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Brad Gillis is a member of US rock legends Night Ranger and was also briefly the guitarist in Ozzy's band straight after the untimely death of Randy Rhodes. He has also released a very listenable solo album 'Alligator', that featured ex-Night Ranger member Gary Moon on vocals. Night Ranger are currently playing dates in the US.
1. What are you currently up to?

I am now working on a dozen Fox Sports music pieces and a CBS show. Night Ranger is gearing up for a Spring and Summer festival tour and possibly a live DVD and studio record.

2. Who was/is your biggest influence on your career?

My biggest influence was Jimi Hendrix and all the wild sounds his guitar would scream. He got me into the whammy bar and after I received my first Floyd Rose tremelo, I started honing my style.

3. What plans do Night Ranger have for 2003?

Touring, recording and a live DVD.

4. Your solo CD 'Alligator' was well received (and very good in my humble opinion!). Any plans to do another? Will Gary Moon sing on this as well?

He has a very powerful voice which complements your guitar playing perfectly. Gary and I got back together in December and wrote a few new songs and recorded them in the studio. We're planning on writing more soon.

5. What has been the highlight(s) of your years in Night Ranger? Would Night Ranger ever consider some European/UK dates at all?

Night Ranger had a few great years between 1983 and 1987 and the good times did roll. Some highlights we're the "Texas Jam", American Bandstand, Day On The Green's (S.F.) and touring with ZZ Top, Kiss, and so many great bands of that era...

6. Do you find Night Ranger fans only want to hear the 'classic' tunes? Many bands seem content to tour without doing new material(REO Speedwagon, Foreigner).
I must admit I find it frustrating as a fan that many bands seem happy to put out live/best of albums. Night Ranger are one of the few bands who try new material ('Seven' was a great CD). For our live shows, we tend to stick to the Greatest Hits and not too much new material. When doing long shows, we add a few new songs like "New York Time", "Forever All Over Again" and others.
7. You worked with Ozzy back in the early 80's. What was he like to work with? Do you like 'The Osbournes' show on MTV or do you think it shows Ozzy in a bad light?

I was very fortunate to get the Ozzy gig and it changed my life. To be thrown into an instant headline position and asked to emulate Randy Rhoades was a great personal test that I had to endure. I sat in a hotel room for 4 days learning all the parts and on the 5th day I did my first show in Binghampton, NY for 6000 people with only a short soundcheck. This was the first time I had ever played with the band!!! I screwed up on "Revelation Mother Earth" and Sharon let me know the next night not to do that again."The Osbournes" TV show is very entertaining to watch and Ozzy has tamed himself down since my year with him.

8. Who would you like to work with in the future?

I've had the pleasure of working with many artists in my career but always loved Peter Gabriel and Phil Collins. I'm an early Genesis fan.

9. The last thing that you read?

The manual for my new Mac G4 laptop and Electronic Musician magazine.

10. Message for your fans...

Hope to be touring with original Night Ranger around the world soon and hope can can make it out to see us live!!! Many thanks & best wishes, Brad

Interview © 2003 Jason Ritchie/
Format and edit: The Music Index.

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