Interview With Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal

1. So Ron, who have been your biggest musical influences to date?

There have been a whole lot... the biggest ones? George Martin, Beatles' producer. He added the classical instrumentation to their music that took it to a whole new place. It influenced me to add cellos and different instrumental lines to songs where I wouldn't have if not for the impact George Martin had on me. Then there was KISS - hearing the Kiss Alive! album at age 5 is what made me wanna be in a rock band and do what I'm doin'. Guitar-wise, it's a long list starting with Eddie Van Halen, Jimi Hendrix, Ace Frehley and Angus Young...

2. How was the recent tour with Lita Ford in Europe and the US?

Haha, that was some fun stuff! Learned the songs in 2 days, got together once and hit the road. Lita and her family, the band and crew, a lot of laughing and making trouble, haha. Good bunch of people... musically there was a lot of jamming and trading solos between Lita me and the keyboardist, spontaneous stuff, it was a damn good time.

3. How was your time with Guns N’ Roses in South East Asia lately?

Fucking amazing. Playing Korea for the first time, playing for hours in Japan, and as always the people were so kind, it was a great thing. Finally got to bust out the double-neck and new gear and play the songs appropriately. It's good to finally be able to do this the way it was meant to be done.

4. Seen as you’ve now had the chance to play almost all of the “Chinese Democracy” songs live, which would now be your favourite tracks off the album to play?

Shackler's, Scraped, Better, If The World, Catcher... Chinese, Street Of Dreams, TWAT, Sorry... Prostitute, IRS, This I Love, Maddy...

5. We’ve seen some images on Frank Ferrer’s blog of the band on the road in between each tour date, was the atmosphere on the bus as fun as it looks?

It's always a shitload of fun... I took it easy on this trip though - stayed in, stayed warm, slept a lot, did what I could to make sure I was good for every show. As much as I wanted to go out and misbehave, I have a responsibility to be at my best every night and I take it seriously and that's more important to me than anything.

6. Seen as the Canadian and South American dates will soon be upon us, will you be bringing the same guitars and equipment, or will you make some changes?

I plan on bringing the same gear, I'm likin' what I got. Vigier single & double-neck, Engl Invader100 amp, it's workin'.

7. Finally, will you be making any New Year resolutions, and what will they be?

To finally put out my line of hot sauces.

Have a great 2010, see ya there!