Philip Bardowell: In The Cut with a fresh voice for AOR
Philip Bardowell delivers his most straight forward melodic rock release to date in partnership with Tommy Denander.
Hi Philip, I hope you saw my review of the album, it got quite a rave. Congratulations on the end result.
Yes. Indeed I did. Thanks for the review and the kind words.
While you have been cast as a melodic rock singer, it certainly isn't or hasn't been your total upbringing has it?
Not really. I enjoy singing all styles. I grew up singing rock and gospel music in church. I've always been drawn to bluesy, soulful singers, so my natural style tends to follow along those lines. I even sang show tunes in various musicals and I sing Jazz as well. In the Beach Boys, I really had to tone down my natural inclination towards blues/soul to accurately capture the Beach Boy's sound and in Criss (my band with Peter Criss) I was really stretching my voice to cut the hard rock vocal style that the music called for.
In The Cut I would say, is easily your most straight ahead rock release for your career to date. What was the plan going into the making and recording of the album?
Serafino Perugino at Frontiers Records contacted me several months ago to be the featured vocalist on a project called In The Cut that was spotlighting the songs of various other writers, like Jim Peterik, Mark Spiro and Stan Bush to name a few. After I completed my vocal tracks, Serafino approached me about releasing the album under my name. That's how this album came to fruition in its present form.
The label obviously suggested working with Tommy Denander - you two seem to have paired off nicely. Tell us about working with Tommy The Swede?
It was great. Tommy is an amazing all-around musician. He's a very talented guy and he provided me with slamming tracks to sing to.
Featured on In The Cut are some great melodic rock/AOR tunes from other artists, but also a couple of originals. The title track I think has captured the attention of most people - could we hope to see more like that in the future?
I hope so. I'm pleased that people have responded well over all.
Tell us about She Will Never Know, the other self-penned track.
She Will Never Know is a song that I wrote about my failed first marriage. I wrote that song on a plane from Okinawa, Japan to Los Angeles. It poured out of me and was a cathartic experience for me. I really let out a lot of emotions in that song!
Of the material picked, what inspired you as a singer to want to record the tracks?
I'd have to say the songs. I genuinely liked all the songs, as I'm a fan of a good melody and strong lyric just like anyone else.
Do you have any particular favourites of those recorded?
I truly like them all, but One Day In January, Never Too Late For Love and Voices Of The Heart stick out. Of course, I'm partial to She Will Never Know!
Were there many songs suggested or sent to you that you rejected, or even some you would have liked to have included. but for whatever reason couldn't?
Actually, I'd have to say no. However, to be honest, I'd like to contribute more of my own songs on the next album.
I love your recording of the Jim Peterik tunes....especially Dreamin' With My Eyes Wide Open. Marvellous track!
THAT is a great song. Jim is a songwriting legend. He's been around the block and is a proven songwriter. I feel fortunate to have been able to sing one of his songs.
How would you describe your voice? I hear a little Lou Gramm in there and I think you adapt brilliantly to the individual tracks on the album. It's like the songwriters influences are portrayed through your vocals.
Wow! Thanks. I really tried to do the songs justice. I do get comparisons to Lou quite a bit. I'm humbled and honored whenever that comparison is drawn. I'm a BIG fan of Lou's.
Did you have a crack at the lead vocalist position in Foreigner? If not, you should have :)
No. I would have loved a shot, but by the time I found out about the position, it was already filled by Kelly Hansen. However, there is still hope! I replaced Kelly in Unruly Child, so perhaps I'll replace him in Foreigner one day! Ha
Will we see another collaboration with Tommy in the future? Next year perhaps?
That would be very welcomed as far as I'm concerned. I'm a fan of his work and have already done some things with him since In The Cut.
Moving to other projects - what else do you have going on right now Philip? Did I hear that you have a Gospel album planned?
I do. I have a concept album in the works that speaks to and deals with my Christian faith. I'm also working on an album with Richie Zito and am talking to a couple of other people, including Serafino about being involved in future album projects.
As you mentioned, the great Richie Zito has been working on a record for himself with a number of singers any more details?
Yes. I'll be in the company of some great singers on this album including, Eric Martin, Joe Lynn Turner, Eddie Money and Joseph Williams to name a few. I'm very excited to be a part of this album with Richie and I've contributed two songs. One that I had written and one that I collaborated on with Richie.
Any chance your Day After Rain release might get a wider release? I recall having some trouble obtaining a copy when it was originally released!
That would make me very happy. I'm proud of that record and wish more people could hear it. Perhaps that day (after rain!) will come.
And moving on again - this time to Unruly Child. It's been some time since UC3, any plans for a follow up to that record? I know the guys are busy there too, but I think fans enjoyed UC3.
There are no plans as of yet. I have no plans with them and I have not been in contact with Guy or Bruce for quite some time now. I'm proud of the work I did with them.
Anything else going on Philip?
Just busy being a dad to my newborn son and my 4 year old step son. I have to find time in there to be a husband to my wife Sarah as well! I am also leading the music at my older brother's church where he is the pastor, and I quite enjoy that.
And anything you would like to add mate?
I'd like to thank you, Andrew, for taking the time to listen to the album and for the review. I'd also like to thank everyone for their support of my career and this music. For more info, please visit my website: www.philipbardowell.com