Bumblefoot: A dozen years ago I was hangin' with my gal while she was studying veterinary medicine. One of the bird diseases was called Bumblefoot - one of the treatments was to rub hemorrhoid cream on the bird's foot. I was quite touched by this, and redirected my entire life on a new path...
Bumblefoot: It was in 2001, people were already calling me Bumblefoot, everything I was doing musically had the name Bumblefoot on it - just kinda happened.
Bumblefoot: I thank you sir. My stuff is pretty strongly connected to my life. Not everything lyrically, sometimes there's just story-telling, but overall what I'm feelin' is what comes out.
Bumblefoot: I just always felt a guitar should be as personal as the music you make with it. I'd chop 'em up impulsively, often without a plan, and in the end it would be whatever it was meant to be. Now I leave it up to Vigier - they do a much better job.
Bumblefoot: I started taking one-on-one lessons at age 7, did that for 8 years. Studied mostly out of books, strict reading stuff, moved onto theory, classical, jazz. After that I just kept studying on my own.
Bumblefoot: Orange-ish brown.
Bumblefoot: I thank you again sir. There was a time when I'd spend all day and night trying to learn every song I could by ear. Back in the old days before CDs, I'd be sitting by the turntable playing a few seconds at a time, going back and doing it again, figuring out every AC/DC, Priest, Maiden, Halen, Ozzy, Malmsteen and Yes album I had. That was probably the best thing for my playing - got the ears in shape and kept me playing songs more than just exercises.
Bumblefoot: And again, thanks. I always dug that song (the original version). I was watching the show Taxi and one of the characters played it on piano - that was when I got the idea to learn it on guitar. Got the notation for it and came up with the guitar version. Took out the middle section and did my own thang. Actually, when I recorded that I had busted a tendon in my finger about a month before - tore it working out and then fell on my hand (long, stupid story) and killed the fourth finger on the fretting hand. The doctor wanted to put me in a cast up to my elbow, instead I exercised the muscles in the wrist and hand with light weights and it healed up fine - recorded the Chopin thing a few weeks later.
Bumblefoot: I was talking with Vernon Reid at the time about donating a song to an album that would raise funds and awareness about the problems in that country. Never came together, so I put the song on my own album.
Bumblefoot: The album "Normal" (available online in December of 2005) tells the story of a musician who took brain meds to make himself normal. The only downside was that he lost the music in his head and couldn't write songs anymore. Eventually he had to choose between being normal and being musical - he chose music, went off the meds, became a nut again, and wrote this album. The music is considerably normal, sounding a bit like Green Day or the Foo Fighters some say, but still with the fancy-shmancy guitar noodling stuff. There's an MP3 sample here if you wanna hear a few clips.
Bumblefoot: Yes, just got home. Played Russia, the UK, Netherlands, Belgium, France and Italy - had a great time!
Bumblefoot: Man, I don't know. I appreciate it though. Merci.
Bumblefoot: I play with different folks in different places, but things are starting to solidify, especially after this last tour. Been playing with Dennis Leeflang on drums for 3 years, Joe Nerve on bass for a year - it's seeming more permanent, but everyone still does their own thing and it's all a big expanding family. There's also Fanalo (guitar) and Elmobo (bass) from the band Plug-In , Randy Nerve (guitar) from Joe's band The Nerve, Chris Ptacek, Hugh Floyd, Lindsey Tims and Paul Warren at the RMA school that played on the DVD of the clinic I did down there... close band friends I've jammed with like 24-7 Spyz and Freak Kitchen. One big happy.
Bumblefoot: OK, let's.
Bumblefoot: Been talking with Mattias about doing some kind of Freakfoot/BumbleKitchen collaboration for years, but we're both so busy touring and doing our own thing that we never have time to make it happen. Some day... I added a solo on Metal Kartoon's newest CD - great album - Chris Godin is a sick player.
Bumblefoot: Warm and bubbly. Mistheria is a great keyboardist - was a pleasure to contribute to his CD.
Bumblefoot: Guitar music isn't for everybody. Can't expect to sell as much as pop vocal music, and that's OK. Guitar music is for those who enjoy it, and it's great that Guitar Nine gives us a place where we can easily get it. Thanks Dan.
Bumblefoot: Perhaps a little of both... but does guitar music really need radio? We have the Internet - anything can be streamed or downloaded at your convenience - that's better than radio.
Bumblefoot: I'm happy. Learned a lot, plenty of surprises. If you asked me 10 years ago where I'd be 10 years later, I don't think I would have predicted the producing, the film/TV publishing music stuff, the teaching (SUNY Purchase College) Not sure what I would have said. Probably something about spaceships, or broccoli.
Bumblefoot: I stopped planning. We make plans, and God laughs.
Bumblefoot: Bought an old house in Princeton NJ three years ago, gutted the rooms and turned it into a studio. Recorded a lot of cool bands there - 24-7 Spyz, Most Precious Blood, Q*Ball, and my own stuff. Local bands too - everything from Brazilian music, rap, jazz, pop, a capella, all different types of stuff. Studio's my favorite place.
Bumblefoot: Motown mostly - The Four Tops, Stevie Wonder, etc.
Bumblefoot: "Sleepwalk" (Santo and Johnny).
Bumblefoot: Hmmm, this is tough, and I know I'm gonna miss something. I don't think I can answer this one - but I'm gonna say three that stand out. One is the intro to "Mean Street" (Van Halen), another is the guitar throughout the song "Going For The One" (Yes), and the solo to "Detroit Rock City" (KISS) They each add something pretty special to the songs.
Bumblefoot: My pleasure, thank you! And thanks to the artists on Guitar Nine for the music, and those visiting Guitar Nine for your support.