No question, The Dead Daisies are the domain of guitarist, aviator and Australian business magnate Dave Lowy. But this top-flight collective has always had within its ranks some esteemed collaborators, including, previous to Glenn Hughes, vocalist John Corabi as well as drummer Brian Tichy and bassist Marco Mendoza. Now onto their fifth album, titled Holy Ground, Lowy is joined by Hughes, Doug Aldrich — this is his third with the band — and drummer Deen Castronovo, making this latest lineup of the consortium their tightest yet, a fearsome foursome, as it were.
GOLDMINE: Congrats on the new record, Glenn. Is this a whole new lease on life for Glenn Hughes?
GLENN HUGHES: You know, for me, it’s another chapter in my career, if you will. I’m very fortunate to be able to do what I do. And joining The Dead Daisies was an opportune moment for me to express myself with my music.
GM: What surprised you about writing with these guys versus past bands? I know you’ve toured with Doug.
GH: Yes, and primarily, coming into the band, knowing Doug was there, I feel really comfortable with that. Doug played in my band five years ago for four or five months, and it was great. Doug and I had been talking about doing something like this, and here I am in this band. As you know, it’s been difficult to do anything, but we made the album exactly one year ago. And here we are; I’m talking to you.
GM: Do you feel like this is ticking off a lot of boxes for you, you know, based on the frustration level of Black Country Communion? Is this basically a neat replacement for you?
GH: I don’t think I would use that terminology. I appreciate that, but there’s no band like Black Country Communion. And it’s not finished. I will do another album with Jason (Bonham) and Derek (Sherinian) and Joe (Bonamassa) in the next couple of years, of course. And I am a solo artist, despite being in two other bands. Black Country Communion doesn’t work too often — you can’t hide that. But hopefully that will change, and we’ll do more shows. And Dead Daisies is an opportune moment where we can start touring. This is a global touring band.
GM: Tell me a little bit about Dave Lowy and his life in Australia. Also, any cool flying stories?
GH: I had dinner with him a couple of months ago and we talked about flying, and about how we started, and how he started his business, etc. He’s really, really, really interested in flying. It’s his first love, flying. And I know the David Lowy story, as you do, but I know some other stuff as well about him, how hard he has worked. As we all know, he’s a very successful businessman. But what really makes me happy is that he really works hard to play guitar, here in this band. I spent some time with him, too, and I wrote specific guitar parts for him, which I thought would be appropriate. I wanted to make sure he was comfortable in that setting.
GM: How is he different from Doug?
GH: David, if you will, is more, if I can say, the Malcolm Young of the band and Doug is the Angus, although we’re nothing like AC/DC. But in general, David is a really old-school rhythm guitar player — that’s his forté. Chunky, no fear, really aggressive, raw, and I kind of like that. I don’t like anything to be too polished. So he ticks all the boxes for me.
GM: Where are you in terms of your lyrical hot buttons these days? What are your major themes here?
GH: I’ve been on a spiritual journey now for 15, 17 years, and I’ve been sober almost 30 years, and for me, I write about the human condition. What happens between life and death, and the glory and the defeats, the failure and the celebration, the wonderment, the wanderlust. I only write about stuff that goes on between my ears and in my gut. And we all go through this. So what I’m writing about normally is what’s going on with me and that may have been going on with you and everyone else. And you can hear it! If you follow my lyrical trip throughout the sobriety years, you can hear it. I’m all about the giving back if you will. I always say, “Hashtag music is the healer.” It’s a huge thing for me. Music may never change the world but it’s going to help a lot of people.
GM: Nice. And what does producer Ben Grosse bring to the table?
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