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Micheal Schenker Fest: Rock And Roll Resurrection

Micheal Schenker Fest: Rock And Roll Resurrection

The MICHAEL SCHENKER FEST studio album Resurrection has arrived – and what a monumental adventure the legendary guitarist and his fantastic crew has bestowed upon the world at large.  In addition to Michael Schenker and the three M.S.G. singers Gary BardenGraham Bonnet and Robin McAuley, you can also hear Doogie White (Michael Schenker’s TEMPLE OF ROCK) as well as musicians Steve Mann (guitars, keyboards), Ted McKenna (drums) and Chris Glen (bass). There are also some guest appearances from Kirk HammettWayne Findlay and co-producer Michael Voss-Schoen. And with Michael Schenker Fest about to make their way to the States for a full on tour, expect to hear a whole lot from the new album as well as all the classic MSG tunes in what will surely be the rock and roll performance of a lifetime.

Highwire Daze Online recently interviewed the one and only Michael Schenker to discuss the just unleashed Resurrection, the upcoming tour, and other grand and glorious moments from a truly brilliant career.  Read on rock and roll warriors…

What are you looking forward to the most about bringing Michael Schenker Fest to The States?
It’s the first time we are 4 singers and it’s a travel show. It’s the beginning of the release of our new album. I haven’t been to the states for a long-time, touring so it’s going to be fantastic.

How difficult has it been to coordinate everyone’s schedule first to do this new album and then to do this tour?
My son is doing a lot of the coordination and he is doing a very good job. Also, you have to take it easy and not force too much. The thing is, my organization is very straightforward. Everybody gets paid on time. People are being asked ‘can you please make a note on that date’ or ‘in the spirit of time and we will let you know ASAP if it is going to happen or not’ and then they immediately be told ‘okay you can book your own things’ or we say ‘Okay we are on.’ Basically, it is a trust thing and coordinates with the offers that are coming in and what the guy is currently doing. Sometimes you just have to dance and play around with it. For some reason, it has all worked out so far in a very positive way.

What has it been like to work with Graham Bonnet again?
He has still got a fantastic voice and he is doing a great job. When I hear the ad libs to Night Moods it is fantastic.

And I’m sure he has changed a whole lot since you last worked with him and now.
Yeah, of course. We all get older and wiser and things are much easier to deal with. It is a lot of work but the fun aspect is much bigger than the work.

When you look back, what do you think of your collaboration with Robin McCauley and did you keep in touch with him over the years?
No I don’t really keep in touch but I have been doing on and off a little bit here and a little bit there with Robin. Maybe we were hired by the same people for the same project and we ended up on the same song here and there. Since the 90’s, it’s a 38-year period, in comparison to that many years, very, very little. But, everyone carries on doing their thing. So basically, with Robin that started in 86’ and the idea was to take responsibility equally with me. It was like a partnership, 50/50, and I had never done that before.

After Gary left, I tried that experience. There were also more songwriters involved, we had American management. It became different than what I was used to doing even though I carried on playing my guitar the way I do. Of course, if you have other people involved in writing, but we had a lot of great songs out there in those days that had hit potential that made it quite far in the charts. It was more like a commercial period but the main focus for me was just to see what it was like having a partnership 50/50 and in the early beginning of 91’ we separated and we went our own ways.

What do you think made your work with Gary so successful and iconic?
The thing with Gary is, I just left UFO and with Scorpions helped open the doors for America for them and then had a big struggle getting away from The Scorpions because they wanted to keep me but my vision was to do something. I was 23 years old, I experienced the success at its highest level and I was grateful that I was given that experience. So I was able to make a decision if I wanted to stay up there and hold on to fame and be in the limelight, or just to drop out or just kind of be more low key and look for an unknown singer with a great voice.  Experiment with music, do things at my own pace and do what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it and how I wanted to do it.

I‘ve heard the new album and it’s fantastic. It’s definitely some of your best work. That cover art, I love it. Who did the cover art photography? How much input did you have on it?
The funny thing is after we finished the DVD I was thinking of the next thing. Then I was thinking of the next thing and Michael Schenker Fest in the studio came to mind. I had a really funny concept, I saw myself on a big table with ever