EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW – JOHN CORABI, THE DEAD DAISIES
It will come as no surprise that The Dead Daisies have become firm RUSHONROCK favourites over the last few years, with their classy, honed hard rock sounds, coupled with John Corabi’s big raspy vocals. With two incredible studio albums under their belt, and a brand new live album Live and Louder (RUSHONROCK 9/10), under their belts, things are going strong for the super group.
RUSHONROCK co-editor Adam Keys caught up with The Dead Daisies front man John Corabi to talk all things Daisies, and it’s safe to say, the former Motley Crue frontman is every bit as cool as you’d expect.
RUSHONROCK – Hi John, thanks for joining us at RUSHONROCK. How the mood in the camp?
John Corabi – Thanks for having me man. Everything’s great in the camp. Live and Louder is out next week and we’ve got a busy summer coming up, but I’m just sitting on my couch talking to you about music and thinking ‘how fucking cool is my job?!’
RUSHONROCK – How has the early response been from Live and Louder?
JB – It’s been great. We’ve got a great team of managers who are super-hot on social media, and they’ve been picking up reviews and sharing them for fans. The response has been incredible. Marco and Doug are both great at responding on there as well, and we’ve been blown away. It’s been fucking awesome man!
RUSHONROCK – Why did you decide to go with a live album?
JB – Anyone that has come to see one of our live shows will tell you that we always take time for a meet and greet with fans once we’re done playing. Every time we meet people, they tell us we’re even better live than we are on record, and we should release a live record.
The demand from the fans, along with the fact we needed a metal break, were the real driving forces behind the release. Since I joined the band, we made Revolución, then Doug joined and we went on a world tour. Then, we went back to the studio and made Make Some Noise, then another world tour. It was pretty much non-stop, and Live and Louder allowed us to put out the record the fans wanted, while giving ourselves a much needed mental break.
RUSHONROCK – You’ve got two albums packed with hits now, and a great live album, what song is your personal favourite to play live?
JB – We do have a lot of great songs now. It’s tough picking a favourite, but my favourites to play live are probably Last Time I Saw The Sun and We All Fall Down. They really hit the spot for me on stage, I just love them man.
RUSHONROCK – You’ve got a couple of great covers on Live and Louder, most notably the RUSHONROCK favourite Fortunate Son. Tell us a bit more about this.
JB – You know, we get a lot of gripes about playing covers! But the truth is, we’re just a bunch of music fans who are just as geeky as our fans. I used to go see bands in my home town of Philadelphia who all played covers. Like say, Grand Funk Railroad, they used to cover Heartbreaker by The Rolling Stones. And, we’re talking like three years after the track came out. The way we see it – a great song is a great song.
The covers we play are just songs we love. We’re such music geeks. Before every show you’ll find us sitting on our laptops watching YouTube videos of our favourite artists. I think Doug, Brian and I are the worst for it. We’ve got a lyric game were we say a lyric and the others have to guess the song.
We love educating ourselves, and we love educating our fans with bad ass songs. Our covers are an education to our fans and a tip of the hat to our heroes.
RUSHONROCK – It’s a sad week for rock, with the passing of the ‘king of Sunset Strip’ Mario Maglieri. You were deeply ingrained in the Strip in the 80s, what were your personal memories of the man?
JB – Oh God. That whole family – the dad and the two sons, they were the babysitters of Sunset Strip. They really looked after all of us, and one thing that people don’t realise, is that the Rainbow did really fucking great food!
One time I was sitting with my wife having some pizza. Next thing, this guy just sits down beside my wife (he said he was a fan), and started talking to me. I talked for a bit, and he just picked up a slice of my pizza and started eating it! I was like ‘what are you doing, you’re eating my fucking food man!’ In my head I was trying to work out I not to be an ass-hole to a fan that was being a complete ass hole.
Thankfully Mario saw this, and he came over and took the guy away and give him a brutal tongue lashing. That’s what was like. He looked out for all of us.
RUSHONROCK – Can rock ever really recover and have another hay day like the 80s Sunset Strip? Or, has the modern accessibility to music killed the gig going spirit and the rebellious nature of music?
JB – Places like The Whiskey, The Troubadour and The Rainbow saw the break through of every act that came through LA. I’m talking right back as far as The Doors, Hendrix and Joplin. I think what’s changed is the instant gratification people want today and they’re not prepared to do the work to get there, so I don’t think that spirit can ever return.
When I think back, I was in those bars every Friday and Saturday watching shows, I played them and I fucking lived through the great era of rock on the Strip. I can look back and say ‘I was fucking part of it all.
RUSHONROCK – The difference between Dead Daisies musically and previous bands you have worked with.
JB – When I got a record deal with The Scream – we got a record deal on three songs – we were told to go away for a year and just write before going into the studio. It was the same with the Mötley record – it took a year to write. With The Daisies, we are organic, quick and old school. Don’t forget, The Beatles and Led Zeppelin recorded albums in a day.
With Revolución, we got it together acoustically, then developed it with electric guitars, recorded it and mastered the whole thing in 32 days. Make Some Noise took 35 days. The difference now, is that I write, Doug writes, Marco writes, Marty writes, and it means we’ve always got new material to work with. It’s all very old school.
RUSHONROCK – What’s next? Another full length album?
JB – We’re going back into the studio in October to start working on a new record. We don’t have any set plan, but that’s how we work. The most descriptive I can be, is that we want to make a kick as 70s rock record, even though it’s 2017. We grew up listening to bands like Zeppelin, Bad Company and Aerosmith and we still love them today. We want to make a kick ass, classic rock record in that style.
RUSHONROCK – When will we see the Dead Daisies on another full UK tour?
JB – I don’t know to be honest. I know we’ve got a couple of UK dates before Download, but I’m not sure where (Edinburgh and Derby). Once we finish our summer festivals, we’re heading to Japan, South America and then North America to play US and Canadian shows.
RUSHONROCK – The Japanese audience are very receptive to rock….
JB – Japan has been amazing throughout my career. We played Loud Park Festival last year and got a great response. We’re playing four shows out there, a couple in Tokyo and a couple in Osaka. It will be super cool. Once we’re done with all of these shows, we’ll be taking our touring hat off and putting our recording hats on, then once recording is done, we will look at another world tour.
Northumbria University Journalism graduate, rock and roll enthusiast and co-editor of RUSHONROCK.com.