Former White Lion & Freak Of Nature singer Mike Tramp joins Non-Stop Rock Talk to discuss his latest solo album, being pigeonholed in the 80's and his thoughts on White Lion re-recording the song "Broken Heart' on 1991's 'Mane Attraction' album. Stay Safe and enjoy!
young dreams here. I'm afraid there smile, spirit rebel cried Joan wings Good. You know you can fly. Never quit Never doubt you stand on your mouth and you're screaming your shabby You know you want what you will Nonstop rock talk with Tyson, Right? Right. Hey, Mike, Welcome to nonstop Rock talk. How are you doing?
I'm doing good under the circumstances. A good,
good man. It's really an honor to speak with you. I mean, I've been a fan dating back to the mid eighties when I first bought my final copy of Pride White Lines. Pride. I still have that album to the state. And let me tell you, he's pretty worn out. Um, I believe that. Ah, the song. Wait, doesn't even it's not even playable anymore. And on a side note, White Lion with Cinderella in danger was actually my first rock show. Um, see any grandstanding Toronto way back in the late eighties. So, um, I think I still have that taking stuff somewhere. But with all that,
I probably remember that Cheryl. Yeah,
that's awesome. Yeah, it was a good show, man. It was like August, and it was nice. It was thought just like a You know, the eighties rock stuff was the best in the summer when he went to a show. Right? So, um,
wait, you know
exactly, man, Um, so let's talk about your latest all entitled second time around, which drops on May 1st. Um, this may be an odd question, but in the press release I receive you mentioned that and I quote with every album I recorded or every tour I finish I always came home with such more knowledge than when I started it with this album. If you had to summarize it, what do you think was brought forth from the experience of recording second time around?
Well, I mean, I know I've always might like what you just mentioned right there. You know, to me, this is this is this is an ongoing journey Until I take, you know, my last musical breath crypt down a trans endless highway where where each exit I pull to take a break for presents an album and and win a little back at my poor soul album are 97 Capricorn And now the 12 in 2020. I assume a journey. It is clear as crystal you follow the same care that you're basing. The dealing with the same isn't Sometimes against yours are sold, some kind of distant gone worse they settle, settle. But it is reality from from from wait up to going to bed And that is what I was. I was going for twine to make sure that I would stay myself from day one on and not having ever to go back. And we do something. Me, I so 1% my gran in his life and his view in every single song and where I am with these different albums can you sold a kind of condition? Well, you know, he got over that her But now he's landed there and he's dealing with that and so on. So I wanted I was going to be next time at the same time. Also, my way of Saul riding has never changed, and I'm not. I'm not aiming for changing it. I'm not aiming to be groundbreaking on aiming at going to two dimensions. I'm just stain my tramp and continue that You're only resist used more all the same, but different.
Yeah, and I agree with thought because as I'm listening to this material, I kind of like for, like, changes and I mean changes within the songs. I still here, that same type of formula. It's just the music is a different, different style somewhat, you know what I mean? Like, um, the guitars aren't upfront as much. They are, but in a different way. And and I really, really enjoy that, especially listening to this out.
Well, you know, you know, I always try to, you know, sometimes for hours, I describe the things. So I got what I host come over, you know, silly metaphor or analogy described, you know, like, you know, I remember my grandmother and then my mom took over this this three level spice rack she would have over the stove and there were there. Were you remember? You know, they had names. I couldn't remember stuff like that. We even understand what it was. And later on a single doubt that I wanted to be something specific. That because my mom, when he explained to me that well, I ask this for a specific thing is not a guessing game. I'm just going over and then hope is going to be right. So where we for cinnamon or a condom on your something else? That is exactly what I want. And I want those who follow my tramp and those who won't steal that today. I wanna listen to my trip to have that thing that you're reaching for that spice because you can taste it in your mouth and that's what you want. And I don't want them to fight it through and say That's not despise it, you know, and the same thing with that. And that's all I want to do. I'm happy to be one of the spices that you don't use often, but when you do, there is no doubt what it is.
That's Fanta. That's great. And help did she have like that? That was good. So I'm getting to the title. Um, was there a special meaning behind that title second time around?
Yeah, well, actually, you know, always contradicting a little bit of what you said. Some of these songs happy songs that, for some reason or another, and I'm still trying to buy a commode with one has been pushed aside. So these are sauce, getting a second time activity, probably been half of the album on the original basic tracks that are pulled out and over in my studio and sat there list. Doesn't one happening in White and I What distracted me there in the at the Final Station A. While putting this together? I I now have to, you know, come to the conclusion that there are some of my favorite songs off the songs that are written. And I decided then that second time around would be better title than something percent ing where I am and going because it's really for standing still and then just say, Listen, I'm going to just give it a second chance. I'm just gonna give you something. You know what? A second move it's gonna run. And also 11. Let's let's prove itself and said, I've just always heading down the road that maybe in reality, this could be going back and active, and you're saying there was something There's something that happened here, but I didn't result it
So So, honey, I'm creating my own little you know, both fantasy, but it's old based on reality, my own little story. You know, I, even though it has absolutely nothing to do with. I'm big. I'm not. I'm not sure you do. You know what I'm talking about. But, you know, one of the first books Stephen King ever wrote backing, I think back anytime University days or or call. It stays a story called The Gun's Staying Out of our power. And he was put aside for a long time. But once he started doing it, and then he came out all the books, and then he took 20 years break anything the matter, you know, that's gonna sing on that, traveling through this wasteland below the table. Both. Sometimes I see myself that
that's a great answer. Um, so you feel with this album and brass respect where you are musically today. Do you think this l'm is a good representation of my tramp in 2020? I mean, we all one
1000% because there is. There's no, you know, you will be different in a ll the 12. So lab is maybe, you know, you can notice that you know both the, uh, the evolution off technology. Even though the first album is still starting in a digital age. So it's not like I'm paying forward of the Beatles. But I am. I am maturing with each album. I'm getting more confident with each album, You know, that's what I hear. But if you went back and uses those first album, were presented lying tramp and say 100%. And so when I basically stayed over the last couple off things like that is that, yes, I never wanted to go any further. There's another. Here's another you know, it's still they think I am my own version of a CDC. No, no, no, Nothing bad about 80 disease, one of my favorite dams. But for some reason they decided to sound the same in every album,
that soldier. But that's not about things, because that's what people, that's a formula. And those people
would be excited that, you know, just ashes where you need to do it. My advance and groundbreaking and always being at the front here and coming back. And we need things like that.
I just don't want to be like that. Um, one I started landing back. Um, and I don't wanna say fact. It doesn't mean issues of the through the eighties and half of the night. that was the surging time. And so the one bottle and back it became back to my worry boots, my jeans and my leather jacket. And it's sort of just being consistent there. You older than closet? Look at all the songs that I have that might be alive, but all it's all the same.
I mean, I think going back to talking about the eighties I mean, I was thought your lyrics were always above most back in that time. I mean, you chose more serious topics, and I always respected that. There was a real seriousness in those certain topics, and it was always conveyed in your vocal approach. I mean, I think
I appreciate you saying that I don't have to bring it up in that way, But then once you open it up, you know, I was speaking to someone else and tries to say without it sounding wrong, because I am so fortunate and so locking that experience the eighties and I that I got to the top and I saw a ll that kind of stuff. But along the way there was a person inside me that was searching for who I really was I wanted. I came to American 82. It was 100% fuel. I wanna be like David Lee Roth. Write songs like Journey Team Tree. I mean, what fuels me to be in here once, once, white line, he hit it big, and we started getting get to that next level there. I mean, um, and little Emma. I was, you know, I started dealing with, and that was that. I was not very good at playing the rock star behind the mirror sunglasses, the limousine and playing and a I'm not really here kind of road where I found myself getting off early at the two of us, getting it, sitting there, watching the P system and the stage being billed, asking all the room keys to the pushing the weight of a man. You ask too many questions I have. So what, Interested? Get all the time. I have no interest in the backstage parties and all that other kinds of stuff. I know. I was good on stage. I know that. I you know, I fulfilled the rolls out that I was as the front man and the singer of white line, But the dilemmas that time I was, I was facing also would rise in the lyrics, trying to They're listening in a drug deal on the blind Joe be on break my nose and saying, I can't write it. It's not where I am where I come from what I understand that on the front man with an American band that I have started. But I can write this kind of stuff. He didn't come easy for me. I have to create it. And I felt I was fake because I didn't really, You know, I didn't really feel that I was very sexual innuendoes. I fell morning to be that kind of person that Clinton was speaking that kind of language, which is always a big thing. It's not a physical fight, a fight with you. Well, you know what we're trying to do to convince you know myself, that I should just think, Oh my God and guns. And you know, when when you listen back and some of the songs, especially around the world, and survived our songs like Like When the German Crying Little Fire, A Cry for Freedom, a strong that rude about apartheid And when I told the band. They had no idea what he missed. No idea about South Africa, but because I was raised in Copenhagen, Denmark, a very you know, social and the environment. You know, my mom raised in my flat by two brothers on, you know, on Johnny Cash and Elvis and about Dylan. That's you know, that's why my room, that folk music, but also its school and you call that I was going at the school. We were very, very aware. All the world, Um, when I came to American and a 2.5 for the band with Peter on decided that it's almost like a wall came around and I was living the American world. Nothing else matters. He was 20 graders years in my life. But when when you asked me that same question, we mentioned that thing. The fact of the matter is, it is something that I was constantly dealing with. I couldn't write about tits and ass and red sports car going down sort of bollocks. He did not fulfill me.
That's a great answer in and the song that that I was actually alluding to besides the other ones besides little fighter when the Children crying Cry for freedom was actually broken home. Because when that song came in and I first heard it and there's
and I listen to those lyrics that it bothered me, it was an inn. The point was, the way that you your desperation in your voice as you saying that song it was like, Wow, because I couldn't find them anything like that. I mean, I lived, but I mean, I had my two parents and lived in my bubble and hearing something like that was just really affected me. It was really It was touching, like I was like, Wow! And And the great
thing is, you know, I mean, I grew up. I grew up in a worker's neighborhood in cold, paying a very poor neighborhood. Insult like that. Probably nine out of 10 on my mom. I made my soccer friends my mind. My karate buddies came from divorce holds. The fathers were saying that ate at the park, you know, being drawn good stuff. Like I said when I presented that song to the band and stuff like that, you know, you know, record coolly ate our guys made produces something like really, really? They were scared. This is 1989. Do you know what? Only three years later, Pearl Jam will come out with Jeremy and empty. He would embrace it. But in 89 sitting with people on here and time pants and colorful jackets, it was out of place.
Yeah. And do you think Do you think that image with a song like that might have hurt, hurt of and let
you know? Of course, In the same thing with little cider, You know, I wanted to do it. I wanted to do it. And you know what? I understand that I'm a part of me. I wouldn't call it to blame, but it was a time. I was just I was just, you know, a She cornered wolves closing or wounds. And she's cold, you know? I mean, whatever. When you add it, I have I have my vision, You know, I had my ideas, but it didn't work together,
But somehow they ended up being together that I'm out there, the little cider video. I mean, it's like going back. You need sunglasses. That how called off all my clothes is, But this song, even though the song doesn't specifics. Talk about the Rainbow Warrior, that little station troller, that Greenpeace we're trying to prevent a French column and doing nuclear testing explosions down in New Zealand and proven shaped pieces has been called has become a song for people Strongly has the cones so awful people and, you know, returning for wars without their legs. And it becomes songs for people from, you know, in all different. That was like playing shows is play the fire. I'm a little fire and you know, so somehow the nexus still came across that, you know, this was one against beat one with Skins assistant will get the government was against where Every word, you know, you were the one that we're gonna get, you know, survive in the long run and things like that and be a little details around that. But the thing was, nobody was interested in the to here any kind of serious interview,
Why, any better would not have existed in the
good point. Just
nobody was interested in anybody standing states lecturing the people.
Yeah, I think with a little fight
you have a drink on us. You know all that kind of stuff. That's what you did from the stage. But when you're not good at that and don't sound good saying that, what do you say that? Okay.
I mean, I remember seeing the video for little fighter and didn't realize until after later on when I actually read the lyrics, because the video doesn't portray
the big overpower song
support. Yeah, you don't get the point. It's like it's all bright And, you know, you guys were on stage and the song sounds amazing, but it doesn't get it doesn't convey that point around were like a band like Metallica doing the song one they were able to, you know,
your great great born you made But it also shows how our tune you know both our managers And I reckon I mean, even though you don't have a songwriter and we have some sort of direction, there is a limit. Two for us to, you know, be Rocky Waters at the time we went and had, you know, the complete vision and standing out there and being groundbreaking, you know? So whenever we get thrown at us, you know, we just think Okay, this is a promotion that we just carry on. What way left. But someone could ask you to call me and say, you know, it is a and I am now, but, you know, the killed the eighties.
and people just can't too much, too much.
Yeah, everybody decided enough. And it's time to move on. And let's look, it's
exactly we're facing wire the word grand. She should be just just not the old turn it. It is like people need now an alternative, you know, But But the interesting thing was also getting TV was goading us to Do they use like that?
These are the videos that build in TV. The didn't want stuff like I even remember what we get. Radar love. You know, the record company didn't have their basically eating if we can write the motorcycle without a helmet, you know? So So the reburying was from there. It was It was it was a controlled rebellion.
Yeah, that's crazy. That's crazy. I mean, you're just you're kind of pigeonholed right into
me. And at that time, who the hell is going to go against the grain?
You're so you're I mean, you're you're in many ways so afraid losing your rank and your position that you saw Just continue with what you've just done
more of the same.
Yeah, And luckily, you were able
to give you what you see, for example, that then when we get because it back fired at being honest with been on the road for 2.5 years with Pride Album says her center of weight, we get you know, if ever there was a band, I needed a break. It was Vito High and White Lines, but we never got a chance to purchase ladies all just staying away before we sign writing. We've got so not pushed into that and beat. And I actually wrote that they came out in two weeks in a motel in Palm Springs, California, where we take with, well, where were written pride over for years. Um, which meant that that way, you know, we've read, even really got some great songs. We It's an unfinished album. It's an unfinished album. So when we truth the break and we started writing for the final album Main Attraction, you see the amount of words Peter and I put in there and it because it's dark album in many ways, and we trying to sort of recover or maybe reality land the van off where we wanted to go. Imagine it before you. You can look at a circus magazine or hit operator in 1988 and almost every banned books to say, Now you can you take a box off albums from the eighties and a lot of the Congress both the same. Now you can take the vital out and put on your current table. This is where separate way line does not sound like poison. Cinderella or rap
already from the science marches, Vito and I had a symbol of David Roth and 80 Ban Ham gives him sound like them. We were on our way to wanted to become that much more like a journey for that kind of album, a figure out, a song kind of band and more instrumental musical van, then a you know, it's an ass, you know, shaken by glam band.
I think for me, I think, um, I had a big game and pride on last night, who is listening to my finals and I actually have two coffees with pride. I had to buy a new one, but he still loved It's no one. Um, but anyways, uh, I think you hit the nail on the head. Um, you listen to those albums. The guitar is different, The vocal I mean, the vocals, the lyrics are different And yeah, it stands out Is it really does stand it. And today, listening to some of those topics on those songs, it really makes sense And, you know, because today's a whole different time, right? So it's, you
know, it is. I mean, you know, I wrote one of the Children crying 1985. I mean, just looking out for a second. Ronald Reagan was president. They think you mean people. Some people will move with, you know, kind of state because it always someone. What kind of date 85 in America is probably at the top of their game. Older old people are happy concerts for our Max capacity album's selling Bigger than ever. Rock roll is just every single radio station. People are happy you moved out from the stage. You look from the audience to the stage there, panting as if you were. Hey, I'm sitting at my man in your house in Staten Island, New York, where I was living, writing No more president and all the wars will end one united world under guy. That kid from Denmark in 1985. Would you speak hair and probably some tight pants in town, but it sits there when you're still in mourning. Guitar writing. That's all
without thinking, you know, And every band has. How's the home sweet home? Yeah, I also like that. And here comes when the Children by those worries are stronger today stronger today, and they will be stronger more than the world here. 1985 or 1988 when it became a hit.
Oh, that's awesome. Um, would you say, like Broken heart, which was originally on Fight to survive? Was was that you're in the band's intention to actually redo that song at some point on. In a way, we
were completely against that. This is not, you know. This is This is like it eventually beat me, ending the band on September 2nd 91 when a final show in Boston, Vito and I were not not any problems writing songs. And we felt it was, If you develop a step back, um, we did. We understood and saw Happy. That's a song first on video and I ever wrote that started wide line. Someone was always part of our life, said from the start to the finish. We knew he was a great song. It's a very stable is always a powerful classic rock and roll song, but we did not need it there again. But this is this is once again we have a new producer on the album, which is Tito. Our record company was kind of saying, you know, in lack of better ideas because they had no fucking ideas off what they wanted to do. Stupid comments again, things like that. And, you know, eventually you don't I Good, good, good. Sort of like, you know, overpowered Thio, redo the song and things like that and you know, we're going to do without it We could just do without
Yeah, that's why
and just started it just it just in time to get better. And and so although it is things you know, finally, you know I have total freedom and you know, this is this is this is gonna be a final show and be okay. And he did. He and I feel that band. You know, We parted as friends and we didn't speak about it. Paul, 20 years.
It's crazy. I mean, that does. That was a great album. Definitely was from top to bottom. But it
is a great at home, a home. It's not down 100. I got passed over the back of water. How many bands from that decade? Holden's off with 10 minutes on call. You know, like thunder.
That's amazing Team.
But again provided on my statement that that's where we were as a musical band.
Yeah, and I think that's some kind of said. Here's the album. This is the first track, and it just I mean, it just got going from there. It was just a solid album from front to back, and, um, even lyrical content on that one, too, is fantastic as well. So it is. Ah, it's it may be my favorite white line. I want to be honest with you.
Well, I mean, that's great. I mean, way, you're happy that we finish on that out things like that. That album should actively, where Big game was way had had that year or leave half a year to breathe and started using, not here. Wait in our head and not hear that. And maybe not watching any TV, but just getting back to how we'd on. I used to write. He's sitting there with with my acoustic guitar being Dylan and Peter sitting across the table, the strapping you know what he was. And then the song meaning in the middle, That's that's That's where we were, right, how we were writing songs, but we never really got a chance to come down from the high horse. We were burned out when we drove when we drove out to a you know, a A motel in Palm Springs and set up a little four track has sent to you inside writing these songs.
It's cool. Now, now, um, Linscott. I guess we kind of got off on way. Start talking about why you lying. And I wanted to talk more about the all, but we kind of went off on that. But, um, I want to talk. I want to ask you about the road. Um that song is I love it. I've probably listened to let three or four times in the last day. And, um is God cool? I think more of a rock approach with a little bit of an American. A vibe. I think the what about the guitar is really cool on that. Um, what was your approach on that song
there He did that. Get excuse my language. Plains scratching my ass. I mean, it's like one of the most said something. He simply This is indeed a skater's length. 1 million% crammed DNA. The simple way of writing. I think I can trace that song out after my child was a hearing knocking on Heaven's door. Or some of the Danish folk artists in the late 67 grew up when I was sitting and sort of like, you know, trying to learn these simple songs like Have you ever seen the Rain, Creedence Clearwater Revival or those kind of songs? And then just attaching, chanting the lyrics with sort of I'm not saying end of the road, but, you know, you sort of gotten to you. You come to the conclusion now that you're facing getting older journey. You know, the Germans got continue. It's sort of going remain there. But now when you look back, you know that that road that may she is the road that breaks you and all these things. Get out there, lived the life, learn. It's probably no short cuts. Don't come pick you up even more, please. That is just four hours together with a friend. I could put it being together on my farm that just 1% me 100% at people paying attention to these small things that happens when should emotion, natural things, you know. And And, you know, this guy was saying Thank you for inviting me, inviting me, inviting us in to your private life when all I wanted to do Is this the wishes be me, which was amazing. I've been on all my soul Wow, Maybe, or something like that. But, you know, I can't come off of the concept. How about if we just filled me?
It's a good video. I fall had stayed a couple times, too, and I enjoy it. So job well, huh? It looks yet, um who is Who's seeing Who's the girl singing on the the background vocals.
Yeah, that's That's my that's my bass player. Why she's basically saying enough opposed my soul, adults, The last case. So Lower West, basically being the same players in an hour, I even though, you know, you know, I understood, and I learned my final lesson in 2010. That is impossible to put a permanent ban together. I do like the, you know, the comfort, all my friends, the people that I love and the people that I like, the way the airplane to come confidently part of my albums. And I think probably because we came this way is why we're still very, very strong friends. Of course, you know, they're not been conflict between because I run this project, this band, my tramp with an iron hand. And you know, this is my life. There was nobody else that's going to have a saying, you know, I paid my dues and now I'm going to guard it.
Well, that's great. Um, so I understand the album will be available for download CD and 500 copies will be available on red vinyl with pre orders, and I'm gonna put the say they're being personally signed by you through target dot d k as well. 100 copies will include a second time around T shirt, so I I'll just throw that it there. And so people are interested in buying the out moment. I mean, I'm going to Vegas for the fact that I really enjoyed it and,
you know, you know, it is a long way from for, you know, the record story in store signing sessions with, you know, 1000 people down the block. You know, it's, um, always just from the record store, you know, now it's just the way this and that's fine. I sell a lot of albums after the show, waiting to come out and meet that meet the people in trouble I got and I'm fine with Where is final worries? I have Ah, I build my life is in many ways a minimalist. You know, I just need I just need, you know, water on air and that they are good boots, jeans and a leather jacket and a more ghetto telecaster and, you know,
and you're good to go.
Thank you. That was a lot of things.
So before, before I let you go. Um, Hey, I mean, it's hard. It's hard to tell with everything that's going on the world on in the world right
in terms of touring paint plans. I guess everything's kind of on hold right now.
You know, it goes round one. It doesn't just, you know, I mean, it's actually the first time, but wanted, sort of I'm not fear, you know that I'm okay. Wait. You know the word camping. Or we could call it postponed, because at the same time, the venue is all the closing down. So it's a joint effort. Together with the fans. Everybody is closing down. So you know what was to be mine in my one of America tour starting April 15 will now start, You know, probably the last week off, even the world. So we're back to see me normal. I don't think the world will ever be back to normal, but it will be back some some way or another.
Okay, let's get you know, hopefully hopefully you'll be coming to Canada because that's where I am. And yes, I
know. I mean, I've been work, I had offers. I can and I think the way to do it is to do. Is this safe? Can it work?
Cool. Okay. Well, hopefully I'll see you here. But, Mike, I wish you the best lock with this album. And I thank you so much for your time.
Appreciate your support and bringing the message out to into your organs and stuff like that. Then, uh, we'll need down the road.
Okay. Perfect. Thanks, Mike. You have a good day. Rooth with a way with Wade. Never like the others. Stood by yourself when you show them your collars Lay Joe's black and you chose wide factual Who are you?