FOZZY/STUCK MOJO Guitarist RICH WARD Records With Rapper BONZ For First Time In Five Years

FOZZY/STUCK MOJO guitarist Rich Ward has posted the following message on his official web site:

"About five months ago, DUKE [Rich's solo project] manager Mark Willis told me about a young female R&B singer from Atlanta that had the goods. A great voice, great look and the right personality for the business. Her dilemma is that she's not completely thrilled with the direction of today’s pop and R&B scene. Although this is the musical direction that she has been pursuing since she started singing, she is more drawn towards being a rock singer.

"After Allison and her manager heard the DUKE demos, they spoke to Mark about having me write some songs for her. After an informal meeting with all parties present, the decision was made to move forward with a partnership and the recording of a demo would be the first step. With all of my song writing currently focused on my solo record, I decided to rework a couple of SICK SPEED [Rich's now-defunct post-STUCK MOJO outfit] tracks that I knew she would sound great on. The songs we chose to record were 'Time and a Place' and 'Can't See Straight'.

"Those of you who are familiar with the original SICK SPEED demo of 'Can't See Straight' know that I did rap vocals for the verses and the original SICK SPEED singer, Eddie, tracked the melodic vocals. After spending some time listening to the vocals that Allison had tracked, I decided that my 'aggro' rap style seemed out of place next to her smooth and laid back style. That's when one of my rare moments of genius hit me. Call Bonz [STUCK MOJO rapper/frontman]!

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"As you know, Bonz and I have had a few phone conversations regarding the new MOJO record. But we haven't worked together in the studio since 1999 and haven't written together since 1997. I knew that we both still had some issues that needed resolving, so I thought this would be the perfect place to collaborate again. Being in a neutral place would give Bonz and I a great opportunity to work together again and to iron out any wrinkles before we start on the MOJO record.

"After explaining the project in a brief phone conversation, Bonz and I both felt hesitantly excited about the prospect of working together again after all these years. He arrived at the studio and, after some pleasantries, we got right to work. I gave him a CD of the riff he was to work on and, after a few minutes of jotting down lyrics while listening to the track, he proceeded to lay down one of the best vocal performance that I have ever heard him deliver!

"I have to say that my previous experiences of working with Bonz in the studio have almost always been unpleasant overall. But this time was much different. He came down with a great attitude and with his game face on. Shawn Grove was engineering the session and the studio's owner, Chaney Brannon, (both longtime friends) commented that it was awesome to be in the room to see Bonz and I working together again. All parties involved were 'feeling it.' So let's hope that this a sign of what's to come. Needless to say, my enthusiasm towards writing and recording a new MOJO record with Bonz are ten times what they were two weeks ago.

"The other part of this week's adventure was the filming of FOZZY's music video for the song 'Enemy'. The concept of the video was written by British filmmaker Paul Hough, who also directed the video. I have to give it up for Paul. He has the perfect demented writing style to put him on the map of horror movie royalty. There are a lot of cool shots and plot devices used in the video but, in the interest of time, I won't detail all of them. Here's the Reader's Digest version of the story.

"Guy with one leg crawls up multiple flights of stairs, catches his wife in the stairwell with another dude, keeps climbing until he gets on the roof where the band is playing and crawls over to the edge. He looks over and then throws himself off to his death. It's the feel good story of the year. Trust me, I fought hard to keep the handicapped from killing themselves in my video. In the end they did agree to film two different endings to appease me, but we all know what's going to happen. Phone rigs, 'Hey Rich, MTV loves the amputee suicide ending, so we're gonna go with that one.'

"How a band can go from wearing spandex and wigs to killing off the handicapped in two short years makes me wonder if there is hope for humanity. I am well aware of the fact that there is a special place in hell for those of us who [email protected]#k with the handicapped. I only hope that when I leave this Earth, that there is a Post-It note at the Pearly Gates reminding interested parties that I thought it was a bad idea.

"On the upside, the video is going to be a work of art and filming it was mucho (that's Spanish) fun. All the scenes involving the band were shot on the roof of a building in downtown San Diego. Those of you who have never been to San Diego should drop what you're doing and go NOW! It is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and even the ridiculous cost of living is well worth it; even if just for the weather. So, obviously, hanging out all day on top of a skyscraper, overlooking the ocean in the beautiful southern California sunshine made a great day even better. In addition, the cast and crew were complete professionals and a pleasure to work with making it one of the best video/film shoots that I have ever been a part of."

Read the rest of Ward's posting and check out photos from FOZZY's "Enemy" video shoot at this location.

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