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Jack Frost – Guitarist and songwriter for Seven Witches, guitars for Bronx Casket Co.



Date: 2/4/06
Interviewed By: Rich Catino

 

1. There has been much talk by yourself and in the press about “Amped” being a different Witches record.

What are you thoughts on this and how different, if so, do you find it?

JACK: Its funny because three or four records ago the press said “O we sound like Priest, we sound like this”, and then we make a record like “Amped” that’s a bit of a stretch for us off the beaten path for a Power Metal band and we got our balls broke. Where we these people when we were putting out these great records that sound like everybody else? You know what I mean?

Now we take a chance and everybody opens their eyes so that’s cool, cause “Amped” is a different record and a new era in the band. I think with the first two we did with Bobby, to the one with Wade Black, to the two with James they are all a bit different and part of the growing processes. If you don’t grow you stay stagnant. With “Amped” we didn’t try to do anything ground breaking because its all been done before. Priest, Sabbath, Maiden, Thin Lizzy, they set the rules and any band, whether it be American or European, are just rehashing old music. Everything comes back around again, its old music that comes back.

I’m proud of this record and I’m glad everybody is taking notice.

2. Compare working with James and with Alan and tell us what each brought to the Witches music?

JACK: James brought very much that old school style of singing to the table, Halford, Dio, Dickinson. At the time when we played together we recorded “Passage to the Other Side” and I still find that one of our best records. It was a great time creatively and incredible. With Alan he takes more chances, he re writes the stories, he has his own identity. Either you love him or hate him. With James, you may not be into Power Metal but still will enjoy his voice because he has things in common with Halford and Dio.

Alan is unique in his own way, its like fitting a square in a rectangular hole. He’s like Blitz from Overkill, he’s special, King Diamond is special. Nobody sounds like those guys. My whole life people have said to me “You’re a good player, you have a lot of Tony Iommi or Zak Wylde in your playing”. Alan sounds like Alan, he doesn’t get those kind of comparisons. He also brings a lot of intellectual qualities to the music through the lyrics he writes.

3. I think a lot of both the fans and critics find the albums “Passage” and “Year of the Witch” that you recorded with James were the ones that defined and brought a certain benchmark to Seven Witches. Do you agree?

JACK: No you can’t say that because when we recorded the first two with Bobby at the time that was groundbreaking and special for me, and then with Wade he took the band to another level, then with James he then took us to another level, and with Alan yet another. Every singer or player who has been part of this band has really brought some thing to the band and stepped things up a notch. There is no one singer and one record that is the best. Maybe in the fans mind the ones with Bobby are the best and I hear that, or maybe the ones with James are the best. Say what you want, they are all great singers and still doing it. Say what you want about me too but I can pick the greatest singers to work with because everyone of them have gone on to join other bands and I’m very proud of that.

4. Is this is a new Seven Witches with Alan, and let’s say there is another singer after him. What direction will you take the music in then?

JACK: Lets get something straight, we don’t go in a direction because of the singer. We go in the direction of what I am writing at the time. I don’t go ok, this record is going to sound like Disturbed, the last one is gonna sound like Judas Priest. I write what I feel, I don’t write for the media, I don’t write for the record label because you know what… I had a lot of trouble at first with the label because of this record.

I write for me, Picasso painted for Picasso, I write for myself. Not to be a dick dude but I’m tired of the whole…”What do you feel” from the press, you know what, fuck the press in plane English. You asked me about the next singer, you know what dude….Alan will sing on the next record because I really enjoy working with him. I don’t know if he will be here ten years from now but he’s here now.

5. Give us a look back at your time in Metallium and the album recorded with them.

JACK: That was my first real opportunity to go to your Europe and be part of the European fests which are the greatest for Heavy Metal. I am proud of what I did with that band but not happy working with Lars Rats. Ask Chris Caffery or Mike Terrana, his ego was too big for his own good, he could have went so far with his career. He had some great guys working with him, Henning is one of the best singers in Europe, Mattias were great guys. Lars, is a negative Gene Simmons. A money hungry snake.

6. What is the future of Bronx Casket CO. and does DD Verni enjoy singing?

JACK: The future looks really good. Its was awesome, we did our first show in New Jersey with DD singing and it went great. DD was a little nervous at first but then he got into after the first two songs. As far as him continuing to sing he has no choice, we want him to sing, Hahah, he sounds great.

7. As we speak, the first two Seven Witches records “Second War in Heaven” and “City of Lost Souls” have been reissued with bonus tracks in the U.S. Are you happy with how those came out?

JACK: I think its awesome they finally got released in the States. I really wish we could have done more with those as far as the liner notes because I have a lot of great pictures that could have been included but you will see those on the DVD “Years of the Witch”. There are bonus tracks included on those which are some the early demos for “Second War”.

8. Do you find “Amped” the Seven Witches album you are most proud of and why?

Do you think that a band can come out with an album that is just not “them”, for example Helloween’s “Chameleon” is not liked by neither the fans, critics, or even the band.

JACK: No you cant say that, because bottom line is….. that’s like saying everything you have done before that is shit. You know what….working with Joey Vera, James, Wade, was amazing. How can anybody say “This is my best record”. So what are you saying you lied to the fans. I can’t say that, I’m proud of everything I have ever did, its all part of me.

It’s like saying you like one wall of the Sisteen Chapel better than the other. People are so naïve is this business.

As far Helloween’s “Chameleon”, if the band is called Helloween then it’s a Helloween record. I like that record. They did it that way because they believed in it at that time. You’re a musician, that’s what you do. That’s like if Seven Witches did a country record. If you jerk off Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday with your right hand, why then can’t you jerk off with your left hand on Friday? Because you felt like it, its still your dick.

9. Will you do another solo record? If this could be your wish list for contributors who would they be?

JACK: Of course I will. That last one was great and a step up for me and it also got a lot of positive response from both the fans and critics.

As far as a wish list I will definitely ask Patrick Johannson from Yngwie Malmsteen’s band back for drums, I wish I could have Cozy Powell god rest his soul. On bass my friend Clint from a band called Teos and definitely Joey Vera again. Another legend who passed away Ray Gillan, I wish he could sing a song, he’s the brother mother of all brother mothers of vocalists. Ray Alder would be good. Man there’s so many great guys I have worked with already. I think if I did something with Ronnie Dio we could come up with something great.

10. Your thoughts on your time Savatage. Do you still talk to the guys and do you think you will be asked to be part of the proposed anniversary album and tour in 2007?

JACK: Dude how can you ask a question like that, they are one the greatest Heavy Metal bands of all time. It was an honor and a dream come true. It was a guitarist and a band that I grew up worshipping and getting to be on the same stage as Jon Oliva, I mean really. Its like winning a million dollars.

Yeah I still talk to the guys, I speak to Jon and Chris often, I just saw Jeff Plate at NAMM and we talked. Things got twisted at the end, time has past so its ok. What we accomplished together was amazing.

I hope I am asked to be part of the anniversary tour, I would love to do it not only for the fans but for myself because I loved playing that stuff. There’s a DVD coming out at some point that has all their videos, live stuff which goes all the way back to the beginning of the band.

11. Plans for the rest of 2006?

JACK: Well first we have these dates with Wasp in the States. Then European shows with Demon. Bronx Casket will be playing some with Loudness in the U.S. and it looks like we may be doing the Wacken festival in Germany and a festival in Massachusetts. I will also start working on the new solo record and hopefully new Witches in September and look for the “Years of the Witch” DVD which includes a live show, old footage, interviews, and photos.

I also want to thank the fans for all their support over the years and taking this continued musical journey with me. O yeah, the devil horns, Hahaha, up to Metal Asylum, thanks for the support.

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