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Interview – Jack Frost of Seven Witches, July 2013

| 13 July 2013 | Reply

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Some guys make it on talent, some guys are lucky as hell.  Jack Frost has a little bit of both, but his work ethic has kept him in this rock and roll game for this long…

ToddStar: How are you today?

Jack: I’m good man, how are you?

ToddStar: Good, good. Thank you for taking a few minutes out of your busy schedule for us today.

Jack: Dude, no problem. Just wanna let you know that this is pretty cool ’cause this is the first interview for the new record, so you guys are like popping my cherry today.

ToddStar: Oh cool, it’s been a long time since I popped anybody’s cherry.

Jack: [Laughter]

ToddStar: Well, then let’s get to it. Seven Witches, man, this new album, Rebirth this thing is getting ready to drop here in a couple of weeks. After listening to it a few times myself and really loving this thing, you’ve got some fans out there who are going to pick this up, they’re going to listen to it once or twice through. What kind of things can you tell us about this disc that they’re not going to get first or second time through?

Jack: I think some of the older fans are going to be a little bit shocked because it’s a little bit more, I would say song structure… you know of course we have a whole new vocalist that never was a part of the group till now, and he approaches this record a lot differently to the other guys. I mean you know James, Alan, Bobby and Wade, not to say anything negative about their vocal style, but a lot of those guys were, they come from the same – the Dio, the Rob Halfords, the Bruce Dickenson style of singing. Anthony is more of a Paul Dianno, a John Bush, a Jeff Keith type of singer. He’s got more gravel and that’s what at first I think the fans are going to be like ‘Whoa, this is a little bit different, where’s the screaming with a vengeance, high parts?’ and that was a big thing, you know, hence the name Rebirth, I think the fans are going to be like ‘Wow, this has got a lot more of a bluesier vocal feel than a lot of the previous records’. So that will be the first thing that might take them back, but I think when they really sit back and listen to this record a couple of times, the songs will just flow a lot more. It’s not your typical Seven Witches record, which makes it a new move for us.

ToddStar: I also found that. The album seemed more jointed. Not to say your other ones are disjointed, but there just seems to be a flow.

Jack: Yeah, you know honestly I think it comes over years of… not to toot my own horn, but I think as a song writer you grow, you build. Like anything you want to write better, and I think maybe on this record I really second, third, fourth, fifth guessed myself. I wasn’t happy with certain things and I kind of went back and forth, and I took my time. I really wanted to make something special, and I think there’s a type of record that you can put in your care and listen to, and I think it’s got more of a wide spectrum of music, you know? I think you’re having your traditional power metal fans, but I also think like, fans of Five Finger Death Punch, fans of old Pantera, you know, pans of Tesla, even like eighties hair bands, they can listen to this record and be like ‘Wow, this has got a lot to offer’, it’s not like ‘Okay, this is Judas Priest 101, that’s the record’. That’s where I really went for it and I’m really proud of the outcome of it for sure.

ToddStar: Well you should be, it’s my favourite of the catalogue that I’ve listened to.

Jack: Wow, really?

ToddStar: Yeah.

Jack: Thanks a lot man. That’s a major compliment you know, because a lot of fans feel that Passage is the only Seven Witches record that really ever mattered, and I mean I’ve loved Passage for many reasons, that was the record that broke us pretty much, and you know there was a lot of emotion into the record, but I feel as future, I feel like Rebirth is definitely the biggest stepping stone in our career, for sure.

ToddStar: That’s why I like it. You mentioned Passage, but ten years later you’re putting out an album that shows the growth, not only as a band, because obviously there’s been a total line-up overhaul since Passage, but just like you mentioned earlier in your writing, you can just see the growth and the change, and you know, a lot of bands ten years on, they’re still trying to regurgitate the same sound, the same lyrics almost, and you guys really turned it up. You’ve got a great line-up behind you but you took an idea and you ran with it and you showed the growth, which is really nice.

Jack: Thank you man, I mean I have to be honest with you, I wouldn’t have been able to do this record without the guys with me. Seriously, we haven’t used, and I’ll come on record saying this and I’ll probably get shot for this, but this is the first time we used a real drummer in many, many albums. We always used drum machines. Not that the drummers couldn’t play the stuff, they did it live, but it was just a lot easier to use a drum machine, and Johnny just… you know, when we went into this I said to Johnny ‘Think Cozy Powell, think Vinnie Appice’ you know, and he loved that, because that’s what he loves. You know, think John Bonham. And that brought a lot of that live feel, and Ronnie… it was just different. The bass, the drums, the rhythm section, and then Anthony just put a whole new dimension like. Anthony loves guys like Ray Gillen, which I to this day put down as one of my favourite singers of all time and we love Bush, and it was that kind of feel. So I definitely had to take my hat off to the guys that I work with too, because they really brought a lot of heart and soul into this record, and it shows.

ToddStar: Yeah it definitely shows, and I do like the bluesier feel to this album that you’ve had on a lot of your previous releases, like you mention just wanting to use Cozy Powell or Ray Gillen as influences, you’re talking about guys who oozed blues when they played.

Jack: Oh god yeah, it was in their pores and it came out. It’s funny to think a lot of people don’t really know me as a song writer, they think of my name right away and they think horns up, he’s a total metal head, and seriously I’m an eighties child and I love hair bands, hair metal, and I always will. Johnny always busts my chops for that, he’s like ‘Oh you and your purple colours and your big hair’, but that’s I grew up on and I still to this day try to get a lot more influence on this record, to be honest with you.

ToddStar: Now you mentioned you second guessed, triple guessed, quadruple guessed yourself. Any of these songs, I mean I’ve got a couple I love, I love Head First, I love Nightmare Man, even Poison All the People, you’ve got stuff from the front of the disc to the end, you don’t have any throwaways near the end. Are there any of these that just came together for you like overnight, it was just so easy to do?

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Jack: You know I have a weird way of writing, it’s pretty funny. I can go into the studio and start thinking and writing, but when I write I write in packs, it’s really odd to me. I write two songs at a time. Not finished, by no means, but the initial ideas are there, and some of these were like… Nightmare Man was like a five minute song, I wrote that in five minutes. But then like, a song like Claustrophobic, took a lot of time just to develop it because I’d never liked the bridge part, or I didn’t like the solo section, but even the songs that took five minutes I listened back and I’m like ‘Is this really the best this song could be?’ and the guys from my band, the engineers, the guys who mixed the record, they always laugh, ‘You have a really odd way of doing things’. I’ll send in demos, and if you heard my demos to what the finished product is, it’s night and day. They’re like, I have to have a vision but nobody gets my vision until the last minute, and once they hear it they’re like ‘I’m not really grasping what you’re saying’ and then when it’s done they’re like ‘Wow dude, I would have never thought the song would have sounded like that at the end’ and I guess that some come quick, some don’t. You never know what… I can go to the studio today and write five songs if I’m lucky, or it could take me five weeks to write a song. It’s the luck of the draw. I’m just really… one thing I really wanted, and again, no disrespect for any of my previous work, I feel some of the records, there are some songs – I hate to say filler – but I think they’re good songs, don’t get me wrong, they’re still your babies and you still love what you’ve done, but I feel this record, there’s really nothing I would look back at and say ‘Yeah, six songs are really great, the other four… ehhhhh’. I really think I put everything I possibly could into this record. So I appreciate the words about that because I feel the record starts out strong and finishes strong, and a lot of people… you know the first three songs of their record is their record, and that’s it. Then they’re like ‘Yeah, this is a good song’. I feel like this record starts out of the gate fast, and finishes fast. That’s my feelings on it.

ToddStar: Cool. You know, you’ve been at this almost nineteen years, you know when you first broke out with your audition with Helix, and almost twenty years into this, did you think you’d still be able to say ‘I’m putting out records’?

Jack: You know man, I was so like, when I auditioned for Helix, I was a real nightmare kid, and the guys were so sweet to me and they had no idea who I was or what I would become. I don’t even know if they realised that I went on because of that audition what I went on to. Like, I don’t think they realise I went from flying up to Toronto and auditioning and they’re like ‘You’re really great, just a little too young for us’ and I hope someday they read an article and realise I take my hat off to them, because those guys, their drummer mainly, took me under his wing and I’ll never forget that, and that got me…. him and Jeff Labar from Cinderella really, I have to say I owe a lot of gratitude to, because they showed me, like the drummer, Fritz said to me ‘I hope you the best man, you’re a great kid and you’ve got a great look, I hope you stick with this’. Twenty years, twenty three years later, you know what man? Yeah, I knew I would be doing this for a living. I didn’t know at what level, but I really don’t know anything else. Some form of music; teaching, producing, engineering, guitar tech, whatever. I’ve done it all, I’ve been on every side of the spectrum and I think in my heart and soul I knew this was what I would be doing now, and hopefully ten years from now I’ll still be doing this, in one side of the art or another side, I’ll be doing this for sure.

ToddStar: Well like I said, this thing comes out in a couple of weeks, and what’s the word, any big tours lined up, are you guys going to bring this to the masses?

Jack: Oh yeah, you know what man, tomorrow we’re pretty fortunate at KNAC is doing a world premier video. We shot two videos for the record, one for Claustrophobic, and one for Stand to Fall, they’re going to premier our new video tomorrow, and all the tour dates. We start September 19th through to middle of October. It’s us, Leatherwolf, and Vicious Rumours. We’re doing a three guitar ass attack of Leatherwolf, but we’re doing a three band attack of Leatherwolf, Seven Witches and Vicious Rumours. We’re hitting the road in September till October and then we’re definitely going to be looking to go to Europe in November and if all goes well with this record we’ll definitely be touring the States again, and maybe on a bigger run or something. So we are starting to get our engines going to take this to the masses, and I think we’re going to tour as much as we possibly can on this record.

ToddStar: I know I can’t wait to see you guys hit Detroit. You’re going to hit Detroit on September 24th, so that will be a high point for me.

Jack: Yeah, I mean I love Detroit, I’ve got a lot of good friends. Many times I’ve played in Detroit, either at the I-rock or across the street at the… what’s the name of that big place, it’s got the huge stage.

ToddStar: Blonde’s, with the high stage?

Jack: Yeah, Blonde’s. Yeah I mean we play Detroit, I probably have played Detroit fifteen times in my life, between theatres or great rock and roll scene, great fans and great place to play. It’s awesome, so we’re definitely going to put on a good show for you guys there. We’ll be playing the catalogue. Let the fans know we’re not going to forget about our past. We’ll do a song from each record for sure, and we’ll do a bunch of new stuff too. We’re looking forward to getting out there and hopefully the kids love what we have to offer on this run.

ToddStar: Well you mentioned the tour with Leatherwolf and Vicious Rumours, but if you had to pick a band or two to go out on the road with Seven Witches that you think would complement you guys well, but you would also complement, who would you like to take out on the road on a headline tour for Seven Witches?

Jack: Like us headlining, or us open for somebody?

ToddStar: You headlining.

Jack: Us headlining? Wow, that’s just… the band that I would want to bring out with us are way bigger than we are, so I couldn’t say that, but if I could be on a package I mean, I’m gonna get, I’m probably gonna get shot for this, but I would love to go out with a band like Shinedown, because I just think they’re a great band that have great songs, and they’re still heavy and … I would love, love to be on Gigantour because to me that would be a great tour for us. I think we fit really well in with Megadeth and stuff. I mean, to take any other band out with us you know, I would love to do a tour with Iced Earth like, I think we would be a great addition to a run with them. I think that would be cool, I mean there are so many bands that I love, I mean, I love to go out with the Winery Dogs because I love Richie Kotzen and I think that would be a great tour. There are so many great bands out there that I love, that I would you know, I mean I’d love to open up for Anthrax because getting to play with Joey and stuff, you know what dude, I’m just a fan of music so I think any chance to be out there touring, you know, would be great to be honest with you.

ToddStar: What was the last CD you brought?

Jack: I just ordered from Japan the new Winery Dogs, and I just got it and it’s ridiculous. Like, ridiculous, ridiculous. And actually I talked to Doug Aldridge about this; the new Burning Rain record is just phenomenal. I said to him ‘We should go out and do some shows together’ and he’s like ‘Dude, that would be the coolest thing’. I think Doug is one of the best guitar players out there today, and I always tell him, he’s just such a sweet and humble guy and you know, and I even toured with Jericho. We should go out, Fozzy and Seven Witches I think would be great. So yeah, I just got the new Winery Dogs and Burning Rain.

ToddStar: Yeah, I love The Burning Rain, I think he and Keith nailed that album.

Jack: Oh, its great man. You know Matt Starr, what a great drummer dude, what a great drummer.

ToddStar: Well listen man, I appreciate your time, so I’ve got one more for you before I cut you loose.

Jack: Dude, no problem.

ToddStar: It’s 2013, you got a new album coming out in two weeks, you’ve got a tour on the horizon, what’s the meaning of life, Jack?

Jack: Rock and roll, brother, and just being glad that I still get to do this. That’s the meaning of life, rock and roll. We’re very fortunate. I think a lot of these bands that don’t realise how lucky we are. With the internet and everything, it really kind of… the record sales are not what they used to be, so we all need to band together and just be… you should look in the mirror and say, ‘You know what? I can’t believe I’m still getting to do this’. That’s the meaning of life. Brotherhood out there, and that’s how I feel about it.

ToddStar: Cool man. Well again, I can’t wait till this thing gets unleashed on the masses, and they get to enjoy it like I’ve been enjoying it.

Jack: Thank you, brother.

ToddStar: I can’t wait till you guys hit the road, and I look forward to much more from Seven Witches over the next nineteen years.

Jack: Dude, make sure you get in contact with me for the Detroit show and hopefully you come down to the show early and we can hang out and talk a little bit.

ToddStar: Sounds good, maybe we’ll even do a recap interview after the album’s been out and you’ve been on the road.

Jack: Dude, that would be totally awesome. I’d just love to see you come down to the show and hang out. That’d be great.

ToddStar: Sounds good, Jack. We’ll see you then.

Jack: Thanks for your time, man.

ToddStar: Alright brother, bye.

Check Seven Witches on the web here:

http://www.jfrost.us

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Seven-Witches-Official/185545834901482?fref=ts

and our review of the disc here: http://magazine.100percentrock.com/cd-reviews/201307/22061

Todd ‘ToddStar’ Jolicoeur

Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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