Legendary rock vocalist Paul Rodgers (FREE, BAD COMPANY, QUEEN + PAUL RODGERS) recently spoke with Bill Hernandez of RockBandReviews.com. The full conversation can be streamed below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On his musical influences:
Paul: "THE BEATLES hit me hard. When I first saw John Lennon and they did 'Love Me Do'... It was a minor hit, but it was the first [time] I thought, 'Wow, these guys are really cool.' They went on to be the greatest band ever. THE [ROLLING] STONES hit me hard, and then Jimi Hendrix, and then I discovered the blues and soul music, and I was off and running."
On how he looks after his voice while on tour:
Paul: "I find the voice is really is your whole body, so you take care of your whole body. In the early days, I used to live the rock 'n' roll lifestyle. I learned that when you get up in the morning and you're croaking, it's not a good thing, so I live as healthy a lifestyle as I can and take care of it."
On his children pursuing careers in music:
Paul: "They both were brought up with music all around them. They were quite used to seeing Bill Wyman or somebody in the studio. They got very accustomed to it, as kids do. They were writing songs when they were very, very young — before they went to school, actually — but then they had piano lessons, and that all stopped, and they didn't go near the piano for years. I think now, they rediscovered music for themselves, and they're both starting to write amazing music... My initial thought was, 'I wouldn't advise [pursuing a career in the music industry], because there's a lot of sharks out there.' We all know that — a lot of people get ripped off, and it can be a tough business. But then I thought, 'Well, where are you going to guide them — to be an accountant or a bank manager? Let them do their thing.'"
On original BAD COMPANY guitarist Mick Ralphs, who suffered a stroke in 2016:
Paul: "He's now hospitalized. We're trying to take care of him from a distance. It's a lot. His family are involved a lot in taking care of him. He's doing as well as can be expected."
On late BAD COMPANY bassist Boz Burrell:
Paul: "Mick and I first met, and we started writing songs together. Eventually, we had so many songs, we were like, 'Let's put a band around this.' We called up Simon [Kirke], and then the three of us were looking for a bass player. We actually tried a lot of bass players. It's funny — we just couldn't make our minds up. One was, like, 'His hair was too long,' or, 'He was too tall.' Eventually, we settled on Boz because we got tired of looking, but Boz was a great bass player, to be honest. I remember playing the first chords in the song 'Bad Company' when I played the song to him, and he did those bass lines – they're bass, but he sort of played lead on bass. I felt him a very melodious bass player. It was the final link — we just locked together once we found Boz. We've been through a lot together."
On BAD COMPANY's 2019 plans:
Paul: "This year, we have selected to play just 20 [live] dates, and that's all. We're going to pull back a little bit so that we can spend more time in the studio, doing a little recording... I'd like to create some new music. That's my focus right now. We're in the studio, just kicking things around and seeing what we've got. I love putting a set together of all the BAD COMPANY material and making it as powerful a set as we can, and that's one thing — it's a great show — but I want to move forward. That's uppermost in my mind right now."
On the group's staying power:
Paul: "When we first started out, we thought we thought we would be like yesterday's newspaper pretty quickly. But it's amazing how the music has a longevity, and I don't quite know what to put that down to. We used to listen to a lot of blues and soul, which was very old when we started to listen to it — things like Sonny Boy Williamson, Elmore James, B.B. King. That music stretches way back, and I think we took a lot from that. That seeped into the music, and somehow, that longevity has come along with it."
BAD COMPANY has not released a studio album since 1996's "Stories Told & Untold", and has not recorded one with Rodgers since 1982's "Rough Diamonds". The group continues to perform live on a regular basis, and will next appear in Hollywood, Florida on February 22.
Photo by Christie Goodwin