Time to wrap up my four-part Eddie Jackson interview from 2001!
This has been the complete, unedited text of our 1-hour conversation. This has never been seen by anybody before. In case you missed the three previous parts:
This is the final part. Enjoy.
EDDIE JACKSON INTERVIEW, OCT 30 2001 (Unedited – Part 4)
Q – [NOTE: We had just finished talking about the recording of the Promised Land album.] Now the next album, Here In The Now Frontier, was different. In the liner notes to the new live album, it’s pretty much just skipped over completely. And only one track appears. Were you disappointed in that album at all?
E – No. That’s interesting that you bring that up, because we were working on a couple of the other songs, but I don’t know why there was only one song recorded for the Live Evolution. That’s just interesting you bring that up because I kind of noticed that. I go, “God, there’s only one song from that album, I wonder how that happened?”
Q – I guess it’s the same problem you talked about before, where you can’t fit in everything you ever played.
E – Again, I think we were really focusing on a lot of the older stuff. Throughout our touring, these last few years and whatnot, we kept hearing a lot of “Hey, are you guys playing anything off The Warning or anything off Rage For Order, or anything off the EP?” So right then, that kinda sparked the idea of, “Hey, let’s go back. Let’s really give ‘em something that they’re gonna really enjoy. Who knows if we’ll ever get this opportunity again? Why not just give ‘em a variety, a potpouri of Queensryche material from the beginning to the present, you know.
Q – Listening to the live album, and trying to pick out influences, I think I hear a bit of Steve Harris and Geezer Butler. Were those guys influences on you or am I just hearing things?
E – Since the beginning?
Q – Just bits here and there.
E – I’m sure, especially from the earlier days, there were some major influences from Geezer Butler, Steve Harris, a little bit of Geddy Lee. If there’s times that it sounds like that then you’re probably right. At that given moment, I’m sure I was influenced. We were all influenced by what was out at that time. Especially with the EP, and The Warning. When you’re listening, like I was saying before, you’re relearning the songs. And then when you start hearing the instruments, you go, “Wow, doesn’t that sound like that one band back then?” I don’t you’re really aware of it up until a few years later when you listen back you know!
Q – Is there anybody out there right now who just frightens you on the bass?
E – Oh heck, there’s tons of them! I take more of a simplistic approach, but that’s just my style. I love funk, I really like a really hard driving sound. I tend to focus more on the sonic end of it than the performance end. I’m really into experimenting with sound. As you can tell, actually on the Mindcrime album, I’ve had guys come up to me, and they go, “Hey, how did you get your bass to sound like a truck?” I go, “What? Where’d that come from?” you know? So obviously there’s a little bit of fretless in Promised Land, and Real World, there’s some fretless on there. So heck, you know, some 5 string here, some whatever, here or there. I’ll experiment with anything. I think I really love approaching the sonic end of it, trying to come with a really cool sound, something that’s very distinctive.
There’s a lot of bands out there with a lot of talented bass players that I’m just listening to this thing and go, “How the hell did he get that sound? That is so cool! What is he running? Some sort of an effect? I wonder what he’s using!” You’re just reaching and guessing, it’s a lot of fun though, hearing a lot of these bass players. I tell you, you learn a lot just from listening and I was really a big, big Grand Funk and especially Alice Cooper fan. I mean, [Dennis] Dunaway [Alice Cooper] back then, that guy was an amazing bass player. And then, what’s his name? Sure? Sher? From Grand Funk? Heck, I forgot his name…Mel Schacher. Yeah, he was an amazing bass player. I kind of enjoyed a lot of their bass work back then. You don’t really hear it in my style, I just liked hearing it. The performance, you know.
Q – I know when you put on the Promised Land video game, there’s some definite funk influences there. Funky backgrounds and colours too! Do see yourself for that aforementioned solo project doing some funk, big horn sections and stuff?
E – Oh yeah yeah! That was just a little piece I wrote for that Promised Land CD-ROM game. Yeah, that was kinda fun. And if you noticed, I’m using a different coloured tie on each musician. Each instrument that I’m playing. I dunno, that’s not a big deal but it was to me. You know I go hey, I wanna put a different tie, I wonder if anybody will catch it. But yeah, that was a lot of fun. I tell ya, you’re almost kinda acting your parts out, especially when I was the secretary at the front desk there. It was kinda weird, putting all that makeup, and dressed in drag.
Q – I guess it’s a chance to lighten up because Queensryche are not the kind of band that is really known for joking around.
E – Yeah, I mean, some levity here and there, it doesn’t hurt.
Q – Running out of time here, I’d better start wrapping up! I wanted to ask you if there’s any questions out there that you’ve been waiting to get, but nobody’s asked it yet.
E – Oh geez! That is a great question! Oh geez! You got me on the spot here! This is cool!
Ummm…oh geez. That’s good. I don’t know, you got me here! I just don’t know what to think here! I mean, what question? Oh geez…how about uh…this might be little cliché, or a little simplistic, but how about “How is my son doing?”
Q – And how is he doing?
E – He’s doing wonderful.
Q – How old is he?
E – He’s eight months. Other than that, I can’t think of anything else. Do you have anything you want to ask?
Q – I don’t know…now I’m on the spot here! How about…what can I say…do you remember playing Toronto in ‘95 at Molson Amphitheater?
E – Yeah.
Q – I was there at that show, I thought it was a great show.
E – That was with AC/DC.
Q – Type O Negative.
E – Type O Negative, you’re right! The Molson Amphitheater or Labbatt’s? Yeah, that was back in, yeah with Type O Negative.
Q – Was that the last night of the tour?
E – Yep.
Q – I seem to remember you guys messing around, like a big roadie with a wig playing the part of the nurse during that one song…can’t remember the song.
E – Yeah yeah, well that was our crew, kind of putting in the finishing touches of the last show of the tour. And with the brawl, the bar brawl, yeah, normally that really didn’t happen except for that night. It was the last show of the tour and they wanted to screw with ya.
Q – One of those examples of Queensryche’s sense of humour.
E – Yeah, you know, and I’m sure it throws the audience for a loop, because they just like, “Is this part of their show?” You can just look at their incredulous looks you know. I can just imagine what’s crossing their minds, like, “Wait a sec, what’s that guy with that wig doing onstage?” Oh, get this! We had that same production through that whole tour, with the bar scene, and the lounge band. We were in Dallas, and every night there’s guests that can win seats to sit in, on stage, during the Promised Land song, and that’s when the bar comes out, and we’re the lounge band. The winners would go up onstage with us and stuff. And there were these two girls, and they had to have been peelers! During that song, they started to like, make out! It almost took away my whole emphasis of performing. I’m just looking at this, and looking at Michael, and next thing you know they’re on the floor just like, rubbing each other body to body and I go “Oh my God! Here I am and I’ve got some cousins and aunts and nieces here!” And I go “Oh my God, what the hell are they going to say after the show!” It was just nuts! That was very entertaining that night! They were just…yeah, they were going for it! I’m surprised we didn’t get arrested.