Jimmy Kay from Canada's The Metal Voice recently spoke to legendary guitarist Michael Schenker. Schenker spoke about his upcoming new Michael Schenker Fest studio album the musical direction and guests, the second leg of the tour that is beginning in April 2019, the sad passing of his drummer Ted Mckenna and comments on his and his brother Rudolf relationship.
When asked about the sad passing of drummer Ted Mckenna
"Our dear friend and great drummer Robert McKenna had passed away on the 19th of January this year. So as you know we were in the middle of recording our second album and getting ready for the tour. I mean, it was as unbelievable shock for us. It just shows you, you never know what's gonna happen next, it's just unbelievable but I'm sure he is watching and wants us to carry on rocking. I went to his funeral on the 19th of February, very sad, great loss, thank you for everything Ted. So now we have drummer Simon Phillips who helped us and recorded ten songs off our new album and Bodo Schopf will also be joining us on tour as a permanent drummer. We might even end up playing with two drummers in the future at some places maybe. Simon did a fantastic job on the new album which will be released on the 23rd of August and Bodo also played 3 songs on the album and did a fantastic job. "
When asked about the musical direction of the new album and if it is completed
"I actually have just got the master right now, so basically if I approve the master today and if I don't make any corrections it's done. After the first album Graham Bonnet said I want to write my own lyrics and do my own vocals and so he did and he did a fantastic job, incredible. That alone gives the album a kind of new flavor. Robin McAuley will do his own songs and of course Gary Barden will too. It's a continuation of the first album. "
When asked if there will be any news guests on the new album
"Yes, I don't know how much I can say but on the 23rd of August we have some really cool surprises coming up. On Michael Voss wrote 4 song that was supposed to be used as the all singer songs but only used three, he then had this idea to have Ronnie Romero to sing on the 4th song, who he worked with before and who sings for Ritchie Blackmore and it turned out fantastic, incredible. It's Called, We Are The Voice.' I also wanted to put a Japanese guitarist on our Japanese album bonus track for Japan. So I chose the guitarist of Loudness Akira Takasaki he is jamming on one part of the song. "
When asked what would it take to make peace with his brother Rudolf
"It has nothing do with peace Rudolf is dangerous for me I have to stay away from him, it's the only thing I can do, he's a bully and he takes advantage of his little brother.
What do you do if you have a bully on your back? The best you can do is stay away I have no bad feelings or anything for Rudolf god bless him do what you do. I don't need to put myself into a vulnerable situation and that's what I would do if I would connect with him, it would just be the more of the same bullshit, more off the same ripoff, He's a charming person he achieves everything with charm but I'm an artist so whatever. So the best thing for me is to leave him alone and I am better off. "
MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP vocalists Gary Barden and Graham Bonnet, Doogie White, plus Robin McAuley of the MCAULEY SCHENKER GROUP
MICHAEL SCHENKER FEST will kick off its U.S. tour on April 15 at the Whisky A Go Go in West Hollywood, California. The trek will include performances in Vancouver, Chicago, and New York before concluding on May 18 in Austin.
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