speak of your new album "The Usual Suspects". In what
way is it different from its predecessors?
It is more song oriented than most of my previous releases.
“The Usual Suspects” is a revisit to my more melodic rock
side. There are some better written songs on this disc. It’s
got big choruses, strong hooks and amazing production. “JLT”
blues based hard rock and in contrast this one is more melodic
but not wimpy or soft. There are some mellower tracks but
the overall sound of the CD is very powerful.
What can you say about the musical team on the album? Pitrelli,
the ex Rainbow members, etc.
They are all amazing people as well as musicians. They are
people who have always been there for me throughout my career.
There is also some “new blood” with David Z on bass. They
have devoted their time, energy and talents when I have been
up and down. We all toured together as the ‘JLT All Star Band’
in the 1990s as well.
first solo LP "Rescue You" has been reissued recently. How
do you consider this first opus, 20 years on? I always thought
it lacked good bass guitar parts…
That’s an accurate observation. Kenny Aaronson was the original
bass player slated to play on the album But then he had some
problems with drugs. We had contacted Michael Anthony of Van
Halen and he wanted to play on the record. He was real enthusiastic
about it and then other obligations with Van Halen made him
unavailable at the last minute. That left us high and dry
for a bass player so our guitarist, Bobby Messano, ended up
playing the bass parts also. In retrospect, I think the bass
parts and guitar parts ended up being a bit too conservative.
do you look back on the Deep Purple "Slaves And Masters" period.
Wasn't it difficult to replace Ian Gillan, especially in front
of die-hard Deep Purple fans?
As for replacing Ian Gillan or any singer that the fans admire,
yes, it’s always a challenge. But I tried to interpret the
songs from Purple’s past in my own unique way. In fact, after
I joined DP Ian actually sent me a very nice note that told
me to “sing as you sing.” It was a very gentlemanly thing
for him to do. As for how I remember that era, we made a great
album, "Slaves and Masters" and wrote some other songs that
were not released. We toured the world during the Gulf War
when many bands were afraid to go out on the road and the
fans were very appreciative. It was a great experience. I
completely respect all of the members of Deep Purple and will
always admire them for their incredible contribution to rock
and roll history and glad I could be part of it as well.
were Ritchie's protégée. How was it with the rest of the band?
Well Rainbow welcomed me with open arms. No problems there!
Everyone was part of the team and we all worked well together.
We were happy to have all this talent on our team throughout
all 3 Rainbow albums I was a part of. In Deep Purple…there
was a lot of pent up frustrations from the past, ego and jealousy
and that lead to the demise of the incarnation of Purple I
was a part of. It basically all went down while we were in
the studio doing the second album. And then shortly after
“The Battle Rages On” came out, Ritchie left.
Let's speak of the Malmsteen episode. "Odyssey" is his best
selling album to date. How was the collaboration with him?
I remember a song ("Crystal Ball" I think) which is a quasi
copy of a Fandango track (Fortune Teller) which was attributed
to Yngwie… An opinion about that?
We co-wrote it. I have seen some reports where I was taken
off the credits on items, discographies, an EP and collection
CD. I find this really strange because I am credited on the
original discs. I think Malmsteen went through a period where
he resented my input. People often attributed his level of
prominence to me. The melody and lyrics of the songs I co-wrote
with Yngwie are mine. Yngwie wrote the music track. He actually
had a title called “Crystal Ball” and the music track for
it but I added the melody and words. The melody IS the song
in my opinion.
love the Fandango album "Cadillac". Is there a chance to hear
the 4 albums on CD one day?
JLT: Thank you for your kind words. RCA own the masters so
they would have to re-release them. Or a company like Wounded
Bird records would have to go after the rights for the masters,
make a deal and then re-release them. It’s a lot of work to
do that and I do not have the time to do it myself. It would
be nice if Wounded Bird or a company like them could do it.
do you think of the present Deep Purple line-up?
JLT: It’s a different band now. It lacks authenticity without
Ritchie Blackmore. I believe Blackmore’s riffs and playing
helped define the legendary Purple sound that is most identified
with the band. However “Bananas” is a good record. It seems
that now Purple are moving closer to their original sound
and “Bananas” was a step in the right direction.
do you think of them not wanting to play tracks from albums
which Gillan didn't sing on?
I don’t understand that concept. It is strange because I would
sing any and all of their songs because I can.
have collaborated with Glenn Hughes for the last two years.
Glenn and I have been friends for a long time. When I did
a tour in Japan for my 'Holy Man' album, Glenn played bass
and also did some vocals plus a few songs of his own. Then
my manager and the Japanese record label agreed that we should
do something together. I think we pushed each other, which
made the whole thing an incredible self-growth process, spiritually
and mentally. We knew we wanted to work together but we had
no idea that the quality that would come out of it would be
we expect a new chapter or is it over?
JLT: Right now HTP is on hiatus because of other projects
Glenn and I are doing. But certainly I’d love to do another
are your future projects?
There is talk about a Mother’s Army reformation. I am also
working on a rock opera called “Stargazer” about Galileo.
The people who are planning to produce the rock opera are
the same people who brought the world the “We Will Rock You”
show. I am also having fun with the Hit Squad project here
in the States. You can read all about that on my website www.joelynnturner.com
Is there any chance of you playing with Ritchie again?
JLT: I’d love to, and some time ago his manager, Carol Stevens,
said that Ritchie and Candice wanted me to do a duet with
Candice, and I hope they continue feel that way. We always
had this magical chemistry…I feel we were one of the better
singer-guitar teams in history.