The greatest hard rock bassist of ALL TIME joins the show to celebrate five years of The Great Song Podcast! Billy Sheehan's cred is unquantifiable, and his work with David Lee Roth, Steve Vai, Mr. Big and SO many others proves it without a doubt. Billy sits down with us to talk about the new project from Talas, his career and style, and much more. Get ready for a wild ride! Thanks for listening, and here's to the next five years! Plus:
- Pat Boone Does Dio
- “This song already has a hand in my shirt.”
*Editor’s Note* Our interview audio for this episode is straight from Zoom, as opposed to our typical multi-track approach. That being said, it’s slightly lower in quality than what you have come to expect from us. Due to a last-minute situation, this was all we had to work with. Thanks for understanding.
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Producers: Andrea Konarzewski, Brad Callahan, Ari Marucci, Michael Conley, Peter Mark Campbell, David Steinberg, Randy Hodge, Chaz Bacus, Juan Lopez, Jason Arrowood, Howard Passey, Micah Murphy, Tim Jahr, and Christopher Cudnoski--- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/greatsongpod/message
Turn out the radio and sing all along. It's time for another great song. This is the Great Song Podcast. Season's. Greetings, and welcome once again to the Great Song. Podcast. I'm Rob Alley. I am J.P Modern, and we're here to celebrate the greatest songs in modern music history. We're gonna tell you what makes 'em great, why we think they're awesome, and why you should too.
J.P, how you doing today, man? I am doing fantastic, Rob, happy five year anniversary. Come on man. What a way to celebrate folks during this. Fantastic, I just wanna say five years, 10 seasons, 200 plus episodes. Yeah. Who would've thk it? Who would've thk? 700 million? That's . You wouldn't even believe it. Yachts and retirement homes everywhere, all over.
And I can think of no other artist that we've geeked out as much about getting as the guy that we're speaking with today. Absolutely been an artist. Spotlight, arguably one of the best, if not the best bass player ever. Stuff with Talas, Mr. Big Winery Dogs, Da Lee, Rob, Steve, I Rob. Tell him who we're hanging [00:01:00] out with today, and let's play some clip Today.
We're hanging out with the greatest rock basis in history. Billy Sheehan. Yeah. Yeah. Let's start with a little crystal clear from the new album by Talas.
Outta your head, made it outta your head.
Come on, come on. Yes. That's amazing. And if you're not familiar with that side, we are gonna hit so many other things. As a matter of fact, why don't we just play you, This is just, This is from Billy's 2006 Prime Cuts album, a space solo from Buffalo in 1994. This is just Billy doing everything in the entire universe.
He's just a machine guy.[00:03:00]
Keep in mind, that's a basic guitar.
What in the world? I'm gonna stop, but that's a six minute track, and. Listen to that whole track. It's like a masterclass in what's possible for a rock base. If, if you grew up learning guitar articulations from a tablet, your book, you know what I mean? Like we did, that's like a showcase of every little special marking, fingering and [00:04:00] technique that you've ever learned.
All in one modes, harmonics, hammers, both natural and artificial pull offs. Hammer on bends. Arpeggios four finger, two handed multi pickup, multi amp. Goodness. That's right. That's the essence of Billy Sheehan. Leave the restraint to Nathan East and Leland Billy Sheehan is here to shred every note, fire on every cylinder, and leave you gasping for air.
That's good. I love that. That is my bio of Billy Sheehan. That's good. In the short, if you like that concept, but you may not be as familiar. Play a little addicted to that rush by Mr. Big. Yes. Let's hear a little this.
If you're like, Where's one? There's one[00:05:00]
Yes. That's doubled him and Paul. Oh, holy cow. Yes. And if you're like, How do I know Mr. Big, but not that. Yeah. We'll get there. , let's just say, Well, you know what though, if you don't know that one. Yeah, yeah, let's go. Let's move on to the next thing. Let's, why don't we, I don't know. What should we, Maybe a little guy you may have heard of.
We've mentioned him a time or two on the podcast. That would be David Lee Roth. Let's do a little Yankee Rose, Rose Eat 'Em and Smile. Yeah. If you know a David Lee Roth solo song, it's probably Yankee Rose. So let's, let's check that out for a second and get ready. We're gonna play lots of clips today, guys.
Lots of clips. This is gonna be way more clip heavy than we are normally, Billy's career can't just be contained in one little clip, so we're gonna play lots of clips from lots of different artists. Here's a little Yankee Rose.[00:06:00]
Well roll up onto the sidewalk and take a look. Whoa. She's beautiful
Now, I dunno what now.
We'll talk about that guy in a second too.[00:07:00]
I'm talking about it. When she, All right. Okay. Let's get into some talk here for a minute. But that's like half of the artists we're gonna talk about today. That's right. In, in connection with Young Master Billy Sheehan. So the, but I gotta say this because this just came up on Apple Music when I was playing that this is part of the the Apple Music write up on that on that album, which is Eat 'Em and Smile by David Lee Roth, it says, The reason David Lee Roth remains one of history's greatest front men is that he was never a singer at heart.
He was instead more a combination. Carnival Barker Cabaret Act, and Car Salesman, Roth will sell you a great show regardless of musical content. , that is absolutely the truth. Like, that's such a funny, such a funny way to put that. Okay. So [00:08:00] Billy Sheehan, arguably, and almost not arguably right, the greatest hard rock basis of all time, I think that is, without question you would say he's in a conversation.
The greatest, the greatest hard rock, right? I mean, you talk about, I mean you can go wooing, you can go that fun, but wootens not a hard, I'm hard rock guy. That's a different style. Yeah. Like you can put him in that category. You can put different bass players in different categories. But in terms of hard rock, in terms of hard rock, Billy's she, and hands down.
And and he is definitely among the greatest to ever pick up that instrument. And so getting the, getting the chance to talk to him was just like super incredible for us. But if this episode feels a little bit all over the place, it's because we literally couldn't just go. Well, let's talk about that one song too.
Yeah. You know so, Okay. He, he plays a, Well, you'll probably talk about what he plays, right? Go ahead. You're good. Okay. He plays a Yamaha Attitude base which is his signature model. It's modeled after his original Fender Precision Base, which he heavily modified to get certain tones and options that he wanted, including [00:09:00] scalloping the upper, I think the five highest frets.
Adding an additional neck pickup and a separate output line for that pickup, which provides a really heavy low end. And we let him talk. When we talk to him about it, we ask him about the, the, the pickup and the additional support. I think we talked about that and Yeah, I think so. Yeah. And his original Fender Precision Base, which is Yamaha signatures or model off of is nickname the wife.
And he actually picks it up in the interview. Oh. So cool. And but I think he point, no, he plays. Maybe points at that one and picks up a different one. Yeah, so one of the, one or the other. But anyway, it was called the wife because he, it was always with him, like they got the nickname because like he's answering the door with this base on, you know what I mean?
And so it got the nickname, the wife he uses two amps live, one distorted with the low end rolled off. That's just giving off, you know, higher frequencies. And then one clean, full of monster. Low end, but clean. He has been voted the best rock bass player five times by Guitar Player Magazine. He is in the Buffalo Music Hall of [00:10:00] Fame being a native of Buffalo, New York.
And really, I didn't think about, I didn't think about calling his style this in this context because only because it's bass. If this was anybody else, this is one of the first words that would come to mind. But the term shred. Yeah. Right. He's a shred guitarist on base. On base, Yeah. He's a bass shredder.
Yeah, he's a bass shredder. And so I found a nice little quote by Steve V who will mention several times over the course of this episode. Steve v of course, is one of the, you know, not shred seems, is, is almost a diminutive term. Like he's one of the absolute, You hear, shred, you just think I'm gonna play fast.
But like he. Smart and weird stuff. Like he's not just a shredder, right? Yeah. He's like one of the guitar virtuosos of all time. But anyway, but his, he had a good definition for the term shred. He said the terminology used for someone who can play an instrument and has such a tremendous amount of technique that what they do just seems completely effortless and absurd.
It's like this [00:11:00] burst of energy that just comes out in extremely fast tearing, kind of playing where the notes actually connect. Shred has to have a particular kind of tied to it. I think that actually gives you that blow away factor that makes it impressive to a certain degree. And that is exact, I mean, that is Billy Sheehan's playing.
Yeah, for sure. Right. And we didn't even think to talk about the fact this is being our five year anniversary. We're gonna talk. These are people that we like. Yes. Like this is our, this episode may be more so for us. That's right. For some of y'all, we hope y'all enjoy the ride. But this is super fun for us.
Yes. Like we have completely geeked out about the Exactly. Milestone episodes that are like, you know, every 50 episodes or so, you know, or, or every year. Right. Anniversary. We just do a, we don't, like, we don't really super care if you know who we're talking about or love who we're talking about or whatever.
Like these, we do these for us, you know, So being able to put Billy in. In that category was a lot of fun. Let's talk a little Talas, because that is the most immediate Billy Sheehan you're getting. Let's, let's play the meet the [00:12:00] band jingle, because I wanted to introduce one of the mini bands. Okay. And I'll just say names, so that way we'll introduce, Let's meet TAs and let's talk about TAs.
Okay, great. Hey, let's meet the band. It's time to meet the band. Hey mama, Let's meet the man. Let's all meet the band all for the sake of time. And because we're gonna talk about a lot of people, I'm just gonna list the people that play in Talas. Okay. So we've ob obviously talked about Billy on base, who we're gonna talk about at the end, Mark Miller on drums.
And actually they recorded a large portion of this album in his living room. The 1985 album, which is what Crystal Clear that we played at the beginning is from they recorded a lot of that in his living room on guitar. Kirk Nando, Nand Doki, I believe is how you pronounce the name. Sure. I just call him Kirk, but Duke and freaking Trip Ndo.
Trip Nando. There you go. It might be an Endos ski, probably an end Doky on vocals. Phil Naro, he actually passed away shortly after the recording of these vocals. And we'll talk a little bit. We talk with, with Billy and Rob can touch on one of the tracks on the [00:13:00] album that is transcribed for Phil.
In a different way. That's kind of neat. A little, And so that is the Talas band. That's right. So Talas started in Buffalo with as Billy's first like regular band with Dave Constantino on guitar and Paul Vaga on drums and lead vocals being shared kind of between all three. The first Talas album was released in 1979 and they gained their first sort of national exposure opening for Van Halen in 1980.
They opened for Van Halen for 30 shows but still remained independent. Didn't, didn't get signed off that, you know, that burst of exposure. Billy Reformed Talas with drummer Mark Miller, guitarist Mitch Perry and vocalist Phil Naro. And they released what would be their final album at the time, which was called Live Speed on Ice.
That would be until right now with the September 23rd release of the album, 1985 by revived Talas. We were fortunate enough to get an advanced copy of this, but you can now enjoy it and it's full glory. It's out for you to hear. And it's dope dude, and it's great. The, [00:14:00] the album cover alone is gonna tell you every, everything you need to know.
Yeah. It's this beautiful. wrecked DeLorean Uhhuh and it has a, a license plate on it that says 1985, and it's wrecked and dinged up, and there's tires and there's like stuff growing on it. And, you know, whatever doors are wide open, you know, winged up. But basically they had these, you know, these tracks and Billy's gonna talk about it, but they, you know, had these tracks and they were like, this would've been the next thing.
This would've been 1985 for us. If Talas hadn't sort of disbanded. And so why don't we go from there? You wanna play? Let's play something else off of this 19 five album. Let's start, since we're talking about Talas, their very first track. It's called Seesaw Off The first, the first Talas album.
It came out 1979. And you can already hear what is to come with. Like, if you go to, let's go to about minute two. Okay. It, first of all, you'll notice how high the base is in the mix, and so, you know, this is gonna be a base driven album. And listen to the base harmonics on this song, a song called Seesaw.
So this is the first thing that Talas ever put out. And so, [00:15:00] you know, this is what you're about to get else.
His tone. Yeah, you, You go immediately. You know who that is.
It's such a heavy base. Yeah. That it sounds like multiple people. You know, it's even spread across the stereo field. If you're listening to headphones, jump ahead to about two minute two. Dang. Here we go.[00:16:00]
just madness, Just absolute, just grit. And it's like, it's like you know, it's, it's like, Eddie Van Halen and Mel Shocker from Grand Funk. Had a baby. You know what I mean? . That's good. It's like just this insane, insane combination. Sots releases this 1985 album, their time traveling back in time to 1985.
Cause here's what happened in 1985. Okay, let's time travel ourselves a little bit. It's 1985. Welcome. Hope you brought your parachute pants . David Lee Roth and Van Halan have split. Just gimme a Pepsi. Free . You want [00:17:00] a Pepsi catch? You're gonna pay. All right. Alright. So David Lee Roth and Van Halan have split.
David Lee Roth is ready to make the next move and try and strike first and come out on top in the breakup. Right. And he assembles one of the all time craziest bands you could possibly. Billy Sheehan on bass, Greg Bissette on drums, and Steve via on guitar, An absolute haymaker of a, of a band. Yeah. One of the greatest, like, assembled bands of all time.
Yeah. I mean, literally like there for virtuosity alone, you probably could not assemble a, a more impressive band. Yeah. You know what I mean? They each are like the best at their instrument in their own right. Yes. And then you put 'em all together. Yeah. And so so they are the, theEat 'Em and Smile band.
They are the, you know played with Dave on his next two solo albums that would be Eat 'Em and Smile and Skyscraper. But but Eat 'Em and Smile is considered one of those. Landmark, You know what I mean? It's like the quintessential David Lee Roth album. And the second track on that is called Shy Boy, which [00:18:00] is actually Billy's song.
He it's it's callous song. Yeah, it was a, it was a, And so Billy brought this to Dave. Let's, so let's play a little bit of that. This is Shy Boy. By David Lee Roth.
He was like, Let's get weird.
I one, but not alone with you. Something starts to naps with side. I need aggressive women, not be on my feet. Cha [00:19:00] char give one more
time. Nervous anyway. All right. It's all, it's all, this album is so, so fun to listen to with that band. I, I have to bring up, by the way, so we're talking about Greg Bissette being the drummer on that. Greg and Matt Bik both virtuosos on their instrument. But I have to bring up a particular Greg Bissette appearance because it was recently like rewr to my memory.
Okay. And I don't know if you know. Album or not? I'm not sure. I feel like you probably do. We've probably talked about it. We've probably joked about it before. But Greg played on a landmark album called In A Metal Mood. No More Mr. Nice Guy by none other than Pat Boone. Yeah. remember you remember this album?
Yeah. I remember. Is that Yeah, he was Is that the one where he was wearing the leather? Yes. Best thing Pat Boone Croner. Right? Like [00:20:00] super like what do you call like pic and Span? You know, he plays in the movie Crossing the Switch Blade. Okay. He's the original David Wil, not David Wilcock. What's his name?
Wilkerson. Wilkerson? Yeah. David Wilkerson. Okay. So he's like super cut, you know, whatever. And he puts out this album called In a Metal Mood No More Mr. Nice Guy in which he covers metal classics in a like, crooner standards style. Okay. So let's see let's, let me do a couple here. Okay, here's This one starts, This one's a cheater cuz it starts with a R.
But this is pretty much the vibe of the whole thing here.
This is of course inner sand, man by metal. He's bring it amazing. I love him. Say your prayers. Forget my son to include [00:21:00] everyone. Hi Doug. You okay? I love it so much. Speaking of David Lee Roth, we've got a little,
his guitar was like, I'm gonna have to buy a distortion pedal. I don't even own one.
It's pretty tight still. Oh, it's amazing.
the album itself. It like, this is what I said the other day when I was talking to my kids about this. I was like, You guys have no idea, but like
But if he put out this album now, if this album was just 25 years too early. Yeah, like if he put this out now, it would be celebrated. You know what I mean? He got blasted for this [00:22:00] album. I remember that. He had organizations dropping him as sponsors. Well, we carried him a pathway. I worked at a Christian bookstore at the time and we carried him, but we wouldn't carry this album.
Yeah. Like we carried all this other stuff and people would come in and be like, You have Pat Boon. And I'd be like, Sorry, we don't have that one, but here's this. Yeah, exactly. I don't want that. Here's Catone things. The red back. I, Yeah. No, I want him doing, You've got another thing coming and smoke on the water and you know, all this stuff.
No more Mr. Nice guy. Or I got one more for you. See if you can spot this one. Let's see here. This one actually kind of has a rock groove to it. But Let's skip ahead here. Here we go.
Then it gives way to the jazz.
diver's. Say the line. Ride the tie. You could see stripes, but no, East Queen. Oh, don't you [00:23:00] see what I mean? It's so good. Anyway, but anyway, if you've never checked out the album, I encourage you. Check it out. So that's Greg Bessette on drums for that whole album. That's how we got here. I had to get us a little bit off track because.
I didn't know when I was gonna get a chance to talk about this again. That's, I didn't wanna forget. We go then from the David Lee Roth era, unless you've got more on the David Lee Roth. I'm good Band era. You're good, man. I got some notes. Most of the stuff about that. A lot of the stuff we ask him in the interview, so I'll try to keep moving.
Okay. All right. So then the next big era for Billy is with Mr. Big. Let's camp out on Mr. Big for just a minute here. So if you know Mr. Big, it is for the following song, or if you know them for nothing else, you know them for the following song.
Hold on little girl. Show me. Sing along. Go ahead. Stand up little girl. This song already has a hand under my
You know what I mean? That's so good. This song, this song is wearing cutoff jean shorts and has a hand off my shirt.
That's funny. Deep inside.
This is of course to be with you, the huge song The Next to Be With You. Okay, so to be with you was like massively huge. It went to number one in 15 countries in 1992. And they, you know, Mr. Big may be known more in the states for that kind of soft ballad, but that's crazy when you think about their original lineup.
Mm-hmm. like the original guitarist was Paul Gilbert, who was a shred genius master. Just look him up. I mean, he's insane. We might have even played one of his tracks with Martin Miller. I can't remember when we did a Martin Miller episode. We might have played, He said in with him. [00:25:00] Yeah. But anyway, Paul Gilbert, like shred master He was replaced in 1999 by Richie Co, who we've talked about at length on our Patriot exclusive Hello Poison episode on the song stand.
If you want, if you want to gain some access to that, just support us on Patreon. That's all you gotta do. But anyway, which he, he wrote, and we'll see Richie Co again before we're done here today too. And so, and then you've got just this massive band like so on drums, Eric Martin on vocals. I, I really like him as a vocalist.
Yeah. So it's one of those either love him or hate him kind of thing. Yeah. And I'm on the love side. Yeah. And they're, But like you said, that's not Mr. Big. Right? That is the furthest thing from Mr. Big. Yeah. We played addicted to that rush at the beginning. Exactly. That's much more indicative of like who Mr.
Big really is. But my favorite song by them is probably Daddy Brother Lover Little Boy. If you'll look that one up, That's the first track off of off of Lean Into It. I love this song. There it is. The Rifts. Oh, so good. Parenthesis. The electric [00:26:00] drill song there you.
Oh yeah, that's Mr. Big. That is Mr. Big
Girl. Lovely song. That's a stinking rock and roll, you know? And my favorite, that's. Power Ballad of theirs is not to be with you. Okay? It's Green. 10 and sixties. Mind love this song because of obviously their vocals are [00:27:00]highlighted extremely strong on to be with you, but they're vocals on this. Ah, so good.
Golly. That's how you do a ball. Yeah. That is thick. This, this is a power ball that is more power than Ball. Yes.
Is oh and live. Their vocals are just as strong live, which is all strong vocalists. Billy very strong vocalist. So that's that. I was gonna play another clip, but you co you covered it. Their, their latest album, so Mr. Big has kind of been off and on for a while. But their latest album was 20 [00:28:00] Seventeens Defying Gravity.
There's a really funny track on there called 1992 that's basically like, well, I was on top in 1992, Like, you know what I mean? So it's a, it's kind of a tongue and cheek, tongue and cheek track. Mr. Big is the literal definition of big in Japan. Yeah. Of being big in Japan. Like literally, this is not, I'm not kidding.
Literally, if you look up the phrase big in Japan, the picture in the Wikipedia article is Mr. Big. That's awesome. Like, that's not a joke. , there's few, if any more shining examples of it than them. Like, you know, here they have hardcore fans and, and like Prague Appreciators in general, you know, know them. But they've always been like mainstream huge in Japan and they've done multiple out live albums in Japan, you know, huge tours and have, have never waned in popularity there, you know what I mean?
Here it was like grunge kind of took over and, and took some steam from a lot of these types of bands. But. But not in [00:29:00] Japan. Yeah. Like, you know, it wasn't like that other acts, by the way, who were like as big or bigger in Japan than in North America. I just listed a few here. Neil Sadaka, The Runaways.
Scorpions and Spinal Tap. Let's go. Spinal Tap. Oh yeah. There we go. And get this one Irish musical group. The Nolans, who are virtually unknown in North America. Do you know the ones? I don't know. The Nolans sold over 12 million records in Japan, outselling the Beatles, Michael Jackson, Adele, and Ed Sheehan combined.
Holy cow. They also became the first international act to have all their releases hit number one in the country, as well as the first to hit number one on both the Japanese domestic and international. What's that? And we've never heard of 'em. The Nolans never even heard of wild. So y'all pick up any of raw like sushi and you'll love it.
That's their live and Tokyo stuff. Exactly. The term big in Japan also gets used to describe pro athletes, by the way, who find success in Japan after leaving their stateside counterparts. Can you think of any of those? Like who were like, I think of like when Cecil Fielder played in Japan for a while.
Oh yeah. You know what I mean? That's or stuff like that. Tom [00:30:00] Sellick, you know, Mr. Baseball, Mr. Yeah. forgot about that. And the opposite phrase is a thing too small in Japan acts who are huge otherwise, including acdc, Adele, like, don't, don't really have an audience in Japan's. Yeah. In a weird, It's just strange.
Okay. Okay, let's go to the next. Stop on the Billy Sheehan, like torpedo train of madness. And that would be Nin. Nin is a jazz fusion super trio of Billy Sheehan. Keyboard is John Novello and Legendary Funk Fusion drummer Dennis Chambers. Let's play a little, This is called elbow grease by niacin.
This is gonna, I don't know what It's
kid [00:31:00] gracious. Yes. And Billy's just going ham. There's so much happening. Yeah.
Anyway, That's amazing. That's, that's a little niacin. Niacin puts the B3 organ up front as like the lead instrument. With a hard rock edge, you know, very, very distorted. And the B3 can be a really unique, unique instrument. And so that's just a whole other level of like musicianship. Yes. You know what I mean?
It's like in a different side of Billy's playing. Yeah. You know what I mean? It's like this got this, it's got this hard rock edge, but it's also very jazz funk fusion. He's smart. They, they did some like chick career stuff and like, you know, just, just crazy. So that's elbow grease by Nin. Oh, you snarky puppy fans.
Check out some nin. You'll be happy with what you find. [00:32:00] Yes. There you go. And Nin, by the way, I think it, I think the name Nin comes from, it's connected somehow to the B3 vitamin. Like, Oh, okay. Yeah. Make sense. So I, I can't, I can't remember exactly what it is, but it's a, you know, it's a, that's a good tie.
Chemical, blah, blah, blah. Anyway, it's connected to the b3. Okay. Then we get to Winery Dogs. Winery Dogs would come next. And Winery Dogs is a hard rock power trio formed in 2012 comprised of Billy Sheehan, The four mentioned to Richie Co and Dream Theater founder Mike Portnoy on drums. I mean, come on, just think about those three names I just said.
Again, I'm not even repeat them, but here's . Here's a, it's more of a classic rock influence on the Winery Dogs than you might expect being those, you know, those three guys. But like it's this group of like it, it, it's of all Billy's projects, it's this group that you would go to a concert and hear them cover, fooled around and fell in love.
You know what I mean? Or like something by the Beatles or something like that. So, but anyway, this is a track called The Other Side from their debut album, The Winery [00:33:00] Dogs.
It's just drums,
that's on vocals and,
Just that big happy chorus. Love that.
And so that's the other side from the debut album. And then if you wanna revisit some of that DLR band, David Lee Roth Vibe you can check out the opening track Oblivion from their second album Hot Streak. Ah, yes.
the middle of the, Forget it.
Yeah, just rocking all day long. I, it's, it's so [00:35:00] crazy. I just think about, and I mention this a little bit in the interview so I won't spoil it, but like Billy, she literally changed my life. , right? Like, that's not an exaggeration, . So it's just weird. For me to be going through all this, you know what I mean?
In the context of us doing this podcast, getting to interview 'em, and being able to, One of the things, one of my favorite things about this show is that we get to give people their flowers, Uhhuh. You know what I mean? That's what we talk about, is like, this is the thing that we can give back to them uh, is by being able to say to them, You're important to me.
Yeah. You know what I mean? Uhhuh, . And so being able to like, you know, Billy Sheehan indirectly had a huge influence on my life. And so it's just crazy to like, it's so cool to get to do this man and go through all this stuff. I went I went kayaking the day after we interviewed him, and then I got a text from him later in the day.
There's nothing, there's no feeling like getting a text that says Billy Sheehan. And then a compliment. Yeah. It's like there's no feeling like that. It's like, what just [00:36:00] happened? What? Yes, exactly. Like for, for dorks like us, you know what I mean? And, and music industry wanna bes and you know, whatever. Like people, these are the people we look up to.
Yeah. So for them to be like, Hey, I had a good time with you. You know what I mean? It's for you youngsters out there that are. I wanna reply to this girl that I like the best way possible. Do I put an emoji? Do I put a, you know, do I, That's how I was on my response, right? My wife was like, Let's leave the parking lot.
And I sat there for like 12 minutes. Like, I was like, Is this too wordy? I was like, You send it, you send a screenshot of your proposed text to your friend group. Like, how does this sound? How does this sound? How am I coming off here? Is this too much? That's hilarious. That's amazing. This, this might be a good time.
Let's let's do a little five year stump the genius. Well, okay. Okay. So let's do some, let's take a pause. We're gonna play stump the Genius and we're gonna do a five years of running jokes on Stu, the genius. Whoa. Here we go. Okay. Stu, the genius, [00:37:00] stu the genius, stu the genius. It's time to stu the genius.
Take your part. I take your part. Oh, I'm so excited. This will be amazing. All right guys, so we're gonna do five questions, five years of running jokes. Okay? I tried to pick five. Wow. And we're gonna see how well Rob can do on stuff to jeans. Okay. What am I, what am I, what am I supplying? You'll, you'll, Each question's a little different.
Okay. All right. Holy diver. Yeah. Finish the lyric. Ride the tiger. Yeah, you can see his stripes, but you know, he's clean. Uhhuh. What's the next line? Oh, don't you see what I mean? Oh, can you see what I, That's okay. Close enough. On the pat boon, it says, don't you? So you get credit for that. Oh. Hand me the bill.
Where's the bill? Here's the bill. Oh, here it. We put a freaking you can ring yourself. Boom ring. There we go. One for one Baker Street.
Okay. So the core is, is definitely the S part. Yeah. Either sing the first line of the verse. Okay. Or the first line [00:38:00]of the pre chorus used to think that I could be happy. Is it happy? It used to think that it was so easy. It was. Oh wow. That's okay. But you got the melody right. I'm gonna give you credit for that.
Right. Okay, there we go. So that's, Should we explain, explain the joke. So that goes all the way back to season one. Or don't stop Believing on Journey. Where I, I confused mentally. Who's crying? Who's crying now? Who the fuck Right. With who's Crying, Crying know. And it's got that. And for some reason, Oh, because the last line of the preco is yo crying.
And so then I started to sing the sax line when we mentioned Who's crying now? I said, I was like, Dude, that is not like Jerry. That is Baker Street. Baker Street. So, and then Holy, where was the first Holy Diver reference? We had somebody go, go back and look this up earlier. Yeah. Somebody found that answer.
I don't remember. But. We have had this running Holy diver thing for several seasons now. Yeah, yeah, yeah. What is the name of the penguin in Christopher Crosses? All right. I think we're gonna make it . [00:39:00] That would be Penguin Rodriguez. Penguin. Oh, Rodriguez. Very good. For those of y'all on that one dude, the Christopher Cross song, All right.
Think we're gonna make it. If you listen to it, it sounds like, All right. Ping Winner Rodriguez, If you're from Mexico and you're from Mexico, if you're from Mexico, which is where J.P people's life is from, and, and my dad, my wife's dad agreed. And he loves that, that joke now as well. All Mickey Dolans is alive.
Yeah. Mickey Dolans, No matter how many times we've killed him off, how many of the other three monkeys are alive? None. None at this point. Can, can you name all three of them? Oh, sure. Yeah. Peterik, Davey Peterik, Peterik Torque. Davey. Jones. Thank you. David Jones. First names good. And yeah. And hold on.
Peterik Torque Peterik. Davey. Mickey. Who? Face Oh my gosh. Hold on. You want some help? Hold on. No, I don't. Cause I should, This is a thing that I literally know. I'm just blanking on it right now. Mike Nemo. There we go. Mike Nesmith. Good job. All right, [00:40:00] man. Four for four. Give yourself the ring. There we go.
Boom. Let's see if we can run the category. You've hit your goal of 80%? Yeah. All right. This one is the last one. This one's a little tougher. So our very first interview was with Billy Vera. Yeah. July. Okay, so episode 1 0 1 8 or whatever. Yeah. Yeah. Right. One 18. One 18. Yeah. One that's season one. We interviewed season four, Season one.
We interviewed Riley. Holy cow. What was the first question we ever asked a guest? Oh dang. Do you remember it was the We ask him on the phone line. Yeah. Our, There's like, no, you jump straight in with a question. Wow. And you ask the very first question in interview history. Do you remember what it was?
Oh gosh. There's so many things. It could have been. Yeah. There's so many. Probably something about. Know, how did you, how did, how did how did at this moment end up on family ties? It was, what are your influences as artist influence your influences? Artist, writer, actor. That's like the literal, [00:41:00] We don't even ask that question anymore hardly, because it's like the most basic question you can ask someone.
We've advanced this question. It's like, what you Yeah. Was that nice? Was that Yeah, ? You remember when you were in The Beatles? That was awesome. Okay. I'll give you makeup on that. Okay. You gave me a gift that day when we did the Billy Vera episode. Okay. You gave me a gift. Okay. And it's an awesome gift.
Okay. Do you remember what that gift was? It's the same day. Dang. No, I, It's a Bruce Hornsby autograph baseball. Oh, that, That same day. Same day. Okay. But you got your hit 85 have 80%. Nice job. Five years running jokes on the five years of history on, That's my favorite. Genius stuff. The genius ever.
That's a fun one. Thank you guys. Fantastic doing us on the ride so far. Okay. All right. Let's, let's follow up here with just a, One more one more flavor of Billy Sheehan. And that would be his latest project, latest forming project. And that would be Sons of Apollo which is like another sort of Prague slash [00:42:00] metal super group.
You know, we've talked before about how like all these Prague guys ends up in 15 bands. Yeah. You know, Doug Pin, I swear, has like 30 different groups of event. I'm so glad you mentioned Doug Penn because I was thinking the whole time we've been talking, this could turn into a longer episode with multiple clips playing and I was like, Dude, remember when we did all things King's X?
I think that was a landmark anniversary or something like that. Serious. It was like two and a half hours down was ridiculous. Join the Rudd of King's. We finished and we were tired. Yeah, I remember we that day. I was like, man, I'm so tired. We just did that with, Yeah. Okay, so this is a little clip from Sons of Apollo's 2017 album, Psychotic Symphony.
This is the track coming home.
That would be keyboardist. That's not a guitar. That's Derek Shian on Keys, former Dream Theater Planet X Tons of Prague and heavy rock bands and Acts played on one of Rob's projects He did. I have a version of one of my songs with Derek Charian on it that I still haven't released.
That is [00:43:00] vocalist Jeff Scott Soto
and Guitarist Bumblefoot, which if you've never seen Bumble, But just go watch him. Watch him. Yeah. Yeah. He does crazy stuff on a fretless guitar. Like, but obviously this is leaning into a heavier edge. Yeah. But say of all the stuff he's done, Billy's been in a lot of heavy stuff, but this is definitely the heaviest stuff.
Yeah. And of course this Mike Portnoy again on drums here in Sons of Apollo.
There he is. Get that lick in.
Yeah, that's, I love that so much. Good. Solid modern hard rock. A note on Jeff Scott Soto that you may have said before. Do you have Jeff Scott Soto? I dunno. [00:44:00] Okay. A note on Jeff Scott Soto that I either didn't know or forgot if, if I knew this it's because you told me. Okay. If I didn't know this then we did both.
Didn't know this. Okay. So Jeff Scott, Jeff Scott Soto did vocals with Envey Stein a long time with the Bandman Trans Siberian Orchestra. And he was in a little band for about five, six months called Journey. Oh, I didn't know that. He was their vocalist between Steve A.J really? And Arnell Pineda. I forgot about that for, about, I feel like maybe I knew that now that you say that, but I forgot it.
Like, so it's a kind of a deal where like, They, he, he, So A.J started having vocal problems, couldn't tour. And he took over the tour, and then like, at the end of the tour, or at some point during there, they officially announced that he was their new lead vocalist. And then, like, that was in like November, December.
And then the following, like June or July, they were like, Oh, we're parting ways. Like whatever, But never give a reason why. Mm-hmm. , he's still to this day, like, I [00:45:00] just don't know why they didn't want me to keep going. Like, Yeah. You know, whatever. But he was officially named, they had press releases and stuff that he, Jeff Scott Soto is the new lead singer journey.
And then they, one day they were just kinda like, eh, whatever. That sounds so familiar that I feel like I either knew that or we've had this conversation. Yeah. But I don't re like, yeah. I couldn't have put that together. That's in Interesting. But imagine that voice right there. Singing. Singing faintly.
Yeah. . Yeah. But he, I mean, he crushed. He was, you know, and. did a great job on the tours and stuff that did with him. It just, for whatever reason, and, and it's, it's literally a mystery. They haven't said, he's never found out why, why it didn't continue. So have I, have I given you my take that I think Steve A.J is my favorite.
I have heard that. That's I love that guy. That's wild dude. So good. He was with him for a long time. Pick up the album Arrival. It is so good. It's the most unheard journey project ever. And it's amazing. So many of Journey's album titles sound like they're the same album. Yeah. It's like, Is that Escape? Is that Infinity?
Is that Ari who, Yeah. Yeah, yeah. I know 'em because I'm a Journey fan. But if you're just, It could be easily [00:46:00]ran together. Yeah. It's so weird. Okay. Alright. We haven't even like scratched the surface. We've barely, Right. I mean you know, Billy's done so much with Steve Vi, like Billy and Steve, I are like blood brothers.
Mm-hmm. , you know what I mean? They are like born to play music with each other on this earth. Yeah. They're just kindred souls in just about every conceivable way. And they fit together, like hand in glove, everything that they do together, you know, and we talk, we talk with Billy about his kinship with Steve I and us getting to see them together on one of the G three tours here in Nashville.
And so that's, that could be a whole other stuff. Him, his, you know, touring life with Steve, I, and their, their longstanding connection is a whole other thing, but just I don't even know how to close this out. It's just been awesome. But we still have an interview, so we're gonna kick it to that. There you go.
Let's let Billy close it out. This has been an amazing five years, you know I. Think about the world five years ago. You know, it was just, our world was so different. We got, we didn't get to see each other. Yeah. We saw each other maybe once [00:47:00] a year. Yeah. Five years ago. And now we see each other once a month.
We get to talk to you guys once a week. And and it's because of this podcast, you know, it's really allowed us to do things and we get to talk to our heroes together. Never imagined that we would, you know, get to do this. So like, it's amazing. Thank you guys for listening. We say it all the time, but we really appreciate it.
We would still do this even if you didn't listen. We did it before you listened and we'll do it once you're gone , but like, But like seriously, it's really a privilege that you guys listen and give us such, you know, encouragement and good feedback and, and to all the artists who have shared this era with us, we so appreciate every single one of you.
We know that you're all listening right now. That's right. We know it. So like every episode, especially a five year, like, Oh, I can't wait to tune into this. Can't wait to tune into that podcast. I was on that time. You know, Don McClain is sitting there. Like, this is good stuff. Absolutely. Ray Stevens has us locked in.
Dude, David Wilcox is just jamming along with us right now. But yeah, it's, you know, it's meant so much to us to do this. So as our officials sort of sign off for this fifth anniversary episode, I'll just say thank you. If you want to [00:48:00] be more of a part of the show, if you want more of the show in your life, you can go to patreon.com/ Great, Song Podcast.
If you give us you know, your support there at any level, you get all the bonus goodies that we can possibly think to offer you extra shows, extended episodes. Our second show, which is called the Catch Up with Robin J.P, which is a weekly show on that we do on weekend. It's more focused on music news.
And then we also pick up any threads remaining from, you know, from episodes that are out there hanging including when we get stuff wrong, which does happen from time to time. And if you are of the nature to want to yell at us on the internet about it, you should check out our Patreon shows. That song's it a, that song's not an F.
That's right. We realize it. We caught it. Check it out on Patreon first. And usually, and if we didn't catch it there, then you can yell at us. But otherwise don't yell at us. Give us a makeup. That's right. But yeah, so if you wanna do that, go to patreon.com/ Great, Song Podcast, and you can hit us up on all the socials Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and even TikTok at Great Song Podcast.
We're not like fully invested in TikTok yet, but we're on there. Okay. We're gonna go to this interview with Billy freaking Sheehan and collect ourselves. And then we'll be [00:49:00] back at the end of Tuckman. This is the Great Song Podcast. Hey Billy Sheehan. What's up man? J.P over here. Rob over there. Can you hear us okay?
I sure can. How you guys doing? Fantastic. Doing great. I wanted to make a a Sergeant Pepper's Billy Shearer's intro for you, but I just ran out of time Sheehan, but when I, when I was a kid, it blew my mind. Oh, I bet it did. Like, are they gonna, like, the first time you heard it, you're like, What in the world?
Holy god. I said my name, Hendrick said my last name in Little Wing when he says, When I'm said Sheehan comes to me, . That's awesome. It happens to all of us. I wanted to be, I wanted to be like, Who's Hendrix? But I got that over my shoulder, so they kind of gives that away. How'd the masterclass go yesterday?
It was great. I got another one today, so Okay. It's another full, full day of Master Classing. It's a lot of fun. Yeah. And you're doing like one on one, [00:50:00] right? Is that. Yeah, sit down one on one and they videotaped the whole session and professionally photograph it. And I got a bunch of my bases there, my double neck.
The wife is there a couple others. And so it's, so actually one guy, he flew in so he couldn't bring a base, so he. He did the class on my original pase, my the wife base. Yeah. That's awesome. I gotta play that one's cool story. That guy walked. That's great. That's awesome. Ladies and gentlemen, as promised, we are here with one and only rock bass, rock musician, legend Billy Sheehan joining us on the Great Song Podcast.
Thank you so much for being with us, Billy. You are too kind. Thanks very much man. It's, it'll be here. I I, I'll start this, I'll start the conversation this way. My cousin Brian, who was a few years older than me, was always like my cool cousin. He was, blew my mind as a basis when I was like, maybe 11.
He had this fingers flying all over the place and he had this weird det tuner on his base. And, you know, it's one of the first times I completely like, had my [00:51:00] mind blown as a musician. I'm like, What is this you're doing? And he's like, Have you heard of Billy Sheehan? It was like, it was like he was evangelizing me.
You know what I mean? Like, you know, Billy Sheehan has a wonderful plan for your life and. But like your influence on him had what turned out to be an incredibly profound influence on me. So I just wanna say thank you for that because it's really, I mean, it really kind of turned my life upside down as a musician.
Oh, that's quite an honor. Thanks very much. It's it's amazing to see now with social media, you get, can hear from everybody all the time. And I respond to most everybody that writes or comments, even though it is a quite agan you in test to do so. But it's amazing to see how and this goes out to all musicians, you know, when you put something out there how it affects people.
Later on it was quite fascinating and quite quite touching to see how many people. Listen to what you do and listen to your songs and your music or come to your shows or whatever and what what it does. Cuz I know as a fan it's done that to me, you know, and I've seen players that I, I [00:52:00] really love that changed the course of my life in many ways.
So to to be, to be one of those that might do that for someone else is quite an honor. Yeah. Let's talk about one of those. You posted a picture just the other day, I think from the first concert you ever attended, which was Hendrix in Buffalo. Tell us, tell us a bit about seeing Hendrix as your first concert.
Yeah, I'd never gone and I was with a friend of mine and we, you know, we didn't ride buses too much to get, and I'd never really went the downtown Buffalo, except was a little kid to see Santa Claus . So we, you know, we got on the Buse. And we're figuring out our change to what, what transfer we should make to get down there.
And we walked in, finally into the auditorium in Buffalo, New York, and a soft machine was on stage playing already. And they had a huge white sheet that hung from the ceiling of the auditorium all the way down to the stage. And this. Huge projected ameba image was on it swirling. And, and I remember we're saying to each other, [00:53:00] it's smells like some, there's rope burnings somewhere.
Americas going on. What does that smell? You know? And it was, of course, it was a marijuana smoke. We had never smelled it before. And we, so Hendrix came on stage and he walked up. The show started, people went, people went wild, but they were still so curious. They didn't really know what to do yet. And he just stood this two feet on the base of the microphone stand and played fire.
So he wasn't moving around a jump. And he is just, you know, it's a. Microphone there. And then when he get, I'll move over Rover. Let Jimi take over. Yeah. You know what I'm talking about? Yeah. And then he jumped back and, and the whole place , everybody went crazy. It was amazing to see. And he was just incredible.
The original experience with Mitch Mitchell and all Redding. And it was life changing experience. The next day things looked different. You know, things were things were it was a way of expanding our, our understanding of [00:54:00] how the world worked completely and pretty Awesome. Technical the next day.
Just . Yeah. Everything saturated and pretty well. What did it cost to see Hendrix in what year was that? 68. $2 and 50 cents. . Oh my word. Do you still have the ticket stub? That would be amazing. Yeah. I, No, but I had, I had the ad from the newspaper. You know, taped up in my, in my room. I had a bunch of posters in my room.
I lost that. But, you know, I didn't even think of, of keeping the ticket stub at the time cuz we didn't know these things would be of any valuable later. You never know. It's funny. Yeah. That's awesome. So, pretty great . Well, I guess since you picked up a base, let's talk about customizing bases, adding a neck pickup and additional support for the bolt on the neck that you play.
Talk a little bit about why you do that and how that started and, and why. Well a bit of a home handyman and my dad and my brother were very mechanically. Inclined. And they, they were, you know, [00:55:00] my brother could do just about anything. You know, the streetlights are out, Hold on a second. You know, figure out anything, you know, And my dad was very much like that too.
So I had a whole, you know, little workshop in our house. And then I took wood shop class in high school, which was really a great class. It really I've, I've probably saved tens of thousands of dollars from what I learned in that class. So when I got the base, I just kinda automatically right away, it was sacred and untouchable.
And I realized, you know, it's, it's, it's wood and you can change it and add to it or whatever. And I love the. That Gibson base, that's deep low end neck position pickup of the Ebo basis. It's Jack Bruce Hughes one the bass paper for Chicago use one Paul Samuel Smith in the Yardbird. He had one on its Epiphone Revol base, and that was the first base I got while I was waiting for MYP base to, to.
To show up for the music store. They gave me that, the Epiphone Revol in the meantime and then my bass came in. I went, went and got it. So I [00:56:00] got to play through that and I really loved that sound. So I thought, Hey, there's room for it on this thing, you know, right up in this area. So I, I popped it in.
I didn't know how to wire it, so I just wired in a second output and used two cords. Cause I didn't. I don't wanna do a stereo cord because are hard to find stereo jacks. If you're in El Myra, New York at 12 midnight, you're not gonna find a stereo jack if you need one. So, so I, it later on became a thing visually for people.
Unintentionally they see two chords coming on. Oh, man. Unbelievable. It's two cores. It must be twice as powerful, you know. No, no. But don't think that that's okay. And I just went on the, I saw Tim Bogert on the back of the Beck Bogert Nae record, and he had what I thought was a pase and a telly neck.
Turns out fender made that, that was a pase. They just cut the headstock, like a tele headstock. So I found a 68 tele base at the time was quite easy and they [00:57:00] weren't expensive. 200 bucks. They're, they're, I don't know, about $5,000 now. And took the neck off it and put it on there so I could look like Tim.
Space. And and it was a great neck. It was a big, giant fat thing, so it was just, just really beefed it up. And it was that base, it's in my car right now cause it's gonna go to the masterclass or I show it to you. But it's been plenty of photos about it and I, I've posted been on magazine covers and things like that, so it's quite an iconic instrument in many people's eyes, I'm glad to say.
But yeah, that was my, and that was with me right up until the first Mr. Big tour in Japan. I think maybe in Japan or maybe the second tour there. And but I still continue to. Was a pase for a long time and then eventually it retired it and went well with all the Yamaha eds. The neck is modeled after the 68 tally neck, so it's, it's pretty much the way that base was only has one extra foot at the top.
So high is note is an E, which is real [00:58:00] handy in rock roll. That is handy. It's always nice to have that E on top. And now you've got the 30th anniversary attitude base, which is just absolutely. Yeah, that's over there. That they did a great job, made 30 of them though, and cuz they were sold out right away.
And I only have the prototype, so I never even got one. So really the prototype. Okay. All right. , that's cool. Well let's, you, you mentioned Mr. Big, so let's, let's switch over there for a minute. You know, obviously to be to be with you is, is like the, the hit that most folks in the US associate Mr.
Big with. And I know you guys have had a, a basically a whole other like side to Mr. Big in Japan and you know whole different audience over there. But but here in the States, what changed for you like you personally and, and for Mr. Big as a band when to be with you took off? Was it kind of a gradual thing or something more like an overnight change?
It was pretty overnight. We were on tour, I forgot with who. And we had run the course and we thought we put out three or four singles and nothing really caught fire. Even though later on those songs were, are. [00:59:00] Play him in concert and, you know, Green 10 sixties mine I think Lucky this time was one of the single as well and some DJ in Lincoln, Nebraska.
John Terry was his name started playing to be with you and people started responding and, and the radios used to judge things by what kind of phone requests they got and what the sales were at the store. So at the time, Atlantic Records and their infinite wisdom, they didn't think it was real.
They thought we had friends of ours in Lincoln, Nebraska calling the station and going to buy the record in the stores. Oh. And then when they told us that, I thought, You mean we could've faked it if we could've now that we would've done that six months ago? Put that on the scale. Exactly. So, but it was real.
And it started going to spread the city to city all over the place, all over the country. It's get up on the top 30, top 20, top 10, and then we're Michael Jackson. And some other huge band, I forgot, a huge iconic [01:00:00] band. Were ready to jump into the number one spot, and Mr. Big jumped ahead of both of them and got on the number one.
So we pushed, pushed them out of the number one position or the possibility of a number one position, . And I would often say to my friends, Hey, you wanna start my car for me ? In other words, in other words, a car bomb would've been in a, in there waiting for, You're it shark-infested waters. Once you're in the top 10, you know it's anything, it'll cut anybody's throat to get ahead.
So, so, but we were there for three weeks, so, which was you know, maybe one week you could said, ah, it was a fluke two, eh, it was a long fluke, but three weeks at that point, they had to give it up and give us pat on the back. And everywhere we went, our life was changed. We get on an airplane to fly somewhere and the flight attendant go, Are you guys in a band?
We go, Yeah. Yeah. What's the name of the band? Oh, Mr. Big. I never heard of it. Lou one who was up the first class and bring drinks, the pilot would [01:01:00] come out and shake our head. . Yeah. It was incredible everywhere we went and it wasn't it gets kind of cliche that it's Japan. But we, we played for a hundred thousand people on the beach in Brazil as a headliner there.
At one point there were four Mr. Big cover bands in Italy Germany all over South America and all over Southeast Asia too, Korea, Thailand. I got more mail from Indonesia than anywhere in the world. Do you remember a name of any of the cover bands? Were there any that would really I don't recall.
That's a good question. I, I, I probably could look it up, but our favorite was there was a dire Straits cover band in Italy and they went with the clever name Italian Dire Straits. It was always brilliant. Brilliant. You speed. So you instantly knew exactly what they were. Yeah. I, last I heard there was kind of no kind of clear path forward for Mr.
Big after Pat Tope passed away. Is that still the case? Not sure. We may wanna do something. Possibly, there's couple rumors about maybe next [01:02:00] summer we need a, we had a drum that sank to replace Pat, but he didn't have quite the range that Pat did. Pat had a, a really great and a high voice and he was great Matt Star.
But we need, we need. Stronger cuz our harmony is the thing. And it was me, Pat, and Paul that did all the three part. And then Eric would sing over us or along with us. And so we were able to do like as covered songs in some of our shows. Crosby Hills and Nash and Three Dog Night songs and things like that.
So we had a lot of harmony and of course Green to Succeed mine and as well as to be with you and just take my heart, the heavy harmony songs, you know, So we, we need that, that, so there's a couple guys. We're, we're, we we're considering for singing drummers one in particular. I can't don't want to say anything about it now, but We're hoping to play again cuz you know, we miss each other.
We're all good friends and we get, just get hit all the time to come out and play some more, you know, Took us a while after we lost Pat though, you know, it was a, that was a, that was a tough one. He was my closest musical band friend I've ever had, you know, [01:03:00] So it was, it was very sad. He was just a great guy and an incredible drummer.
But so we'll, we'll, we'll honor him. If we, if we do go out, we'll make sure somebody that can really do, do his finesse on the drums and sing accordingly. Yeah. Well, let's talk about what. Is going on right now. And that would be the new Talas album 1985. Which you guys were so condescend us a copy of in advance.
So we've gotten to enjoy the whole thing, right? What, what made the right, what made right now the, the right time to sort of bring that back and, and do the new album? Well, nothing in particular, but I'm glad we did it at that time because we managed to get it in before sadly we lost Phil not to get to down on, on your show.
But soon after the record was done Phil passed away. So I'm glad we did start it when we did. We wouldn't have been able to, to, to, to complete it. And, and for Phil's legacy, that's, that's, you know, we first did the record, we wanna do it cuz we back in 85, this is what we were doing. You know, it all ended when I went with David Day Ross.
So go back and celebrate what we had. We had two ways of doing the [01:04:00] record to do it. The modern beefed up, modernized version or do it like we used to do in 85. So let's get on the time machine and go right back. Yeah. So we were excited about that. So losing Phil, it became kind of more of a, a legacy to him than, than than that.
But still both factors are in play. And he sang his. He was just great in spite of shouldering the knowledge that he was in big trouble with his health. So initially we just, we played some show for charity and everybody went nuts and we thought this was easy. Let's do some more shows and then, hey, that was easy.
You wanna do the songs we're doing in the shows, which is our same set list from 85. Let's record it. And we, we did. And it was, it was really a joy, the whole project. And I'm very pleased we finally gave the proper treatment to all those songs, of which our, that was our set back in the day. Pretty, pretty nostalgic in a way, but just a lot of fun.
They're all, those guys are great people. So we, we had a blast. Yeah, Me and Rob were talking before like our, probably [01:05:00] the one that we love Crystal clear off that, not just because you're a three piece with a vocalist, but it was, I was telling him, it gives me kind of like police vibes with a little bit more thickness.
It's awesome. I love it. And, and we were talking like, I have to be selective cuz I have, we have a page of stuff and I've gotten through one question and we have seven minutes, so I'm like, be smart Moser. But I got, you're, you got legendary solos over the year was my favorite. Was your G three, 2005 with v with the, when y'all played each other's guitars.
Me and Rob were at that show on that leg of the tour when you were here. So obviously there's. I don't know which one to talk about, but you touched on your time with David Lee Ross. I guess we should probably lean into that a little bit. I see what you did there to, to the alternate 1985 times.
That's right. That's good. So so shy, boy that was on an original Talas project. How does that work about bringing that to David? I mean, I know it was on you know, sink your teeth into it. My favorite track off that is actually Hick Town, but Oh, thanks. I love it. [01:06:00] I love that it doesn't resolve the fast start steady grooves.
Good stuff. How does the process of bringing Shyboy to David Lee Roth, how does that look? Well he heard the song, he came out to a couple of shows we did on that last Palace tour. I wasn't allowed to tell anybody anything. And so what do I do, Leonard? I have no idea. , the beginning of the tour, we had had a meeting and decided I was gonna fly to LA after the tour was done and start a band with him.
So I couldn't even tell the guys in the band. It was a state secret. So I just, it was, it was a odd situation to be in, but he hurt the song and he liked it, and he chose it. So I thought, Great. We changed the, the key for the solo and added a few things that Steve and I did together. But basically it was the, the same song.
He, he liked it and I'm glad he did, and I'm, and very pleased to have that on the record, that's for sure. And my time with Dave was just amazing. It was he was the king of the world at that time, coming off of 1984 Van Halen. And we had a. [01:07:00] It was that tour was a legendary blast. We had so much fun on that tour, and Steve and I created a friendship that lasts to this day very strongly, along with Greg Bien.
I, as well. Yeah. You guys seem to just fit together. I mean, you and Steve just seemed to like, you know, just ask. It works really well, Oddly enough when I, when I, we had so many odd things in common, and this I didn't find out until not that long ago. He, he grew up on a street called Fairfield in near New York City.
Carl Place, New York, near New York City, and in Buffalo. I grew up on a street called Fairfield, Also Kidding. Had his name, street name. But and I just did the Via Academy, which is a guitar like Summit with Steve that I did, with Steve Nuno, was there, Tommy Manuel, a bunch of people really, really great players and just sold out event and we had a riot again.
We got up and played Shyboy. Somebody took an iPhone video of us at soundcheck, making sure we [01:08:00]remembered the literally part at the end. a little bit complicated, and we did, and they posted there's a, and within a day or so, like 300,000 views on it was pretty cool. So we're really honored that so many people got off on that project in the band.
And I hear about it almost every day. It's funny. Yeah, it's, I mean, it's one of those sort of landmark things to look back on, you know what I mean? I don't, I don't know if everybody realized what a, what an incredible moment that was gonna be, you know, at the time. But now looking back on it, you go, Holy cow, this band
Yeah. Pretty, pretty awesome. I just found the hard drive with, I have a pro shot video of that show really, I dunno, anybody else that has it. And the audio isn't great, but the, it's, it's a full shot of multi-camera shoot of the show at the capital center in Baltimore, Maryland, near Washington DC And so I, it's not mine, so I can't do anything with it.
So says he wants it. I'll be glad to give it to him. That's right. There you go, dude. Yeah. Yankee Rose and going crazy [01:09:00] or Fanta. I did have a going crazy question. I know I don't have much time, but on the video where you pick up Steve by his hair, does he actually play the guitar left handed on that solo section?
No. Okay. Okay. It's a reverse image video. Yeah, that's one thing Steve and I and Greg discovered that anything's legal on a video, you know? Yeah. Holy cow. There isn't a committee over the corner saying, Hold on a second, that it looks like you didn't actually play that part and No. And so a lot of people were surprised to find that you don't perform in a video because in order to have audio and record at the same time would be a gargantuan task and would take forever.
Yeah. So you just go in there and lip sync the parts, and that's pretty much standard operating procedure for everybody, unless it's a live show for real. And then you're actually playing. But and Dave was of course the grad master at that medium and was amazing to, to work with. But listen as, as brilliant as all you guys are, it would shock nobody for you or Steve to be like, Oh no.
I really did flip it upside down. Lefthanded for that. . We did some pretty you [01:10:00] know, I looked back at the video footage and and your gentleman mentioned the the guitar playing shows, guitars we did, which we did also at Crossroads there, Clapton's Festival in Texas. And reaching over and, and playing different notes and things like that.
It was at the time we didn't. A lot about it. Technically we didn't, It was funny it, but later on when it came out on video and people saw it and all the comments, it was, it had seemed to have quite an impact. It was pretty, pretty amazing that the way people responded to it. And we, we always had a blast too.
It was a, a key element of all those shows that we, we, those laughs were all real. We were having a ride. That's good. Yeah. It definitely comes through. Going back to Theis project for a moment. Sure. So the, the last track on the album is all you. It's like a beautiful, you know, solo piece. And it's absolutely gorgeous.
What goes into creating particularly a solo piece like that for you? Well just just kind of a. Picking up a base and starting to move around and seeing what sounds right and what's appropriate. And [01:11:00] the, the title of the track looks like a bunch of numbers, but if you turn it upside down, it's fulfill.
Yeah. J.P clued me on on that. I was like, I think maybe this is a misprint , It's, it's back in the day on, on the sink, dea end of that record. My base, so on there was NV 4 3 3 45, which is she upside down. So we kind of kept with that tradition to some degree and wanted to honor Phil as best we could. But yeah, just kind of when you're ever composing a piece or writing a song, just kinda let nature take its course and see what kinda works and move around.
And I'm lucky to have played. Oh, about 55 years now I've been playing. Okay. So I've got a lot of vocabulary to pull from, from all the songs I've played and shows I've done and copy tunes I've learned, which is probably many, many hundreds. So you, you know, you start to pull from, from those things.
And It comes together somehow. It's funny, when I look back on things of of that nature, I, I don't really know how it happened. It just kinda, we just kinda let nature take its [01:12:00] course. And of course I was so glad to be able to do something for Phil and in his honor. Yeah. Well that's great. Well, well Bill, you've been, We wanna be respectful of your time.
I gotta pitch, We, we have to have you back cause we gotta talk about n we gotta talk about Winery Dogs. That's Rob. You wanna pitch one question then I'll ask the last one that ask everybody. Pick your favorite one. That's. Okay, this is alright. This, if I get one more question. This is it. Going back to one more, one more question about David Lee Roth.
Cuz the, the sore thumb for me with, with Roth has always been his pension for that sort of like Vegas style Dean Martin kind of showmanship. Right. I, I call Dave the, the world's most successful pageant kid. And like his kind of crooner tendencies have just never really jived with me fully in light of his like legit rock chops.
I mean the guy's a rock monster. And so those things have always like, been a little bit outta balance of me. When you were part of putting the albums you did with Dave together, was that ever a discussion among the band, that sort of disparity of styles clashing or were you just guys like that's. We just kind of rolled the dust [01:13:00] and what came up.
I just read Ted Temple's book and he talked about doing the Edman Smile project and talking about working with Dave in the early van days as well. And I love Dave's voice. I, a few years ago somebody put out just the track from running with the devil. Just the vocal? Yeah. Vocals, just screaming, yell.
And I think initially they put it out as kind of a way to like mock Dave. With all his noises. But when people heard of there for real without the band, you could hear him really distinctly, man. He was right on his, his timing and his pitch. And I, I, I loved his, his his voice, very much ice cream man.
Amazing. So yeah, I, I recommend that book Highly to tell them his book, he talks about all the early van Helen years and, and working with Dave and, and Steve and I, and he had been smile very, he was very, very kind to us. But yeah, Dave was we let Dave be Dave. That's, that's what he does best.
And God bless him for it. It's pretty amazing. Yeah. It's only one of them that's for. That's for sure. Well, Billy, we asked one [01:14:00] question to everybody. Let's say you're on tour, either doing TA stuff or you're doing winery dog stuff, or you're doing nice. Anything. You go into a gas station. What is your gas station snack, Food of choice, and why you're thinking of your, I'll tell you mine, I would get a three Musketeers bar.
When I was growing up, my mom would say, You could have any candy bar you want, and that's the most ounces. So I get a three Musketeers bar. What's your gas station snack Food of. Interesting. There was a thing that was called Beaver something. Beaver nuggets. Yeah. Beaver nuggets. Shut up. That's Martin Johnson's favorite from the nineties.
Oh, swear to God. I just discovered 'em on one of our last tours we did in the usa, maybe on the Winery Dogs. I'm not sure. New Winery Dogs record is finished and mixed and mastered. That's, that's good too. Taser among teasers right there. . But yeah, the beaver nuggets. And I remember I went online to look 'em up and say, you can buy these online too.
So if is a gas station that doesn't have 'em, I can get 'em. But they're a little, little heavy on the sugar, which I try to avoid. But man, they were so good. I uh, if you ever see a Bucky's gas [01:15:00] station, you can get beaver nuggets at Bucky's every time. So there's, there's your hint. Right on. We got a few of those in this area.
I know. great. Awesome man. Well, thank you so much for joining us today. It's been a truly, I mean a real pleasure and an honor. Oh, you're very kind, both of you. Thank you very much. And let's do it again soon. You, we gotta way to get in touch with me. I. I'm I'm around in general, so text me when you've got an idea for a time and we'll, we'll, we'll roll again if you like.
I'd be absolutely, we would love it. That sounds awesome. Round two, Billy. Thanks man. Talk to you. Thanks you guys. We'll see you soon. Absolutely. Bye. Take care. Bye-bye. This is the Great, Song Podcast and that late as a gentleman. The greatest rock basis of all time on the Great Song Podcast. That's right.
That was Billy Sheehan joining us. And we are gonna take him up on round two. That's right. That is for sure gonna happen. We just don't know when, but that's definitely happening. Maybe when this new Winery Dog's album drops, we can have him back on or something. But just so cool you guys, we'd said it.
I'm not gonna be Labor the Point. We love you guys. We love this show. We love each other. [01:16:00] I love ringing this bell when I get stuff right. It's just great. It makes me feel so good. J.P, when I came to record today, had me a pack of vintage new kids on the block trading cards. It's just everything is great.
Happy five year. Yeah, we got each other. Gifts Rob. I've got me a new pod mic that I'm excited about and interface. Come on, we're going to see John Patro. Yeah. Another gift. So there's a little, another little thing there. So all that. Absolutely. So anyway, we'll see you guys next week with another amazing song.
Until then, I'm Rob. I'm J.P. Go listen to some music.