Thursday, 23 January 2014

Q & A with Derek Close

Now obviously I cannot fly around the world to meet all the bands I want to talk to, and due to having an actual job, different time zones and the bands' work commitments it is easier at the moment to e-mail a few questions. I did this with Derek and he played it poker faced, answered all the questions directly and with tongue slightly in cheek and a cheeky glint in his eye...

Tell us how the band name came about, what does it mean.

Band name histories are usually quite interesting.  Mine is no exception.  Some time ago Mr. & Mrs. Close had a baby boy.  After some deliberation they came down to 2 names:  Tom and Derek.  Mr. Close came into the hospital room and told Mrs. Close that his name would be Tom.  He left and then came back in and said, "Derek".  He left and returned with Tom.  Once again he went out and came back in.  "Derek".  He left.  The doctor came in and asked what the name was going to be.  Mrs. Close shrugged her shoulders and said, "Derek".  The doctor left and Mr. Close came back in and said, "Tom".  Mrs. Close told him that it was too late and that his son's name was Derek.  Derek Close grew up, learned to play music, went solo and named his band after himself.

Derek is derived from the German name Theodoric which means "ruler of the people".  Close means "not far" or "nearby" so Derek Close means "nearby ruler of the people".

Tell us about the best thing(s) that has happened to the band so far.

Some of the best things that have happened over the years is that I've had the opportunity to play with some outstanding musicians and meet a lot of cool people.  Most recently it's been really exciting to have people being very receptive to my music and getting some airplay on indie stations around the net.  The positive feedback has been very encouraging.

Tell us about the worst / funniest thing that has happened to the band so far.

The funniest thing that has happened to me in the world of music occurred at my very first gig.  The band I was playing with got the opportunity to open for an up and coming local band at the time.  We were extremely nervous.  Our set was received by the audience with arms wide open.  After the show our guitarist came up to laughing because kids were coming up to him asking for his autograph and guitar lessons.  I thought it would be cool to sign an autograph so I started keeping an eye out for potential signature seekers.  One kid made eye contact with me, got an excited look on his face and said, "Hey!  Do you know what time it is?"

Tell us something about who your favourite bands / musicians are, who inspired you to get involved with music.

80's metal is what inspired me to get involved with music.  I heard the song Blackout by the Scorpions and I was hooked.  I wanted to play!  My favorite musicians/bands include: Joe Satriani, Stu Hamm, Angelica, Extreme, Altar Bridge, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Tony MacAlpine, Gary Hoey, the original Queensryche and Metallica.

Tell us anything else, make it interesting, funny and attention grabbing rather than a ‘please buy our album’ pitch. (We’ll pimp your album anyway)

What's interesting, at least to me is that my new album, The Beta Sessions won't officially release until 2/18/14.  At the time of my writing this, the CD artwork is still going through proofing.  Despite that I'm already moving on to the next project rather than waiting to see what the current release does.  What is the next project?  Well a lot of it is up in the air but I may be moving toward a full band rather than flying solo.  Going solo is cool and all but I really miss the camaraderie that comes with a good group of musical buddies.  Besides, when you're solo you don't have anybody to fight with.

Thanks for that Derek, it's always nice to have someone verbose and amusing to do these things.

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