Frontiers‘ latest super musical project, Black Swan, gave me the opportunity to speak to a musician I’ve always admired, Robin McAuley (ex-MSG) that together with Reb Beach (Winger, Whitesnake), Jeff Pilson (Foreigner, The End Machine, ex-Dokken), and Matt Starr (Ace Frehley, Mr. Big) have in “Shake The World”, a hard rock proposal that promises to rock the masses. – By Miguel Correia / Photos by Enzo Mezzo
Hello Robin, i start by thanking you for your availability for this interview.More and more side projects are emerging and the Black Swan are a supergroup that sees the light of day. How did it all happen?
Hello Miguel and thank you. Jeff Pilson was asked by Frontiers to put a new project/ Supergroup I together like he had done with The End Machine. He had worked with Reb previously on a Dokken record and so he called him. Reb was totally interested as long as he could write songs with Jeff. Jeff then called me and I was really excited to write with both of them. Jeff and I have been dear friends for many years. He was also Best Man at my Wedding 27 years ago this October.
How do you manage to combine schedules, when you naturally have other musical connections?
Our individual work schedules really do keep us busy but Jeff was constantly in touch working out which days we could be available to record once we had songs or material to work on. Reb got together with Jeff at his home studio and began working on some new ideas. They sent me an idea to work on and that first song we wrote became “Big Disaster”!! Reb laughed because when I started singing my melody and lyrics, he said that Big Disaster probably wasn’t the best title for our first song together!! Ha!! It’s become a big favorite with everyone listening to “Shake The World”!!!
Time to talk about “Shake The World”, does the title come with the ambition to make things shake? How do you define this work?
I love to Shake things up! It’s like a wake up call which we all need from time to time. It has no political statement to make but does call to our minds that we have lost a lot of respect and dignity and values. It’s an ever changing world and unless we uphold strong family values how do we expect our kids, the future, to make thinks right? It’s ok to remind ourselves every so often before we lose sight altogether.
From what we have already heard, I see a band there in a fantastic way, especially Robin, who reminds me of his old days, full of energy and with fabulous intensity. Fitting these pieces together, as if it were a puzzle, was it easy when composing?
The writing process was a lot of fun. Jeff did an amazing job on Production and this for me is the best vocal sound I’ve had on any record to date. The songs are powerful and fresh and Reb’s guitar playing is something we haven’t heard him do before. This guy is incredible and so much melody. Matt Starr came in with great ideas for the songs and he really brought the Thunder. It’s a great record! I’m really happy how it all turned out.
And with Queen inspiration in compositions?
Jeff saw the Queen movie Bohemian Rhapsody and was immediately inspired to write United/ Divided. It’s a beautiful piece both melodically and lyrically. I just put my style to it and Reb added that great riff on the second part of the song.
Are there any ideas to do a tour or do the schedules make it complicated to accomplish?
Obviously Black Swan would love to tour and perform. It’s all about scheduling with our individual projects. We are hopeful that we can make it happen. It would be pretty awesome live.
One of the fears of fans is that these projects are just occasional releases. Do you have any idea of going further and making the Black Swan something to be taken more seriously.
Black Swan will make another record and continue to write big powerful songs. We look forward to it and hope our new found Black Swan fans will love it just like they have “Shake The World”. The resigns reviews have been really something and we’re blown away!!
Frontiers has been a pioneer in these initiatives, aside from the financial side that is very important, naturally, how do you face all this?
Life is crazy! Opportunity is often scarce to many of us. It’s important to seize the moment and to share our individual talents with those we love and respect. Great music is uplifting and inspiring. It makes us happy, it makes me happy!! I love what I do and am very Blessed to continue doing what I love. If the fans love it too then I’m doing something good that brings a smile to someone’s face and a beat to their heart! As I said at the beginning “Shake The World”. One beat at a time!!! I hope your day is full of smiles and good music Miguel.
Support World Of Metal
Become a Patron!