’ve developed a good relationship with the good guys in Toto beginning with my first interview with Steve Lukather back in 2013 (here). That interview was followed by five more interviews (six in total). That sixth interview coincided with my first interview with lead singer, Joseph Williams (here).

The band has historically gone through personnel changes and experienced some tough challenges over the years. The current configuration of the band shows once again their innate survival skills as well as the continued respect they command from the best musicians in the business. The current band make-up consists of:

  • John Pierce (Bass, formerly with Huey Lewis and the News)
  • Robert “Sput” Searight (Drums, formerly with Ghost-Note and Snarky Puppy)
  • Steve Maggiora (Keys & Vocals, formerly with Robert Jon & The Wreck)'
  • Dominique “Xavier” Taplin (Keys, formerly with Prince, Ghost-Note)
  • Warren Ham (Keys and multi-instrumentalist / vocalist, also currently with Ringo Starr)

I’ve posted a couple of videos from the new CD/DVD to give you a taste of what’s to come. As with anything that Toto does, it exudes musical excellence and a freshness that makes the band feel the excitement of their early days.

The interview video is below. Check it out. Tell your friends about it and then, order the album/DVD by clicking on the album cover on this page. Below the interview is the official press release about “With A Little Help From My Friends”.

Also, be sure to sign up for the band’s mailing list by visiting their website, TotoOfficial.com.

 

The Boomerocity Interview With Steve Lukather & Joseph Williams

 

 

TOTO AND THE PLAYERS CLUB / MASCOT LABEL GROUP ANNOUNCE GLOBAL RELEASE OF
WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM MY FRIENDS ON JUNE 25

Toto With A Little Help By My Friends CoverClick Above To Order Your CopyLos Angeles, CA --- TOTO and The Players Club / Mascot Label Group have announced the global release of With A Little Help From My Friends on June 25. The performance captures one special night on November 21, 2020 when Steve Lukather, Joseph Williams and David Paich appeared with the new line-up of Toto for a global event originating from Los Angeles, CA. Joining Lukather, Williams and Paich for this next chapter in their indelible history are new band members bassist John Pierce (Huey Lewis and The News), drummer Robert “Sput” Searight (Ghost-Note / Snarky Puppy), and keyboardist / background vocalist Steve Maggiora (Robert Jon & The Wreck). Keyboardist Dominique “Xavier” Taplin (Prince, Ghost-Note) and multi-instrumentalist / vocalist Warren Ham (Ringo Starr) segued over continuing their tenure in the ensemble. This marks the fifteenth incarnation of the Toto line-up in consideration of band members or sidemen who joined or exited. 

Alongside LP pressings of the audio only, both a CD/DVD and CD/Blu-ray package are available. The track listing features “Till The End,” “Hold The Line,” “Pamela,” “Kingdom of Desire,” “White Sister,” “You Are The Flower,” “I Won’t Hold You Back,” “Stop Loving You,” “Home Of The Brave,” “Rosanna,” and “With A Little Help From My Friends.” In the DVD and Blu-ray releases, a documentary is featured alongside the performance, featuring thoughts from all members of the band that appeared that evening.

Steve Lukather a.k.a. Luke shares, “When the music is performed by great musicians it honors Toto. The documentary featured on the DVD offers great insights in to our thoughts looking forward. David, who stands with us, alongside Joe and myself, desire to keep this music alive. And Paich could pop in any time for a show as a special surprise. When it came to plan this specific set list, we picked an eclectic group of songs for this one night only show. Looking forward, we’ll be selecting a broader mix from the Toto catalog that includes deep cuts, the hits, and tunes from Joe and my recently released solo albums. Both of us could not be more thrilled with the global response to these records. They charted all over the world, and integrating some of the music in to the new Toto set brings a fresh spice to the Toto: The Dogz of Oz World Tour when we head back out to begin staging shows. Simply, both of us aim to bring the past Toto to the present and beyond, and this first look at the new line-up sets the stage for a chapter in our history we can’t wait to write.”

Joe Williams offers, “It’s always a complete joy to perform a Toto show, but this one was special. Joining me, Luke and David last November were three new top level, virtuoso musicians as well as a few returning geniuses. The show itself was born out of the need to play after being on Covid lockdown, but also served as the reason to build this new band. Right out of the gate this group gelled and dug deep into the new and old Toto material. Among some of the deeper cuts is one of my all-time favorite songs, ‘You Are The Flower’ by the original - Bobby Kimball. Being a massive fan (and a good friend), I dedicate the performance to him. Also back are a few of my favorite things, ‘Till The End’ and ‘Pamela.’ Played to perfection by the new cats. I have the best job in the band because when I’m not singing, I get to watch the most incredible players work! The Toto model holds strong and true. A band of the very best musicians and singers writing and performing all manner of cool songs. That’s how it began, and that’s how it continues.” He continues, “This documentary explores that concept by talking with David, Luke, Warren, Dominic X, John Pierce, Robert ‘Sput’ Searight, and Steve Maggiora about their experiences as players, and also about being a part of the Toto legacy. And, of course discussion about the show as well. I think I’m in there too, saying how much I love these guys! Soon we’ll to get back out to you, on stage, in the flesh expanding our set with some even deeper ‘legacy’ cuts as well as some new stuff from Luke’s and my new records. We can’t wait! In the meantime, enjoy a little Toto history and current events. Xo Joe.”

Luke and Joseph Williams are life-long friends since they were kids, and bandmates sharing a deep colorful history that has thrived professionally on a global basis over the past decades. In front of staging this one night only appearance during the global pandemic, Luke offered, “We could not be more at peace with this move. There is a refreshing, optimistic enthusiasm to step in to the future. At this moment, Joe and I are the only long-tenured members of the band that want to be on the road continuing to bring music to our multi-generational fan base. I’ve spent almost four and a half decades of my life as the only original member who never missed a show or an album nurturing this legacy while enabling the music to continually exist in the live concert setting. That is something I’ll never stop doing, and when we inevitably return to the road it presents a rare opportunity to reimagine our personal futures while simultaneously preserving the deep connection that exists with the audience while likewise yielding continual discovery.” Williams shared, “Luke and I have been through a lot with one another. He’s like a brother to me. Our creative partnership has always enriched our lives. As we look towards what’s to come in unison, there is nothing but anticipation to bring everything in our minds to life. I can’t think of anyone else on Earth I’d rather launch the next chapter with than with this lifelong, loyal and gifted friend and band mate. We’re the last men standing…The Dogz of Oz!” Luke adds, “Joe and I have been friends since I was 17, and Joe was 14. During the course of this pandemic, we’ve been reevaluating our career and how to move forward. People are either not with us anymore or have retired. We still feel like kids who want to be back on the road as soon as possible. It’s where we live. Joe’s growth as a producer, songwriter, engineer, singer and performer is inspiring. The timing of this move is perfect as Joe is at the top of his game, and he amazes me every day. We are enjoying this collaboration, and could not be more enthusiastic about the future.”

With A Little Help From My Friends was Produced by Joseph Williams, who also edited the accompanying long-form video. The band’s long-time front of house engineer Ken Freeman mixed and captured the sound that evening.