Interview: Steve Hackett (solo, Genesis, GTR)

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HIT CHANNEL INTERVIEW: July 2011. We had the great honour to talk with a very kind person and a revolutionary guitarist, ex-Genesis member, Steve Hackett. A few months ago, he released “Live Rails” live album with excellent response from everyone. Steve except his skills as guitarist, is famous for his attitude not to comprise in his career, and this is very difficult decision being a member in a huge band. Read below the interesting things he told us:


Firstly, my best wishes for your wedding! You’re going to do Europe tour in a few days. Which are you expectations about this tour?

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Thank you for your kind greetings. The tour I’m going in a few days is with the Hungarian band Djabe. They play a wide range of music with various ethnic influences, which I enjoy. Later this month I’ll be in Sicily with my acoustic trio and in Italy with my electric band. I like to be flexible with the kind of music I play.


Some months ago, you released “Live Rails” live album. Are you satisfied by the feedback you’ve got so far from fans and press for this? How difficult was it to select the songs you recorded live?

Yes, fans have been really positive about Live Rails and it has received some great reviews. I’m very proud of it. Some of the songs are more difficult to perform than others, but I’ve always been ambitious for the music and risk is everything!


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“Out of the Tunnel’s Mouth” is your last studio effort and one of the best albums is your career. Was an easy process to record it?

I recorded it all in my living room at home because due to circumstances it was difficult for me to access my studio at the time. It was a challenge, which paid off.  I was thrilled that the album received such an incredibly positive response from everyone and it outsold previous studio efforts.


During the last years you record and tour with Nick Beggs (bass, chapman stick). What was it like to work with such a talented musician? He has also played with John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin bassist, keyboardist). Had you ever had the chance to play with J.P.J?

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Nick Beggs is a very versatile player and writer and a joy to work with. Yes I worked with John Paul Jones in Japan a few years back. John is a very warm and open character himself and obviously a huge talent.


You have recorded an album with Chris Squire (Yes bassist). Will we hear it soon?Who others will participate in it?

At the moment I’m waiting to hear from Chris and his team. I hope to know the answer soon. Drummer Jeremy Stacey plays on it, Roger King is on keyboards and Amanda Lehmann is on it too. Chris is also on my forthcoming album, “Beyond the Shrouded Horizon”.


How close is a new solo album? Any other project you’re currently involved in?

Beyond the Shrouded Horizon will be out in the early autumn. This features all the members of my electric band, along with Chris Squire, drummer Simon Phillips, my brother John and orchestral players. I’m also currently working on a live DVD from the London gig last year.


Looking back, what went bad with GTR? I’ve heard that Steve Howe (Yes, Asia guitarist)  isn’t a very easy person to work with. Were the relations within the band a problem?

Steve was a joy to work with but all super groups have novelty value. We felt that it didn’t warrent more than one studio album and a live one. Steve Howe and Jonathan Mover came up with ideas that I’ve used on a couple of tunes in my new album.


You have played with many great musicians in your career. Is there anyone you’d like to play with and hasn’t happened yet? Maybe with Eric Clapton?

There are lots of people that I’d still like to work with. I’m open to collaborations across all genres.


You are pioneer of tapping. How you started using it? Did you see anyone did it before? (Ritchie Blackmore has said that he saw Harvey Mandel (Canned Heat) doing tapping in a NYC club in 1968).

I invented tapping in 1971. I was trying to play a Bach piece and I found that tapping was best way to make the stretch. It’s used in abundance on Genesis’ “Nursery Cryme” album. I was never aware of anyone doing it before me.


Do you think rock’n’roll is dead and everything now is about managers, contracts and percentages? So,Jim Morrison was right again?

Rock’n’Roll is only limited if you allow it to be. As far as I’m concerned it’s still growing up and it’s up to everyone to keep the fire burning.


Have you ever been to Greece? Send a message to Greek fans.

I’m thrilled to be visiting Greece for the first time for my honeymoon in September – Jo and I hope to visit several Greek islands. Jo has always loved Greece and she studied Classics at university. She is my best guide and we’re looking forward to visiting Greece both modern and ancient. I look forward to playing in Greece on day too – hopefully soon!


A huge thanks to Mr Hackett!!



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