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Triumph Frontman Turned Down Gigs with Boston, Asia and Damn Yankees To Go It Alone

07/22/2010
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Rik Emmett tells Gibson.com in a new interview that he turned down high profile bands and found solo success by doing things all on his own. Here is that part of the interview: I look back over my career and, after I left Triumph, there were some offers that came by from time to time. Tom Scholz was looking for someone to sing for them on a Boston tour. When the Damn Yankees were starting up and I was talking on the phone with Jack Blades, I got a call to become the guitar player and singer on an Asia tour. Those kinds of things I turned down. I'm sure they would have been nice opportunities and they might have led to something, but I didn't want to just end up in another band.

...I think I got to a point in my life around 1995 or '96 where there was just no record company on the Planet Earth that was interested in a guy my age that had made the music that I'd made, had the track record that I had, because there's been such a huge change that had happened in the industry. At that point, I said that if I wanted to keep playing, then why don't I just make my own record. And I think that was a really big moment for me in my life. You know, you don't think of it as a big moment when it's happening. It just seemed like it was the only logical and natural thing to do. I bought myself a little digital board, set up a little studio with a computer in my basement, thought, "You know what? I've always wanted to make a finger-style nylon-string guitar record. That's what I'll do! Little classical pieces. I'll start there, start a little record label, put it out on my own and see what happens."

I made all my money back on that album in the first three weeks. How expensive is it to record your own little classical guitar record? It was pretty cheap and simple. So after that I thought, "Gee, I'd always wanted to make an arch-top blues swing record, I think I'll do that next. Oh, geez, I've always wanted to make a real hard-rocking kind of blues record or a more pure kind of blues record." In the first two or three years, I put out this trilogy of stuff thatů I'd always saw it, like in the process I was going through at the time, I'd just write whatever I felt like and record whatever I felt like, then I'd figure out how to put this onto an album and make it a sort-of boutique marketable something or other. Those were the first three formatted piles that I came up with. One of them would be in an acoustic finger style. One of them would have been sort-of swing arch-top-ish kinds of things. And the third one was sort of an electric blues and bluesy-based kinds of things. - Read the full interview here

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