Select Page

Guitarist Siggi Schwarz and The Fire Inside

Guitarist Siggi Schwarz and The Fire Inside

Guitarist Siggi Schwarz and The Fire Inside

German guitar legend Siggi Schwarz presents The Fire Inside, his 11th magnum opus now available worldwide via Pride & Joy Music. In addition to Siggi’s absolutely amazing guitar artistry and composition prowess, all songs on The Fire Inside were co-written and co-produced by native New Yorker and U.S. Army Veteran Dave Schaefer who was stationed in Grafenwoehr, Germany. This inspired collaboration unveils modern day classic rock in it finest hour, and The Fire Inside is certainly an auditory adventure not to be missed.  Highwire Daze recently interviewed Siggi Schwarz to discuss The Fire Inside, the discovery of his dynamic vocalist Dave Schaefer, working with the likes of the one and only Michael Schenker in the past, opening for Scorpions and ZZ Top and a whole lot more!  Read on…

Where are you based out of, and what is the local music scene like there?
In Southern Germany there’s a beautiful county called “Ostalb” (East Alps) what we call home. My hometown is Heidenheim close to Stuttgart. The music scene is very colorful, alive and diverse here. Locally you can find a band or solo artist on every corner with almost every genre you can think of. Not only are some artists internationally known here, but this area attracts artists from all over the world. The appreciation for live music here is massive! Everybody’s looking really forward to when that can happen again.

How did you wind up on Pride & Joy Music?
Most of my albums were released with Sony Music. For The Fire Inside, I wanted to work with a label that mainly focuses on Hard-Rock and Metal. Pride & Joy were obviously the best choice for this production. I’m extremely satisfied with their work and cooperation!

Is there any overall story or concept behind the album title The Fire Inside?
I guess you can say it’s about the burning desire that rockers and metal heads have to enjoy life to the fullest. The music is what fuels us and keeps us going no matter how difficult the circumstances may be. The message on this album is simple “LET’S ROCK!!!”

Tell me about your vocalist Dave Schaefer and what is his background in music and how he became involved with The Fire Inside.
Dave is a US Army veteran that was stationed in Grafenwoehr. I first met him about 10 years ago when we formed a classic rock cover band called Oxford Circus. We discovered quickly that we have a lot in common and have been great friends ever since. Dave is actually a drummer, but from what I know he became a singer/frontman by accident. He’s extremely creative and has an amazingly strong and dynamic voice. Not only that, but he has a super stage presence and puts on unforgettable live performances. His “Fire Inside” has to do perhaps with the Cherokee blood running through his veins.

The idea to produce a rock album with all originals sparked in me due to all the cancelled gigs I had lined up for 2020. Now I had a lot of time to work on some cool Guitar Riffs and song ideas. So I asked Dave, if he would like to collaborate with me. We agreed on trying it out first and then see what happens. After about four hours of jammin‘ we recorded 5 basic instrumental demo tracks that ended up on the album. We knew that we were really on to something here. Dave has also proven himself to be a great producer. He really brought out the best in me and my guitar as well as the overall production.

We’re currently working on songs for the next album and expect to be in the studio by April/May 2021.

Select two songs from The Fire Inside and what inspired the lyrics.
Lockdown Love was inspired of course by our current situation. It’s about staying positive in a negative situation and taking the time to reflect and appreciate the good things in life. The song is a strong reminder of the power of love, should it be for your family, spouse, friends or most of all love for yourself.

Badass is pretty much self-explanatory. The song is a tribute to all those brave souls that go that extra mile and try to beat the odds no matter how difficult the situation.

What has it been like to record and release new music in the middle of a pandemic and so much social unrest in the world?
It fueled our desire to deliver something positive to the world even if it makes a minimal impact. That’s at least better than no impact at all. It has been known from the beginning of man that music has the power to heal. It’s a universal language that simply makes us feel good and brings people together no matter what age, sex, race, belief, nationality, religion or color. We didn’t devote our time to complaining about the whole situation but rather focused on how we can spread badly missed and needed positive vibes. We went totally nuclear recording this album and HAD A BLAST!!! (pun intended)

Any chance of doing any live shows to support The Fire Inside once the pandemic comes to an end?
ABSOLUTELY!!! We’ll be opening for ZZ Top, Toto, Foreigner, Journey, international open-air festivals and basically storm any stage we can attack! Live music is what we live for! When it finally happens there will be no holds barred!

What was it like working with Michael Schenker and do you keep in touch with him?
Michael was already a huge inspiration for me when he played for UFO in the 70’s. I met him first in 2004 when he started accepting my invitations to play on several of my albums. We became friends and toured together as “Siggi Schwarz & Michael Schenker” with our tour band. We also played some of his UFO hits, including Rock Bottom, where we shared the solos equally. That was totally awesome and a huge honor for me. I consequently went on then to produce his albums Tales of Rock n’Roll and In the Midst of Beauty where I put a band together with Simon Phillips, Neil Murray and Don Airey, negotiated a record deal, organized a tour management, helped him move and basically supported him any way I could.

Speaking of Schenkers, a big show you opened for was the legendary Scorpions. What was that experience like?
I’ve known Rudolf Schenker for a long time now and have already opened for The Scorpions a couple of times. It’s always a thrill! Matthias Jabs and I are also friends.

You recently opened for the likes of ZZ Top. How did that show go and did you get to meet or hang out with them at all?
2009 was the first time I supported ZZ Top. Billy Gibbons came on stage in his pajamas to listen to my soundcheck. He said he really admired my guitar playing style and that he would like to have me back as support. He of course kept his word and since then I’ve opened for them with my band for 4 tours in Germany. Billy really likes my Tribute to Gary Moore album (Sony 2011). I’m anxious and really look forward to present The Fire Inside on stage in the opening act for the next ZZ Top European Tour.

What other current bands or projects are you involved with?
Since 2015 I’ve had a Crossover Project called Milestones of Rock where I play with an ensemble of my band and various well known German Philharmonic Orchestras highlighting hits from the 70s and 80s. I produced 2 albums from this project, Milestones I and Milestones II which include Siggi Schwarz & Friends and special guests like Bernie Marsden (Whitesnake), Chris Thompson (ex Manfred Mann’s Earthband Singer), Pete York – Drum Legend (Spencer Davis Group) and many more.

Any final words of wisdom?
I like some quotes from my singer, Dave Schaefer: Rock n‘ roll is like a cup of mojo that’s constantly overflowing and messing things up.”  “DESTROY BOREDOM – KEEP ROCKIN‘ !!!”


(Interview by Ken Morton)

Official Website:

Skip to content