antiMUSIC's Morley Seaver recently conducted an interview with SAVATAGE/JON OLIVA'S PAIN mastermind Jon Oliva. An excerpt from the chat follows:antiMUSIC: Your last record was two years ago. Can you tell us what led up to this record [JON OLIVA'S PAIN's "Maniacal Renderings"] and how it all came together? I understand there's an interesting element to this story. Jon Oliva: Well yeah, the first [JON OLIVA'S PAIN] record I did, I mean I started doing this whole thing mainly because of the TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA stuff and it was taking a whole lot of time away from the SAVATAGE guys since they all play in the orchestra. So I came up with this idea for an avenue for me to put music out again because I was kinda just sitting around writing a lot and wasn't really doing anything. So the first time was kind of like a rush job. More like a rush job. I didn't really spend a lot of time on it. I just wanted to get something out, because it had been like four years, three or four years before I'd had any kind of release out. So it did OK and then it led up to doing the second one. And, um, you know, the first one did pretty good. You know people liked it and stuff. So it was, it warranted them to do another one. You know the interesting thing about this one is that we found some lost writing tapes my brother had given me a long time ago. And I actually pulled some stuff off of those, things that no one had ever heard before, that we never used with SAVATAGE or anything, and incorporated them into this record. So that's kind of been the thing that a lot of people have been talking about because it's kind of a cool thing. And also it's been a long time since we'd heard anything from [late SAVATAGE guitarist] Criss [Oliva]. antiMUSIC: Are you a touring kind of guy or do you prefer to just write and record? Jon Oliva: I'm a studio guy. I love to play for people. But everything that goes along with touring is really a nightmare. Especially going overseas. So it's a sacrifice you have to make, because I love to play and if I could just be like "I Dream of Jeannie", laughs, I would just blink and show up five minutes before show time. I'd tour...I'd never stop touring. But it's the flying around, and the shitty hotels and you know now you have all the shit with the terrorists going on and the people over there are just a little creepy sometimes. You know, when you go over there…I was just over there when they had the thing where they broke up the plot of blowing up the 10 airplanes flying from Europe to over here. Well we were booked on one of them. (Laughs) So that kinda...when shit like that hits happens, it kinda hits you. When 9/11 happened we were one tour. We were in California at a rest stop in our tour bus. We were on like a whole string of shows coming back to the east coast, and the next thing we know we're stuck at a rest stop in California. The borders are all closed. No airplanes are flying. The phones are all screwed up. We couldn't get a hold of anybody at home. It was like a slap. It was really intense. I'm kinda over the traveling. I've been doing it for 25 years but I love to play, so you've got to take the good with the bad. Read the entire interview at this location.
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