Foo Fighters Guitarist Goes Solo – And Win His Album
Foo Fighters guitarist Chris Shiflett admits he was enjoying the band’s two year hiatus so much that he’s caused himself a problem with side project Chris Shiflett & The Dead Peasants.
“If I hadn’t been relaxing so much I’d have gotten our debut album (self-titled and just released) out a year ago, and given us a chance to tour,” he told Classic Rock. “As it is, I’ve just done a run of dates locally (California), but we start recording the new Foos album in September and that will probably take us through the aurtumn. There might be time for me to do some more gigs around the end of year. But then we’ll probably be into Foo Fighters touring schedule that’ll stretch into 2012.”
For Shiflett, this album is a chance to showcase his interest in Americana, rockabilly and rock ‘n’ roll in general.
“I can’t say that I grew up on this music, because I’m from California and it was Aerosmith and KISS for me. But then my older brother got me into the Rolling Stones and Elvis. From there, I discovered Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Willie Nelson, then the Replacements, X and Wilco.”
The original idea, says the guitarist, was to make this a solo album. But it’s now becoming a band.
“I just wanted to get a record made. But now I’ve got this bunch of really good musicians together for the live dates, and I’m really enjoying what we’re doing. So, I’ll try to keep them together for the next album.
“I did try this once before with a band called Jackson United, but my heavy schedule eventually meant that I had to give that one up. This time, I hope to keep it all together, get an album ready to go by the time the Foos’ touring cycle ends, and then really go out and tour.”
Shiflett deliberately tried to seer the recording process away from using modern techniques.
“I hate the way records sound these days – too much technology. To me that destroys music. Hearing the mistakes is part of what music is. We tried to maintain that philosophy throughout.”
His main ally in the studio (the Foos’ 606 complex in Los Angeles) was drummer John Lousteau.
“He was my sounding board. We’re pretty much on the same page musically, and we went in and worked everything out, before we got anyone else involved.”
And the band also have some songs left over from the album, including a cover of Sunset Of My Tears by 80s Scottish rockabilly band the Shakin’ Pyramids (it’s on their 1981 debut album Skin ‘Em Up).
“I’d like to get that out for people to hear. We might even post it on our website.”
As for the UK, Shiflett hopes to make it over in November or December, for at least one show.
“That’s the plan at the moment. I hope we can stick to it.”
Find out more at www.myspace.com/chrisshiflett
And we’ve got five copies of the album to give away. To enter the competition, go here.
Tags: Aerosmith, Chris Shiflett, Chris Shiflett & The Dead Peasants, Elvis Presley, Foo Fighters, Hank Williams, Jackson United, John Lousteau, Johnny Cash, Kiss, Rolling Stones, The Replacements, The Shakin' Pyramids, Wilco, Willie Nelson, X