Bad to the bone, but still good on the road
George Thorogood first toured Canada 40 years ago and he’s back again May 9 at Sandman Centre
Courtesy Kamloops This Week
By Sean Brady
If it’s the hits they want, it’s the hits they will get.
That’s the philosophy of George Thorogood, who has been touring in Canada for more than 40 years now along with his band The Destroyers.
Thorogood’s is a career that would be the envy of many musicians, with hits like Bad to the Bone, I Drink Alone, Who do you Love? and several others.
With more than 8,000 live shows under his belt, you might think he’s tired of playing the hits over and over again — but you’d be wrong.
“That’s what I set out to do to begin with,” he told KTW. “Do you want to go pay $70 for a ticket and have someone get up there and say, ‘Here’s a song off one of our records that didn’t sell very much and it’s a song nobody knows or doesn’t like very much’?”
But just because he doesn’t tire of the songs doesn’t mean they don’t sometimes make him tired. The American musician, 68, said some songs are just physically harder to play than others.
“After I play One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer, I need about three days off and a bowl of Wheaties,” he said, laughing.
Thorogood has been to the River City at least a few times in the past decade and early next month, he’ll return again to waiting fans. He and The Destroyers will be at Sandman Centre on Wednesday, May 9. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and tickets range from $50 to $60 (plus fees) and are available through Ticketmaster.
After decades of touring and 16 studio albums spanning a 42-year career, the question might be: What keeps him on the road? Thorogood was pragmatic in how he answered.
“What inspires me is that there’s still a demand for us. That blows me away on a daily basis,” he said.
“That’s really what dictates the whole thing. You’re not still here because you want to do it, you’re here because you’ve succeeded, because you’re popular and people like it and still want to see you. That, to me, is the bottom line. When the phone stops ringing, then it’s over.”
George Thorogood & the Destroyers Cover The Sonics' "Shot Down"On Exclusive Record Store Day 7" Single Limited-Edition Red Vinyl 45 Also Features New Original "Ain't Coming Home Tonight" on B-Side
George Thorogood & the Destroyers are releasing a limited-edition 7" single for Record Store Day featuring two new recordings. The A-side features a cover of "Shot Down," originally recorded by legendary garage rockers The Sonics, backed with "Ain't Coming Home Tonight," an all new original penned by longtime Destroyers guitarist Jim Suhler and legendary producer Terry Manning (Al Green, Joe Walsh, Widespread Panic), with Grammy-winning producer Jim Gaines mixing the track. A download card will be included with each purchase.
The 7" single was engineered and produced by Shawn Berman, whose engineering credits range from Ice Cube to Guns N' Roses. Berman has engineered five George Thorogood & the Destroyers albums and Thorogood's 2017 solo release Party Of One.
"I wasn't aware of the song 'Shot Down' until my wife turned me onto it," Thorogood said. "Turns out it's a perfect Thorogood song. As for 'Ain't Coming Home Tonight,' Jim Suhler is a genius! I hope you dig these songs as much as I do."
A limited run of 1,650 copies of the single will be pressed on clear red vinyl and hand numbered by Third Man Pressing for Record Store Day, which will be celebrated at independent record stores throughout the United States and Canada on Saturday, April 21, 2018.
George Thorogood & the Destroyers have announced a series of tour dates in the United States and Canada that kick off on April 13 in Lincoln, Rhode Island. A complete list of tour dates is below. More dates will be announced in the coming weeks.
These dates come on the heels of Thorogood's first-ever solo album, Party of One, his fastest-selling album in nearly 20 years, which features acoustic interpretations of 14 of his favorite songs by artists such as Robert Johnson, John Lee Hooker, Elmore James, the Rolling Stones, Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, and Bob Dylan.
Praise for Party of One:
"Thorogood is a guitar-blazing revivalist whose enthusiasm and showmanship make the music fresh. - Baltimore Sun
"This guy plays with dirt under his fingernails, and he exudes the essence of the back road troubadour. Pick him up when he hitches a ride. Whew!" - Jazz Weekly
"This is a record that only a charismatic performer and interpreter could pull off." - American Songwriter
"It's (George's) guitar that remains the lifeblood connecting his fans to his musicianship." - American Blues Scene
GEORGE THOROGOOD & THE DESTROYERS TO RELEASE THREE ESSENTIAL ALBUMS IN NEW VINYL LP EDITIONS
‘Bad To The Bone,’ ‘Born To Be Bad,’ and ‘Greatest Hits: 30 Years Of Rock’
Available Now for Preorder on Black Vinyl and Limited Edition 180g Color Vinyl
George Thorogood & The Destroyers on Tour Across North America in April & May; Tickets On-Sale Now
On March 30, George Thorogood & The Destroyers’ Bad To The Bone and Born To Be Bad albums, long out of print on vinyl, and the band’s Greatest Hits: 30 Years Of Rock collection, never before available on vinyl, will be released in special vinyl LP editions via Capitol/UMe. All three albums are available now for preorder on black vinyl LPs and in limited edition, 180-gram color vinyl editions, which are exclusively available for preorder from The Sound of Vinyl and George Thorogood & The Destroyers’ online store. Tickets are on-sale now for George Thorogood & The Destroyers’ North American tour dates in April and May.
Bad To The Bone (1LP): https://UMe.lnk.to/GTBadToTheBone
Born To Be Bad (1LP): https://UMe.lnk.to/GTBornToBeBad
Greatest Hits: 30 Years Of Rock (2LP): https://UMe.lnk.to/GTGreatestHits
In 1982, George Thorogood & The Destroyers first hit the rock charts with Bad To The Bone, the band’s major label debut. By that time, the powerhouse band from Delaware had already toured with the Rolling Stones and demonstrated their mettle by performing 50 U.S. shows in all 50 states in 50 days. Bad To The Bone achieved Gold sales status and spent almost a year on the charts, helping to catapult Thorogood & The Destroyers to a new level of popularity. The album’s title track was Thorogood's first major crossover hit, which remains a staple of classic rock radio and a popular choice for film and TV placements.
A treasured cornerstone of Thorogood’s recorded catalog, Bad To The Bone also features the Berry-esque workout "Back to Wentzville," the playful rocker "Miss Luann," the soulful road ode "Blue Highway," and the introspective blues ballad "It's A Sin." The album also includes high-energy covers of the Chuck Berry hit "No Particular Place to Go" and the Isley Brothers’ "Nobody But Me."
Released in 1988, Born To Be Bad was George Thorogood & The Destroyers’ seventh studio album, featuring the band’s original boogie-rock title track, their signature cover of the Roy Head and Gene Kurtz-written soul classic “Treat Her Right,” the swaggering original “You Talk Too Much,’’ and covers of vital classics by Elmore James, Chuck Berry, Howlin’ Wolf, and others. Born To Be Bad went Gold, spending 24 weeks on the charts and peaking at No. 32 on the Billboard 200.
Released in 2004 to celebrate the band’s 30th anniversary, George Thorogood & The Destroyers’ Gold-certified Greatest Hits: 30 Years Of Rock features 16 standout tracks on two LPs, including the band’s biggest singles, “Bad To The Bone,” “One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer,” “Move It On Over,” “You Talk Too Much,” and “If You Don’t Start Drinking (I’m Gonna Leave).” The collection also includes a remix of “Who Do You Love” by longtime Thorogood fan Tom Rothrock (producer for Beck, RL Burnside, and Elliott Smith, among others).
Touring has been as integral to The Destroyers’ success as the band’s studio albums. The raw energy of the band’s live performance is represented on Greatest Hits: 30 Years Of Rock with concert recordings of “The Sky Is Crying” and “Reelin’ and Rockin’.” The collection also includes a studio session version of “Rockin’ My Life Away,” cut in February 1993 for the Haircut Sessions, recorded by Terry Manning and produced by Terry and the band at Nassau’s Compass Point Studios.
Founded in December 1973, George Thorogood & The Destroyers is comprised of original members George Thorogood (guitars and vocals) and Jeff Simon (drums), Bill Blough (bass), who joined in 1976, and longtime members Jim Suhler (rhythm guitar) and Buddy Leach (saxophone). With more than 20 studio and live albums to their credit, the band has achieved Platinum and Gold success with eight. George Thorogood & The Destroyers continue to actively tour around the world, sharing their bar roots, unchained attitude, and unbridled love for their blues, rock ‘n’ roll, and country influences with fans everywhere the road takes them.
1. Back To Wentsville (Side A)
2. Blue Highway (Side A)
3. Nobody But Me (Side A)
4. It's A Sin (Side A)
5. New Boogie Chillun (Side A)
6. Bad To The Bone (Side B)
7. Miss Luann (Side B)
8. As the Years Go Passing By (Side B)
9. No Particular Place to Go (Side B)
10.Wanted Man (Side B)
Born To Be Bad [1LP black vinyl; limited edition 1LP opaque yellow color vinyl]
1. Shake Your Money Maker (Side A)
2. You Talk Too Much (Side A)
3. Highway 49 (Side A)
4. Born To Be Bad (Side A)
5. You Can't Catch Me (Side A)
6. I'm Ready (Side B)
7. Treat Her Right (Side B)
8. I Really Like Girls (Side B)
9. Smokestack Lightning (Side B)
10.I'm Movin' On (Side B)
Greatest Hits: 30 Years Of Rock [2LP black vinyl; limited edition 2LP root beer color vinyl]
1. Madison Blues (Side A)
2. One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer (Side A)
3. Move It On Over (Side A)
4. Who Do You Love (Side A)
5. Bad To The Bone (Side B)
6. I Drink Alone (Side B)
7. Gear Jammer (Side B)
8. Willie And The Hand Jive (Side B)
1. The Sky Is Crying (Live) (Side A)
2. Reelin' And Rockin' (Live) (Side A)
3. You Talk Too Much (Side A)
4. If You Don't Start Drinkin' (I'm Gonna Leave) (Side B)
5. Get A Haircut (Side B)
6. Rockin' My Life Away (Side B)
7. American Made (Side B)
8. Who Do You Love? (Side B)
George Thorogood: badass to the bone
Courtesy Goldmine Magazine
By Ray Chelstowski
This summer George Thorogood released his 16th studio album, “Party of One,” and his first back with Rounder Records. The album also establishes a first for “Lonesome George” in that it’s his first solo record without his legendary backing band, The Destroyers. Produced by longtime collaborator Jim Gaines, the record charts a historical walk through of the artists who have helped shape his career and whose music provides the underpinning to the cannon of one of rock’s most respected musicians.
Goldmine had the chance to speak with George about this record, the acts he admires most and his thoughts on rock ‘n’ roll’s historic past and uncertain future. With wit and an expansive understanding of rock’s rich history our conversation covered a good amount of ground and introduced us to his theories on everything from why we love electric guitar to something he calls “pulling off the trick.”
GOLDMINE: So I played a bunch of tracks from the new album for staffers in the office here and every one of us had the same impression almost immediately — we all said “it sure sounds like George is having a lot of fun.” What were you looking to accomplish with “Party Of One”? Was there any album that was the inspiration or sort of your guidepost for the record?
George Thorogood: When I started in the early ‘70s that was my “mo”… to do that first and then maybe later on move on to getting a rock band together like everybody else does — doing stuff on acoustic guitar, a solo album like Springsteen, and various others. But we kinda jump-started into the band thing and put the solo record on hold for a while. Rounder Records was very keen to do that, so was I. As you know we went our separate ways for a while and then when we got back together with them. We said, well, we think this is the time to do this. I also wanted to document the songs that I was doing at the time and include some that I had never recorded. And as we went along I said, let’s try to get one song at least from every artist that really meant something to me when I was just starting to learn the guitar, putting my solo act together — and lo and behold it kinda presented itself one song after another. We found a Johnny Cash song. We found a Hank Williams song. We even found a Dylan song. Those people as just as big an influence on me as say Robert Johnson, or John Lee Hooker, Hound Dog Taylor. So when we went in that direction that’s when it did become fun. Because I have been banging on Hooker, and Bo Didley, Chuck Berry and my own songs for so long that that’s where some of the fun came.