Hi Ean, we're very honored to be able to talk
to you and we hope the french fans 'll discover you a bit more after
reading this interview.
You had to fill big shoes with the replacement of Leon, you played with
the Outlwas, but what people certainly doesn't really know is your band
Noon, and your guitar playing in this band.
Before talking about Noon, can you tell us about your musical career?
When did it start? Did you learn music all by yourself or did you get
My career started on the trumpet becoming a symphony musician during
my school years. In my late teens I picked up the guitar and my music
took a new direction. I went from cover musician, studio musician to
original recording artist. My first opportunity came when I met my manager
J.J. French (of TWISTED SISTER) who has guided me through my career.
Soon after came the OUTLAWS, NOON & LYNYRD SKYNYRD.
As a young guy, which kind of music did you listen to? And now?
I grew up on LED ZEPPELIN, PINK FLOYD, RUSH, AEROSMITH etc. I now listen
to METALLICA, NICKELBACK, THREE DOORS DOWN, LINKIN PARK, OZZY etc.
Who were your prefered musicians back then? And now?
Jimmy Page, David Gilmore, Geddy Lee & Joe Perry.
It seems you play different instruments. Which ones exactly can you
play? Can you explain us how you've been involved in playing different
I play acoustic & electric guitars, mandolin, bass guitar, trumpet and
other brass instruments, some keyboards & electronic percussion. My
symphonic training allowed me to understand multiple instruments and
learn them. It has helped me to become a better musician for studio
& live performance.
When and how did you first hear about southern rock music?
Growing up in Atlanta,Georgia southern rock music was & still is very
popular with SKYNYRD at the top of the list.
How was Noon born? Did you perform a lot of shows with this band?
It started out as a means to record my songs and share them with others.
I wanted to combine southern rock with hard rock to see what would happen.
Noon has performed many shows in the southeast U.S. but now playing
with SKYNYRD we donít perform. (for now!)
Do you prefer being a guitar or a bass player? Which instruments
are you having the best feelings with?
I prefer the guitar and the bass. I have played them both equally from
It seems you use your personal studio to record your band. Can you
tell us how you built it ? What was the idea of getting a personal studio?
Simply, I built it with lots of volume in mind. It took lots of soundproofing
but I wanted to be able to record loud & capture an instruments raw
sound without compromising my home environment. I always wanted to be
able to create an idea and immediately go to tape with it. The studio
is also used for recording other projects and for TV & Radio jingles
as well as NOON II.
How have you been involved in great bands such as the Outlaws and
When the OUTLAWS were in need of a bass player I had a friend that knew
Hughie and through a live and on stage audition I got the job. The time
came for Hughie to join SKYNYRD and I formed NOON. When Leon got ill
it was Hughie who suggested that I come and help out.
Was it difficult for you to be fully integrated in the Lynyrd Skynyrd?
Is it difficult to work with these guys?
No, because I spent a lot of time on Leons parts but no one can be the
original but Leon. It was Leon himself that showed me the finer points
of his style that I have now added to mine. The guys are great to work
with and are very serious about their music.
How were the recording sessions for the next Lynyrd Skynyrd album?
How did you work with them?
The sessions were awesome! To be in the same room with all that talent
is truly an honor. I blended my style with all that Leon gave me of
the SKYNYRD bass guitar style.
Did the Lynyrd Skynyrd members listen to Noon? What were their reactions?
Yes, they think it is a heavy form of SKYNYRD meets ZEPPELIN with OZZY.
How would you define southern rock? Does it still exists today
Southern Rock is a pure form of music capturing true life experiences
and consequences. Yes, it still exists in bands like THREE DOORS DOWN
who have a southern influence, NOON, and so on.
I understand you're a big fan of Led Zeppelin. What do you think
of their future reunion?
It is a reunion I cannot miss.
Did Lynyrd Skynyrd members asked you to re-create Leon Wilkeson's
bass parts or do you have the freedom of adding your own parts?
They did not have to ask, I knew it was very important to the fans that
they hear SKYNYRD bass the way they know & love it. Yes, I have the
freedom in recording because I am an extension of what Leon has created
in the SKYNYRD style as you will soon hear.
Is Lynyrd Skynyrd your main priority today?
Yes, most of my time is spent with them on tour and recording. On my
off time I am working on NOON II.
We've read you were working on a new Noon album. Can you tell us
a bit more about it?
Yes, NOON II will be my best work. It combines all styles of rock music
brought up to date with todays sounds. An album for all ages.
Can you tell us a few words about the next Lynyrd Skynyrd album?
It is an awesome album showing that SKYNYRD music is still alive today.
Thanks a lot Ean for answering these questions.
You are very welcome and we are looking forward to seeing you and all
of the fans in Europe this summer.