Issue 36

Interview with Geezer Butler

Interview with Joe Satriani

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

Interview with Ian Gillan

Another busy issue this time around. I spoke to Geezer Butler, famed bassist from heavy metal icons Black Sabbath, who had a new album out under the name of Heaven & Hell as they were sans Ozzy Osbourne. Buz and I did a co-interview with guitar hero Joe Satriani to promote the amazing debut album from Chickenfoot. I got to meet another Deep Purple legend in the form of Ian Gillan, who had a new solo album ‘One Eye To Morocco’ out. And as Sunstorm’s ‘House Of Dreams’ was out, I got to chat to my mate Joe Lynn Turner again!






You talking to me? You talking to me?

You talking to ME?

I‘ve been really lucky with my work for Fireworks, as almost without exception I’ve been able to interview people I’ve been long term fans of. I’ll interview anybody if I appreciate what they’re doing, but when you get to interview someone who has had a profound effect on you, then so much the better!

If you don’t know exactly what it is I do, one of my jobs is to create the artwork and layouts for the melodic rock magazine Fireworks. Aside from doing the artwork for it, I’m also blessed with the chance to write reviews for it and conduct interviews for it.

My first ever interview was with the mighty Joe Lynn Turner and I had such fun I couldn’t wait to do another one. I didn’t feel nervous, I felt this was something I was good at, and have been complimented on as a result. So, as I enjoyed writing them so much, please feel free to download the articles and read them. In order to do so, you’ll need Acrobat Reader. Most computers come with it already installed, but if you haven’t got it you can download it for free at This allows you to see the article exactly as it appeared in the magazine, zoom in on it, etc etc. Enjoy!

If you want to get hold of a copy of Fireworks, then visit our website Rocktopia which will inform you which stores carry it around the U.K. - or alternatively you can simply buy one from the store there and then and have it mailed to you! This issue pictured, featuring KISS, can also be browsed FREE so you can try before you buy.

Issue 20

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

In this issue, I got to talk to one of my heroes in my first ever interview! Normally this would be quite daunting, but I had met Joe once before and knew how cool he was, so I figured I’d get a decent piece out of him. I wasn’t wrong and Joe made my job very easy indeed. The chat was about his album ‘The Usual Suspects’... but we covered a whole lot more besides.


Issue 21

Interview with Chris Jericho

This was an awesome interview to bag. I’ve been a huge fan of Chris since he joined the WWE. What made this extra special is it wasn’t a telephone interview, this was a face to face with him on a sofa in the dressing room, just chatting! The interview was to promote Fozzy, Chris’ band, who were on tour in support of their newly released ‘All That Remains’ album.


Issue 22

Interview with Tony Martin

Interview with Rick Parfitt

Former Black Sabbath vocalist Tony Martin had just released a solo album called ‘Scream’ and I spoke to him about that album and his other projects. In my other interview, I spoke to the legendary Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt to talk about their current album at the time, ‘The Party Ain’t Over Yet’.



Issue 24

Interview with Jim Peterik

Jim is a melodic rock god, being the driving force behind the Ides Of March, Survivor and Pride Of Lions. Jim co-wrote the timeless ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ and has won awards for his song writing. He played keyboards for Survivor, and plays guitar and sings for the Ides and Pride Of Lions. The man is a legend and I had the honour of talking to him to promote the release of his solo album ‘Above The Storm’.


Issue 25

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

It’s back to Joe again as the ever busy vocalist released the superb ‘Sunstorm’ project. I made the call and once again had great fun talking to him about his work.


Issue 27

Interview with Jimi Jamison

Interview with Roger Glover

Being as long time fan of Jimi Jamison I was thrilled to interview him... if you can’t place the name, he sang for Survivor, performing the theme ‘Burning Heart’ for Rocky IV. He also performed the theme ‘I’m Always Here’ for Baywatch. I also spoke to Roger Glover, bass player for Deep Purple, about their tour with Styx and Thin Lizzy.



Issue 28

Interview with Stevie Salas

Interview with Gregory Darling

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

Interview with Stan Bush

I was really busy for this issue. First I got to talk to Stevie Salas, hot shot guitarist for the likes of Mick Jagger and Rod Stewart, as well as being a gifted solo artist, who was promoting his compilation ‘The Sun And The Earth’. Then singer songwriter Gregory Darling, who writes with Julian Lennon and had just released his debut solo record ‘Shell’. Next was the ever entertaining Joe Lynn Turner, talking about his latest CD ‘Second Hand Life’. Finally, Stan Bush of Transformers The Movie fame, who was talking about his CD ‘In This Life’.





Issue 30

Interview with Mick Jones

Interview with Francis Rossi

Interview with Glenn Hughes

This was a belting issue for me as I got to talk to three musical legends and three men who have serious shelf space in my record collection. We have Mick Jones, leader of Foreigner - he’s the man who wrote ‘I Want To Know What Love Is’ for God‘s sake! We have Francis Rossi, as I headed back for my second Status Quo interview which was a great deal of fun, and we have the legendary Glenn Hughes who talked about his entire career, and who has been on my interview wish list for years. Just amazing!




Issue 31

Interview with Dave Henzerling

I’m a big fan of the hard rock group Big Cock, and this issue gave me a chance to speak with Dave Henzerling, lead guitarist and chief songwriter of the band, in a fun interview where we covered the band’s output, the music scene in general, reality TV and absurd riders and demands for playing concerts.


Issue 32

Interview with Hugh Cornwell

Interview with Glenn Hughes

This issue gave me chance to talk to former Stranglers frontman Hugh Cornwell, who was very interesting with his cutting edge ideas of using the internet to further his musical audience. Then I had the joy of a follow-up interview with Glenn Hughes - two issues previously he’d been talking up the album he was making, called ‘First Underground Nuclear Kitchen’, so I was granted a chance to see if it lived up to the hype. I think it did!



Issue 33

Interview with Dusty Hill

Out of the blue I got a chance to talk to a member of the legendary Texas trip, ZZ Top! Everyone’s favourite bearded boogie/blues merchants have finally gotten around to making a full length live DVD, and to promote it, interviews were being carried out, and yours truly managed to bag one with bassist and vocalist Dusty Hill. It was a fun chat and an honour, because interviews with Dusty are something of a rarity!


Issue 35

Interview with Tom Fuller

Up and comer Tom Fuller was in London to promote his second album ‘Abstract Man’, and due to my deserved reputation of being a damn good writer who knows his stuff, his people requested me to come to London and talk to him, write an article and review the album - and they paid for my to come down and put me up. Couldn’t say no, could I? I had a great time, Tom was a really nice guy and I related to a lot of what he said - giving up a corporate life to chase his dream. He had no ego on him and proved to be an interview I really enjoyed.


WHO I AMWho_is_James_Gaden.html
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Issue 41

Interview with Ron Young

Interview with Fred Turner

Interview with Glenn Hughes

Issue 41 was a big one, as it marked our first ever issue stocked in WHSmiths. In our continuing effort to improve the magazine, we made this leap in order to ensure we had a high street presence. Once we had signed up, we had to deliver a good issue and fortunately this one was a cracker. I was fortunate to be able to contribute three interviews. The first was with Ron Young, lead singer of a great band called Little Caesar, who also had a cameo in Terminator 2 - he’s the biker Arnie chucks through the window. Next up was Fred Turner of Canadian rock legends Bachman Turner Overdrive, discussing coming out of retirement for a new album. And I rounded it off with another chat with Glenn Hughes, a face to face interview about his new supergroup, Black Country Communion.




Issue 42

Interview with Ronnie Wood

Interview with Myke Gray

Issue 42 was like ‘the difficult second album’ after we hit WHSmiths with such a good issue 41. If anything though, I think we topped it. Buz and I were blown away when we were given the chance to interview Ronnie Wood, face to face, about his new solo album ‘I Feel Like Playing’. A true legend, and a very nice guy to boot, we met up with Ronnie in London and had a great time chatting with him. I followed that up by talking to Myke Gray from reformed UK rock band Skin. I’ve been a fan of them for ages and when I heard they had reformed for one last album and tour, I did what I could to spread the word - and organising the interview with Myke was one of the steps I took.



Issue 43

Interview with Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan

Interview with Huey Lewis

Interview with Vinny Appice

Interview with Chad Taylor

Issue 43 was a packed affair for me. Not only did it feature my favourite band, Mr. Big, on the cover, but I got to contribute four pieces of my own, one of which gained me great feedback. I did an interview with Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan of the classic Status Quo line up, celebrating their ‘Live at The BBC’ box set and they gave me a great four page article. I also got to speak to Huey Lewis, as he and The News had a brand new Motown covers album out, plus I chatted with Black Sabbath drummer Vinny Appice about Heaven and Hell’s ‘Live at Wacken’ DVD and his memories of working with the legendary Ronnie James Dio. Finally, I talked to Chad Taylor of new band The Gracious Few, formed from the ashes of multi-million selling bands Live and Candlebox. Phew!





Issue 44

Interview with Jimi Jamison

Issue 44 was a bit more hard work, coming right after Firefest, and then Christmas, then New Year. Everyone is always a bit sluggish and the artists were no different. There was nothing in the new releases that were in my taste range so other than the artwork and the odd review, it was looking like I would have no interviews to do. However, I came upon the idea of doing a retrospective on one of the landmark albums of an artists career, by interviewing them about their memories of it. I fired off some emails and Survivor vocalist Jimi Jamison was happy to agree to cover my favourite Survivor album, ‘Too Hot To Sleep’ with me. And here it is.


Issue 45

Interview with Francis Rossi

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

Interview with Ben Waters

Interview with David Coverdale

Issue 45 was the issue where I achieved another big ambition - I got to interview the leader of Whitesnake, David Coverdale! I’ve been a fan of Whitesnake for years, they were one of the main reasons I got into this music. Back in 1997 I thought I was lucky to have even seen them live as they split. But they came back with a vengeance and my patience waiting in line for a chance to speak to Coverdale paid off! On top of that, I had a highly amusing chat with Status Quo frontman Francis Rossi about his solo DVD, interviewed pianist Ben Waters about his charity album featuring Jools Holland and the Rolling Stones, and talked to my friend Joe Lynn Turner about his classic solo album ‘Rescue You’ where he pulled no punches about the machinations of the music business. I’m pretty pleased with that lot!





Issue 46

Interview with Francis Rossi

Interview with Glenn Hughes

Interview with Kelly Hansen

Interview with Pete Agnew

This issue featured three returns to people I’d interviewed before and one new one. First up was virtually a sequel to last issue’s piece with Francis Rossi, only this time it was to talk all about Status Quo’s new record ‘Quid Pro Quo’. It was arguably funnier than the first one, but you read it and judge for yourself. Then I sat down again with the legendary Glenn Hughes, to talk about the second Black Country Communion album. I also talked to Foreigner vocalist Kelly Hansen again about Foreigner’s phenomenal live DVD. Finally, I was asked to cover Nazareth in favour of a colleague who was indisposed. So I talked to founding member and all round nice guy Pete Agnew. It’s all go you know!





Issue 47

Interview with Roger Glover

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

Interview with Brian Howe

Interview with Chris Jericho

Interview with Don Airey

Interview with Andy Bown

I broke my own record in Issue 47, doing no less than six of the interviews featured, as well as my usual clutch of reviews. With my being a big Deep Purple fan, two members of the band had made solo albums, so I called up bass player Roger Glover to talk about ‘If Life Was Easy’, and keyboard whiz Don Airey to hear about his ‘All Out’ CD. Another entertaining interview with the always gracious Joe Lynn Turner was on the cards to promote the reissued box set of the trilogy of albums by Mothers Army who Joe sang for. I also had a great time with my brother doing a face to face interview with Chris Jericho before we saw Fozzy live in London - this was by far my favourite of the three with Chris. Ex-Bad Company singer Brian Howe gave me a great interview about the band’s classic ‘Holy Water’ album. Finally, I interviewed another member of Status Quo, keyboard player Andy Bown, who was promoting his solo album. And what a life he’s had... a damn good crop of articles if I do say so myself.







Issue 48

Interview with Lindsey Buckingham

Interview with John ‘Rhino’ Edwards

For this issue, I took over an interview that was scheduled for Buz, but because Buz was stuck at work and wasn’t free for the interview, it fell to me to talk to Fleetwood Mac legend Lindsey Buckingham... a man, who, with their ‘Rumours’ record has co-written and performed on the ninth biggest selling record EVER MADE. Yeah. I thought wow too! He was promoting his new solo album and was a very nice guy.

I also spoke to yet ANOTHER member of Status Quo, in long time bassist John ‘Rhino’ Edwards. Rhino was promoting Quo’s Christmas package tour with Roy Wood and Kim Wilde - he was great fun and singles Quo out for having the most members of a band that can give a good interview that I’ve encountered. Don’t just take my word for it, have a read of our conversation and see if you agree!



Issue 49

Interview with Brian Howe

Interview with Jon Stevens

Interview with Myke Gray

Interview with Glenn Hughes

Interview with Michael Des Barres

Interview with Matti Afonzetti

I was busy again with Issue 49. Brian Howe, who I had previously interviewed in Issues 39 and 47 decided he was not going to make any more records, so I got in touch to help plug his final EP and discuss the reasons behind that decision. I was granted an interview with one of my favourite Australian based artists, Jon Stevens, who had put out two great albums in the space of a few months - I never thought I’d have the opportunity to talk to him, so that was fantastic! I talked to Myke Gray again about his new band Red White & Blues - which I was lucky enough to be one of the select few to help select the tracks for the album! Glenn Hughes helped us out of a tight spot when our cover artist fell through, so he and Black Country Communion stepped in and he gave me a great interview as always. I spoke to the former Power Station vocalist Michael Des Barres, who, aside from being a successful actor, also fronted rock bands such as Silverhead, Detective and Chequered Past, whom I featured in my Retrospective piece. And I interviewed Matti Alfonzetti, who happens to also be the singer in Red White and Blues! See how it all comes together?







Issue 50

Interview with Tony Martin

Interview with Michael Thompson

Interview with Jeff Scott Soto

Interview with Joe Lynn Turner

The Fireworks Story

For our 50th issue, we wanted to do something commemorative, but first up was the business of interviews as usual. I got in touch with ex-Black Sabbath singer Tony Martin to talk about ‘The Third Cage’, the third edition of his Cage albums with Italian guitarist Dario Mollo. I had chance to have a most entertaining chat with top session guitarist Michael Thompson, a man who has played on a list of anyone who is anyone’s records, from Madonna to Michael Jackson... and his first Michael Thompson Band record is one of my all time favourites, so he graced my Retrospective feature covering both the classic original and the new sequel. The ever busy Jeff Scott Soto talked to me about his solo album ‘Damage Control’ and I interviewed Joe Lynn Turner again, this time for the third Sunstorm album. Finally, to commemorate what the magazine had achieved so far, the editor Bruce wrote a terrific article explaining how we went from mostly black and white niche magazine to full colour periodical in WHSmiths. I didn’t write it, but I am interviewed in it and I’m very proud of what Fireworks has become, so I’m including it here. It’s my site, who is going to stop me?





                                   Fireworks Story_Issue50.pdf


Issue 40

Interview with Francis Rossi

Interview with Chris Jericho

Interview with Sammy Hagar

Issue 40 worked out great for me on the interview front. First off, I had the chance to phone up Francis Rossi from Status Quo, as he was promoting his new solo album ‘One Step At A Time’. My last interview with him was great fun, and if anything, I thought this was even better. On top of that, I had the chance to do a second interview with Chris Jericho, who was my first ever face to face interview. I’ve been a Jericho-holic for years and years so it was great to do a second piece on him about his band Fozzy’s new ‘Chasing The Grail’ album - this one was a phoner but still cool considering I watch him on TV every single week! And finally I was offered a chance to speak to Chickenfoot singer, former Van Halen vocalist, solo artist and all round legend Sammy Hagar, to promote the Chickenfoot live DVD. I had a blast with the Red Rocker and it’s one of the best interviews I’ve done so far.




Issue 38

Interview with Don Airey

A chance to speak to the legendary Don Airey appeared for issue 38, and I jumped at it. Don has a stunning background, working with everybody from Andrew Lloyd Webber, to Ozzy Osbourne, Black Sabbath, Whitesnake, Gary Moore and many, many more. He’s currently the keyboard player in the mighty Deep Purple, and with the Purps about to go on tour, I was offered the chance to talk to Don about hitting the road.


Issue 39

Interview with Brian Howe

Interview with Mick Jones and Kelly Hansen

I was particularly happy with the interviews I was granted for issue 39. I got chance to pop down to London and talk to the two main men of Foreigner face to face, Mick Jones (who I previously interviewed over the phone in issue 30) and singer Kelly Hansen. It was great to meet them in person and they were really nice guys, promoting their ‘Can’t Slow Down’ record, which I rated the best album of 2009. After that, I had the chance to phone Brian Howe - Brian was the lead singer of Bad Company for ten years, taking over from Paul Rodgers. I’ve been a fan for years and I had a fantastic chat with him lasting an hour, and resulted in one of the best interviews I’ve done.




For a whole lot more interviews with the great and the good, click here.

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