John Taglieri
28th July '05
John Taglieri is a man on a mission - a mission to make the world aware of the superb talent that is John Taglieri! John can sing, play & write instant indie rock classics - he proved that with his debut album "Leap of Faith" and four years later with a recording deal, Sponsorship by Ovation guitars, TV appearances and another two albums under his belt, John is still building an impressive fanbase across the world through constant gigging & internet promotion. SkidMcSkidder talks to J.T. about what's new in Taglieri world since the last interview back in 2002...

SkidMcSkidder: Hi John!! It's been over three years since our last interview and there's been loads of things happening in the J.T. camp since then so where shall we start?....

John Taglieri: Anywhere you want my friend! WOW...has it been THAT long??

SkidMcSkidder: Yep! In fact you were only the 3rd ever interview with SkidMark back in Feb. 2002!

John Taglieri: Wow...very cool to know! I guess we can start with my new CD

SkidMcSkidder: Okay, tell us a bit about the new album "Now"

John Taglieri: comes out on 8/2/05. It's a totally different CD for me...

John Taglieri: only one ballad, all the rest are upbeat and fun. hardly any love songs...mostly about life, and going after your dreams no matter what anyone says. I wrote and recorded it here in my own studio, so I'm really proud of that

SkidMcSkidder: Cool - a departure from the kinda stuff contained on "half & half" then?

John Taglieri: Yes...far different then Half & Half and even Leap Of Faith

SkidMcSkidder: Are we talking even more upbeat / harder rocking than "leap of faith"?

John Taglieri: Yes...a whole CD's worth!!

SkidMcSkidder: Fantastic!! I'm looking forward to hearing some of that then - "LOF" is still one of my top ten SkidMark band tracks

John Taglieri: Thank you

SkidMcSkidder: So why the change back to the rock roots?

John Taglieri: Not really a change...just a more fun way to say has been SO good to me the last few years in so many ways, and my writing is showing that. I look at life very positively and this CD reflects that notion. A lot of the songs have two main themes...

SkidMcSkidder: which are?

John Taglieri: Life is what you make of it, so don't waste any time. If you want something, go get it... don't expect it to be handed to you...

John Taglieri: and NO WHINING...

SkidMcSkidder: Hah! one of your pet dislikes!!

John Taglieri: Yep...have several songs about people I knew in life that bitched about everything when they had no right to complain at all.

SkidMcSkidder: How many songs in total on the disc dude?

John Taglieri: 12 on the CD... I don't believe in EP's or 10 songs albums. If I want people to pay, I want to give them something worth it...

SkidMcSkidder: I totally agree bruv - you got to give the punters their moneys worth

John Taglieri: Yep...about 58 minutes on the CD....good length I think

SkidMcSkidder: True

SkidMcSkidder: on the subject of CD's...

John Taglieri: Yes?

SkidMcSkidder: I seem to remember back in February '02 you were close to completing an album called "True Believer" but I don't remember you ever releasing an album of that name?

John Taglieri: Oh boy... (Laughs Out Loud) ...nope, that never came out. The label I was signed to at the time left me hanging. Never got me into the studio, never came up with my budgets, no promo...nothing. SO I had all these songs demo'd with nowhere to I left the label and stepped back to reevaluate

SkidMcSkidder: And did the tracks metamorphosis into H&H?

John Taglieri: No...totally different songs. Nothing came over at all

SkidMcSkidder: They were a lot of older songs that fit the hard rock thing that the label wanted, but I was changing as a writer and the songs really weren't me anymore... So it's a good thing in a way that it never came out

SkidMcSkidder: So there's a secret vault of unreleased JT material waiting to be discovered in about 50 years huh??!!

John Taglieri: Yep! a whole CD that never made it out

John Taglieri: All very 80's sounding rock

SkidMcSkidder: Oooh I can imagine you in spandex with big hair!! (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: Wait until you see the NOW CD insert...

John Taglieri: Some good pics there

John Taglieri: with the insert on the new CD, we wanted to say..."this CD is NOW and here's how I got here"

SkidMcSkidder: oh-oh... not OLD photos...!!

John Taglieri: LOTS of old photos!

SkidMcSkidder: I'm sure I seen a pic of you in what could only be described as a 80's boy band!!

SkidMcSkidder: So what's the marketing plan for "Now" - are you getting some major distribution?

John Taglieri: No...major distro doesn't make sense to a guy like me. Why send units to a place that I don't play to sit on a shelf when I can sell it off a stage where I am?

John Taglieri: So I'm doing my distro mostly on the web... Aware Store, CD Baby, my own site, I-Tunes, etc..

John Taglieri: And at shows. So it'll be very available, and in this day and age, most of my fan base is very computer savvy and loves to buy on the web, so it makes sense that way

SkidMcSkidder: Sure.

SkidMcSkidder: And touring?

John Taglieri: YES...touring like crazy...Have about 25-30 dates right now over the next two months

SkidMcSkidder: So when you hitting the UK??

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud) ...I wish!!

SkidMcSkidder: You'll have to do it Ali Handal style - and back pack it over here!!

John Taglieri: I've thought about it...have to find the time and money to be able to

John Taglieri: I don't have a day job I can go anywhere, but it also means I don't have the steady paycheck it brought...but I love life this way - music is my full time career now and I love it

SkidMcSkidder: And does it pay the bills?

John Taglieri: Very well.. I've been lucky... I paid off all my bills and am literally debt free right now... just a monthly nut to make... and I can make it pretty easily

John Taglieri: I'm not making gaggles of cash, but I'm doing ok...

SkidMcSkidder: Brilliant - it's a position so many musicians strive towards but only the talented few who make it there - SkidMark salutes you (we're not worthy! etc, etc!!)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: Honestly, what I've done has taken 4+ years of killing myself to do. It all comes down to how bad you really want it

John Taglieri: Want some honesty Skids?

SkidMcSkidder: hit me...

John Taglieri: I've given up more then you can imagine. I lost my marriage, my house, everything that most people dream of having... but here I am right where I said I was going to be back when I to me it was all worth it.

John Taglieri:
I set a goal, and drove for it and here I am...and I earned it...which makes it more real

SkidMcSkidder: And that's what makes the sacrifices worthwhile I guess - to be truely happy and at peace with your place on this ball of dirt..

John Taglieri: My ex-wife and I are still friends and she'll joke with me about "why wasn't I doing all this 3-4 years ago??" I just tell her that she should have believed in me...I told her I was going to make it happen...

SkidMcSkidder: Mine would like to stick a knife in me! (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)...ouch!

John Taglieri: Yes...I'm very comfy with being in my own my life, and am very confident in who I am and what I can do. Sometimes I think that sounds almost pompous, but it's true and I worked my ass off for it.

SkidMcSkidder: I guess you've got more time to spend online now also? Does this mean a new in pipeline??

John Taglieri: Actually, we are launching a new website next Tuesday to coincide with the new CD release...8/2/05 everything launches!

SkidMcSkidder: Excellent! Is it self written??

John Taglieri: Fully redesigned site...looks killer too. My web designer, Keith LuBrant is ridiculously talented and made me a home I LOVE

John Taglieri: All the content...yes...all me. Keith provided the templates and design, I filled in all the content

SkidMcSkidder: So where's the tour taking you this time John? Out of state??

John Taglieri: All over the East Coast actually. I'm touring in august with Robert Matarazzo for 12 days...Robert used to be signed to Atlantic, had a couple of Top 10's...awesome performer. Doing some shows with Rik Emmett in September and then just going to keep going

SkidMcSkidder: Excellent - I bet you get to meet some very cool people on your travels?

John Taglieri: part of the job!

John Taglieri: Actually what's really cool is that as my career has grown in the last few years, I've been able to meet, perform with and become friends with a lot of people I grew up idolizing

SkidMcSkidder: like Rik Emmet?

John Taglieri: People like Rik Emmett, Edwin McCain, Angie Aparo, Sister Hazel, Jeffrey Gaines..tons of acts

SkidMcSkidder: How's your fan club going?? Does Katie still run it for you??

John Taglieri: Yep...Katie is still running the fan club...and it's going well!

SkidMcSkidder: Haven't heard from her in ages - I'm sure I wrote a little piece for one of her fanzines a few years back but (embarrassingly) I can't remember if it was about you or Kirk McFee!!

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)...probably Kirk...I'd remember that!

SkidMcSkidder: 8-)

John Taglieri: Mailing list just keeps growing and with MySpace, it's been crazy...such a great fan networking site that place is!

SkidMcSkidder: Yeah, I joined myspace a few week's a ago - it's BIG!

John Taglieri: Man...that is THE biggest site on the net right now

SkidMcSkidder: You can get lost in the amount of "friends" people seem to have associated with their profile !

John Taglieri: Yeah...i have about 5,000 right now

SkidMcSkidder: 5000!!!!

SkidMcSkidder: I thought I was popular with 6 HA HAH HA!!

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud) are HUGE bro!

SkidMcSkidder: So the ladies tell me he heh

SkidMcSkidder: I seem to have attracted some of the "stranger" friends to my page (then again what do you expect when I've got my alien mask on in the pics!!)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)...strange and you?? now that would never go together

John Taglieri: It all comes back to what I said bad do you want it. I spend hours on that site inviting people...more people = more exposure

SkidMcSkidder: Going back to visiting the UK - what exactly would it take to persuade yo to come?

John Taglieri: Setting it up...i don't know the market and have no connections there to help set up gigs...

SkidMcSkidder: Air tickets?

John Taglieri: Yep

SkidMcSkidder: Promise of a BIG gig??

John Taglieri: Or even some good small ones!

SkidMcSkidder: Well... I'm having a bar-B-Q in the garden in a couple of weeks....

John Taglieri: Done!

SkidMcSkidder: Hey, I can show you my awful version of "LOF"!!

John Taglieri: Sweet! been waiting to hear that!

SkidMcSkidder: Oh know you ain't (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)

SkidMcSkidder: So what else you been up to lately??

John Taglieri: Well...I fired my long time manager, Dave Tedder, so I've picked up a lot of things to take care of. I'm doing all my own press, PR and booking...not that I wasn't before...

SkidMcSkidder: does that side of being an independent cost a lot? Management??

John Taglieri: Well...not really since I'm doing it all myself. But it's not free and postage and other things do cost. Press kits, ink, paper...all the things you don't normally think about cost... and no... he got a percentage of what he helped me make... so it's based on me actually it's not that bad

SkidMcSkidder: Oh - forgot to say - I downloaded and watched your vid of you singing the US national anthem the other day - what was that all about??

John Taglieri: I've been doing national anthems for 3 years. Have done them for NASCAR, the NFL, Major League Baseball, Soccer...a lot of pro teams. It's great exposure.

SkidMcSkidder: Don't you ever worry about the sniper in the floodlight system like on Dirty Harry?? (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud) me...of all people to shoot, I'm low on the list!

SkidMcSkidder: While on the subject of vids.....

SkidMcSkidder: I've a "vids & gigs" section on SkidMark nowadays where visitors can download & see skidmark listed artists in action ( mostly I filmed myself) - I'd love to put a JT vid in there and obviously I can't come and film one so - is there a vid you'd like to send me and put up??

John Taglieri: we can definitely do that...I have two music videos that we can manage to get to you

SkidMcSkidder: Nice!

SkidMcSkidder: And are you still playing / sponsored by ovation guitars??

John Taglieri: One from my last CD for the song "Stay With Me" good airplay on and a new one for the new CD for the lead single, "How Will I Know"..

John Taglieri: Yep...still with Ovation and also with Curt Mangan Strings...

John Taglieri: My band also has G&L Guitars and Marshall Amps for endorsers

SkidMcSkidder: Wonderful - I was going to ask how you got the heavier sound on the new stuff - effects on the ovation or did you use electric guitars

John Taglieri: And as for the sound...lots of different guitars

John Taglieri: My lead guitarist John Calendrillo is brilliant with textures and parts...and a killer lead player as well

SkidMcSkidder: he's been playing with you a long time now - didn't he play on "LOF"?

John Taglieri: No...LOF was all me

SkidMcSkidder: No Way??!!

John Taglieri: Yes...all of LOF...the whole CD...all the voices and instruments was me

SkidMcSkidder: I'm impressed JT - you can play a mean heavy lick yourself then if you did all the work on LOF (I feel another "we are not worthy - Wayne's world" moment coming on!!)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)...I used to be a lead player... but mostly these days its voice and acoustic. I can still tear it up when I want to though

John Taglieri: I only played electric on two songs on the new CD...everything else is John

SkidMcSkidder: Rock! - have to fly you over to do some session work for me then - I'm only good enough to play rhythm!!

John Taglieri: Sure would! send me a ticket and I'll be there!

SkidMcSkidder: Just going upstairs to raid the little 'uns piggy bank...(Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud) ...That's my man.. steal from the children! I'm so proud of you!

SkidMcSkidder: So - how many interviews do you reckon you've done in the last few years john?

John Taglieri: A bunch...(Laughs Out Loud)...don't know really...a lot

SkidMcSkidder: I'm asking because I want a handle on the stuff you're not supposed to talk about... so we can!!

John Taglieri: go for it! most interviews are boring...same old questions!

SkidMcSkidder: One for the ladies - do you have any distinguishing marks / features secreted about your body?

John Taglieri: Hmmmm...not really...which is good! can't pick me out of a lineup! Though, for the ladies, there are some VERY good features!

SkidMcSkidder: They're listening.....

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: Skids, you know I have no do we really want to go there?!?!

SkidMcSkidder: what is the most depraved act a fan has promised to do to you after a gig?

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)...umm...hmmm...just the normal I guess...what you would hear about any groupie

John Taglieri: God bless the groupies too...great bunch!

SkidMcSkidder: is there a dedicated JT group of groupies then??

John Taglieri: Some...

John Taglieri: But I have a wonderful and most amazing girlfriend and don't ever play with the groupies... just flirt... harmless of course

SkidMcSkidder: Shoe on the other foot then - what's the most depraved thing you've done at a gig then? ah - that's screwed that question then! heh heh

John Taglieri: Ummm...not much...i get too lost in my show to do anything bad!

SkidMcSkidder: On a more serious note then - who would you love to tour with if you had a choice?

John Taglieri: Edwin McCain, Train... A few others

SkidMcSkidder: I'm going to sound really uneducated now but - I've yet to hear anything by your two choices! What kinda tunes do they play then?

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud)...yes you have, you just may not have realized it

SkidMcSkidder: Sorry - still waiting for the drugs I took as a teenager to wear off....!

John Taglieri: Remember a song called Drops Of Jupiter from a few years ago? And Calling All Angels

SkidMcSkidder: Er... no! (Laughs Out Loud) you wanna hum 'em??

John Taglieri: When I Look In Your eyes

SkidMcSkidder: Cheeky! (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: about I'll Be

John Taglieri: Tons of hits between them

John Taglieri: And of course Rik Emmett

SkidMcSkidder: I bet if I heard them I'd recognize 'em 8-)

John Taglieri: Yes you would

SkidMcSkidder: What band did Rik used to be in?

John Taglieri: Triumph

SkidMcSkidder: Yea! I've got a triumph picture disc - in fact I'm sure I saw them at the Donnington monsters of rock festival back in the early '80s

John Taglieri: Awesome band

John Taglieri: (Gotta get going soon...have rehearsal)

SkidMcSkidder: No problemo bruv - I didn't prepare Q's tonight so have been winging it (as you can probably tell!) so when ever you're good to go!

John Taglieri: Love winging it...more fun that way. Well..i have to make dinner and get to rehearsal...

SkidMcSkidder: Yeah - except I can't type as fast as I gossip!

John Taglieri: (Laughs Out Loud) Thankfully I can

SkidMcSkidder: Okay my friend been good talking to you

John Taglieri: Good talking with you also...dont be such a stranger...

John Taglieri: Thanks for the interview, taking the time and for the Feature also

SkidMcSkidder: No thank you - always a pleasure to feature talented artists on SkidMark

John Taglieri: Well...I truly appreciate my friend

SkidMcSkidder: Good luck with the album my man here's wishing you all the best

John Taglieri: Thanks bud...tell everyone you know to go to and buy it!

SkidMcSkidder: That's a mission I will accept!! (Laughs Out Loud)

John Taglieri: Thanks bro. Talk soon

SkidMcSkidder: Take it easy bruv & have a great rehearsal

John Taglieri: Thanks!

SkidMcSkidder: Later dude!

John Taglieri: Have a great night. Later

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Virtual Interview conducted using AOL instant messenger 28-07-2005
SkidMark Multimedia Productions MMV