Rob Wylde of Tigertailz
Hailing from Cardiff Wales, Tigertailz have been around the rock n roll circuit for over 30 years blasting out fans with glam rock at its finest. Throughout that time, they have broken up, got back together, had a death of original member bassist Pepsi Tate, and have had a mix of musicians in and out of the band. Their beloved fans have stuck by them through it all. And now, they have a new voice. Coming from Nottingham England, with his distinctive catchy guitar riffs and super tenacious – lively-rock-pop-glam- punk vocals singer Rob Wylde is about to step this band up even one more notch. I have been to many of his shows when he was in Sins of America. Trust me when I say, this guy, will blow you all away with his expertise, love for music and charisma.
So let’s start at the beginning. What was the first record/song/band that you heard as an adolescent that made you say to yourself, this is exactly what I want to do with my life?There were actually quite a few. Growing up, although my parents weren’t particularly musical and certainly didn’t play any instruments, music was always played in and around the house all the time. My dad loved Country music and loved artists like John Denver and Dolly Parton whilst my mum was more into Elvis and then T Rex. My dad was also a big fan of Abba and on Sunday afternoons whilst my mum was cooking dinner in the kitchen me and my older sister would sit in the front room and listen to Abba records with dad. And I think that’s where my love of hooks, pop sensibilities and melodies came from. Those guys were geniuses in that department! But I think the first song that really caught my attention was “Stand And Deliver” by Adam Ant which I heard on the radio when I was 4 years old. Then a couple of weeks later I saw the video on a kids T.V show whilst I was sat eating my cornflakes one Saturday morning. I was totally blown away, with not only the song, but also with just how cool he looked! I couldn’t tell whether he was a boy, whether he was a girl, whether he was an alien. I had no idea. But whatever he or she was, I loved it and I think that that’s were the initial spark came from.
A couple of years later I discovered Duran Duran through my older sister who, like every other girl on the planet at the time, was totally crazy about them. She’d play their “Seven And The Ragged Tiger” album over and over again in her room and I think I kinda got brainwashed with it because before long, I started to love it too! Whenever my sister went out with her friends, I’d sneak into her room and borrow her cassette and I’d listen to it over and over again. And once again, in addition to their music, I was also bowled over with just how cool they looked. All 5 of them looked incredible! After seeing the video for “The Reflex” I was completely sold. It was at that point that I decided that I wanted to become a musician and do what they were doing and I also wanted to look like them. They became my idols! From there me and my sister would religiously sit and watch “Top Of The Pops” every Thursday night on T.V and would sit and listen to Radio 1’s top 40 countdown on the radio every single Sunday afternoon without fail. From there I discovered all kinds of great bands and artists. In addition to Duran Duran, I became a fan of acts like A-ha and Nick Kershaw, tons of stuff. In 1986, the floodgates well and truly opened when I first heard Europe’s “The Final Countdown” and a couple of week’s later, Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love A Bad Name”. From there it was goodbye to Duran Duran and hello to long hair, tight pants, loud guitars and the fabulous world of Rock N’ Roll!
How old were you when you realized you were able to sing?
The funny thing is I didn’t initially start out singing. For some reason I was always drawn to the drummer when I was a little kid. Roger Taylor was my hero at the time, so I wanted to become a drummer like him. I’d sit and watch him and other drummers on T.V and would study how they played drums and quickly got the hang of how it all worked. From the age of 7 I would constantly hound my parents for a drum kit every Christmas and birthday that came around but they were having none of it. So I started to make my own drum kit’s out of my dad’s home made wine barrels, biscuit tins, shoe boxes. Basically anything that would sound like a drum when I hit it. My grand-dad bought me a real pair of drumsticks for Christmas one year and I would sit in my bedroom and drum along to the radio for hours on end whilst all my friends would be outside playing football. When it became pretty clear that my parents weren’t going to relent and buy me a drum kit, my dad suggested that I played a “nice instrument like the guitar” – his words, not mine. I decided that after drums, guitar was probably the coolest instrument to play so on my 9th birthday I was given a classical guitar. Singing was something that came later and something that just came naturally to me really, especially when I started to write songs. Although I did sing in the school choir! haha.
Did you take guitar/ vocal lessons? Or did you just learn on your own?
When my 9th birthday came around I was expecting to get a nice, new, shiny electric guitar. Instead I was given a classical wooden guitar with nylon strings which are notoriously hard to play! I started taking lessons every week with a boring old guy who lived around the corner and didn’t really like it much at first. I was taught all the boring stuff that kids hate learning, like the major and minor scales etc then I went onto learning major and minor chords, bar chords and from there started I started learning how to play real songs. But instead of being taught the stuff that I wanted to play, I was taught stuff like “Greensleeves” and “Annie’s Song” by John Denver which pleased my dad but bored the hell out of me!
After a while I was really losing interest fast and was still way more interested in becoming a drummer than a guitarist, so for my 10th Christmas my parents bought me my first electric guitar and a little amp to go with it. In addition to that, my parents found me a new guitar teacher who was a lot younger and a lot cooler! From there I started to learn the type of stuff that I actually wanted to play and at the age of 11, I wrote my first song. As soon as I discovered song writing I fell head over heels in love with the guitar. I took lessons for a good 3 or 4 years after that, and for my age, I was really good but I never really aspired to be a lead guitarist. I wasn’t really interested in doing solo’s and stuff like that. I was much more interested in writing songs and using the guitar as a tool to do that, then singing along to them with the lyrics that I’d written. By the time I’d hit 15 I was pretty much as good a guitarist as the guy who was teaching me, so I stopped taking lessons from that point on-wards and figured everything else out for myself.
As I got older and started singing in bands, I took a few lessons which taught me the basics of warming up, breathing right and where to sing from etc but once again, after the basics were covered, I pretty much worked out the rest for myself. I think you can teach anyone a musical instrument to some degree but in the end it really comes down to whether the person has a natural ability to do it or not. It’s in your gene’s really.
What was the first band you played with? How old were you?
I joined the school Rock band as drummer when I was 14. We were called Nightmare and we were just horrible. The band was a 4 piece but had 2 guitar players as neither of them would back down and play bass haha. We started out playing school concerts and entered a few talent contest’s where we’d always finish last because we were so bad! We mainly played covers but then I started bringing in some of my original songs and we added them to the set. We’d also play party’s and I remember once playing one of the guitarist’s grandma’s 70th birthday party and got paid £10 each. We thought we’d made it!
After I left school, I decided to leave Nightmare and joined a band at college called Father Time as their singer but that didn’t last long. When I was 17 I formed what turned out to be my first serious band called Inside Out, again playing drums, and that was when I got my first real taste of getting in a van and traveling up and down the country playing shows in pubs and clubs. It was also my first time in a real recording studio. We released a 6 track E.P in 1997 and got some coverage in the press including a few reviews in Kerrang magazine which was big time to me! That lasted 5 years and really showed me the ropes and the “do’s and don’ts” of being in a band. Inside Out was were I cut my teeth really. Following that, I moved to Nottingham and started singing again. This time in the Melodic Rock band China Doll. We were together for about 3 years, released a CD and got to tour with Danger Danger which was amazing. After that went pear shaped, I met Jamie Delerict in late 2003 and we formed TCC.
How did Teenage Casket Company all come about? Is TCC on hiatus or are you guys done?
My previous band China Doll had just split when I met Jamie Delerict in late 2003. His band Panic were on their last legs too and we just seemed to be in the same place at that moment in time. I was always into the 80’s Hair band stuff whilst Jamie was into Punk but we both had that “do or die” attitude when it came to our music. Music was our number 1 thing in life and we were both so determined to do something. Jamie was the first guy that I’d met in my life who was as driven as me. We didn’t care about jobs, girlfriends or leading any kind of normal life. It was just music, music, music 24/7 and I think we both found each other to be kindred spirits in that respect. Despite our commitment to the cause, I wasn’t really sure that it would work musically when we started working together but to both of our surprise, it did! I brought some melodies, hooks and a commercial side to Jamie’s Punkier stuff and he added some grit, attitude and snarl to my more melodic, poppy stuff. It just worked plain and simple. I guess in a way, we were trying to do what bands like American Hi-Fi, Marvelous 3 and Lit were doing at the time, which was basically take the big choruses and hooks of the 80’s and add that punk attitude to it. That’s basically what the whole Powerpop/ Pop Punk movement was all about really.
We added Rob Lane on bass and Spike on drums and by late 2003 we had a band. From there we released 2 CD’s “Dial It Up” in 2005 and “Eat Your Heart Out” in 2006 and toured our asses off, playing 150 shows a year in the UK, USA and Europe. We also released 3 promo videos for “Don’t Look At Me Like That”, “Without You” and “(You Only Love Me) When You Hate Me”. We took a break in 2008 and regrouped in 2009 for a tour which was to be Jamie’s last as he left the band later that year. We continued as a 3 piece for a couple of years and in 2011 American label Jamsync Music released “Best Kept Secret” which featured the best songs from our first 2 releases plus the single at the time “Best Friend Is My Radio”. In 2012 we recruited a new guitarist in Dave Kerr and in 2013 we released a new album “Still Standing” which received rave reviews all over the world.
The band is very much still together and a going concern. Unfortunately we’re not out playing as much as we used to or would like to be but that’s just a sign of the times really because none of the bands that came out when we did (of which there’s probably only 2 or 3 remaining) are either! It’s sucks but it’s just the way it is. We have shows booked over the summer and Autumn and still play about 30 shows a year, sometimes more but right now we’re currently editing together an hour long “Behind The Music” style documentary on the history of the band. 2015 marks the 10 year anniversary of our first album being released, so we thought we’d do something special to commemorate it. It features interviews with past and present band members, fans, friends, bands, artists that we’ve worked with etc and it’s all going to be edited together with rare live footage, promo videos, old tour posters/ photos. In 10 years, we’ve amassed a “wealth” of stories. Some good, some bad but this documentary will document the whole story from the start up until the present day. We’re hoping to have it ready for release in September/ October and we’ll be playing some shows around it to promote it. We’re also hoping to release some new material before the end of the year too.
Rewinding a few years back, some of your fans may or may not know that you had a band over here in Boston called Sins of America that was getting fairly well known opening for bands like L.A. Guns, Bang Tango and Britny Fox. How did you feel about the music scene in the United States vs England?
At the end of 2007 TCC was pretty burned out so we decided to take a break to all go and pursue our own things for a while. This led me to jumping on a plane and heading to Boston. I’d thought about starting something new in the UK but didn’t really see the point as I’d have just ended up playing the same venues that TCC had been playing for the previous 3 years and the prospect of doing something in the U.S had always appealed to me. When I landed in December of 2007 I literally knew 2 people, my girlfriend at the time and her best friend. But prior to flying out I’d asked around about musicians out in Boston and was put in touch with a drummer called Shawn Vincent. We emailed back and forth for a while and seemed to have a lot in common music wise. Turns out that Shawn and Chris Kelly (who went on to play guitar) were both at TCC’s show in Boston when we’d toured there the previous year so they already knew of me and TCC and were fans. We managed to put Sins Of America together in no time. We found bassist Evan Deane around Christmas time and by January, about 5 weeks after I’d arrived, the band was together. Musically it wasn’t a million miles away from TCC but at the same time a little more American sounding with a way Glammier image. We really nailed that side of things, looked like a gang and totally stood out from all the other bands on the Boston scene at the time. We mainly played around Boston but also headed out to New York, New Hampshire and Rhode Island and would play at least 4 or 5 shows a month for 3 years both headlining are own shows as well as opening for the likes of L.A Guns, Faster Pussycat, White Lion, Britny Fox and Dangerous Toys to name a few.
In May of 2008 we caught the attention of a promotions company called Illumina who put a fair amount of time and money into the band including the release of our debut E.P in November of that year, a short tour and a promo video. Then things started to fall apart bit by bit. Sins Of America were every bit the Rock N’ Roll band in “every” sense of the word and without doubt the most reckless band I’ve ever played with. In the 3 years we were together, 2 of us spent time in jail, there were drug problems, alcohol problems, divorces, you name it and at times it was just total debauchery! And that was kinda the downfall of the band in the end. And I’m not blaming just the other guys here because I was just as reckless at the time as well. Thankfully we all survived and are in much better places nowadays. I’m still close to Evan and Shawn who are still playing music and doing great. A German label called Mighty Monster Records recently released an album of our demos called “Demos For The Deranged” which is available via the Sins Of America Facebook page as well as online via ITunes and CD baby.
In terms of the UK versus the USA, to be totally honest, playing wise there wasn’t much difference. At the club level that we were at anyway but I did notice a “Huge” difference just in general as to how big Rock music still is in the USA. Rock N’ Roll is a way of life in the States. I’d turn on the radio and T.V and every single station was playing Rock music 24/7. We don’t get that in the U.K at all. If you want it, you really have to look hard for it. Then I’d go and see band’s like Poison headlining 10,000 seat arena’s every night when in the UK they wouldn’t even be able to sell out a club. Rock N’ Roll just seemed/ seems so much bigger over there.
I know you also front another band called Poizon. What’s the status on that?
Poizon just started out as a fun way of earning some decent money really. Everybody in the music business knows that there’s little to no money in it whatsoever, and it’s almost impossible to make a living out of it these days. I literally know hundreds of musicians all around the world and “none” of them make a living out of playing in one band alone. To be able to do that, you have to have your fingers in a lot of different pies. So that mean’s playing in multiple bands, doing session work, engineering, producing, teaching and doing the covers/ tribute thing. I’ll happily admit that It’s a sad state of affairs when cover and tribute bands make 4 and sometimes 5 times more money than original acts but that’s the reality of it and we all have to pay rent and put food on the table at the end of the day!
I was never really into doing the cover band thing, although I have done it from time to time in the past, but I thought that I could put a really good Poison tribute band together and make it work. I know that there’s a ton of them out in the States, but Poizon is the only Poison tribute in the whole of the UK and Europe so we kinda tapped into a niche market. Of course Poison were never as big in the UK as they were in the States but they were certainly big enough for a while over here to get a ton of people out to our shows. And seeing as Poison haven’t toured in the U.K since 1990, there is a market for us! We focus solely on the “classic CC Deville” era of the band, in other words just the first 3 albums. In addition to a full 90 minute set we’ve also put a hell of a lot of time and money into making it as close to seeing Poison circa 1988-1990 as possible with a great stage show that includes lasers, bombs, and customized guitars and drums etc…it’s a hell of a lot of fun and we all grew up loving Poison so it was a no brainer really, and the money doesn’t suck either! We’re all super busy in multiple other projects outside of Poizon but we still manage to play about a dozen or more show’s a year.
So tell me, whom musically inspires you? What are your top 5 favorite bands?
Kiss – Hand’s down my favourite band of all time. I’m somewhat of a Kiss freak and love every era of the band including the 80’s stuff as I discovered them in 1987 through the “Crazy Nights” album. And although I love mainly the classic 70’s stuff, “Crazy Nights” would still be in my top 5 Kiss albums. Paul Stanley is also my favourite singer, greatest Rock N’ Roll front man of all time and my ultimate hero, so I think you get the picture haha! Playing with Kiss and meeting and talking to them last year was the highlight of my life so far!
Def Leppard – How can you argue with “Hysteria”? Every single song on that album was pretty much a hit single. I’m pretty sure 7 out of 10 of the tracks on there were anyway and who can do that?! “Love Bites” would be in my top 10 songs of all time as well. Just a class band that always produce great music and never fail me!
Danger Danger – Massively under-rated Melodic rock band from the late 80’s. It’s no secret that I am the walking encyclopedia of Hair Metal, and I love all that shit but these guys were always a cut above the rest. Like Leppard, D2 wrote incredibly fun, melodic, hook laden American commercial rock that should have been huge! They took what bands like Survivor and Loverboy did (both of whom I loved) and added some attitude! Massive influence on me and over the years I’ve gotten to know bassist Bruno Ravel, who has always been a big supporter of TCC so that’s an honour right there!
Bon Jovi – Although they haven’t released anything of any note for over 10 years and have turned into a dull, corporate machine, their first 4 albums are landmark albums to .Especially “Slippery When Wet” and “New Jersey” but even “7800 Farenheit” had it’s moments too. Those albums definitely sum up my childhood/ adolescence. Bon Jovi was also the first band that I’d sing along to as a 10 year old kid in my bedroom. In addition to that, both TCC and even Sins Of America have been compared to classic Bon Jovi so on a writing level, they’ve always been a big influence on me as well. Just wish they’d make a Hard Rock album again but I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon.
Cheap Trick – Just the perfect blend of Pop and Rock, enough said!
If you could be a stand in, for any band, just for one show. Who would it be and why?
It would have to be Kiss circa 1977! Just because I can’t imagine how insane that time must have been for them. Being the biggest band in America, selling millions and albums and selling out arena after arena every night. But I’d want my own character and make up. So maybe I’d be the “Tiger”. I always thought you could’ve done a great make up design with that idea!
Everyone has that one band or singer, that maybe; you would be embarrassed to admit to liking. What is your biggest guilty pleasure in music?
Well it’s no secret that I’m a massive Pop music fan. I’ve always loved instantly catchy, hooky and melodic music. The type of songs, that once you’ve heard them, you can’t get them out of your head and you end up singing them in the shower or driving your car for days. And as a songwriter that’s what I’m always aiming for. Even the Rock band’s that I grew up loving were always the more poppy/commercial sounding bands. Although I loved a ton of the Sleaze bands like L.A Guns and Vain, I was always more into their look and attitude and I don’t think that bands like that really influenced my writing to be honest. For that I’d always be looking to bands like Def Leppard and Bon Jovi for ideas.
Nowadays, I can hardly find any Rock band’s doing that type of stuff so that’s why I end up listening to so much Pop music and I’ve got to confess that I really like a lot of One Direction stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I “HATE” the concept of it. 5 puppets who clearly can’t play, write or sing but I’m a fan of the songwriters behind them, not them. It’s really funny because the other day I was listening to an album by the band 5 Seconds Of Summer and there’s about 3 songs on that album that sound exactly like TCC! And that’s the thing, the melodies are so strong and the hooks are so big that all you would really need to do is to add some loud ass guitars and some attitude, and you’d have Cheap fucking Trick! Butch Walker is another classic example who has written for everyone from Pink to Katy Perry to Taylor Swift, a million Pop stars and he started out as Guitarist for the Hair band SouthGang. It’s all about the melodies, they’re just sometimes dressed up a little differently that’s all.
With all the traveling you’ve done over the years with touring, what’s your favorite place you’ve been to?
I’ve literally been all over the world and have been lucky enough to visit a bunch of countries that I never would have done if it hadn’t been for my music, so I’m really lucky in that respect. But out of all of them, it would have to be a tie between Italy and the USA.
Italy is one hell of a beautiful country. Lots of history and architecture there. Also my favourite type of food, not to mention the women! I had a lot of fun the last time I was there that’s for sure and I look forward to going back! And America just because it’s my favourite place on earth. I love how everything is bigger and better over there. Everything’s OTT. I love the lifestyle, the people, the weather. I mean what’s not to love about the U.S.A? Having lived in Boston for over 3 years a few years back I got to love America even more and felt very, very at home over there. Much more so that here in the U.K.I also made some amazing friends from my time living out there, most of which I am still very close with to this day and I definitely consider it to be my second home!
I know you’ve written a lot of material for all of the bands you’ve been in. Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspiration just comes from life in general and all of it’s up’s and down’s. But most of the stuff I write about is relationship type stuff which accounts for pretty much 99% of every song written in history. I have a notoriously bad taste in women so I guess that that has really helped over the years haha. I know a couple of my friends who have been happy in one relationship for most of their lives which is ultimately what I would like one day, but at the same time, I don’t think those friends would be all that great at songwriting as they’d have nothing to write about! You do tend to find that when things are at their most fucked up, that’s when you tend to write your best songs! Because what you’re talking about, you’re actually “living” and feeling at that moment you’re writing it, and it’s coming from the heart and those are the songs that people relate to. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve written lots of songs when I’ve been happy and in a good place too but not typically because when you’re happy and content, you’re out being happy and content and having a good time, not sitting on your couch with your acoustic guitar and a beer in your hand!
Now lets talk about what you have going on now. You just landed a new gig as the lead singer for Tigertailz. I know you had already been playing with them but how did you end up becoming the new frontman?
I joined the band at the start of 2012. The original drummer Ace Finchum was actually the guy who brought me in. Tailz were putting the finishing touches to a new line up together at the time and they were looking for a rhythm guitarist to make it into a 5 piece for the first time in their history. Ace got my number from a mutual friend of ours and basically just called me up and said that I was the first guy that had sprung to mind when thinking about who to bring in, so I was obviously really flattered by that. I’d grown up worshiping Tigertailz and had posters of them all over my bedroom wall as a teenager, so to even be in consideration for the job was incredible really. So I spoke to Ace a few times on the phone then spoke to Jay Pepper and that was it, I was in the band! I didn’t even have to audition. That’s one of the advantages of the internet in that you can check guys out before they come down and save time on potential time wasters I guess. They’d both heard of TCC and the other bands that I’d been involved with so they knew that I could play and sing and had the right look going on so a couple of weeks after that initial phone call from Ace, I was on stage shooting the promo video for “Fall In Love Again” and a couple of weeks after that we set off on a European tour. It was all a whirlwind really!
We did a European tour, a short tour of the UK and a couple of festivals with that line up then Ace decided to leave the band and things weren’t really working out with the bass player, so I switched to bass and Matt Blakout who had played in the band for 8 years prior to Ace coming back rejoined the band and that line up was pretty solid for 2 years or more. We once again did Europe, a 3 week tour of the UK, a couple of festivals here and there and of course played 4 shows in the U.S with Kiss last October with that line up. It was all pretty solid until March of this year when Jules Millis, our singer decided to leave the band. Jules lives in Melbourne, Australia and was traveling across the world to tour with us which must have been incredibly exhausting for him and I think that he just got burned out with it all. Understandably really. He also had some personal stuff going on at home so after we played the Hard Rock Hell festival together in Wales in March of this year, he left the band. There was no animosity whatsoever and he left on the best of terms with all of us. Jules has and always will be one of my best friends in the world and right after he sent us the email saying that he was leaving the band, he emailed me and told me to make a promise to him that I would sing so it was nice to get his
blessing and take the torch from him.
How did it feel when the job was offered to you? How did they ask you? I know you’ve mentioned prior that you were always a fan of the band. So was this like a dream come true for you?
When Jules left both Jay and Matt were really gunning for me to sing and with Jules’ blessing I think I always knew that I was going to do it. But at the same time it was a really big decision for me to make and not one to be made lightly so I though long and hard about it before I said yes to doing it and also had a few rehearsals singing with the band as well to see how it sounded. It sounded great and it all just kinda made sense from there really. It’s also been cool for me to be able to bring in Berty Burton, a long time friend of mine in on bass and the band is sounding better than ever even if I do say so myself haha! As a lifelong fan of the band, it’s an honour to now be singing. I have and always will have the up-most respect for Tigertailz and it’s legacy and I’m looking forward to doing the band justice and at the same time also taking it to a new, exciting level! I mean how many people can say that they ended up singing in one of their favourite bands?!!! It’s an honour and not one that I take for granted so I realize how lucky I am but at the same time, anyone who knows me will tell you that I’ve worked my fucking ass off for 20 years to get here, so maybe this is the payoff for all that hard work!
Will Tigertailz be recording any new material with you on vocals? If so, will you be doing any writing for the new record?
Yeah definitely! We currently have about 4 songs already recorded for the next album (one of which I wrote) so there will definitely be a new Tigertailz album coming your way either later this year or early next year. I have written a bunch of songs with Tigertailz in mind so the song writing will be split between me and Jay Pepper I would think. It’s gonna be a monster!
Have you performed yet being the new lead singer? If so, how was the response from the fans?
Not yet but I’m about to. We’ll be playing the Rock N’ Bike festival in Leicester on July 17th which will be our first show with the new line up, then the following night we have a headline show up in Glasgow, Scotland so I’ll let you know what the reaction is like after those shows. All I can say is that I’m ready and raring to go!
Any chance of Tigertailz coming over here to the US for a tour?
Well we made our debut in America last October when we played 3 shows with Kiss and Cheap Trick on the Kiss Cruise in the Bahamas. We also played a show in Miami with L.A Guns and Great White a couple of days beforehand which kicked ass.We loved being out there and would love to come back and do a proper tour of the U.S but it all comes down to someone bringing us over really. In the past we have been offered a couple of festivals out there but with our old singer living in Australia it just wasn’t financially viable to do them but now that we are all based in the UK, that won’t be a problem anymore. So If someone made us a decent offer to come over, (either to tour or just to play a decent festival) we’d be there in a heartbeat. Spread the word and you may see us sooner than you think!
Lastly, what piece of advice would you give to the next generation who want to make it in music?
Stay in school! Hmmm this is a really tough one because I don’t want to sound negative or pessimistic but there really is no future in music. Not making a living out of it anyway. Gene Simmons has gotten so much flack recently for telling it how it is, but everything he’s said in the press is 100% true. It’s sad because there’s always gonna be that 12 year old kid with a tennis racket in his bedroom dreaming of “making it” one day. The reality is that that’s never gonna happen for him or anyone else for that matter. The days of putting a band together and working your ass off to get a record deal, then being able to record 3 albums before you make are done, as are the days of selling a million albums and living in a mansion with a Ferrari. Those days are long gone and are sadly never coming back. And that’s all down to the internet and downloading.
We live in such a different world nowadays and we have to realize that. I mean what kid is going to save up his pocket money to buy an album when he can get it for free? If I was a kid, who knew no different, I’d download it for free too! But beyond that, the magic and mystery of music is all gone as well and websites like Twitter are to blame for that. When I was growing up my idols were like super heroes to me. They were so huge in my mind that they almost didn’t seem real. Nowadays I can log onto Twitter and see what Paul Stanley is having for dinner and that I hate stuff like that. I mean can you imagine Kiss coming out for the first time in 2015 shrouded in the whole mystery of the band, never showing their faces etc..they’d launch the band in the morning and by the afternoon we’d have already seen them without make-up on some social media website. So in reality a band like Kiss would never have made it in this day and age. Similarly with a band like Bon Jovi who took 3 albums before they broke. In today’s day and age, they’d have released their first album, gotten dropped and Jon Bon Jovi would’ve been working in fucking McDonalds! People’s attention spans are also so short nowadays because there’s so much information being thrown at them 24/7 that most kids can’t even sit through a full album and just want a song here and there and have instant access to it. The whole situation is just really sad but that’s the way it is!
So my main piece of advice (apart from staying in school!) would be to only 100% commit yourself to music if it’s something that you “need” to do. Just enjoying and wanting to do it sadly isn’t enough these days. It’s gotta be something that you “need” to do that you can’t live without.