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Monday, October 14, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Mötley Crüe - 'Wild Side'

Gang fights
Fatal strikes
We lie on the wild side
No escape
Murder rape
Doing time on the wild side
A baby cries
A cop dies
A day's pay on the wild side
Wild side, wild side
Tragic life on the wild side
Wild side, wild side
Kickin ass on the Wild Side

Motley Crue's "Wild Side" always takes me back to high school- on one day in particular. When I was in 11th grade I'd spend my morning cramming in all of my academic classes so that my afternoon could be spent at a vocational school. Cosmetology seemed like a dream job for a 16-year old girl that spent plenty of time teasing her own hair and being in beauty school meant that I had a little card that gave me access to every professional beauty supply store around. My supply of Apple Pectin shampoo was endless and eventually, I traded in a big can of Aqua Net for an even larger can of Vavoom which cemented your hair in place AND made it smell like coconut.

Anyway, the afternoon bus was filled with headbangers that had zero desire to go to college when they could be learning how to take a car engine apart, cook like a pro or even become a medical assistant, all while in high school. This bus ride was the high point of most days because we truly became a family and had each other's backs, no matter what. Most days the same 3 people sat in the very last row trying to hide the fact that they were smoking a blunt. It was normal. We kept the windows open in the dead of winter and usually had an ancient bus driver that was more concerned with how loud the boom box was than anything else. 

On this particular day, there was a fill-in, much younger bus driver, one who didn't care if the music was blaring. Motley Crue had just released Girls, Girls, Girls and the song "Wild Side" was our new anthem. Since the driver told the guys to play it as loud as they wanted to, our bus was rocking, with that one song playing on repeat. The guys decided to be extra brave and they lit up a bowl in the back seat. We figured that might be pushing it and halfway to the school the driver pulled over and came storming up the aisle. We thought we were dead. Since no one would dime anyone out I was expecting to go down for pot that I hadn't even touched. The guys hit the switch on the radio as the rest of us braced for hell. Instead, the young driver had come to the back of the bus to smoke with the guys!

After a minute or two, he galloped up the aisle, sat back down in the driver's seat and delivered us all to school, with Motley Crue still blaring, of course. Talk about taking a drive on the wild side!

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Exclusive Interview: Toto's Steve Lukather on the Band Taking an Extended Break, a Second Book in the Works & Playing with Ringo Starr

Steve Lukather Official Promo Shot

Steve ("Luke") Lukather may be best known as a vocalist, guitarist, songwriter, producer and founding member of the iconic band Toto, but that's just scratching the surface of what he is actually capable of. He started his career as a session musician and you'll find his work, spanning various genres, on more than 1,500 albums. Lukather has spent decades working alongside so many of the industry's best, but Toto is his main job and cultivating the musical fruits of the bands' labor has been the centerpiece to his prolific career.

It was recently confirmed that Toto will be taking an indefinite break after their October 20th show at The Met in Philadelphia and I was lucky enough to catch up with Lukather for a chat about the band winding down, and what's next for him. Check it out below!

 Steve ("Luke") Lukather on life on the road:

"We work about five days a week and those days off cost money. Luckily I don't really need more than a day or two off once in a while. I'm out here working, it's not a vacation and I spend a lot of time in hotel rooms. They've turned into a bit of a sanctuary, to be honest with you. Especially since I'm running the business end of things too. I mean, there's a great team but I have to wake up and make all the decisions and take care of all the BS. That means that I've got to be up early and I've got to have some space to do things. I've got my guitar with me so I practice that and take care of the band business. I've got things to do and if not I can always watch films or peruse the internet or something.

I've been around the world so many times that going out to sightsee is almost laughable at this point! I've already done that so many times in the 44 years that I've been doing this, so I just kind of stay to myself. There's nothing normal about my life, but I've normalized it. I used to be a crazy party guy and so the days were spent recovering. Now I get up when I used to go to bed (laughing). I have to be sober, together and functioning to run a business on top of being an older guy on the road. I have to take care of myself now. I had my wild days and it was fun, I guess. They tell me that I had a great time (laughing), so I've got nothing left to prove in that arena. I'm really fine being an older guy out here and you have to learn to like hanging out with yourself, otherwise, you'll go mad (laughing).

It can be terribly depressing at times too. I've got little kids as well as grown kids, then my dog passed away and I was on the road when that happened. There are things that you just can't prepare for, but you've got to deal with them. I chose this job and the great thing is that the good parts are great and the things that suck, well they really suck and that makes it just like anyone else's life. My doctor has known me through every aspect of my career and I told him he should really come along and do everything that I do, eat what I eat, sleep when I sleep. Travel around with me for a month and then tell me your real thoughts on this job because in some ways it's tougher than people think."

Luke on being away from his family:

"It's very hard having little kids and being on the road, but it has always been that way. My father was in the television and movie business, so he would go on the road for six months at a time, long before cell phones, and I didn't love him any less. That gives me a little peace. My kids only know me this way, so if they only know me this way then there is nothing else to compare it to. When I come home I'm a dad and I do all the dad stuff, which I love doing."

Luke on working with his oldest son Trev:

"Ever since he could play guitar at all he has been working on my records with me. He has played songs for my solo record and he has played live with the band. He wrote Halestorm's first hit, so he has got a gold record, and he plays in this band What So Not that headlined Lollapalooza. Then he has his new band ZFG, with Mike Pocaro's kid on bass, There's a bidding war for that band, wait until you hear them! They opened for us all summer in Europe. He's my best friend so we always try and do as much as we can together. Right now it's his turn to be the artist. That's what he is focused on and I'm trying to help him with that."

Luke on Toto's music being categorized as 'yacht rock':

"The term yacht rock is kind of funny. All they did was put a label on a thing that we called, going to do session work, and we did that every day for fifteen years (laughing). They'd put a piece of paper with a bunch of cord symbols in front of us, count off the song and then you better play something because that's what you got hired to do. All of those records have suddenly become a genre. We didn't write all that music but we did contribute to the arrangement and the performance of it. We gave a lot of ourselves. That was just the era and style of music back then, sure there's some cheesy shit in there but there's also cheesy stuff today.

They always want to put terminology on things. They can't just say, hey this is a cool band, instead it has to be called soft rock. I mean at what point did the music go from soft rock to hard rock, what is the criteria for that shift? Is the guitar louder or does it have a bigger drum sound?  Why do we need terminology? If you don't like something that's cool but in the end, an E-chord is still an E-chord. Everyone likes things in a nice tight little box and there it is, now we know what to call it (laughing). The fact of the matter is that regardless of what anyone calls it, none of us expected any of this music to last almost 45 years like it has."

Toto Official Promo Shot

Luke on Toto becoming an interesting part of pop culture:

"We were Family Guy characters the other night and how cool is that? It was absolutely hysterical, we were howling with laughter. "Africa" kind of went crazy for us these last few years, it has kind of leveled off now which is fine with me, but it was really great for our careers. Everyone always says 'Africa by Toto' which makes us part of the whole schtick and gives us free publicity (laughing). I love all of it and it's an honor for us to be a part of pop culture. You have to be able to laugh at yourself and realize that parodies and things are really an honor."

Luke on working with Ringo Starr's All-Star Band:

"The Beatles spent eight years putting together music that would not only last for 55 years, but it's still going strong! There's never going to be another Beatles and I'm just so grateful that I got a little teeny piece of that experience by getting to work with three out of four of those guys. I've been working with Ringo's band for going on eight years now and I'm very honored to do that. When I first signed up in 2012 I thought I'd be doing one summer and here I am still. We've become really great friends and I just love this guy, regardless of the fact that he's Ringo (Starr). I mean, he is 100 times cooler than you think he is, but to have him as my friend is great. I'd love him even if his name was Joe Smith because he's just the kind of guy that makes you think, 'I want that guy to be my friend' (laughing), and I cherish that. I'd do anything for him and Ringo's band is like my vacation gig (laughing)."

Luke on Toto winding down, at least for the foreseeable future:

"Toto has been my job and I've spent my whole life cultivating this. Toto has had its' best year in terms of live performance and live revenue. Musically, including ticket sales and reviews and all of that, things are fantastic. Sadly, some stuff going on behind the scenes has kind of crippled us so we have to step off and see what happens next at the end of this tour. We are at the end of our 40th-year cycle, it's now actually 43 years of togetherness (laughing) and so we do need to go away for a while there's no question about that. For how long is the thing because there is definitely some darkness behind the scenes.

There is litigation from hateful people that want to tear us apart for no particular reason other than finding personal joy in doing so. None of it makes sense to anyone who is actually in the band. It's kind of insidious and messed up but it is how it is. Sometimes you're forced to do things at the time that don't really make sense but then, in the end, they really do work out for the best. It's just time for me to get out there and do some other stuff.  Out of the dust and ethers, something happens. I don't know what that is right now but I do know that change is good. Music is in my DNA and I've spent my whole life making it so I know that I can play whatever I decide that I want to play."

Luke on what's next for him:

"I am doing book number two! The first one was successful, which is surprising to me (laughing), but okay. I can't put my life into just those first 300 pages, I have a billion stories so now I can get more into the session thing and more into the goings-on behind the scenes. It's going to take me a few years to do it, just like the last one did and I've got a documentary in play too. There will never be a Toto story per se because there's a person that'll stop that. Actually, there are a couple of people now that'll stop it from happening.

So I'll write a second book, write a solo record, I'm going back out with Ringo, I've got other tours to do and I want to stay home and just be a dad. I want to watch my little kids grow up a bit, I'm hardly out of work (laughing), I haven't been out of work since I've started so I'm very fortunate, but there is a price to it all. So, for now, I'll just get to stay home a little bit more and that will be really, really cool for me. This is a great time to step back because it's the end of a cycle. We never thought we would get to forty years, are you kidding me? We're going out with a bang though! Every night there's nothing but good vibes on stage, the reviews are great, revenue is good and the audiences are loving it. We have just decided to go out there and kick ass."

Steve Lukather & Joseph Williams
Color By Kevin Albinder

Luke on the future of Toto:

"There have been eight versions of Toto, eight from the beginning lineup right up to today. People come, people go and we reconfigure. I'm the only guy that has been there for every one of them. Will there be a 9.0 (version)? I don't know, not the way it is now. It breaks my heart and I can't predict the future, but I'll tell you that on October 20th, in Philadelphia, it's the last time that you'll see this incarnation of the band."

Check out Toto's official site for tickets to their final shows & check out Luke's official site to stay up to date on everything that he's doing!

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Loverboy - 'When It's Over'

"When you look into his eyes

Comes to you as no surprise

It's always the same

Every time he's out with you
He tries to tell you what to do
You don't need it that way

Sometimes you think you're playing the fool

He's running around breaking all the rules
Somehow that don't seem fair
There's got to be a better way
You know what I'm trying to say"

Believe it or not, there was a moment in time when women couldn't get enough of Loverboy's lead singer, Mike Reno. I know this for sure because my mom appeared to be one of them. Was it the red leather pants? Was it the bandanna tied around his head? Was it his aggressive lyrics that did it? Who knows maybe it was a combo of all three. All that I'm positive of is that something that he did worked because the band was hot and nearly forty years after they first got together, here we are still mentioning them.

1981's Get Lucky album really put Loverboy on the musical map here in the states and the string of singles that it produced was the proof. "When It's Over" was a breakup anthem with a twist. It was told from the perspective of a man watching another woman's relationship crumble. In other words, Reno was the best friend, would be lover or older brother trying to save you from yourself and your own bad judgment. Who doesn't need one of those? Check it out for yourself below!

Currently Booming: 80's Style Halloween Costume Ideas: Pac-Man

Items Needed
Black t-shirt and tights/pants, white paint, markers, rope, heavy paper, scissors

1. Paint white circles down your pant or tight legs.
2. Cut out your desired Pac-Man character and decorate if necessary.
3. Attach a rope.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Chaka Khan - 'Through the Fire'

"Through the fire, to the limit, to the wall For a chance to be with you I'd gladly risk it all Through the fire Through whatever, come what may For a chance at loving you I'd take it all the way Right down to the wire Even through the fire"

I remember the music of 1984 very well. I was in 7th grade and had the radio, really any radio either by my side or in my ear. Chaka Khan came out with "I Feel For You" and the song found some heavy duty radio play in between the likes of Madonna, Michael Jackson, Prince and more. In gym class (which I hated) we got to listen to a few songs that were on one of the teacher's mixtapes. Chaka made the cut so gym class was just one more place where I heard her voice.

I Feel For You is her sixth solo album and as it turns out, one of the most popular ballads, "Through The Fire" was actually written for Chaka by David Foster. He was so positive that she would sing the song that he originally called it "Chaka". I think it took me a long time to really grow into the soul legend's music. As an adult, I now really get the appeal and talent of this woman.

Check out "Through The Fire" below!

Friday, October 11, 2019

Daily Boom 90's Nostalgia: Linear - 'Sending All My Love'

"I have to say goodbye to you
This pain I have inside
just makes me want to die for you
All these lonely nights
they just don't feel so right for you
Sending all my
Sending all my love
Sending all my love to you"

I completely forgot about Linear and their song, "Sending All My Love" until they randomly popped up on YouTube earlier this year. Then the song came rushing back. It was towards the end of the Latin freestyle craze that this trio hit with the synth heavy dance hit. I can remember Dance Party USA getting tons of mileage out of the guys. 

I also remember them performing it live at a local venue and loving them. "Sending All My Love" did make it to number 5 on Billboard's Hot 100 in 1990 and it really was a huge song in its' prime. Here's the original video and I kinda think it's a nice freestyle Friday throwback to kick off your weekend. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Daily Boom 90's Nostalgia: Saigon Kick- 'Love is on the Way'

"Time of season
Wipes the tears
No rhyme or reason
No more fears
All the dreamin'
Is far behind
You are here now
Everything's alright"

Is Saigon Kick one of the most underrated bands around? Their fans like to think so. After forming back in 1988 the band finally made a huge breakthrough with their 1992 hit ballad, "Love is on the Way". It made it to number 12 on Billboard's Hot 100 but more importantly, the song got tons of airplay across the country.

Technically, "Love is on the Way" is considered a one-hit-wonder but the band is still around, thirty years after the fact. I realized that I had never listened to a full album of Saigon Kick's and so I gave The Lizard a shot. You should too,  it's definitely worth a spin. In the meantime, here's "Love is on the Way".

Are you like me? Do you recognize this song a few seconds in, whenever you do hear it?

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Daily Boom 90's Nostalgia: Karyn White - 'Romantic'

"Take me in your arms, caress me gently
Oh, I can't get enough, ooh
Thrill me, say the word, I will surrender
To your poetic charm, oh

'Cause when the night falls
I hear seductive voices sing
Romantic songs of love
Let's get intimate

Turn the lights down
It's time to get romantic
(Do everything romantic now)
Light a candle
It's time to get romantic"

My introduction to Karyn White's "Romantic" came in the summer of 1991 in a department store. Back then the juniors department always had random tv's placed near the ceiling and MTV would play nonstop. I guess the music itself was supposed to improve your shopping mood and let's face it, that still does seem to somehow work. When is the last time that you were in a clothing store that didn't have some sort of dance music on?


It must put shoppers in a good mood and boost sales, otherwise it would be Marilyn Manson playing, no?

So anyway, back to Karyn. "Romantic" was an instant New Jack Swing dance floor classic. And the video? Totally slick. I always joke that you can tell a 90's video by the blue and brown tones in the lighting. While the song itself is politely about sex, the video was pretty classy for the early 90's. Chair dance and all. I stopped shopping on that day back in 1991 to watch, just like I stopped what I was doing the other day to watch it again. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Daily Boom 70's Throwback: Anita Ward - 'Ring My Bell'

The night is young and full of possibilities
Well come on and let yourself be free

My love for you, so long I've been savin'
Tonight was made for me and you

Technically, "Ring My Bell" actually was released in the summer of 1979 but I'm going to sneak it in here anyway. It sold millions of copies and made sure that Anita Ward would be forever remembered as one of disco's biggest stars. It may be one of the most suggestive songs to come out of the decade but believe it or not it was actually written for a young teen to sing. Yep, "Ring My Bell" was originally supposed to be about a teen girl getting a phone call! Once it was given to Ward the lyrics were tweaked to really sex it up.

"Ring My Bell" stands out because I was totally a disco kid and it was a 45 that I HAD to have. Like, I was 8-years-old and I walked into the record store with my dad and plunked down my own money to buy it. I can still see dad telling my mom about my selection and her freaking out. Dad just laughed and reminded her that I had absolutely no idea what the song was really about and that I bought it for the music. True story but to this day every time that I hear "Ring My Bell" I still can see dad standing there justifying me buying it.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Earth, Wind & Fire - 'Let's Groove'

"Gonna tell what you can do with my love

Let you know girl
You're looking good, you're out of sight
Just move yourself
And glide like a seven-forty-seven
And lose you're self in the sky
Among the clouds in the heavens 'cause

Let this groove light up your fuse
It's alright (alright) alright, oh oh
Let this groove set in your shoes
So stand up (alright) alright"

This has been an exhausting week and music is one of the ways that I take my own version of a mental health break. I've learned over the years that, while my taste is eclectic, nothing puts me in a better mood than dance music. Today I turned to Earth, Wind & Fire for a bit of inspiration and thankfully, it worked. When I was ten "Let's Groove" came out and I remember buying the 45 and playing it into the ground- and that was just in the first few weeks that I had it. Disco was technically dead so I clung to anything even remotely resembling it. I danced my ass off in the privacy of my own room and even back then I understood that this was one of those groups that did extra.

They were the whole package, with a whole section of horns and choreographed moves, Earth, Wind & Fire was a force to be reckoned with. In many ways, they still are If you're lucky enough to catch one of their gigs now you'll quickly understand why they are still thriving. Check out "Let's Groove" below. I'm betting it makes you wanna get down too.

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Foreigner's Double Vision: Then & Now Reunites Original Band Members Mick Jones, Rick Wills, Ian McDonald & Al Greenwood with Current Lineup for an Unforgettable Night in Atlantic City

(Foreigner Original Band & Current Lineup
All Photos: Cate Meighan)

When Mick Jones, Ian McDonald, and Lou Gramm first joined forces in New York City back in 1976 to form Foreigner, they never in a million years would have predicted that four decades later their music would still live on in regular radio rotation across the world. Health issues, growing pains, lineup changes, and internal strife have all played a part in the bands' evolution and temporary disintegration, but the music has always been much more powerful than all of those things combined. The music has weathered every storm that the band has faced, always waiting for them on the other side, ready to be played once the temporary diversions have been settled.

Foreigner's catalog is an overabundance of riches for any musician fortunate enough to be able to do it any sort of justice and no one understands this better than the band's original lineup, Mick Jones (lead guitar), Lou Gramm (vocals), Ian McDonald (guitar/sax), Dennis Elliott (drums), Rick Wills (bass) and Al Greenwood (keyboard). After the success of a handful of reunion shows last year, Jones, McDonald, Wills and Greenwood have once again decided to share the stage and recapture a bit of that rock and roll spotlight. 

Gramm had originally been scheduled to join them but had to bow out a few days beforehand on doctors' orders, after a temporary illness flared up.

 The Hard Rock in Atlantic City was one of only four shows slated for this year's Double Vision: Then & Now reunion and what transpired on stage really was a perfect balance of the original Foreigner members, with the current lineup. So far, this is the only rock band that has managed to successfully meld two different lineups and the end result is an incredible gift for everyone in attendance.

The first part of the show featured Foreigner's current powerhouse lineup led by Kelly Hansen on vocals. He absolutely shows off his range on hits like "Cold As Ice" and "Head Games" before sucking the crowd in with an emotional intensity on "Waiting for a Girl Like You" and "That Was Yesterday". Hansen often seems to get lost in the shuffle of frontmen, but he is truly one of the best around and there's no doubt that he leaves everything that he has got on the stage night after night.

Kelly Hansen

While Hansen is leading the way, the rest of the current lineup is an incredibly skilled group of musicians, all with decades of success before even venturing to set foot on a Foreigner stage. It's unimaginable to think that anyone could ever step in for Mick Jones, yet Bruce Watson did such a phenomenal job during a medical emergency years ago that he has never left. Watson has earned his spot by being versatile enough to either play lead guitar with his own unique flair or to accentuate the magic that Jones weaves, as his right-hand man.

Bruce Watson

Bruce Watson & Kelly Hansen

Jeff Pilson (interview herespent years 'breaking the chains' with Dokken before joining Foreigner and he's still an animal onstage. One minute he is literally headbanging right in front of you and the next he is already at the opposite end of the stage rocking out. His bass playing is a standout, even on the ballads and his background vocals really add to the texture of the band. Pilson also functions as a music director and has a lot to do with all of those seamless transitions that you barely notice happening on stage.

Jeff Pilson

I think every great band needs a solid multi-instrumentalist and Tom Gimbel (interview here)  is probably THE most versatile musician currently touring. In any given song he might be playing rhythm guitar ("Head Games", "Juke Box Hero"), keyboard ("Cold As Ice", "Waiting For A Girl Like You"), or if you're really lucky you'll get to hear him on flute ("Starrider"). Hands down, Gimbel's shining moment is when he cracks out his saxophone to make "Urgent" the soaring, iconic piece that it is. 

Tom Gimbel

Michael Bluestein, on keyboards, is not only fantastic at his craft, but he is also quite an entertainer. Even from the back of the stage he always catches my eye with the way he pumps up and engages the audience. Chris Frazier has been the man behind the kit for the last eight years and he is the driving force that pushes this great band through songs like "Juke Box Hero". If drums really are the solid foundation for any band then Foreigner certainly is sitting in very solid, capable hands.

If you watch the interplay on stage with the current lineup you realize that these guys aren't lying when they say that they really are friends. There are so many little moments exchanged between them that are probably just as sentimental as the actual playing is.

 In Atlantic City, Mick Jones took to the stage right before "Urgent" and this audience (clearly raised on Foreigner) went crazy when he started playing that infamous guitar solo that begins the song.

Mick Jones

Tom Gimbel & Mick Jones

After an extra-inspired version of "Juke Box Hero" Mick introduced the rest of the original members and one by one Greenwood, Wills, and McDonald all took their place on stage. Hansen continued on lead vocals and Watson pitched in on guitar as the guys who actually played on those original recordings launched into several songs from their very first album. Less than a minute into "Feels Like the First Time" it was obvious that this stage (mostly) full of 70ish-year-old men could still rock their asses off. 

Mick Jones & Rick Wills

Rick Wills
Rick Wills on bass,  seemed to be having the time of his life, with a smile that just couldn't be contained and it was cool to see (and hear) Al Greenwood make those melodic keys dance.  Their set, which included "Blue Morning Blue Day" and "Long Long Way From Home", really made me want them to just keep playing.

Al Greenwood

Multi-instrumentalists always intrigue me because they just have so much going on.  Ian McDonald seems to go through a mental checklist while meticulously getting himself together before playing and it's cool to see him have a bit of a sax solo, complete with a bit of theatrical flair, during "Long, Long Way from Home".

The split setlist for the Double Vision: Then & Now shows is exactly as you would hope that it would be. It allows each incarnation of the band to play to their strongest current abilities and then everyone wins.  The sold-out audience in Atlantic City was certainly appreciative and perhaps even more importantly, every single guy playing seemed to be having one of the best nights of their musical career.  There was no better way to wrap up such a rare evening than by bringing all twelve musicians back onstage to perform "I Want To Know What Love Is" and "Hot Blooded"

Jones, Hansen, Wills, Gimbel & McDonald

Jones, Hansen, Wills, Gimbel & McDonald

Kelly Hansen

Bruce Watson

Jeff Pilson

Tom Gimbel & Kelly Hansen

Jones, Pilson, Greenwood, Bluestein, Wills, McDonald, Frazer, Gimbel

Foreigner Original Band & Current Lineup


Current Lineup

Double Vision
Head Games
Cold as Ice
Waiting for a Girl Like You
That Was Yesterday
Urgent (Introduction of Mick Jones)
Juke Box Hero

Original Band

Feels Like the First Time
Blue Morning, Blue Day
Long, Long Way from Home
Dirty White Boy

Both Bands Together

I want to Know What Love Is
Hot Blooded

Exclusive Interview: Foreigner's Jeff Pilson on Reuniting with the Original Band While Working on New Music, Plus Updates on The End Machine & That Project with Robin McAuley & Reb Beach

(All Photos: Cate Meighan)

Foreigner's bass guitarist, Jeff Pilson,  is undoubtedly one of the busiest guys in the business. Aside from traveling 200+ days a year with that classic rock powerhouse machine, he also juggles a few side projects at a time. If you think that supergroups are a thing of the past then you need to pay closer attention because Jeff has a knack for not only combining established rockers but also bringing them to a higher musical level. 

He is currently working on a few "side projects", The End Machine with ex-Dokken bandmates George Lynch and Mick Brown  (Warrant's Robert Mason on vocals), and another endeavor with Robin McAuley (Schenkerfest; The Rock Vault)  and Reb Beach (Winger; Whitesnake)

His plate is always overflowing and this year has been exhausting, yet Jeff was bursting with excitement when he spoke about the great things to come in an interview that occurred about an hour before Foreigner's Double Vision Then & Now reunion show in Atlantic City. Check it out!

Jeff Pilson on Foreigner's journey this year:

"It has been so good! I've been going with the flow and we've done about 110ish dates this year so it has been really busy. We have had to cut back on some dates though because we're not just driving 50 miles to get to a show, we're all over the place (laughing).

When Mick Jones was choosing people to play in the current lineup I know that work ethic was important to him, but also important was how well you fit into the vision. There's a certain chemistry about how we all fit together and Mick is really good at finding and figuring out what works. We all have some sayso in things but Mick is the final arbiter and he understands the importance of chemistry, both in playing and personality. We spend a lot of time in this big tube together and so you have to be able to hang (laughing) and I think he has always been cognizant of that. You have to be at a certain level to be able to play in the band, but after that, it's about how well you fit in and adapt to the overall sound. It really is very much a group effort and we've got it now so that everyone really listens and pays attention. At the end of the night, it's pretty amazing to have everyone on stage and realize that we really are all listening to each other. We've all grown to be great friends and I love these guys- plus we're having so much fun."

Jeff on reuniting with the original members of Foreigner:

"This kind of night is fun, it's just so great. We're all sad that Lou (Gramm) is not here, of course, and we really do miss him. I spoke with his wife this morning and I'm really glad he's taking care of his health. He is going to be fine, it's nothing long term thank god.  We miss him though and it's not quite the same without him. Having said that, these shows are going to be great. The energy is there and the cool thing about Foreigner is that it's really about the music. We miss Lou and I'm sure the audience will too, but the music is so strong that it really has a way of overcoming adversity.

There's something about these reunion shows that connects everyone to the roots of this whole band and that's such a healthy thing for us to be able to do. The fact that we can even pull this off is incredible. No other band has ever been able to meld their past with their current and so I'm genuinely, incredibly proud that we can do it. In the process, we've gained friendships and insight, plus we've come up with a product that allows us to bring these guys in and tour a bit with them too. What an amazing thing that is."

Jeff on what's next for The End Machine, his project with George Lynch, Robert Mason, and Mick Brown:

"There is more coming! I was hoping we would be able to write during the upcoming break from touring but scheduling is difficult. There's definitely more coming but I'm just not sure when. Hopefully, we'll be able to start writing again soon, it has just been hard because there's so much going on. The reaction to The End Machine has been so positive and one of the things that has been really special to us is the depth of the band and our first record. We know not to rush it. Writing with George doesn't feel like work. It's a flowing and fun thing that we love to do.

George (Lynch) and I did a record together in 2003 called Lynch Pilson and we finally got the rights back to that record. In turn, we then sold it to Cleopatra who is going to re-release it. We just wrote a song a few weeks ago called "Top of the World" and that's going to come out soon. I'm so excited about the record being released again and having a new song to go with it."

Jeff on that other side project with Robin McAuley and Reb Beach:

"We just had conference calls about everything this morning! That's coming out in March and I think the first single will be out in December. We're filming two videos for it on Nov. 1-2 and so either sometime in December or January the first video will come out, followed by the second video. Then on Valentine's Day, we'll be releasing the third song, it's a ballad that came out incredible. I'm really excited about it and just wait until you hear Robin's voice on this project. He's such a dear friend and boy does he really shine here."

Jeff on being busier than ever:

"Well, with all of the creative stuff happening and the offers there I feel like you kind of have to strike while the iron is hot. I'm not in a rush about certain things, but who knows what's going to be there in ten years. I'm not that old, I mean I'm kind of old (laughing), but I'm not dead yet. Musically I still haven't written the greatest song of all time yet (laughing). I'll leave the term "greatest" open to interpretation, but that's still on my bucket list of things to do (laughing)."

Jeff on juggling a family while being on the road:

"Honestly, I need to take a little bit of a break. I feel like when I finally go home I need to just be able to stay home for a while. Being a father is really tough with this job and luckily we have a daughter that's just angelic (laughing). She's really smart, really into her school and she does a great job with her schoolwork. If we had a troubled kid I don't know how we would deal with it. She went to her first Foreigner show at 6 weeks old (laughing) and I've had to reconcile myself with not being home very much. It puts a real undue burden on my wife because she has to be like a single parent a lot and that's not fair. I do what I can and my wife understands but she's a human being. She gets tired and stressed out, so it's tricky. When I'm home, I'm dad and I'm all in. We're going to go away for six days on vacation in November and I'm really looking forward to that."

Jeff on what's next for Foreigner:

"More touring forever (laughing), more dates are on the books for after our Las Vegas residency. I'm sure they'll be making an announcement about it soon. We've been trying to stay out of the major American markets and doing secondary markets because we'll be doing a big 2020 shed tour in the summer. I can't say who's on that but an announcement is coming. We're also going to South America and we're headed back to Europe again to do some festivals. Musically it's very satisfying to play somewhere like Germany because those audiences really listen. We are working on some new music and it's strictly on the creative level. There is no time frame involved but it's starting to happen and there could be a new song or two coming."

I want people to know that Foreigner is a very viable, relevant band right now. Yes, we deal with the nostalgia of this great catalog, but we're out there hitting the pavement pretty damn hard and there's no sign of that letting up for the next couple of years.  We're very committed to taking Foreigner, with both its' catalog and its' fans, and making the very best of it. We want the chapter of Mick Jones' life about Foreigner to be perfect and complete. That really is our goal to do that and to make it that way for him".

Head over to Foreigner's official site to check out tour dates, band merch and more

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Exposé - 'Let Me Be The One'

"(Let me) Show you how I feel
(Be the one) That I need so much
(Let me) Give you what is real
(Be the one) That I long to touch

Only you can make me feel this way
I'll give you all, come on, let's get away
This love I feel will never ever fade
I'll give you more and more so

(Let me be the one) Hold onto the dream
(Let me be the one) You can trust me at anytime
(Let me be the one) Give you all the love
(Let me be the one) To feel your tender touch."

Expose` released "Let Me Be The One" the week after my sixteenth birthday and it instantly became my very favorite song. It was the third single in a row off of their debut album, Exposure to crack Billboard's top ten. It was one of the biggest songs of the summer and to this day I associate "Let Me Be The One" with laying in the sun, baby oil scorching my skin, Sun In turning my hair only slightly lighter.

Gioia Bruno handles the lead vocals and did I mention the stunning video to go with it? Filmed in London, the ladies are all glammed up for what looks like a (now vintage) couture modeling shoot. This is one of those songs that you know two seconds after it begins and to this day, audiences respond like it's an old favorite. Check out the video below!

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Europe- 'Carrie'

"When light goes down, I see no reason
For you to cry. We've been through this before
In every time, in every season,
God knows I've tried
So please don't ask for more"

There are those power ballads that while great, seem to be overlooked and then there are the ones like Europe's "Carrie" that seem to go down in hair band history. If I say "Carrie" you'll instantly think of the 1987 hit song right? Doesn't it start to immediately play in your head? Of course it does and that is exactly what first set this ballad apart from most of the rest. 

Europe first broke through in the U.S. in May of 1986 with "The Final Countdown" and they had a string of hits that followed while hair bands ruled the music scene. 

Friday, October 4, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Journey- 'Who's Crying Now'

Journey with Steve Perry...I lost a lot of things to this band

"It's been a mystery

But still they try to see

Why something good can hurt so bad
Caught on a one-way street
The taste of bittersweet
Love will survive somehow, somewhere

One love, feeds the fire

One heart, burns desire
Wonder, who's crying now?
Two hearts, born to run
Who'll be the lonely one?
Wonder, who's crying now?"

I was having a conversation with someone about music the other day and they said that if they never heard another Journey song for the rest of their lives they'd be okay with that. It made me think a little and I realized that people do seem to have a kind of black or white reaction to the band. It's love or hate ( not even touching the debate over Steve Perry on vocals vs. anyone else) and I suspect it's based on the overkill of songs like "Don't Stop Believin'", "Lovin', Touchin' Squeezin'" and "Faithfully".

I mean, we do realize they had several albums filled hits, right? Journey's catalog of music is massive and filled with a lot of really great songs. I can remember being about ten years old and listening to "Who's Crying Now" on my little transistor radio and being blown away by the vocals. Check out the live clip below and then tell me how much you hate Journey. I dare ya.