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In Conversation With…  The Lizards

By Danny Mayo

Following The Lizards' gig at JB's Dudley in the West Midlands on 11th February 2005, The Hairless Heart Herald's Danny Mayo joined guitarist Patrick Klein and bass player Randy Pratt on the tour bus to find out more about the band with the classic rock sound.  Our thanks to The Lizards, their road manager George Feddon, and William James of Glass Onyon Promotions for their warm hospitality.

How did you first get the idea to form a band?

Patrick: We first got the idea of a band because Randy has a studio, and he was doing a lot of projects with Hyperspace Records.

Randy: Yeah, I wanted to re-ignite the heroes of my youth with such classic rock bands as Vanilla Fudge and many more, and Patrick was my engineer.

Patrick: I was working there for two years, but we never worked together before, and Randy knew I could play guitar....... Patrick Klein

Randy: Yeah, I didn't think he was good enough (laugh)

Patrick: (Laugh) yeah, but one day Randy was jamming with his drummer at the time in his band and I just picked up the guitar and joined in. It just clicked, and we got the singer who is on our first two albums.

Randy: He has a great baritone voice, but it was a studio project for two years, but then things got serious.

Patrick: Yes, we went out and done four gigs in New York.

How would say the 'Rock Scene' is today in America?

Randy: New York isn't really a Rock 'n' Roll city.........

Patrick: Yes, it is more of a 'Rap' culture, but there are pockets in clubs in every city in America that likes the rock sound. The Mid West is a popular area.

Randy: We will be touring in America, such as New York and Long Island in key clubs. It seems so business type these days, so many young bands.

Patrick: But the Rock scene is slowly coming back, there are many bands with the classic sound of the seventies. We like England and the sounds too.

Randy: Yes it's our second time over here in the UK.

Patrick: On our first visit, Robert Plant got up and sang with us, that was a great time!

Randy: It was a great night, but many of my heroes are from this area such as Trapeze, but Budgie remain as one of my favourites. I like The Move too. Randy Pratt

Yes, there were so many bands in the seventies from this area, Black Sabbath, Moody Blues and Judas Priest were very popular.

Where have you played and where would you say have been your biggest markets?

Randy and Patrick: We haven't played in Japan yet, but we're working on it!

Patrick: My wife is Japanese.

Randy: Yes she is, so we always play to her and her friends (laugh)

Patrick: (Laugh) Yeah, that's true. Germany is a great country, there are so many great places to play there, and the crowds really love our music.

So how big in status do you expect to become?

Randy: As big as The Beatles!

Patrick: That would be nice! But we are getting good reviews in magazines and on websites, and the fans are behind us too.

With Bobby (Rondinelli) and Mike (Di Meo) in the band, would you say you are a 'Supergroup'?

Randy: Yeah, we like to think we are!

Patrick: (Laugh) we just do our own thing, but it is great having those two guys in the band.

So, first night of the tour, how did you think you fared tonight, and for the rest of the tour?

Patrick: We had good feedback from the crowd tonight, and sold many CD's too. But it was a good crowd.

Randy: I thought we played well.

Patrick: We should fare well with the Glenn Hughes crowd, and on the rest of the tour too.

Have you any Spinal Tap type stories?

Patrick: On our second ever show in the UK, we were sitting in the dressing room and seeing all these tribute band posters, such as Pink Floyd, Kiss, Black Sabbath and the tour manager came in and said 'Here's Robert Plant to say hello to you' and we all didn't believe him, then, in walked Robert!

Randy: We were all amazed at this!

How would you describe the current music scene?

Patrick: There seems to be more guitar orientated music in the charts now, and it's getting better.

Randy: It's inching up to the rock scene, but in the seventies punk became a business and many bands were ignored.

Moving away from the rock sound, what do you think of prog?

Patrick: I'm not really a prog fan, I like the more simple stuff. It could go on for a long time, and you could forget where you were in the first place.

Randy: I love prog, and we had leave two songs off the set because there were three bands tonight. Bobby and I like the prog thing.

Patrick: I can remember seeing a interview with Paul Stanley, and he was asked about Emerson Lake and Palmer. Great band he said, but ask them, not me.

How did you get Bobby in the band?

Randy: Bobby was playing drums in my studio with the keyboard player from Vanilla Fudge, and I asked him to play on the album.

How long have you been together?

Patrick: Three years now, and we are getting better all the time! (laugh)

Randy: Yes, three years (laugh) seems a long time!

What about album sales, have you sold many CD's?

Patrick: Not sure just how many we have sold, but we sell many at our gigs, and from CD Baby from our site.

Randy: Yes, we just bring along about five (laugh)

Patrick: Well we have sold out tonight (laugh)

Ok so that wraps things up, and I hope your tour with Glenn Hughes is a successful one, thanks for talking to us.

Patrick and Randy: Thanks, and thank you too.

Danny Mayo



 

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