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I was in a group called Wild Orchid and it just wasn't working. I wasn't being myself. What I should have done was say. 'Girls, it's really time for me to go on my own. I need to fulfill this dream of mine to have a solo album.' And I didn't know how to do that. I wanted to please them.
It's the group sound that's important, even when you're playing a solo.
I do love being solo because I can have more of my own creative input to every aspect of my career.
My solo music - I get up onstage, I improvise and it's my improvisation. When I get up onstage with Fred Frith and Mike Patton, then we're improvising together. Then it's not my music; it's our music.
There's art in rhythm playing. Just find it. Make your own art. Find your place, and when it's your time to solo, it's your time to shine.
I just assumed the world was full of solo percussionists. I couldn't find sticks or music or anything where I was, but that was expected because there was nothing there anyway. And I think that was possibly the greatest asset for me, just not knowing.
I remember in the early days when we played six nights a week for a month and I was doing my long drum solo every night. My hands were covered in blisters.
If I'm going to go out to be a solo artist, it's because I want to do something different without having to wait on someone else's schedule or hobbies or be limited by other people's prejudices. I'd be kind of stupid not to exercise that.
When I was four, we had to choose a musical instrument to play at school, and I chose the cello. I played until I was 18, and although I found it nerve-racking to play solo, I loved playing in an orchestra. When I left school I didn't carry on with it, which I regret.
Not everybody likes or understands a drum solo, so I like to bring in effects and sounds to keep their interest.
The expectation on me as a solo artist is very different to the audience's expectation of a Pink Floyd show.
People have become less discriminating listeners, which is tragic, really. There's a lot of emperor's new clothes out there, whether they're female or male solo acts. That bothers me. It's hard to break through, and it's like climbing Mount Everest if you actually do.
But I really do have a soft spot for the solo shows. Any musician who writes and sings will tell you that's the center of it, that is it. It's almost like there's something church-like about it and you gotta go back there, if you're a songwriter that sings your material.
I had just left Yes and had done a concert at Crystal Palace, South London, with a choir and orchestra playing my solo album 'Journey To The Centre Of The Earth' when I had my heart attack. That day, I hadn't been to bed for four days. I don't remember much. I felt very numb during the day and airy, which is the best way to describe it.
It's good fun, making a solo album, because there's perhaps songs that wouldn't get used for the Stones or any other kind of outfit that I'm working with. It's just nice to be the boss.
People don't realize you're blowing over changes, time changes, harmony, different keys. I mark a point in my solo where it's got to peak at point D I go to A, B, C D then I'm home.
There are right and wrong reasons for doing solo projects, and this album was done for the right reasons. At the time there was no Judas Priest and I certainly wasn't going to hang my hat up on my musical career.
You're just sort of searching for this 'thing' and sometimes you get it and sometimes you don't. All music is imperfect, but in jazz since you're improvising, at least the way I play, I'm trying to follow my train of thought in a solo.
It was one of the most exciting, perfect evenings of my life, my solo debut at Carnegie Hall. And knowing we were all there to raise money for Gay Men's Health Crisis made the evening an extraordinary experience.
When I recorded my solo album, 'Keep It Hid,' in 2008, I'd gotten more interested in songwriting, inspired by reading Charles Bukowski and connecting with unfancy, interesting language.
Generally my songs are just some riffs slung together as an excuse for a guitar solo.
I build duets into bigger works. I like to see people working together. What we call a giant solo in my company is about four bars long while twenty other people are doing something dynamically. I like the charge that is set up by a lot of people doing something.
The only thing that's better in a group versus being by yourself is the companionship. You have to do a lot of thing by yourself as a solo artist. But it's cool. It's worth it.
That was the producer who produced a couple of my solo albums. He produced my second, third and fourth solo albums. It was his project and I just joined him on it. I sang on one and played bass on another one.
I have to be my own artist. I need the world to know who I am, especially for music. When it comes to acting, that is a whole other story. I have no complaints; that's a team effort. It's not just me, it's everyone. But when it comes to music, it is solo; that's all me.
John F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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