George Dionne of Rock Is Life recently conducted an interview with former MEGADETH and current F5 bassist David Ellefson. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow:

Rock Is Life: What are the differences working with a smaller label like Deadline and a major label like Capitol?

David Ellefson: "One of the things is that I was able to actually license [the album] as opposed to just signing a direct artist deal. I started on an indie label (Combat), and the idea then was hurry up, run don't walk into a major label immediately, because in those days indies were just used as a stepping stone. Now it's ironic that I'm back licensing new work that I'm doing through indie labels essentially, but I tell ya, between JVC, Mascot, and Deadline, I feel like it's a major label push with the radio, publicity, marketing and distribution of it. Ultimately, it comes down to how well is a company going to promote it and can they make sure they can get it out to the stores so people can actually buy the thing. In this day and age, the indie record labels basically rule the roost in the record industry. There is only four or five major distribution networks from the majors, the rest of them are all indie labels anyway. I've been very pleased with the JVC, Mascot, Deadline release that we had around the world with F5."

Rock Is Life: Will F5 tour in support of this album?

David Ellefson: "We were just talking about that this week. We're having those discussions now that the album has been out for a couple of weeks. We're starting to get some good reactions from radio, and everybody is responding favorably to the album. Were looking at trying to get some shows together and get the thing out on the road."

Rock Is Life: Weren't you tied to a band with [rapper] Vanilla Ice?

David Ellefson: "I was not. What happened was Dan Spitz (ANTHRAX) had contacted me because he was doing some stuff with Nicko McBrain (IRON MAIDEN) because they were neighbors down in Florida. They asked me if I wanted to play on it. It sounded like a cool idea, could be fun. Then Dan had gone in and had Vanilla Ice sing on some tracks. I never got in the room with those guys. I never played with them. I had absolutely no involvement with it; zero involvement with it. All of a sudden my name was attached to it as if I was a member. I have a mantra which is, I don't join any band without first getting in a room and playing some music with them first."

Rock Is Life: Is it true that you're only permitted to mention your involvement with MEGADETH once when you promote yourself?

David Ellefson: "I haven't said it at all yet."

Rock Is Life: Does your answer qualify or can I say it again?

David Ellefson: "Actually, all kidding aside, I prefer not to even talk about it. Things are peaceful right now and I just kind of want to keep everything totally on the up and up."

Rock Is Life: That's cool. Let me run these [former band] questions by you and you can decide if you want to talk about them. If Dave [Mustaine] called you tomorrow and wanted to bury the hatchet and get the classic [MEGADETH] lineup back, would you do it?

David Ellefson: "Yes, I would."

Rock Is Life: Last year Capitol Records remastered and remixed the MEGADETH catalog. Do you think that was a good thing, or like me do you believe it changes history and deprives the listener of the raw, original sound that the music is remembered for?

David Ellefson: "Well, I guess it can go both ways. Sometimes something old made new is exciting and fresh again, other times the originals are classics too."

Rock Is Life: That would be good, but with the remasters, Capitol is phasing out the originals all together.

David Ellefson: "I would like to think that at some point you would have the option to buy both, but I don't know how that's going to go."

Read the entire interview at Rock-Is-Life.com.


Posted in: News


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