Marshall of Rock Interview: Bassist/Producer/Engineer Billy Sherwood of Nektar talks new album, Yes connection and more
I had the pleasure to talk to the multi-talent Billy Sherwood today and it was some great conversation. Billy is a man of incredible talent, with a true and passionate love of music. A master musician, award winning producer, mixer and engineer, Billy has worked with an A to Z list of legendary rock artists in every facet of the music business. I caught up with Billy while on his way to rehearsal with legendary art rock band Nektar, as the other guys were in his rear-view mirror as we spoke. We touched on Billy's involvement with Nektar and their only 2012 gig tomorrow night (Sept. 6) at The Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, California. We also talked about one of his other projects, The Prog Collective, his over 20 year involvement with the band Yes, his rock production work on many rock tribute albums, including a new one for Supertramp called 'Songs of the Century: An All-Star Tribute To Supertramp'. Billy also talked about his production/engineering work with a wide range of artists, inlcuding Paul Rodgers, Dangerous Toys, and Motorhead, sharing an interesting story about recording with Lemmy at the on-set of the Los Angeles riots that you've got to hear. Add to that his take on the current state of the music industry, what created his passion for music in general and what iconic entertainment figure was his Godfather, and it makes for some interesting music conversation. Check it out below:
Special thanks to Deborah Brousseau of Spinner PR
Here's the official press release for Nektar with all the info and links on tomorrow night's show. Get tickets and check it out if you're in the area!:
Los Angeles, CA…On September 6th, legendary art rock outfit Nektar will be performing its only 2012 U.S. concert at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, CA. Nektar’s renowned big sound and epic live performance in an intimate setting makes this a can’t-miss show.
Though comprised of four Englishmen, Nektar formed in Germany in 1969, and earned a cult following for its psychedelic, spacey approach. In the mid-1970s, Nektar attracted attention and a growing fanbase in America with several concept albums and a uniquely visual live show. The band continues to perform today to a fervent and developing audience, and remains an influence for “space rock” artists around the world.
Nektar is featured in the August 14 Cleopatra DVD release, SPACE ROCK INVASION, a live show taped in Los Angeles, and is releasing SPOONFUL OF TIME (September 11 via Cleopatra), an incredible collection of classic rock covers re-imagined with the help of members of Yes, King Crimson, Symphony X, Opeth, Marillion, Asia, The Moody Blues, Dream Theater, Tangerine Dream and more.
An added treat, multi-talented musician Billy Sherwood will be debuting as bass player with Nektar. Sherwood has played in Yes (and several of its reconfigurations), Yoso, Toto, Circa, World Trade and others. As a producer, mixer and engineer, he’s spearheaded THE PROG COLLECTIVE, and contributed to recordings by Yes, Motorhead, Paul Rodgers, Dangerous Toys and all-star tribute albums to artists such as Queen, AC/DC, and Stevie Ray Vaughan. He will also be producing and playing bass on the new Nektar album of original songs, recording this fall.
The Coach House is located at 33157 Camino Capistrano in San Juan Capistrano, CA. Tickets for Nektar are $15 and can be purchased in advance by calling 949.496.8930 or at http://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/147983. Doors are at 6pm, show starts at 8pm with Sixstep. This is an all-ages event.
'The Prog Collective' was mastered by Maor Appelbaum (Yngwie Malmsteen, Halford, Lita Ford, Adrenaline Mob, Armored Saint, Sepultura)
'The Prog Collective' Track list and players:
1. The Laws Of Nature: John Wetton Lead Vocals / Tony Levin Stick & Bass / Jerry Goodman Violins / Billy Sherwood Backing Vocals, Drums, Keyboards, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
2. Over Again: Richard Page Lead Vocals / Geoff Downes Keyboard Solos / Billy Sherwood Backing Vocals, Bass, Drums, Keyboards, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
3. The Technical Divide: Alan Parsons Lead Vocals / Chris Squire Bass / David Sancious KeyboardSolos / Gary Green Lead Guitar / Billy Sherwood Backing Vocals, Drums, Keyboards, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
4. Social Circles: Annie Haslam Lead Vocals / Peter Banks Lead Guitar / Billy Sherwood Backing Vocals, Bass, Drums, Keyboards, Electric and Acoustic Guitars
5. Buried Beneath: Billy Sherwood Lead & Backing Vocals, Bass, Drums & Acoustic Guitars / Larry Fast Keyboards / Steve Hillage Electric Guitars
6. Following The Signs: John Wesley Lead Vocals, Lead Guitar / Tony Kaye Hammond Organ & Keyboards / Billy Sherwood Backing Vocals, Bass, Drums, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
7. Check Point Karma: Colin Moulding Lead Vocals / Rick Wakeman Keyboard Solos / Billy Sherwood Backing Vocals, Bass, Drums, Keyboards, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
'Songs of the Century: An All Star Tribute to Supertramp' Track List:
1. Breakfast In America - John Wetton (Asia) & Larry Fast (Peter Gabriel)
2. Take The Long Way Home - John Wesley (Porcupine Tree)
3. The Logical Song - Mickey Thomas (Starship), Steve Morse (Deep Purple) & Tony Kaye (Yes)
4. Give A Little Bit - Richard Page (Mr. Mister) & Peter Banks (Yes)
5. It's Raining Again - Colin Moulding (XTC) & Geoff Downes (Yes/Asia)
6. Crime Of The Century - Billy Sherwood (Yes), Rick Wakeman (Yes) & Tony Levin (King Crimson)
7. Dreamer - Annie Haslam (Renaissance) & David Sancious (Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band)
8. Goodbye Stranger - Billy Sherwood (Yes), Gary Green (Gentle Giant) & Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater)
9. Rudy - Roye Albrighton (Nektar) & Steve Porcaro (Toto)
10. Bloody Well Right - Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow) & Dave Kerzner
11. School - Rod Argent (The Zombies) & Robby Krieger (The Doors)
BONUS ORIGINAL TRACK
12. Let The World Revolve - Chris Squire (Yes) & Tony Kaye (Yes)
Here's the rendition of Give A Little Bit' from the album: http://soundcloud.com/brosseaupr/give-a-little-bit-songs-of-the/s-zmIbk
Here's a video documenting and celebrating Cleopatra Records 20th Anniversary, with plenty of commentary from Billy in his studio. For more info or to purchase any of their releases, check out Cleopatra Records at www.cleorecs.com
The Great Frog launched two new Motörhead-inspired rings last December in all three of their stores, including London, New York and Los Angeles now have released a 'making of' promo video.
The Motörhead Warpig ring is priced at £220.00/$360, while the Motörhead Ace of Spades ring is selling for £180.00/$295.
The Great Frog said in a statement: "We made Lemmy’s original Warpig ring back in the day, around 25 years ago and we still sell it but we never had an official licensing agreement, just a handshake from the man himself. Then recently we were approached by their product Licensing Company to make it official, they liked what we were do and they wanted the opportunity to collaborate to offer the fans high end jewelery associated with the band.
Lemmy hasn’t designed the rings but he has had full and final approval of both the rings. Each ring is hand-made, sterling silver and will have have its own personal Limited Edition Number engraved in the back, with the first five going to the band and management."
The Revolver Golden Gods Awards 2012 took place at the Nokia Theater in Hollywood this past Wednesday night (Apr.11) and for the first time ever, it was broadcast live in its entirety on Xbox LIVE, as well as on the Xbox and Revolver Facebook pages.
Fozzy frontman and WWE pro-wrestling legend Chris Jericho, returned to host the show for the third consecutive year, with a who's who of the rock and metal world in attendance as presenters and guests.
The Golden God Award, given to one special honoree a year who embodies the spirit of hard rock and metal, went to Gene Simmons of KISS. (Previous honorees include hard-rock and metal legends Alice Cooper, Rob Halford of Judas Priest and Dave Mustaine of Megadeth.)
The show featured performances and collaborations that honored both the past, present and future of heavy music. The night’s hard-rocking musical performances included sets by Marilyn Manson (in his first U.S. performance in nearly three years); Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators; Evanescence; SIXX: A.M. featuring Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue, James Michael, acclaimed rock producer and songwriter, and DJ Ashba of Guns N' Roses (in their first performance in almost four years); Trivium, and 2011 “Best New Band” Golden Gods Award winner Black Veil Brides, who performed their only U.S. show of 2012 so far.
Here's an Artisan News Report on the evenings festivities:
Revolver Golden Gods winners:
-Best Guitarists: Jinxx and Jake Pitts (Black Veil Brides)
-Best Drummer: Jeremy Spencer (Five Finger Death Punch)
-Paul Gray Best Bassist: Nikki Sixx (Motley Crue, SIXX: A.M.)
-Riff Lord: Slash
-Comeback Of The Year: Slipknot
-Best International Band: X JAPAN
-Best Live Band: Avenged Sevenfold
-Best Vocalist: Amy Lee (Evanescence)
-Most Metal Athlete: CM Punk (WWE wrestling)
-Most Dedicated Fans: Avenged Sevenfold
-Album Of The Year: Korn’s 'The Path Of Totality'
-Golden God: Gene Simmons (KISS)
-Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement Award: Rush
Here's a bunch of footage pre-show from the 'Black Carpet':
Dee Snider of Twisted Sister and Lzzy Hale of Halestorm with Steven Adler and the guys from his new band ADLER, and much more:
Here's footage of Marcus from Epiphone with 'Headbanger's Ball' and XM/Sirius radio host Jose Mangin, Lita Ford, Ashley McCabe, Frankie Banali of Quiet Riot, Evans Blue, Dylan Rose, U.S. Navy servicemen and women, Dave Lombardo and his new band Philm, Yoshiki, the guys from Halestorm, James Durbin, Tommy Victor (Prong), Steve Vai, Ministry, Chris & Dave from Megadeth, Brendon Small, Matthew Heafy, Zakk Wylde, Dave & Rob from Machine Head, Jon 5 & Ginger Fish, and Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed:
Jo Schuftan HornsupRocks was on the Black Carpet with Yngwie Malmsteen, Slash, Lemmy, Adler, Lita Ford, Jamie Jasta from Hatebreed, Dino Cazares of Fear Factory, Ministry:
Yngwie Malmsteen with U.S. Navy Color Guard on 'The Star Spangled Banner'
Here's more pre-show black carpet footage from
Here's Trivium's set on the show, with Corey Taylor and Robb Flynn of Machinehead on Metallica's 'Creeping Death'.
Zakk Wylde and Billy Duffy of The Cult give out the award for Golden Gods Best Guitarists: Jinxx and Jake Pitts of Black Veil Brides
Here's the Black Veil Brides set, with a special guest appearance from Dee Snider of Twisted Sister on 'I Wanna Rock'!
Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspiritors
Marilyn Manson's set, with guests Johnny Depp and Taylor Momsen of The Pretty Reckless
Here's some of the award presentations from the broadcast:
Zakk Wylde was backstage with a cavalcade of rockers at the Golden Gods Awards. Here's Tenacious D's Jack Black and Kyle Glass talking about the greatness of the D!
Golden Gods "Father' Gene Simmons
With the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Induction coming up on April 14th and Motorhead being one of the many worthy influential bands to not ever be considered for induction, Lemmy Kilmister told Artisan News in the report below that he is furious at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame organizers, but it's not just because the Hall has virtually ignored them.
"They lost my 'Ace Of Spades' tour jacket," Lemmy said. "They had this heavy metal presentation thing and they said, could they borrow a pair of boots and a bass and my 'Ace Of Spades' tour jacket, so I lent it to them, and they said they lost it. A likely story. Look me in the eye and tell me again. One of their girlfriends is wearing it, no doubt."
When asked what his reaction would be if Motorhead was honored by the Hall at some point, Lemmy replied, "What honor? They owe me a jacket before I'll even speak to them."
The new season of 'That Metal Show' debuts this Saturday night at 11PM ET/PT on VH1 Classic, with another great lineup of guests. The season premier features Lars Ulrich, Robb Flynn and Mike Portnoy. Co-host Eddie Trunk has posted on his site that there are some changes to the schedule. VH1 Classic will only be televising 8 of the 10 new shows shot for the first run. The episodes with David Draiman/Adrenaline Mob & Bobby Blotzer/LA Guns will now be included with season 11, debuting sometime this Summer.
Here's the lineup of guests for this season:
Mar. 31 - Lars Ulrich, Robb Flynn, Mike Portnoy
Apr. 7 - Alice Cooper, Jack Russell, Brian Tichy
Apr. 14 - T&N (George Lynch, Mick Brown, Jeff Pilson), Slash, Brian Tichy
Apr. 21 - Adrian Smith, Michael Schenker
Apr. 28 - Lemmy, Robert Mason & Jerry Dixon (Warrant), Michael Schenker
May 5 - Michael Schenker, Mike McCready (Pearl Jam), Frank Hannon
May 12 - Billy Duffy & Ian Astbury (The Cult), Doro, Frank Hannon
May 19 - Vinnie Paul, Tommy Shaw & JY (Styx), Steve Stevens