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Author Topic: Bumblefoot interview on Brazilian Guitar Player magazine  (Read 4926 times)
Voodoochild
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« on: June 27, 2009, 10:17:42 AM »

Ok, I had to translate it from portuguese english, so take it easy on my fuck ups!  Tongue

It came out in the current issue of brazilian's Guitar Player magazine with Joe Satriani in the cover. I don't have how to scan it, so I typed it anyways.


Guns N' Roses' Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal

by Henrique Inglez de Souza


Delayed, expensive, polemic. Those are some of the most common words for Chinese Democracy, the so spoken off last album from Guns N' Roses. Released at the end of 2008, it was the first studio record in 15 years and brought significant changes. Besides being other times, the band is really different from the time they had Slash. The band's hard rock got eletronic music elements and now has not only two, but three guitar players - the current ones are Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal, Richard Fortus and Dj Ashba.

Putting aside comparsions, Chinese Democracy is historic. Read next the exclusive interview with Bumblefoot, one of the five guitar players who recorded the album.

How do you join Guns N' Roses?

In 2004, Joe Satriani put me in contact with managers, producers and band members.

When did you record your parts for Chinese Democracy?

Before the north-american tour in 2006, in LA studios. After the tour, we finished in New York, in the begining of 2007.

What was your work?

When I joined the band, the songs were already written and recorded. I added my parts and some new stuff, like the fretless guitar in the title-track verses. We spent 10 hours or more a day in the studio. I recorded everything I brought, testing different ideas with the fretless guitar for rhythm and solos. At the end of each day, we heard the material and decided the final touches.

What was your gear in those recordings?

For the most part, I kept a simple setup: Gibson Les Paul plugged in a Marshall JCM800. Sometimes I used a wah-wah (Vox or Dunlop) or distortion (Boss Blues Driver). I used a lot of the fretless guitar Vigier Surfreter.

Your tone mix the rawness with some blues

Yeah, it's a classic rock very simple, which create a good contrast and balance with the other guitar tones in the album. We tried some amps and also different guitars and pickups setups for each song. We tried everything and we chose the best tones. Credit goes to the sound engineer guys and producers, they were amazing.

Is there songs for two albums besides Chinese Democracy? Do you think in making some kind of trilogy?

I wouldn't expect for a trilogy because I learned that each album gets its own life and it doesn't matter if we want to plan this kind of thing. It doesn't work always. The songs released in Chinese Democracy weren't all of what we recorded. There's more and we expect to use it in the next albums.

Which of the old songs do you like to play live?

Some because of its energy and groove, like My Michelle and It's So Easy, others for the solos, like Nightrain and November Rain, besides the ones the crowd loves like Welcome to the Jungle and Paradise City.

Do you keep the original line or comes up with something new in the old songs solos?

In some I keep faithful to the original because there is solos that are more than just solos. They are an important melody and gives an identity to the song. Change it would be like change the lyrics. This is the case in November Rain ending solo. But in songs like Nightrain and Paradise City I can jam something different every night, playing with my inspiration.

How do you, Fortus and Dj share the guitar parts?

In a general way, I do the most crazy stuff, Dj gets the melodic parts and Fortus plays something in the middle of all this. It's a good way of keep our identity in this wall of guitars. We do something like that in the rhythm, when I play the low tonic of the chords and riffs with the bass. Fortus fills up the rest of the chords while Dj puts something on top of that. This is the general idea, but it all depends on what sound better for each song. We're getting along well and working a lot on our guitar sounds. We tried different instruments and heads. We're polishing the sound that the crowd will hear, which is very important. Afterall, whats the use of getting a great guitar tone on stage if the sound that makes to the crowd is bad? Everyone, band and staff, worked hard to make sure that the sound that people hear will be the best.

Is there a solo in the new album that could be as classic as Sweet Child O' Mine?

Oh, I don't know! The current band and the old one sound different. It's hard to say. I'm more of a fan of the song as a whole than the solos. To me, Sorry and This I Love stand up from the others in a general way. Better could also be the song of this album. It starts with a remarkable riff. It has a cool sound.

Are you inspired by any of the Guns N' Roses ex-guitarrists?

I try not to be. Not for being direspectful, but because I want everything to be authentic, untied and without any influence in relation to how a particular guitar player would play. Otherwise I wouldn't be truthful to myself. Integrity is everything in life. I've already met Gilby Clarke some times and Izzy Stradlin was with us in the 2006 tour. They are both great guys. If it was to be inspired by them, it would be in a personal level in a way I could play with integrity and still be myself.

How is to work with Axl Rose

Axl has a vision of work in which I believe. Part of it is to let your bandmates being themselves, creatives and doing what they have in mind. It's great!

From the things we hear and read about Axl, what is not true?

Almost everything. [laughs] Don't believe in half of what you read and doubt the other half. People don't want the truth, but instead they want to be entertained. They believe and repeat whatever entertaining history, even on people's name. Don't believe unless you had seen it with your own eyes.
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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2009, 10:27:07 AM »

Nice. Thanks for sharing. I think DJ will be a great addition to the band.
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« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2009, 11:10:17 AM »

this magazine is cool, but I prefer Roadie Crew...

BTW, when will an interviewer ask about tour or clips? damned
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« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2009, 12:39:14 PM »

superb interview. thanks Voodoo for the translation. Lots of good lines, but this one is a must:

Almost everything. [laughs] Don't believe in half of what you read and doubt the other half. People don't want the truth, but instead they want to be entertained. They believe and repeat whatever entertaining history, even on people's name. Don't believe unless you had seen it with your own eyes.

spanish translation / traduccion al espa?ol
« Last Edit: June 27, 2009, 01:28:58 PM by estebanf » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2009, 01:16:24 PM »

Can't wait to see the added dynamic of DJ live if a tour happens.
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2009, 01:57:29 PM »

Thanx for the interview. Really interesting.
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« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2009, 02:02:12 PM »

.. as i always have said ... DJ will be amazing in GNR  love

this is really AXL: "We're getting along well and working a lot on our guitar sounds. We tried different instruments and heads. We're polishing the sound that the crowd will hear, which is very important. Afterall, whats the use of getting a great guitar tone on stage if the sound that makes to the crowd is bad? Everyone, band and staff, worked hard to make sure that the sound that people hear will be the best."

Love !!!  love
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« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2009, 02:04:03 PM »

That's a pretty good interview, thanks!!
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« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2009, 08:14:59 PM »

Amazing Interview...

thanks

RONALD RULEZ !!

 beer


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« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2009, 09:38:52 AM »

Great interview Voodoo, thanks for translating and sharing.  Ron always has such great things to say.  Love him ok
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« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2009, 11:09:31 AM »

good job voodoo.  ok

Quote
People don't want the truth, but instead they want to be entertained.

truth isn't entertaining enough.

Ron> Byron. hihi

 
Quote
even on people's name.

I don't fully get this bit.
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« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2009, 12:49:33 PM »

Thanks for posting. Smiley




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« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2009, 05:17:20 PM »

Thanks Voodoo, great read!!!


Reading this confirms tour plans are just on hold, question is when!
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« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2009, 05:21:19 PM »

Thanks Voodoo, very cool read.   beer
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« Reply #14 on: June 29, 2009, 09:26:14 AM »

Quote
even on people's name.

I don't fully get this bit.
I believe he meant something like "they believe in anything, even if it harms other people". That's what I got from the original portuguese article. Smiley
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« Reply #15 on: June 29, 2009, 11:03:53 AM »

i see. thanks voodoo Smiley
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