Rock Newswire - 10 Questions With James Byrd - July 2002
ROCK NEWSWIRE - 10 QUESTION WITH...JAMES BYRD (JULY 2002)
1. What are you currently up to? (e.g. touring/studio,etc.)
Well at the
moment I'm just kind of taking a break from recording and working
on other things. I usually need to take a month or two off when
I've finished an album before I start recording another. I need
to get it out of my head and start collecting my thoughts. I can't
make an album without some kind of feeling and perspective. My next
project before I start recording again will be to do some more upgrades
to my studio.
2. Who was/is your biggest influence on your
I'd have to say
Hendrix from a musical perspective.
3. Which band would you like to see reform?
I'm not a fan of the whole "reunion" thing but it depends.
Most of them seem to be in it for the money or bleeding the last
hope, but if it was because they genuinely enjoyed playing together,
my answer would be original Rainbow with Ronnie Dio. Sadly, Cozy
is no longer with us, but that was my all time favorite lineup and
4. Your latest CD is very much influenced
by the events of Sep 11th. As the first anniversary approaches of
those tragic events, do you think anything has changed for the better?
No. I think everything's
gone quite wrong actually. I worry a lot about the future of our
civil liberties as a result of 9/11. I have strong opinions in politics,
but I don't care to really go into them. I'm a musician, I put this
energy into my writing.
5. You are a very taleneted guitarist. Would
you consider in the future the possibility of setting-up your own
guitar school/workshop? What tips would you give to aspiring guitarists?
I've never liked
teaching really. If a potential guitarist has "the goods"
in terms of developing into a great player, I've always honestly
felt that the world will be their teacher. There's a world of great
musicians and guitarists out there one is free to learn from if
they're truly motivated. Ultimately, my philosophy has always been
that if one has a teacher, or one doesn't have a teacher, they are
ultimately self-taught. My advice to aspiring guitarists has always
been to record themselves and then be their own worst critic to
make improvements. it's the best mirror there is really.
6. Who would you like to work with in the
I've been pretty
happy with the people I'm working with actually. Michael Flatters
will probably be singing again on my next album. He's been great
to work with.
7. What are your views on the the current
rock music scene? What countries are the most receptive to your
music? Which countries have the most loyal fans?
It's quite hard
to say really. I'm not sure that it can be as easily answered these
days as say ten years ago. Ten years ago I'd have said "Japan"
and "Germany". But the internet has diversified everything
and it seems to be some people from everywhere.
8. What has been the highlight(s) and lowlight(s)of
your career so far?
I'd say the low-light
was the way things went with Fifth Angel after we got picked up
by Epic. That really sucked. Hi-lights are happening right now really.
I mean I can't answer this from any perspective other than how I
feel about what I'm doing, and right now I feel very fulfilled.
I have control of my art, and I'm able to make the albums I want
to make. What more is there? A million dollars? Sure, it'd be great
thank you, but it wouldn't change what I do, and if it did, I wouldn't
be interested. So happiness is no regrets and right now that's me.
9. What was the last thing you read?
I'd love to tell
you that it was some long intellectual treatise on world history
or physics, but in the interest of honesty, it was the National
Enquirer. My girlfriend brought it home from the market and you
know, as cheesy as it is, I just couldn't help myself:)
10. Message to your fans?
Hi and thanks for
hanging in there!