It’s April Katy Kafé time…and that means Roger Taylor is in the Kafé!
As always, I dutifully listened to the Kafé, took copious notes, and am ready to once again summarize, translate, commentate, and flat out poke fun at Mr. Taylor, although I will go easy on him since of course it is his birthday month. (Happy Birthday Roger!!) It is a very tough job, but I do it all for you. For YOU.
I will reiterate my disclaimer: I am not rewriting the Kafé word for word (are you kidding me?), you are merely getting my point of view, and if you were to listen to the Kafé yourself (and I wholeheartedly recommend that you do), it is extremely likely that you might hear things differently. This is my blog, I write it as I hear it. Done.
Mr. Hudson: While I was a little confused as to whether Mr. Hudson was writing with the band or producing (and I still kind of am), Roger said that Mr. Hudson approached management about working with the band. Wendy called the band, mentioned that he was interested in working with them, and the band agreed to have him join them in the studio for a meeting and go from there. From what I could gather, it sounds as though he worked with them on two songs – this Kafé was done a week ago or so (I’ve lost track of time) when Mr. Hudson was currently in the studio with them. One of the songs is slower but is still “groovy” and has an “amazing chorus”. The other is more uptempo. Roger says that Mr. Hudson brought some new energy in the studio and quoted John as saying he gave the band a “musical face lift”. It wasn’t made clear as to whether he was continuing to work with the band or if he was just doing those two songs . What WAS made clear is that the songs he was working on with the band were both brand new in addition to the breadth of material they already have written, and they do not know what will actually be on the album yet. As Roger put it, all of the songs are kind of fighting for placement on the team at this point. At the end of the process, they will sit down and decide what 9-12 songs belong on the album. They try to keep an open mind throughout the process…which by the way Roger says they are 3/4 of the way through at the moment.
DD14: Personally, I cannot wait until I can start typing the name of the album. I know that’s a long way off, but it’ll be nice. I have a feeling though that DD14 has earned it’s way into being the “forevermore” loving-moniker for this album by the fans. In any case, Roger feels pretty sure that fans will have new music to hear by the end of the year. He said that it would be finished by summer. I had a difficult time trying to decide if he meant one song, the writing for the album, or otherwise, but given that he believes they are 3/4 of the way through the process, I would have to assume that he means the writing and recording, but if someone wants to clarify that for me – feel free. I am not very privy to the process of mixing, but I gather that can take a very long time, which must be why Roger said “Obviously the album will not be out this year”, but they are really trying for early 2015. I have to believe him, and hope we’ll have much more to talk about in the latter part of this year into 2015. Katy mentioned (and I thank her for this) that it’s been stone silence from DD in the studio. She’s right, it definitely has, and Roger was quick to explain that right now, they’re in the mode of keeping their heads down, keeping focused, and working. Again, I believe that, and have no doubt that is how it has to be in order for them to ever get this album finished. But, we’re human and can’t help but mention that we miss them. Right?!?
The Reflex: Katy mentioned that they were working on something really cool for the fans to commemorate the anniversary of this album. I can only imagine…and chances are it’s being posted somewhere as I type this, because that’s typically how it all goes down. Things happen when I’m not looking. She asked Roger how it felt to be celebrating this anniversary. Roger said that he’s gotten “used” to these anniversaries. (Me too – although 30 years still feels like a really long time!) He said that he feels The Reflex is one of the most important songs they’ve released. The album version didn’t “jump out” at them until Nile got hold of it and “turned it on its head” As I mentioned in my earlier blog from today, a good many fans look to this song as the one that turned them into Duranies. I’m still wondering what DDHQ has cooked up for fans…
Fan Q&A: (I tried to get names. I am probably misspelling them, and I apologize!!)
Michelle wanted to know if Roger has any hearing damage from playing drums all of these years. Roger said that he was tested four or five years ago and was told that he had the same hearing as someone who has been through a war. Roger takes this in stride, saying that it’s to be expected when you’re a rock musician, but that his hearing really isn’t too bad.
Christine asked about whether or not Roger contributes to lyrics or song titles at all. He said that on this particular album there has been a lot of discussion amongst the four of them regarding titles and lyrics, but that Simon has taken the helm with the bulk of the writing on this one.
Athena asks about places that Roger hasn’t been on tour that he’d like to go, and Roger said he’d like to go to India, China and Israel.
Maia wanted to know if he’s used new technology on this album. Roger said that he’s been using the brand new Roland TD40 kit a lot for this album and he seems to really like it.
Sam asked when Roger knew he’d made it as musician (pop star) and how it felt. He answered saying that at one time early on he and John went record shopping right after the release of Planet Earth and their appearance on Top of the Pops. Girls recognized them and they ended up having to run down New Street in Birmingham. It was about that time that he’d been asked for an autograph for the first time, and he said that’s kind of about the time you start realizing that you’re famous.
Marilyn wanted to know if Roger would marry her to which Roger said that he would NOT say it depended on what she looked like but that it depended upon how she is, and that he liked her name. But then Katy reminded him (good save, Katy!!) that yes, Roger is in fact already married. “Oh, that’s right!! Rewind…rewind!!”
Roger is lucky he is not my husband today…because he’d be getting a phone call. 😀
Lastly, what does Roger want for his birthday if he could have anything? (I didn’t catch who asked this and I’m sorry!) Roger said that he would like a brand new Aston Martin in dark grey. Yes…because wouldn’t we all??? But he’s also going to the Maldives for a vacation for his birthday, and the only way you can get to the island is by sea plane (note to fans who might be thinking they can go find him there – I hope you are good swimmers!), which worries him a bit since he is not a fan of small airplanes.
He thanked everyone in advance for their good wishes, and was back in the studio within a flash. Nice, short and sweet Katy Kafé. No spoilers. No song titles…but we did hear a little bit about what’s going on in there, which is something!