Joe Lynn Turner on RockOverdose: “Rock is not dead! It’s alive and well”!

Talking about Joe Lynn Turner, words are unnecessary. A living legend of Rock music, is coming to our country once again, for a series of live shows. Rock Overdose had the pleasure and honor to speak to this great charismatic artist, who with his voice has 'dressed' some of the most famous songs of Hard Rock and Metal. His words  will certainly be discussed globally, and if you think we write excesses, you should read the interview to understand.


Ladies and gentlemen, Joe Lynn Turner!


Rock Overdose: Hi Joe. Welcome to Rock Overdose once again.
JLT: Thank you. I am pleased with you.


Rock Overdose: How are you?
JLT: All good. I Have a great day today here in New York. How is the weather Greece?


Rock Overdose: The weather here in Greece is amazing too.
JLT: I believe it. For this I love Greece !!!


Rock Overdose: Nice . A few questions now. About your upcoming concerts in Greece, as a part of your world tour, which will begin in a few days, there are seven cities in Greece where you will play, and even some of them will have the pleasure to see you for the first time in concert . Can you tell us a bit about that?


JLT: Certainly. Me and George (Gakis)  had a couple of acoustic concerts in Greece the last time I was there, so we decided this time to make seven acoustic shows. We shuffle in the set all these famous songs of Rainbow and Deep Purple, but this time we will play some songs not only of these two bands. We will remix some songs you really love, songs that really inspire everybody, creating influences, songs that people really love them and passes good listening.


Rock Overdose: We have the pleasure and honor to see often in Greece. What are your memories of all those concerts you have given in our country?


JLT: It is also my honor to come and give concerts in Greece. Really love your country, I love people, and I would say that we are 'una faccia una razza' / 'One face One breed' because I'm of Italian origin, so we have a lot in common between us, we love two much our friends, so all the concerts I have given to Greece were a wonderful audience, an audience full of passion. So the privilege and the honor of being there is mine.


Rock Overdose: Your last appearance in our country was in the cave of Ioannina in Perama area. Do you want to tell us something about this experience?


JLT: Yes !!! We decided with George (Gakis) to have a unique experience, playing in  Ioannina cave. Walking inside I told to George that this would be an amazing place to give someone an acoustic concert ', and so a year later we got from the authorities permission to do it. A unique concert that no one else ever gave in a cave aged over 1,500,000 years. Like this started, and all the efforts of George unsuccesful getting permission from the authorities for this unique concert. A concert was filmed, and highlighting some excerpts from it got very good reviews. We honestly enjoyed this acoustic show.


Rock Overdose: Unfortunately this video is no longer present on the internet.

JLT: I think the video went up but quickly descended reasonable for commercial reasons, as someone can come to an agreement with us to release it on dvd. We'll see how it goes over it.


Rock Overdose: You have to wait (laughs)...
JLT: Yes of course (laughs)...


Rock Overdose: ( Zisis Petkanas comment) 'Because I was at this concert in Ioannina I must admit that it was really amazing!


JLT: Yes I remember. Indeed, you were one of the hundred fans if I remember the number, who watched it.


Rock Overdose: Yes I remember it was strictly ninety- one hundred people only in the cave, not to be a problem of collapse, which might happen if the world was much more.


JLT: Yeah right! You were one of the lucky then!


Rock Overdose: In those days, you sang the song 'Dust In The Wind' (Kansas) accompany some local musicians on the island of Ioannina lake.


JLT: Oh it was amazing! This was a wonderful time !!! I must tell you that we enjoyed very much this folk festival, the food, the people. In the end we decided to improvise with the musicians singing 'DustIn The Wind'. The musicians were really amazing. This song has been filmed there and logically is on you tube. (Note: Yes there is). Wonderful moments!


Rock Overdose: Are you interested to learn more about the Greek folk musical instruments like bouzouki for example?


JLT: Yes! Indeed I played bouzouki that night. It was one on our table, and I can say that is an amazing instrument, very interesting, but difficult to play it. I'll tell you an interesting story. That night after the festival, someone offered to turn us back to Ioannina. So we got into a small boat together with the choir of the festival. So in the middle of the lake in a small boat, those sweet evening with beautiful stars above us, in the beautiful and tranquil lake, we started playing and singing, and my God !!! It was the most incredible experience I've ever had ! Many many great memories from Greece.


Rock Overdose: We talked earlier about your upcoming concerts in Greece, but we would like to become a little more specific in what we just listen to. There will be songs of Rainbow and Deep Purple only?


JLT: Well, you'll listen to some songs from my 'list' as TheBeatles, The Doors, Elvis, will be a little 'crazy' the whole thing and certainly a little different than I have so far present in your country. The repertoire will not contain only Rainbow and Deep Purple songs.


Rock Overdose: As we talked about Rainbow and Deep Purple, what are your memories of these two great bands from the time you were their singer?


JLT: In all the memories are always good and bad moments, but I personally want to keep only the good of them. The best period of my life was with these bands, and these memories will last forever. What I can say is that I am blessed and grateful to have been able to these two great bands as their singer to create such good music with these great musicians, and to have this legacy behind me is something that makes me grateful.


Rock Overdose:
Υou had the opportunity to be a singer of Yngwie Malmsteen.


JLT: I think we recorded the best album that the band has made. One of the best works of Yngwie and mine, with great songs that are heard today, a strong and so wonderful job. At least this was a great moment we had together. I can say that we couldn't do this again and this is not because of  me. At least we had a good time together. And commercially this was one of the most shelling album, and in my opinion put Yngwie 'on the map' from just being guitar rituals up to a lot bigger stuff.


RockOverdose: Let's go back to the years of Rainbow. 2 years ago we had talked and you told us about the reunion of Rainbow and how Ritchie think a return to rock roots. On the other hand we saw a line up with 'strangers' in public musicians surprised us as we expected a reunion with old members.

 

JLT: I remember our talk, yeah. It surprised me, too. I'll tell you what happened. And that's the short story. For over a year I was talking with his management and we wanted to have big plans with an authentic Rainbow reunion, with the integrity of the old members, with Doogie, Graham. Everyone singing, everybody playing. This what the fans really should see. Not what he is doing now. I believe it's a cover band. And we wanted, I wanted, to be involved only if this was the situation. So, when he started to back off from that situation, I set this whole thing back and said: "If you want to do this, I'm not gonna be involved", because for me, it's a cheap way. And I don't think the fans deserve it. I think it's a shame that he feels this way. So, to make it short, I said I am not involved and then he would comment on the press and the newspapers that Joe Lynn Turner is not involved and he doesn't know it yet. Well, I knew it. And it was a very classless way to announce that to the world and I don't respect that very much. And I don't think anyone should respect that. But that's his problem. I'm not angry about anything. I just feel that I wasted my time in trying to make an authentic Rainbow reunion happen and I was betrayed. The fact of the matter is that I wouldn't want to do it any other way. What he is doing now, is a cover band. I don't think he gives anything to the fans. You could hear Ritchie play, but so what? That's it. And I think a guitar player of his stature, should have the best way possible to return. I don't think he made the right decision. That's all I can say. He can do what he wants. Most people were saying that I was crazy, I was delusional, when I was talking about his return to rock and laughed at me. And I was upset about it. At the same time, I am not anymore. I was telling the truth. People should understand that I always say the truth. And what I said today IS the truth. I wanted an authentic Rainbow. Not this. So, good luck, Ritchie. I wish you well.

                                                                                        

RockOverdose: You can say that it is a solo project now.
JLT:
Yeah, I don't know why he calls it Rainbow. It's not Rainbow

RockOverdose: Are you keeping in touch with Ritchie; 
JLT:
No one contacts Ritchie. We communicate with his manager. You don't communicate with Ritchie. As witnessed by the whole RnR Hall Of Fame that is happening now that he is not allowed. Because if he comes, Ian Gillan and the rest of the band won't come. If you ask me, they're acting like children and it's a mess and a shameful situation. It's terrible that it happened. For me, it shows you exactly what is happening over there. That these people don't know how to grow up and be friends. Just stop the bullshit. It's a shame and it makes a circus out of the whole thing. So, I'm gonna be on tour, anyway. I'm going to be on South America for the whole month so I have no problem what the situation is. I made a statement on my Facebook that describes how I feel about the Rock and Roll Hall of Shame, as I call it. I spoke on the radio So Serious the other night, and he (Eddie Trunk) actually agreed with me. He said these people are clueless. They have no idea who is who, what is what. It's a Hollywood event, and it really has not much to do with Rock and Roll anymore. It's more of a celebrity event. In the early days it was a true rock and roll organization. But now, it is turning into a circus show. It's more like Grammys or something stupid like that. People make the band. And I'm writing songs for the fans and the people. That's who makes the cases. Not these organizations. It took them how long to put Deep Purple into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? It should have been in the Hall Of Fame 25 years ago.

Rock Overdose: Do you agree with the phrase 'To Rock is dead'?


JLT: (laughs). No, I don't  agree. Of course it is not dead. See us. Currently chatting. How is 'dead' then? Please tell me your opinion. I would like to hear.


Rock Overdose: I think nowadays the Rock left behind on promotion. They all prefer to promote and reward more Pop and less Rock bands and artists.


JLT: Exactly. Rap and Pop bands and artists. On the other hand many people believe that the classic Rock came back stronger than ever. What I know is that there are thousands Rock fans out there, who think that the music we play we Rock artists are the true music, and I'm very happy that I am a part of this Rock community, which continues to create good music. For example, I just finished the songs for a new album with Sunstorm and i'm very proud of all this. This album is more heavy, more  hard and more strong, is what I call melodic metal. An album will be released in May and will be called "Edge Of Tomorrow". When released search for it because this is a really amazing album. A modern- classic rock album. Modern sound and producing.


Rock Overdose: Some other plans for the future?


JLT: Yes. I will release a live album recording from Cleopatra Records now in March. This concert took place in 1985 in Boston as part of the  promoting tour for my first solo album "Rescue You". Cleopatra Records phoned me and said 'This live recording is bootleg out there, and because it deceives the fans, it is advisable to print the official one on cd, also putting some' unique 'photos and interviews, thus protecting the your music ', and for this reason I respect infinitely Cleopatra Records. The album  title will be "Joe Lynn Turner-Street Of Dreams-Boston 1985". The concert was broadcast live on the radio, not 'tampered' in of studio, it is a real live recording, and the band is amazing. Chuck Burgi ex- Rainbow was on drums, Bobby Messano guitar and vocals, Alan Greenwood on the keys, and the Burry Dunaway on bass. A really great album.


Rock Overdose: So Joe, if you want send a message to your Greek fans?


JLT: I'm coming !!! I'm coming to Greece. I love your country, love your food, I love  Greeks. I feel so comfortable with you. Me and my wife thought about buying a home in Greece, and we're looking to find one already. Greeks feel my own people, and to know something. I do not come to your country for money. I pissed of sometimes when I read bad things about your country. I say that after all your problems you're still out there to make the arts. You're keeping the culture. You are so strong people. I have so much respect to you. Because after these governments and euro and everybody did all this sh#t to you, you still work for life. You must be very proud of your country. On the other hand, your metal fans are among the most passionate fans  in the whole world, and keep the Rock alive. To go back to the question that you asked me before  if Rock is dead. 'Rock is not dead! It's alive and well, and lives in Greece! '

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