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 "10 Questions with Howie Simon" [2005]

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victoria
Talisman
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Number of posts : 425
Location : Los Angeles, CA
Registration date : 2007-01-05

PostSubject: "10 Questions with Howie Simon" [2005]   Sun Jan 21, 2007 8:42 pm

Howie began playing guitar at the age of 6 in his home town of Buffalo, New York. In 1989 Howie joined the East Coast regional touring hard rock act "Ice Water Mansion" where he performed over 300 live shows in 10 different states during a 2 year span.

Since arriving in Los Angeles in 1994, Howie has had many accomplishments including work with Talisman, Jeff Scott Soto and Graham Bonnet

1. What are you currently up to?
I am just home from our European and South American tours with the Jeff Scott Soto band. It was a total of almost 3 months on the road. I have heard rumors that I will be playing a bit on a new Talisman CD, so that will be very cool. I am also forging ahead with writing for my own solo CD, but I am a bit lazy and writing doesn't come extremely easily for me. It's taking longer than I had hoped.

2. How did the recent European and South American tours go with Jeff Scott Soto?
The South American part was great...good size crowds and the audiences were very appreciative. Brazil is one of my favorite countries to play and Argentina turned out to be really cool as well. The European tour had its ups and downs crowd wise, but the highlights were definitely the shows in Greece and the gig in Belfast. Spain is one of the best places to play but we only did the island of Mallorca this time and I am hoping to get back to mainland Spain for some shows soon.

3. What have been the highlights (and any lowlights) of your time with Jeff Scott Soto? Why do you think he has never got bigger success and recognition he so richly deserves?
You ask that question like we are not working together anymore!

There have been alot of highlights but still the one thing that I remember is our very 1st gig at the GODS in the UK in 2002 that became the live DVD.

We all hardly knew one another but there was just a special magic at that show that I can't explain. You can still feel it when watching the DVD.

Lowlights are really something I don't like to dwell on after the fact...let's just say sometimes the organization of things is not at a professional level.

I can't really say why Jeff isn't more widely known. There are plenty of great artists who should get more recognition (Butch Walker, John Cowan, Glenn Hughes,etc.) but sometimes it just doesn't happen. Maybe playing in a band with me is like a black cloud hanging over Jeff's head...who knows?

4. How did you hook-up with Ken Tamplin and what other artists/bands would you like to work with in the future?
Ken Tamplin called an ad I had in a music paper almost 12 years ago.

We have become great friends since then and he is one of the most talented people I know...singer, guitarist, engineer, songwriter, producer...he does it all.

We toured Europe 6 times, went to Japan in 1998, and have done countless recordings and other gigs together. I owe him alot. I guess my buddy Doug Aldrich has the 2 gigs I would like the most - Whitesnake and Dio (the lucky bastard).

There is also a very little known bluegrass singer named John Cowan who has one of the best voices I've ever heard who I would like to do something with I would love to bring him into a more hard rock-ish project and let him wail!

5. What have been the most memorable gigs and why?
Talisman at the Lokerse Festival in Belgium in 2003 where we had 17,000 peeps. Part of it is on the "World's Best Kept Secret" DVD.

I already mentioned the GODS 2002 with JSS' solo band. And in 2000 I played the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City with my Metallica tribute band ALCOHOLICA opening up for Cypress Hill and Limp Bizkit. That show had the most energy from the audience I've ever felt.

6. How have you enjoyed the MySpace experience so far? Many bands/artists have commented they have gained more fans/interest via MySpace than via other music websites. Has this been the same in your experience?
I have been on MySpace for quite a while...I started on Friendster even before that. I don't really know if I have gained more fans since I am not selling any product on there yet. I have had some people I haven't heard from in years find me on there and that's been the best thing about it so far. But if you look at my page you can see I am not a "friend collector" and if a band I dont know or like wants to add me they get denied.

7. Talisman - What has been the reaction to the live DVD & CD the band released earlier this year? Will the band continue with just you as sole guitarists now Fredrik is a member of Arch Enemy?
Talisman is not a very active band and when the time comes to do stuff you can guarantee Fredrik will be there...the band would not be the same without him. I've spoken to him recently and he's very happy in Arch Enemy, but will still be involved in all things Talisman as far as I know. The reaction to the DVD has been nothing but positive. It's weird to answer questions about it since the band has been around for 16 years and I am the "new guy", but I am very proud of the performances on there and the guys in the band are the greatest people you could know.

8. Where do you get your songwriting ideas from and who musically is an influence on you?
I struggle sometimes to complete my song ideas, as I said before. Sometimes things just come to me and other times I get serious cases of writer's block. John Sykes is probably one of the bigger influences on me in that department, but there are others.

9. What do you do in your spare time outside of music?
I am a big NHL hockey fan and I love following my team - the Buffalo Sabres! I also spend time with my dog.

10. Message to your fans...
Fans? I actually have fans? My message to you is - Stop reading this and go outside and do someting!!!!
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