by Ross CAT

by Ross CAT

Morris Performing Arts Center
South Bend, INDIANA
Saturday, October 6th

Is the title of vocalist JEFF SCOTT SOTO’S second solo album released in 2002; it also appropriately characterizes the Brooklyn born singers colorful career to date.
has been an integral component in the music industry since nailing the lead singer slot in an open audition for guitar virtuoso YNGWIE MALMSTEEN back in 1984 Since then the versatile vocalist has accrued an impressive Rock ‘n’ Roll resume while fronting EURO fan favorites TALISMAN since 1990.
    His chameleon like singing style has afforded JSS to scale the gamut of musical genres from Rock to Metal, Funk to Punk with the “Essential Ballads” in between.
    In 2001 JSS would take his piercing pipes to the big screen for the movie “RockStar” starring MARK WAHLBERG and JENNIFER ANISTON.  JSS along with ZAKK WYLDE, JASON BONHAM, and JEFF PILSON would be the band behind the actor; recording songs for the soundtrack for the fictional group “Steel Dragon”.
In the summer of 2006 as JOURNEY were only a few dates into its co-headlining tour with DEF LEPPARD singer STEVE AUGERI feel victim to serious vocal problems.  Instead of canceling the tour NEAL SCHON turned to his SOUL SIRKUS bandmate JEFF SCOTT SOTO, as “Lady Luck” would have it he was available.
    The tour went on to be one of the top grossing of the summer with fans both old and new raving about the smokin’ young gun at the helm.  It looked as though the band was headed toward new “Frontiers”, as they asked JSS to “Stay Awhile”.  Unfortunately just a few months in the band announced through a press release that it was going its
Separate Ways”.
    Although disappointed JSS is right back at it; making new music with his solo band and is ready to take to the road once again with a renewed determination.
    The NIGHTLIFE Rock Rapport had a chance to chat with JSS from his home base in
as he was putting the finishing touches on rehearsals for his world tour that extends into the end of the year.


    Ross CAT-Hey JSS, Thanks so much for your time, greatly appreciated.  In checking out your website ( I was blown away at the impressive Rock resume you’ve amassed at the relatively young Rock ‘n’ Roll age of 41.
JSS-Thank you, it’s my pleasure.  That’s the cool thing about my career to this point is the fact that I’ve been fortunate to work in so many great musical environments.
    *The experience of working with such talented individuals like MALMSTEEN, the guys in TALISMAN, and most recently NEAL SCHON and JOURNEY is invaluable in growing as an artist.         
    Ross CAT-
Lets get right into the recent “Arrival” and “Departure” from JOURNEY.
Fans here in
BUFFALO witnessed first hand what a spectacular job you did stepping in to salvage the 2006 summer tour.  Worldwide fans and critics alike accepted you with “Open Arms”, which by the way is quite the accomplishment considering the STEVE PERRY fans await “Faithfully” for his return.
    *Following the tour it seemed that your addition to the JOURNEY line-up would allow the band to blaze ahead to some new and exciting musical ventures.  Was there any indication that this alliance would collapse before you entered the recording studio?
No absolutely not, in fact it was quite the opposite it was all positive.  Let me put it to you this way they didn’t ask me to be the permanent singer in the band for nothing.  It was all about moving forward musically and adding to the already mighty legacy of JOURNEY.
    Ross CAT-
It was obvious that the chemistry was in place as far as the live performances went, did you get to the point of actually writing new songs together?
Oh yeah, NEAL was actually at my place for a few days after we got off the road, we had well over twenty ideas in place for songs, unfortunately we didn’t get to see them through. Speaking in terms of myself I had every intention of embracing this musical endeavor.
Ross CAT-
Lastly on that subject I wanted to commend you on the class that you showed following the unexpected announcement of your “Departure” from the band.  It certainly seemed it could have been handled a little differently on their end.
I appreciate that, anyone that knows me knows that wouldn’t be my style.  As I mentioned before I’ve had the honor of working in many different musical environments in my career and I take pride in being a team player.
    *First and foremost I’m a fan of the music of JOURNEY; STEVE PERRY was someone that influenced me as a young singer so I respect the bands legendary status.  I’d be lying if I said that it wasn’t disappointing that things didn’t work out, ultimately it was their decision on what direction they wanted to go, I wish them luck.
    *I’m looking at this as a new chapter for me in my solo career, I can’t begin to tell you how excited I am about the new music I’m working on and the guys I’m playing with right now.

    Ross CAT-
If nothing else the tour with JOURNEY certainly raised the awareness of your unquestionable talent and stage presence, especially here in the
No question about it, the response I’ve gotten from fans worldwide has been overwhelming.  That’s what this string of dates I’m doing over the next few months is all about.  After being in the amphitheatres and arenas with JOURNEY I’m really looking forward to introducing my band and new music in a more intimate setting.
    Ross CAT-
It’s great to see that you wasted no time getting back to recording new music.  Tell us about the JEFF SCOTT SOTO Band that will be taking the stage with you this weekend at the MELODIC ROCK Festival in South Bend, Indiana?
These guys are an awesome group of players.  As a matter of fact we have a couple of homegrown BUFFALO boys in the band. Guitarist HOWIE SIMON, anyone that knows HOWIE knows he’s a unique individual and his diverse playing style is second to none. Also from BUFFALO is dynamic drummer DAVID DZIALAK and on bass is GARY SCHUTT. GARY has been with me since the “Prism” record and his talent is endless both on and off stage.
    *All these players possess adaptability a quality that isn’t easy to find, something that these live shows require. They can deviate from disco to metal and everything in between.
    *On this current tour we are playing songs from all the different eras of my career including the new stuff. The songs and the music have really been flowing for me this past year; it’s an exciting time for me.

Ross CAT-
I got a chance to listen to a couple of the brand new songs you posted on you’re “My Space” page.  I especially like “21st Century”, it really revolves around the musical spectrum.
Yeah I have quite a few songs ready to roll maybe too many.  I’m sure most songwriters tell you this but every song is like a child it develops a personality as it grows, it’s impossible to choose which one you like best.
 *For me it’s about versatility and variety, I try to stay away from a theme when putting a collection of songs together.  I like to have every album shine a different light on me as a song writer.
    *By changing things up song to song I create the element of surprise, not to mention the challenge I put upon myself to keep evolving as a song writer, basically expect the unexpected.

    Ross CAT-
Is the new material freshly composed songs, or are they songs that you had been working on before you hooked up with JOURNEY?
No, this is all brand new material that I have written since my split from JOURNEY.  With the way my career has gone working with so many different artists it’s not always easy to present songs into a certain situation so I always end up with songs that never see the light of day.
    *This is probably the most important record of my career so I’m really taking my time on deciding on how I want to distribute the material.

Ross CAT-
I know that you had announced a farewell tour with TALISMAN following the release of “7” last October, is this really the “End of the Line” for that band or is the door still open?
JSS-TALISMAN has been through many ups and downs and line-up changes through the years. With everyone branching out to other projects I kind of thought that “7” would be a fitting way to close out that chapter of the band.
    *I’m really looking forward to settling in with my band; for better or worse I’ve always kind of bounced around from venture to venture.
    *If my experience with JOURNEY taught me anything it’s that I want to focus everything I have into my solo career, I think this current group of guys can help me flourish as an artist.
    *As for TALISMAN that band has been an important part of my career and they are a great group of musicians so the door will never be completely closed.

    Ross CAT-
At the age of eighteen you answered an audition call advertised on MTV to become lead vocalist for guitar virtuoso YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, tell us about that experience?
    JSS-It’s hard to believe that was almost twenty-five years ago; before I joined YNGWIE I was a huge fan of his music, I loved the “
Alcatraz” record. I remember making tapes of just his solo’s on the albums and thinking how amazing it was that someone could generate such sounds from a guitar.
    *At eighteen years old it was a huge undertaking, I got the call after they heard my audition tape and within three weeks I got the gig and started laying tracks for “Rising Force”.

    Ross CAT-
Before joining JOURNEY you had previously worked with NEAL SCHON in a band called SOUL SIRKUS, that collaboration lead to the recording of “World Play”, a solid body of music.  Is there any chance of working with SCHON outside of JOURNEY again?
I’ve always been one to stay positive and open minded and I’m the last person to be burning bridges with anybody, but at this point as far as NEAL and I are concerned the door seems to be quite closed.
    * I’m in a great frame of mind to move forward with my band.  We’ve been looking forward to taking the show on the road since we started recording the new tracks. We are really stoked about sharing the stage with the amazing talent that ANDREW McNEICE has assembled for the MELODIC ROCK FESTIVAL.

    Ross CAT-
The NIGHTLIFE Rock Rapport is also looking forward to attending this momentous eventWhile South Bend may be known as the home of the “Fighting Irish” of NOTRE DAME it’s also the locale of the inaugural MELODIC ROCK FESTIVAL (

    *This show is really going to be an incredible Rock ‘n’ Roll extravaganza.  The event commemorates the 10th anniversary of the pre-eminent music information site created by our AUSSIE BUD ANDREW McNEICE.
    *Once again the show is Saturday October 6th at the beautiful Morris Performing Arts Center and will include some of Rocks elite performers. The show is also being co-sponsored by
premier Entertainment Group BACK II BACK (; tickets are still available at the MelodicRock website.
    *Other artists appearing on the day long bill will be SCRAPMETAL featuring MARK SLAUGHTER, ERIC MARTIN (Mr. BIG), The NELSON Brothers, and KELLY KEAGY of NIGHT RANGER.
In addition to that all-star band others performing will be former DEEP PURPLE/RAINBOW frontman JOE LYNN TURNER, former SURVIVOR members JIMI JAMISON and JIM PETERIK, and last but certainly not least NIGHTLIFE regular
Most certainly ANDREW has been a great friend to me and to all my peers that you mentioned.  He works really hard to help us promote our music, it’s our turn to help give back to him and the phenomenal promotional tool that is MELODICROCK.COM.
    *ANDREW works tirelessly at the expense of his family and his own personal finances to keep this site up and running for both musicians and fans. It’s our turn to plug it in for this Rock and Roll advocate.
    *I always hear fans here in the STATES complain that all the cool Rock Festivals are always in EUROPE, well now its you’re chance to step up and support this cool cause and share in a day full of great music.  Hope to see everyone there.

******************PEACE and Harmonies*****************

E and Harmonies****************

B.B. KINGS Blues Club
September 27, 2007

One of music's most defining and enduring voices belongs to PAUL RODGERS. His peerless pipes have fronted some of Rock ‘n’ Rolls” most respected and influential bands including FREE, BAD COMPANY, THE FIRM, and most recently QUEEN.  He led the band on its first world tour in over twenty years swinging his mic to the rafters throughout EUROPE, JAPAN and the U.S.
is the total package as a musician penning some of musics most prolific songs and belting them out with an unprecedented  passion for the blues. RODGERS is also a “Rock Steady” multi-instrumentalist and has been wowing crowds worldwide with his stage presence and charisma for nearly four decades and shows no signs of slowing down.
    *Since the end of the QUEEN tour in spring 2006 RODGERS has been “Movin On” with his illustrious solo career touring throughout 2007 in support of his recent CD/DVD release PAUL RODGERS: LIVE In GLASCOW.  This collection of songs is a “Rock & Roll Fantasy” for any music lover.  It is a true testament to the all around talent RODGERS has possessed throughout his storied career as a composer and performer, a must for your music collection.
    *RODGERS has created a unique vocal style through his love of the Blues and this Thursday night at B.B. Kings Blues Club  he will be giving back a little to one of the great Bluesmen of our time BO DIDDLEY.  BO was originally scheduled to perform on this date but due to recent health issues had to postpone, PAUL graciously agreed to step in saying, “It is truly a pleasure and honor to help out a friend like BO.  I wish him a speedy recovery and hope to see him on the road again soon.”
    *RODGERS will also be participating in the upcoming “Concert of Hope” honoring the legendary B.B. KING in his quest to put an end to “Youth Homelessness”.
Be sure to check out the interactive PAUL RODGERS website at ( to purchase the CD/DVD as well as tickets for upcoming live gigs through the end of the year.
    *Tickets for the B.B. KING benefit which also includes GEORGE THOROGOOD, TAJ MAHAL and many other national acts can also be obtained at the PAUL RODGERS website.
The NIGHTLIFE Rock Report had the distinct honor to share in the company of one of musics most salient songwriters and the purest voice in “Rock ‘n’ Soul” history PAUL RODGERS.
    Ross CAT
- Greetings from
Buffalo thank you so much for sharing some of your valuable time with us.  Your last visit to town was St. Patrick’s Day 2006 as you where fronting another great “Rock ‘n’ Roll outfit” with QUEEN.
It was a tremendously powerful performance in so many ways as BRIAN MAY and ROGER TAYLOR of QUEEN are able to bring their classic catalog to life on stage once again.  You really did an outstanding job stepping into the band without stepping on its legacy, a daunting task to say the least.
    *The arrangements on all the vintage QUEEN and BAD COMPANY classics were extraordinary; even more impressive was the way you fused your signature tonality without compromising the songs. Tell us about your approach in this collaboration?

Thank you so much for the kind words.  Initially BRIAN wanted to split the set half my material and half QUEEN; my feeling was that since they hadn’t been on tour in over twenty years we should take the show out QUEEN heavy, and so we did.
    *They completely opened up the entire QUEEN catalog to me which really gave me an instant comfort level with the material.
    *I knew that the demand for the classics would be high so it was great for me to dive into songs like “We Will Rock You/We Are The Champions”, they where great songs for me to cut my teeth on.
    *When it came to some of the more complex songs that FREDDIE MERCURY left us like “The Show Must Go On” I really had to dig down deep.  I tapped into the great influences in my career like OTIS
REDDING and SAM COOKE; they taught me that music is all about interpretation.
    *So what I tried to do with the QUEEN material was to step into the song and feel it the way I would feel it. Songs can and should be interpreted on different levels, it’s really about the connection; I think we accomplished that without compromising the integrity of the original material.

    Ross CAT-
Like the song says “The Show Must Go On”, your vocal versatility has given BRIAN and ROGER the chance to perform these great songs live once again.
    PAUL RODGERS- I think so, another reason that the tour was so incredibly successful was the fact that the fans readily embraced the whole idea.  Some many fans both old and new have heard the wonderful songs but never had the chance to see them performed live; this collaboration gave us the opportunity to bring them as close as we possibly could to the original
    *When we first played together there was no intention of actually joining forces together, it wasn’t until we had performed on a television program that the idea came to life.  Following the performance that night we came off stage and immediately agreed we should work together again, that’s really how it all got started.

    Ross CAT-
That leads perfectly into my next question, word has it that a new album of original material is in the works.  Tell us about the next chapter to the QUEEN and PAUL RODGERS story?

Yeah it’s very exciting; we’ve been in the studio twice so far and we are heading to the
U.K. to record again in October.  We’ve put down some nine tracks thus far and it’s gone really well.
    The whole idea of this musical meeting of minds is to let things develop themselves organically, so there really isn’t a time table to speak of.

    Ross CAT-
Let’s talk about the current solo trek you’ve been on in support of the amazing new DVD/CD PAUL RODGERS: LIVE In GLASCOW; which by the way is burning up the charts worldwide this summer. Neilsen Soundscan has the new live solo performance charting at #1 in CANADA and #3 in the U.S. 
    *The selection of songs is stellar in this performance, a retrospective of your storied career with FREE, BAD COMPANY, The FIRM, not to mention paying tribute to the blues influences in your music.
    *Tell us the decision making process in choosing the songs for this disc when you have so many to choose from?

    PAUL RODGERS-Well the songs vary from time to time and place to place. For example if I’m playing in the U.K. there is a huge love for the band FREE so I will lean a little more on that music when playing there.
   *I generally like to take a walk through the songs I’ve written with all of the bands adding in my solo material both old and new, and as you mentioned I never stray to far from my blues roots.
    *Personally I’ve always tried to write my set list as if I was writing a song.  I try to create an atmosphere with my live performances, you always want to please your fans but you also want to keep moving forward artistically.

    Ross CAT-
Speaking of new material there is a poignant new song you perform passionately on the new live disc titled “Warboys (A Prayer for PEACE)”.  It starts with an acoustic urgency and comes to life as the band joins in tell us about that song?
You look around and one has to wonder where the human race is going. I understand that in life sometimes we must fight fire with fire, but I have to question the wisdom of some of the decisions that are being made for us as a whole.
    *I really wonder whether we ought to be putting our resources into seeking out different solutions for power sources.  The problem we all face now is how do we put the lid back on this thing, we’ve already blown it wide open.
    *I’m by no means a politician but I do know that we have to take better care of our environment and this war isn’t the way to go about it.  This song is really more then about being critical of the dilemma we find ourselves in, it truly is a (Prayer For PEACE).

    Ross CAT-
Aside from being an elite songwriter/singer you’re also a multi-instrumentalist, including playing all the instruments on your 1984 solo debut “Cut Loose”.  On what particular instrument do you compose your songs?
That’s an interesting question, I find that each instrument gives me a different take on the music.  Piano for instance is an intriguing instrument to compose on; the left hand deals with the bass, the right hand deals with the chord structure, between the two you have a rhythm to throw your vocals on top of.  So it’s quite a complete instrument in terms of songwriting.
    *When it comes to the guitar I tend to write on the acoustic as opposed to the electric and I even been known to write on the bass as well.  As I matter of fact I wrote the FREE song “Wishing Well” on bass.

Ross CAT-
That’s very cool.  Back to the DVD I noticed a special guest in the show a young lad named STEVEN RODGERS performing an acoustic number called “Sunshine”.
As they say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, tell us about his future in the music industry?

STEVEN has a load of talent he’s written some great songs; he’s a bit shy about putting himself forward, he seems to be more of a musician then a showman.  He really has a great voice and is an extremely talented songwriter, I do try to steer him in the right direction but ultimately he’s got to do it for himself.
    *My daughter JASMINE is also a musician, both of them were brought up with music all around them and have been writing songs since they were quite young.
    *I’m very proud of them, they have both pursued other interests outside of music as well.  JASMINE has a degree in zoology while STEVEN has other projects as well.  Although I think you will be hearing a solo CD from him in the near future.

    Ross CAT-
Throughout you career you’ve been showered with so many accolades from fans and critics alike, most recently being honored with PAUL RODGERS week in
Corona, California.
    *Beyond the recognition of the outsiders in the music biz you’ve been revered by your peers, JIMMY PAGE says, “PAUL RODGERS has been, and still is by far, one of the finest talents of our musical genre”.  Most recently BRIAN MAY explains, “Simply the Greatest Rock/Blues singer Alive”.
That’s some pretty high praise from a few of the worlds elite guitarist.

First of all the
Corona week was a beautiful experience.  It was the most wonderful meet and greet I’d ever done sharing some amazing time with some five hundred youngsters.
    *It was sponsored by FENDER and a group of aspiring pre-teen musicians called THE IGNITERS performed “Rock & Roll Fantasy”.
    *As for the kind words and compliments from my band mates and peers, it truly is gratifying when it comes from the consummate players in your profession.
    *I’ve been so blessed to jam with so many great artists in my time like PAUL KOSSOFF, MICK RALPHS, PAGEY and now BRAIN MAY, believe me the respect is entirely mutual.

The ROCK REPORT would also like to give a shout out to the current PAUL RODGERS Line-up who also jammed on the CD/DVD.
    *HOWARD LEESE(HEART) guitar, seventeen year old guitar sensation KURTIS DENGLER, bassist LYNN SORENSEN, and drummer RYAN HOYLE (COLLECTIVE SOUL).
Thanks to Jane Yin of JSY Public Relations for hooking us up.
    *The NIGHTLIFE/LIGHTHOUSE Rock Report is also available online @, as well as the 107.7 The
LAKE website (

****************PEACE and Harmonies******************

MARK FARNER (Grand Funk Railroad)
Club Infinity
Saturday September 8th, 2007

One of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s most prolific power trios was born right here in the U. S. A. in Flint, Michigan.  During the 1970’s GRAND FUNK RAILROAD would dominate FM radio selling over twenty-five million albums with such classics as “Some Kinda Wonderful”, “I’m Your Captain”, “Bad Time”, and of course their #1 hits “The Loco-motion” and rock anthem “We’re an American Band”.
    *While the band was steam rolling the Billboard charts it was their potent live performances that hit fans like a runaway freight train, packing arenas and stadiums worldwide. In 1971 the band sold out “Shea Stadium” in a record breaking seventy-two hours a Mark that still stands tall today.
    *Singer/songwriter and expert guitar engineer MARK FARNER would strap it on and let it rip night after night as GRAND FUNK would earn the reputation of being loud and proud.
    *FARNER and his unbridled enthusiasm has spent his entire career sharing and caring for people through his music with both GRAND FUNK RAILROAD as well as his successful solo career. FARNER and the N’rG band show no signs of off heading off the tour tracks anytime soon.
    They will be headlining the “DOIN IT FOR DEAN” Benefit show this Saturday September 8th at
    The Rock Report had the privilege to speak with MARK from the road about his upcoming stop here in Buffalo this Saturday.
    Ross CAT- Thank so much for taking sometime out from your FARNER family vacation, we really appreciate it.

    MARK FARNER- No problem at all brother, my pleasure. I just got back from a walk up in the REDWOODS here in the
Sequoia Mountains with the grandkids and it was absolutely beautiful.
    *It’s times like this with my family that I cherish, getting back to mother nature.  It gives me the strength and clearness that I need to keep up with the business end of the industry.  More importantly it gives me a mental balance that keeps me passionate and connected to the music and the fans.

    Ross CAT-
Nightlife was fortunate enough to cover the recent Classic Rock Cares Tour  for the JOHN ENTWISTLE Foundation ( tour at B.B. Kings in which you where one of the artists to donate there time and talent.
    *The set you performed was absolutely inspiring talk about that and what it means to you to represent the foundation?
MARK FARNER- For all of the generously talented musicians involved on the tour it really is important to give back in anyway possible.  It’s a responsibility that everyone in the foundation takes very seriously.
    *Music is a communicator that has an unparalleled freedom about it; the spirit of music allows artists to broach the soul, we can reach people and places that mere words can not.
    *Every show that we played had a magical vibe to it; although this little tour has ended we are all looking forward to getting back out again on behalf of the JOHN ENTWISTLE Foundation soon.
    *As you mentioned the talent on the tour is unquestionable, but to me it’s the heart of each artist that makes it something special.

    Ross CAT-
I noticed that you had the chance to tour with JOHN ENTWISTLE during the 1995-96 RINGO STARR All Stars Tour.  What was it like sharing the stage with “The Ox”?
That’s right, I’ve been blessed from day one in my career to be able to surround myself with extraordinarily talented musicians. That’s something that I’ve never taken for granted, when given the opportunity to share that by helping others I’ll be there.
    *JOHN was of course one of a kind as a player but more importantly as a man.  He was a wonderfully kind hearted soul; I can’t imagine he would want anything else then for us to be doing what we are doing on his behalf.  I consider it an honor to help keep his spirit alive through the
    Ross CAT- Let’s talk about your illustrious career; your accomplishments with GRAND FUNK RAILROAD have reached legendary status, I was really impressed with your last solo record in 2006 “For the People” where once again you Rock with passion and relevance.
    *You’ve become a voice of a few generations through your music does it get discouraging as an artist to see our leaders continue to make the same mistakes at the expense of its people?
MARK FARNER-Your right in that respect, it’s almost like déjà vu with the current situation in the
Middle East.
    *I truly am a PATRIOT and a proud one at that so that is a role that relish with great earnest.
    -*We need to feed back into THIS country, to keep the power of freedom and truth among the people who covet it the most.
    -*For those of us who still put our heart and soul into this land we do so to give our children growing up here the chance to experience the American dream.

    Ross CAT-
I noticed that you dedicate an entire page on your official website ( to the veterans and the active soldiers.
    *I think it’s awesome that you recognize those who are put in harms way through no fault of their own to protect our freedoms
Thank you for saying so; that something that’s been in my heart since I lost so many friends in
Vietnam.  The reality of war hit me very hard as a young man watching my childhood friend’s leave and never return home.
    *That really smacked me in the side of the head and jarred something in me to try and compel people, to provoke them to think about what is happening to our young men and women, and for what.
    *It’s our responsibility as AMERICANS to question why so many lives are being lost and that’s what I do every opportunity I’m given.

    Ross CAT-
While there is no appropriate segue from such a serious subject lets talk a little about the amazing run of GRAND FUNK RAILROAD.
The band enjoyed such enormous success in a short period of time (1969-1976) with the chart topping songs and dynamic live performances, how did the band manage to keep focused on the music at such a young age?
MARK FARNER-Like most things in life timing had a lot to do with it, we all had the same intent back then and things just kind of popped for us.
    *We really had a great promoter in the late TERRY KNIGHT, who was our first manager.  While honesty wasn’t one of his best traits he sure did promote the hell out of the band.
    *Like many bands from that era we didn’t always reap the rewards of our hard work and creativity like we should have.  Being so young and naive we didn’t have a clue about publishing rights and things like that. Yet it was that youth and naivety that was the artistic passage that lead to all the wonderful music we made together; so it was kind of a blessing and a curse at the same time.

    Ross CAT-
The summer of 1973 would see GRAND FUNK steam roll to #1 on the Billboard charts with the albums title track the immortal Rock ‘n’ Roll anthem “We’re an American Band”.
The band enlisted the abstract musical mind of TODD RUNDGREN to produce that album, what did he bring to the studio and the production of this beloved body of work?

Todd brought GRAND FUNK a freshness to the production, something I think we had been missing from the inside.  He managed to change the sound of the music without changing the overall tone of our band, which is no easy task.
    *In my own personal opinion TODD is a musical genius; I really dig his stuff both as an artist and producer.  He really put some magic in that record and made it something special.

    Ross CAT-
Last summer you had quite the busy year with the release of the GRAND FUNK RAILROAD Greatest Hits CD/DVD package.  What was it like compiling the footage and reaching back in time especially revisiting that famous day at “Shea Stadium” in 1971?
It was a unique experience, while watching the tape I could flash back to being on stage and looking out at the sea of people. I remember being able to hear the audience over my amplifier.
    *That day will be etched in my memory for as long as I live it’s an indelible feeling.  That visual even brought back the euphoric feeling; I remember thinking “all these people came to see US”?

    Ross CAT-
You also released a solo record last year ample titled “For the People”.  The new songs embody your signature soulful guitar grooves combined with your salient songwriting resolve. Give us a little insight on that record?

    MARK FARNER-I always enjoy the creative process of making music.  A lot of those songs I’ve had ready to go for quite sometime but just never got around to recording until last year.
    *The songs are taken to another level with the consummate band of rockers the N’rG (energy) band kicking it with me:
LAWRENCE BUCKNER on bass, HUBERT CRAWFORD on drums, and PAUL O’JIBWAY on Keys and Sax.
    Ross CAT-
You have such an extraordinary history with your original GRAND FUNK band mates DON BREWER and MEL SCHACHER is there any chance of the three of you ever taking the stage together again?
Well one thing I’ve learned in this business is to never say never again.  In fact I was hoping to put the original line-up back together last summer to promote the Greatest Hits CD/DVD but it was rejected.
    That’s O.K. I understand, at least I know in my heart I was willing to try to give our fans what they deserve while we are still able to do so.

    Ross CAT-
Lastly Mark, once again “Your Some Kinda Wonderful” when it comes to helping out others.  You will be headlining the “DOIN IT FOR DEAN” Motorcycle Run  this Saturday at CLUB INFINITY in memory of the late DEAN BROWN who passed away earlier this year.   Proceeds will benefit the
    MARK FARNER- It’s these types of shows that really inspire me.  I lost my Mother to cancer some fifteen years ago and to this day my Step Dad has taken that loss and turned into a positive helping other families cope.
    I’ve always enjoyed my visits to the
Buffalo area and we are looking forward to helping the BROWN family honor DEAN’S life.  Hope to see everyone there.
    The ROCK REPORT would like to thank MARK and LESIA FARNER for being so gracious with their time in helping make this event a huge success.

***************PEACE and Harmonies********************

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