GLENN HUGHES Interview:

     INDUSTRIAL STRENGTH ALLIANCEÖ..BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION is the latest Hard Rock Quartet sending global shock waves thorough the Music masses with their self titled debut disc released in September.  Recorded last Spring at the Legendary Shangri La Studios in Malibu itís seen a steady climb of the U.S. Charts while almost instantaneously achieving #1 status in the U.K.
     BCC is fronted by Revered Rock Vocalist/Bassist GLENN HUGHES whose unmistakable voice has resonated amid Legions of Vintage Vinyl since joining the Rock & Roll ranks with his peerless pipes & Sonic Strings in 1969 with TRAPEZE. 
    Since then
HUGHES has been a Hard Rock Ringer with stints at the helm of DEEP PURPLE & BLACK SABBATH along with collaborations that include Metal Royalty the likes of GARY MOORE, TONY IOMMI, PAT THRALL & JOE LYNN TURNER to name just a few.  You can check out GLENN HUGHES infinite catalogue of credits @ www.glennhughes.com.
    Joining
HUGHES is Upstate New York Native & Guitar Virtuoso JOE BONAMASSA who Amps things up immersing his patented Blues Based timbre with crunching Power Chords.  Rounding out the World Class line-up is Drummer JASON BONHAM (LED ZEPPELIN Reunion, FORIGNER) who needs no introduction & coveted Keyboardist DEREK SHERINIAN (ALICE COOPER, KISS, BILLY IDOL, DREAM THEATER).
     BCC has managed to seamlessly fuse the essential Classic Rock Template with a Modern Rock vibe with the help of World Renowned Producer KEVIN ďCavemanĒ SHIRLEY (LED ZEPPELIN, AEROSMITH, BLACK CROWES). 
    The Foursomes organic chemistry & unrelenting raw talent produced one of this past Yearís most riveting Records. 
     With sterling reports coming out of the ď
Black CountryĒ about the Bands two night stand in the U.K. to close out 2010 it seems the Best is yet to come in the New Year.
     The Rock Rapport had the pleasure of speaking with GLENN HUGHES from his home studio while taking a break from writing for the Bandís Second Album set to drop this coming June.

 Ross CAT- Good Morning GLENN Thanks for taking time for the folks here in Upstate New York just a few hours away from JOE BONAMASSAíS hometown Utica, NY.

HUGHES- Thatís right I Love that area, I spent a lot of time there with my Dear Friend RONNIE JAMES DIO early on in our careers.

Ross CAT- Congratulations on adding another chapter to your already storied career with BLACK COUNTRY COMMUION.

HUGHES- Thank You. When we got the band together we wanted to make music that would impact a core audience of Rock fans; so far we seemed to have nailed it.  

Ross CAT- Both You & JOE mentioned what a rapid fire pace this was recorded at, it really captures the songs in their purest form, is that something thatís been lost with technology today?

HUGHES- Oh God Yeah, when I make my albums and I think JOE is the same way we try to capture it live.
     With Pro Tools there so much processed auto tuning, flying in of instruments & multiple tracking it causes you to sometimes overcompensate when in fact sometimes less is more.
    You can hear it on the Album the beauty of one Guitar & one Bass.  From the writing of the songs to laying the tracks down in the studio itís truly an organic process and something I feel has been missing in Modern Rock Music.
    Iíve been wanting to make a Record for my Hardcore fan base for sometime; I had been looking to form a Group that had a 1970ís Band Sound or essence if you will. 
    It just so happens that JOE is a 70ís Rock Buff, his Blues based Music bleeds the influences of ZEPPELIN, YES, THE WHO & FREE, while DEREK has been playing that style for years with BILLY IDOL & ALICE COOPER, what else can you say about JASON he was Born, Bred & Breaths LED ZEPPELINíS Rock & Roll. 
   This Album was a Labor of Love and we had a blast making it, things went so smoothly itís inspired us to hit the studio again early in the New Year.  

Ross CAT- Lets delve into the opening track ďBlack CountryĒ whose booming Bass lines indicate thereís no Holds Barred in this Band.
    Vocally you really sink your teeth into the new material with a fiery passion; instrumentally the Band really stretches things out giving the studio tracks elements of a live performance.
    Talk about how special it is to be part of BLACK COUNTRY COMMUION at this stage of your celebrated career.

HUGHES- Absolutely if you ask JOE heíll tell you the same thing this is a Band that I had to front.  From the onset JOE wanted me to take the reigns if you will because I have a bit more time to concentrate on this particular project.  That being said this is a Band in the truest sense and I write specifically for all the talented members of the Group.
     I will say I had a bit of a vision when we started writing for this BCC & the musicianship allowed me to see that vision through.
    The Second Album which Iím in the process of writing for will be similar in style as we donít want to mess with the Blueprints of what weíve already accomplished.  

Ross CAT- This project morphed from a gig you did with JOE did at the House Of Blues a while back.  KEVIN SHIRLEY was in the House at which point he decided to take it to the next level by adding JASON & DEREK; did you have the same feeling after the performance with JOE that this could be something special or did it take some convincing?

HUGHES- Oh No KEVIN & I go back twenty years so I immediately was on board from its conception.  KEVIN is a real hands on producer and I had an idea of what the Album should sound like from the beginning.

Ross CAT- Talk about what KEVIN brings to the sessions, from the DVD studio footage he seems to be a no bullshit type of guy who has no problem mixing it up with the Musicians.

HUGHES- Iím thrilled KEVIN is involved; heís a Jack of All Trades in the industry which is invaluable.  KEVIN has a knack of tapping into peopleís strengths & steering them in the right direction which was perfect for me as I have a tendency of stepping outside the box.
 
   It was really easy to get the vocals done with KEVIN because he allowed me to be GLENN HUGHES which is a very important component when creating new material that Iím both writing & singing.

Ross CAT- The debut Record features all brand new material except for a track called ďMedusaĒ from one of your early bands TRAPEZE tell us how that vintage track was revived for the BCC Record?

HUGHES- JOEíS a 70ís Music connoisseur & thatís a song he really wanted to do.  It also made sense in the fact that I had the privilege of playing that song with JOHN ďBONZOĒ BONHAM on numerous occasions back in the day.
     JOHN & I were very close back in the ZEPPELIN Hey Day he would come by my home in England and pick me up to take me to the TRAPEZE gigs.  Before the set was over JOHN would end up on stage with us for a few songs and that was one of his favorites to play.

Ross CAT- That must really mean a lot to JASON while heís in the midst of celebrating his Fatherís Legacy with the JASON BONHAM: LED ZEPPELIN EXPERIENCE, which hits the road again this March.
    I had the pleasure of interviewing JASON in Canada a few months back with one of my colleagues at BackStage Axxess http://www.backstageaxxess.com/index.php/interviews?start=10 itís really an amazing show and moving tribute, well worth seeing.

HUGHES- Absolutely Iíve known JASON since he was two years old and have been a close family friend ever since.  Being as close to JOHN as I was itís almost comforting to me that JASON is playing in a Band with me now; I know that JOHN would be very pleased with the results.
   Playing ďMedusaĒ with JASON has kind of made it a Family tradition if you will.

Ross CAT--The CD includes a bonus DVD with interviews & studio clips, that being said the highlight is the live cuts of ďOne Last SoulĒ & the DEEP PURPLE track ďMistreatedĒ from the 1974 ďBurnĒ Album which kicks ass with a sweet exchange between JOE & yourself.
 
  Those songs were filmed at a BONAMASSA solo show last spring had the Album been completed yet?

HUGHES- Yes, Ironically enough we had just finished up the Album that Day & JOE had a gig about eighty miles away in Riverside, California so we thought lets just show up there and play a couple of tunes.
   We rolled up did a short sound check & performed ďOne Last SoulĒ which is the second track on the BCC Record &
PURPLEíS ďMistreatedĒ, it was a blast.

Ross CAT- With the busy schedules that everyone has a full on tour is on hold until the summer of 2011.  The Band just treated the ďBlack CountryĒ folks in the U.K. with 2 blow out sold out shows.
  Talk about the excitement of finally bringing a full setlist to a concert setting?

HUGHES- Yeah I had been very excited about performing the full set over the Holidays & push full steam ahead in the New Year.  We are hoping to drop the Second Record in June & hit the Road on the Summer Festival Tour Circuit with 2 Albums worth of material to take to the Road.
   While we all have other projects going on this is a Band that is already looking ahead even as far as 2012.

Ross CAT- What can you tell us about the Sopohmore effort form BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION is there a working title as of yet?

HUGHES- Oh God no weíre a bit away on that yet, Iíve got five songs ready to play to JOE when I see him, I know he has a couple of things ready for me to listen to as well.
    JOE & I will write most of it at my Home Studio as we did last time basically following the same Blueprint that brought us success on the First Album.
    BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION has a Staple Sound now & I donít want to mess that up by bringing anything in that might be inappropriate for our Sound.  Iím working tirelessly in the studio as we speak and things are flowing really well, Iím really excited about getting this into JOEíS hands when I see him. 

Ross CAT- The upcoming New Year looks very exciting for BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION it will also see the release of a GLENN HUGHES autobiography, tell us what fans can expect from what I expect will be a page turner?

HUGHES- Iím itís actually available only online for now at www.foruli.co.uk, itís a deluxe edition with a three song vinyl EP and Special Packing. The Hardcopy Edition of the Book will be available later in the New Year. 
    As far as whatís in between the covers well there was a lot of things that I needed to dig deep and be honest about.  You only get one chance to do an Autobiography and I wanted to be very clear on the Good, Bad & Ugly because I needed to be true to myself.
    There are a lot of questions in the book that are answered that will leave people will say to themselves Oh Man!
    I decided that there couldnít be any secrets as to why I fell off the Music Map for over a decade; I had to ultimately clarify my struggles with Drugs & Alcohol that have been well documented in the annals of Rock & Roll History.  You can put my name right up there with the likes of STEPHEN STILLS & KEITH RICHARDS; itís taken me a long time to get the respect back from my peers because I was in such a Bad state of Addiction & Denial which truly left me on Deathís door on more then one occasion.
    I know this sounds clichť but writing this book has truly been a cathartic experience for me.  The beauty of surviving my struggles is that I get to help others who have fallen into this industry trap and carry on the message of sobriety, a gift that was given freely to me and ultimately saved my life.
    I was at the Classic Rock Awards a while back with my peers like JIMMY PAGE, JOHN PAUL JONES & RONNIE WOOD people Iíve known all my life and it just feels so good to have my feet firmly planted on the earth once again. I donít mean just as a Musician but more importantly as a Human Being, it really feels fantastic to be part of the Human Race once more.
   Success comes in many forms; at this stage of my career itís measured in the Music Iím making not Fame or Fortune.  I fully intend on giving everything that I have back to the Fans & this wonderful Group of Musicians with whom Iím so fortunate to be working with.

Ross CAT- I have to say considering the abuse you put yourself through both emotionally & especially physically your voice is in vintage form on the new BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION songs.
   This Band seems to be the pinnacle of a truly redemptive tale.

HUGHES- Why Thank you; Iíve got to tell you itís simply a miracle considering the things Iíve done to myself.  What Iíve realized in my recovery is that itís a tremendous gift that God has given me & Iím so blessed to have been able to keep my Art despite taking it for Granted for so many Years.
   At this stage of my life I feel I owe it back to the fans who have given me unconditionally support over the years through thick & thin.

Ross CAT- Speaking of Epic Singers & one of the Greatest Ambassadors of the Music Industry this past year saw the Iconic voice of RONNIE JAMES DIO sadly silenced.
   You pay homage to him in the liner notes of the BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION Album, tell us about your relationship with the Metal Icon.

HUGHES- I met RONNIE when he still lived in your neck of the woods in Upstate New York, he was with his Band ELF in the early 70ís.  I befriended RONNIE very early on in when I was with DEEP PURPLE& we became really good mates.
    As a matter of fact when he left RAINBOW in 1979 he moved out to California not too far from me in the Valley; consequently the
HUGHES & THE DIOS traveled almost everywhere together.
    RONNIE became like an older Brother to me, he took care of me and I took care of him, we loved to laugh & RONNIE was a funny little Bastard.
    He was simply the Kindest & Most Caring Human Being you could ever hope to encounter, even now it chokes me up to think about his passing I miss him terribly.

Ross CAT- I know that WENDY DIO has mentioned on several occasions how comforting youíve been during her time of sorrow and how instrumental you are in helping with RONNIEíS Charity.

   Fans can visit @ www.ronniejames.com & The Ronnie James Dio Stand Up And Shout Cancer Fund on Facebook.

HUGHES- Iíve known WENDY forever sheís been like a Sister to me; In the months since RONNIEíS passing weíve once again become inseparable.  And Yes Thanks for mentioning RONNIEíS Charity which we will continue to work tirelessly for in his Honor & Memory.

Ross CAT- Talk about being part of the Tribute that was put together for RONNIE as well as having the chance to perform with HEAVEN & HELL at the High Voltage Festival?

HUGHES- It was amazing, it was a very appropriate setting to say Good Bye to RONNIE; to be part of that with TONY & GEEZER is a once in a Lifetime Opportunity that will probably never happen again.
    Iíve spoken with WENDY recently and there is talk of a Tribute Album & Possible Concert in the works that would naturally Benefit the DIO ďStand Up & ShoutĒ Cancer Fund.

     To stay current with BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION visit www.bccommunion.com, fans can also follow GLENN HUGHES @ www.glennhughes.com as well as on Facebook & Twitter.
    The
Rock Rapport would like to Thank Erin Podbereski of Jensen Communications for hooking us up with GLENN HUGHES.
     Also a Special Thanks to Ian Harvey of the Express & Star for the amazing photos of BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNIONíS First Full Concert Performance from the United Kingdom.

********************HAPPY NEW YEAR**********************

*******************PEACE & Harmonies**********************



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