Legendary guitarist Joe Satriani has confirmed that CHICKENFOOT appears to finally be dead, with all four members of the band focusing on other projects for the foreseeable future.
The group, which also included former VAN HALEN singer Sammy Hagar, ex-VAN HALEN bassist Michael Anthony andRED HOT CHILI PEPPERS drummer Chad Smith, has not made a CD in four years and Hagar told Rolling Stone last year that there were no plans to work on a new one in the near future. He explained, "I love making music. But doing it on CHICKENFOOT's level means spending a half million on a record. We write and record for six months. It's a lot of work, and then to not sell many records, it's disappointing. I don't like being disappointed. I like winning."
During an appearance on this past Monday's (June 8) edition of Eddie Trunk's SiriusXM satellite radio show, "Eddie Trunk Live", Satriani said that no progress has been made with respect to CHICKENFOOT working on new music, and he doesn't see that situation changing anytime soon.
"It seems like [CHICKENFOOT is pretty much done], yeah," he said. "It seems like the last couple of years of trying to get another record together has been impossible — just too impossible. And everybody kind of wants to do it, but schedules conspire against it. And I started to feel, sort of like, 'Well, I'm really missing it. I'm missing being in a band and collaborating like that. And if this isn't gonna happen, then I'd really love to keep doing it, so maybe I should find somebody else to do it with.' Which is, you know… It's a sad thing."
According to Satriani, he has consistently pushed for CHICKENFOOT to remain active, even when the other members of the band seemed to be losing interest in keeping the project alive.
"I think I was the one who was always banging on those doors, saying to those guys, 'You've gotta come out and make another record. Let's do it,'" he explained.
Satriani revealed that conflicting schedules were at least partly to blame for CHICKENFOOT's inability to continue, although politics played a part as well.
"I think it was always hard [for us to come together and record and tour]," he said. "I mean, the first record was really fun, 'cause it was a crazy idea, but all the other people that we work with suddenly realized, 'Wow! If this thing takes off, what are we gonna do?' And I think that, sort of, started to… That was the beginning of the first dark cloud, and so the second record was harder to pull off, and it made the third one almost impossible. But maybe for a good thing. I mean, you never know with these things."
He continued: "When we get together and play, like we did… Chad and Sammy and I were playing together at the Acoustic-4-A-Cure benefit about two and a half weeks ago in San Francisco, and that was so much fun; it was great to play with those guys. I think I have a real connection with them. But, at the same time, Sammy's got THE CIRCLE, and their new record is good. Sammy sounds very comfortable there."
Satrani also denied that there were any personal differences between the members of CHICKENFOOT that are standing in the way of the band regrouping for a new record and tour.
"There's great vibes all the way around; everybody loves doing it," he insisted. "I mean, I can't imagine… I really have no excuse, let's put it that way… Honestly, I can't tell you that there's a really good reason why we're not doing it, and that's my complaint, I suppose. I don't understand why anyone would be afraid to try to make new music. I mean, that's our job; that is our only job — to make new music, go out and play music and rock and roll. So anything else is just stuff we shouldn't even think about."
CHICKENFOOT's most recent touring lineup included legendary drummer/musician Kenny Aronoff, who was filling in for Smith while Chad was on the road with RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS.
"III" sold 42,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 9 on The Billboard 200 chart. The band's self-titled debut opened with 49,000 units back in June 2009 to debut at No. 6.
Hagar's current band, THE CIRCLE, plays songs from all eras of its members' lives, including tracks from VAN HALEN and LED ZEPPELIN.