(Rules of The Gauntlet: The artists (In this case UK Classic Rock and Prog Band The Room’s Bassist and Backing Vocalist Andy Rowe) is sent a butt ton of questions ranging from standard to stupid from which they must choose at least 12 to answer and return them to us with a minimum of tear stains.)
Tell me why your music rules. Or why it sucks.
Why does our music rule? People like a good tune, they like interesting lyrics, they love to be transported to other places , have their emotions affected, they like hooks that they can sing along to in the car (we have more hooks than a pirates wardrobe) and so we tick all of those boxes …so by definition …according to our rules …..we rule!
Tell me about your new album. The writing, vibe, production/producers, etc.
Let me tell you about our new DVD. We decided that we wanted to take our show to as many people as we could across the world. Without the resources of big band budgets (note gratuitous use of alliteration) we felt the only way to achieve that, was to film the shit out of a show. So we did. We took six cameras and camera people, the Platform Studio Mobile to a rock club in the heart of the west midlands UK back in October last year. We played our socks off, another odd expression, and the production team captured the absolute essence of a show by The Room. The energy, the performance and the emotions are all there in spades (there goes another!). We performed our 2nd album in its entirety for the first time and the film lasts for nearly 2 hours. You can get the DVD or Blu-ray from our web store.
What is an extravaganza? And why is having an extra “vaganza” so special?
Extravaganza. The Vaganza was a pizza found traditionally in the Italian village of Semportini. The story goes that these Pizza were so good that thieves and vagabonds would target pizza ovens and steal the piping hot Vaganza . So the locals always prepared for such a situation but making two just in case. So the word extra-vaganza was formed.
Why do you make your style of music? Why not polka? or Japanese symphonic folk metal? or..?
Why our style of music? Well we all come from widely differing backgrounds. I come from classic rock, Steve our Keyboard player from Hair Metal, Martin the singer and Chris the drummer from Neo prog and Steve the guitarist from Jazz fusion prog strange stuff. Blend all those together and you could create the musical version of the colour beige. Thankfully we haven’t so even if we introduced an Amazonian nose flute player, the rock would still force the mixture!
What’s the stupidest thing you have ever heard someone say?
Stupidest things people say: “have you got a holiday booked?” , “yes we have thanks” …….and then here it comes….. “anywhere nice?” …… no I booked somewhere shit!
Where do your song names come from?
Well that’s easy…. Ummm ….well no its not…. We don’t tend to use the “hook” of the chorus as the title of the song. It could be a word or phrase that is integral to the story behind the song. Martin writes about events or situations, real or imaginary and so our song A Casual Believer for example, is about a young actress travelling to Hollywood to appear in shall we say special movies and the phrase is used only in the opening line of the song.
Top five favorite albums?
My Top five albums apart from our two albums are
a. Frank Sinatra Strangers In the Night
b. The Eagles Hotel California
c. Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here
d. Deep Purple Burn
e. The Sex Pistols Never Mind the Bollocks
What really pisses you off?
You know what pisses me off? No? Well let me tell you. This industry of ours is loaded with sharks. People that want to make a fast buck from naïve or not so naïve rock and roll bands. People that claim to be publicists and do nothing, promotors that don’t, managers that manage their bank accounts and all the rest of the con artists that get in between the talented musicians that want to entertain, and their audience. There are great people around of course and we work with them but the money, time and emotion that those bastards cost us over the years is a real pisser!
Worst thing ever eaten?
The worst thing I have eaten. Whatever it was that gave me a touch of the pharaohs revenge on holiday in Egypt’s beautiful Red Sea. The finest doctor in the whole of the Taba region wanted me to go to his hospital but we agreed on an injection of some medication in the arse was a sufficient solution. I have never ever felt so ill. What it was I have no idea.
If you had a time machine what would you do with it?
My time machine would take me back to Woodstock in 1969 but on that journey we would stop at Live aid, the California jam, and a Ziggy stardust show. That would make me really happy!
Describe your face.
My face? Well people say I look like Hugh Grant. I take that as a complement of course and at the same time get just a tad confused as he has hair and I don’t. Most of the time I have more hair on the bottom of my face than I do on the top of my head but in all honesty I hate shaving… its not a look! I have the strangest coloured eyes. Greeny Browny with red bits oh and a big-ish beak!
What would you like to say to your fans?
What do I want to say to our fans? That is really easy and its just two very simple words that just don’t get used enough: “Thank You” . Ok so that’s a really easy answer but its not. I want to say thank you for so many things.
a. Thank you for believing in us
b. Thank you for buying our music
c. Thank you for applauding in the right places
d. Thank you for singing along
e. Thank you for paying to see us do what we do
f. And thank you for everything that you haven’t yet done that will help us grow as a band.