JON OLIVA Reveals New SAVATAGE Album Working Title, Lineup And More - "This Will Probably Be The Last Record We Ever Make, Ever"; Video
April 20, 2023, 6 months ago
It’s been well over 20 years since Savatage released their last album, Poets And Madman, in 2001. Of course the Trans-Siberian Orchestra took over and then we saw the tragic loss of leader Paul O'Neill in 2017.
Legendary singer, Jon Oliva, just spoke with Sakis Fragos, publisher/chief editor of Rock Hard Greece, for an exclusive update on the new record:
Oliva: “I just got home from the studio, where I was working on some Savatage songs. I was sending stuff back to Johnny (Middleton, the bass player) and Caffery. I'll tell you something. This Savatage record is going to fuck it all up! That's how good it is. I made a lot of mistakes like that before and I don't make them now. I'm in no hurry at all. I want to release it next April, so we can all come and play the summer festivals next year. There's no way we're going to rush it. For any reason. Because this will probably be the last record we ever make, ever. I want to make sure it's a 10/10 album. And the fact that Zak Stevens and I are going to be together on some songs and doing a duet makes me even more excited. Deliberately, I wrote six-seven songs specifically for Zak to sing. I worked on some songs with Al Pitrelli, which are definitely for me. There are a couple of epic songs where Zak sings some parts, I sing some parts, and we sing together on some of them. It's the best record I've ever written. Unless I kill myself!”
Who else is on the album?
Oliva: “I’ll have Steve Wacholz playing on a song or two (that was a real surprise), Jeff Plate on the rest, Johnny Lee Middleton, Al Pitrelli with Chris Caffery, Zak and me. There will also be Jane Mangini who is playing a few things and probably Vitalij Kuprij. Even (drummer Steve) Wacholz in two-three songs. For example, I send Johnny the songs and ask him to add something if he thinks it's worth it. I want everyone involved, from the beginning. I want it to be a full band record, where we all work together. It's going to be great.”
Do we have a working title?
Oliva: “The working title is Curtain Call. I don’t know if that is going to be it. The very last song that’s going to be on the album, is the song called ‘Curtain Call’. And it just me with a piano and it’s very deep. It’s a basically me singing to the fans, telling them all goodbye. And thank you. Every time I hear it, I cry. Everybody I play it for, cries. But it’s my way of saying goodbye to everybody. Thank you. I love you all. This is my final goodbye. Thank you. Have a good life. So I think I’m going to call it Curtain Call, but it’s not in stone yet. Between me, Al, Chris Caffery and my brother (Criss), we have like 40-50 songs. It ain’t going to be easy to trim these down. With any leftovers I’ll put out a bonus CD a year later. We'll start recording in June and we'll be working continuously until we go to Omaha for the Trans-Siberian Orchestra rehearsals. After the TSO tour, we'll be back in the studio in January and by February, we'll have it finished. My goal is to have it out next year, on Criss's birthday (i.e. April 3). Then we want to come back and play festivals. We have so many offers. Saki, I'm not 25 years old. I want to play Wacken, I want to play everywhere and then that's it. This will be my way of saying goodbye to the whole world. I want to tell our fans how much I love them. They provide my livelihood. I don't want to let them down. I'll be there next summer, too, to play the festivals and kick some ass!”