Jamie Rowe best known as vocalist with AdrianGale and Guardian expands on his singing career and what the future holds with regard to new music and live gigs.
Who were your influences in the early days and have you always wanted to be a singer?
First off, thanks for wanting to chat with me! What's funny is many singers I admired were not technically great but were what I'd call "vocal entertainers". I loved a lot of glam rock in the 80s, Bret Michaels, Jani Lane, Bon Jovi, etc. But if there were one truly great singer that influenced me it would be Robin Zander. I hear the influence and still think he's the best out there. These days I like folks like Howard Jones of Light The Torch, Leigh from Pop Evil, and a lot of metal bands that still retain melody. I'm drawn to those types of vocalists.
Have you ever auditioned for the vocal spot in any notable bands?
In 2000 or 2001, I auditioned for Ratt because my friend Keri Kelli was in the band and asked me to. I did and at the time it seemed like I was going to get the gig. But before anything progressed I pulled out. At that point in my life I was still finding my way as an artist and a Christ follower. While today I feel secure in both, but at the time I didn't think I would have been a good fit. Stephen Pearcy is the only one who should front that band, and I wasn't him.
You have appeared on a number of albums. Do you have a favourite and why?
I still have a sweet spot for the first Guardian album I was on, "Fire and Love". Working with John Elefante as a producer took me to a new level vocally. He pushed and got great stuff out of me far beyond where I was when I first got there. I love the songs on that one too. I really like the AdrianGale "Crunch" release and I absolutely LOVE the record I'm making right now, "Kalamity Kills".
Do you still get the same buzz out of singing live as you did in the past?
I've always enjoyed singing, but for me what made for a great night was an engaged audience. I rarely play out these days but I have been stoked to play shows where the audience has been engaged. It makes it all so much better when I feel like it's "us" and not just "me". I plan to play out with Kalamity Kills more so than anything I've done in a long while.
Some vocalists are on strict dietary regimes or gargle with special liquids. How have you kept your voice in tip top shape all these years?
I have only recently figured out that carbohydrates affect my voice very negatively. It causes inflammation in my chords. So now when I sing I tend to fast on those days. I'm 53 and when I fast I can sing the stuff in my 20s in the original key! It's been insane to discover this!
Are there any musicians that you have not worked with, but would like to in the future?
I have been blessed to work with some insane talents! Especially recently! Off the top of my head I'd love to work with my buddy Chris Jericho on a track someday. He's really become a powerhouse vocalist! I tend to not co-write these days, but it would be stellar to write with the Korn guys... they are always doing something interesting but still have the melody at their core. Listen to their track "Can you hear me", it's a pop-rock song filled with a wonderful melody but wrapped in a dark glove.
Is there any unreleased recorded material from your days in AdrianGale, Guardian or any of the bands you’ve been involved with that could be released?
Not that I'm aware of. I think everything is out there.
Do you have any plans to release another solo album?
Yes! I'm recording it right now. I decided early on that it doesn't sound like "solo music", it sounds like a band. So I decided to use the band name "Kalamity Kills" as the banner for my music for the next 10 or so years of my music life. It will be out this summer. I'm committed to it and want it to be my sole outlet.
Is there a possibility of new material from AdrianGale or Guardian?
Not at this time. I'm happy with the music that both bands released, but those chapters are over for me.
With the live circuit opening up again, is there a possibility that we could see you performing some live shows in the UK?
You have no idea how much I would love that! Like seriously, I would LOVE IT! If Kalamity Kills connects, count on it. My wife, Amber, has never been and she would be ecstatic to travel with me too!
Have you ever thought of doing some production work for other bands?
That's not really my thing. I have been smart enough to work with folks who have that gift and give my input. Other than my own music, I don't think it would be something of interest. There are too many people who already are great at all that!
Do you have anything in the pipeline at the moment that you would like to share?
As I said before, I've been working on the Kalamity Kills debut album. I'm quite pleased with it. It's a modern hard rock album but still retains the classic rock element that I'm known for. I'm eager to see where it all lands. I have some cool guests on it too, folks will recognize!
Interview by Stuart Dryden