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One of the best vocal talents to emerge in the past decade or so, who has made his name with Talisman (they played a blistering headline set at 2003's Gods Festival) and also as a solo artist. He has appeared with numerous other artists plus he has a live DVD coming out soon from his recent Queen convention gig. He has also sung with Queen's Brian May & Roger Taylor when Queen were inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

1. What are you currently up to?

Getting ready to embark on my to month solo tour throughout a good portion of Europe. From there, I believe we go to South America so it's confirmed, this is the busiest time of my life/career!

What has been the highlight(s) and lowpoints(s) of your career to date?

Highlights have all occured in the past few months....did a smash-up job at the Sweden Rock Festival & another in Belgium in front of thousands of enthusiastic fans, but the prize goes to my appearance with Queen onstage last October when they received their Star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame...singing with my all time heroes was a big high 4 me!

Low moments, my time with Yngwie, but not because of him but because the many weasels & dickheads surrounding him. It was a surreal, dark period of my life when it should have been the most exciting.

3. How did you first get into the music business? Who have been your main influences on your career to date?

I've always been singing as far back as I've been talking. Yngwie was my 1st break at 18 years old. Queen, Prince, Journey & Van Halen were the artists who taught about breaking the musical boundaries yet giving them integrity...I would have nothing without those guys! .

4. What are your personal highlights on the new Talisman album Cats and Dogs and why?

The fact that it feels like a band again...having Frederik with us brought back a chemistry that was missing for years. The songs are killer too, overall I couldn't be happier...well, I could, we could sell a few 100,000 more, then I'd be happy as a clam!

5. Your doing a series of UK dates how have these been and what has been the highlight for you? How do you view the current live rock scene in both the US & Europe?

It's been more than amazing, especially since I've never had much presence at all in my career throughout the UK until now. My exposure has been due to quite a few appearances with Queen alumni as well as through the Gods Festivals held annually. It's quite sad how the genre is really at a cult status but I can't complain as there are many who have stuck by me through all these years & I'm now just finding out about them.

6. Do you prefer working in a solo environment or as part of a band? Which songs give you the most pleasure to sing live?

It's a whole new thing doing it on my own so I'm still getting used to it, but damn, I do like it! There's a controlling factor that I enjoy behind it, but I don't mean that in an egotistical way, more so in a way that I can pick & choose what & how we do in the studio or live & know the guys in the band are having a blast along with me. I have such a huge past it's difficult as hell to get it right everytime, but I'm having the time of my life doing it all.

Jeff Scott Soto

Photograph © 2004 Martin Kessel

7. You've worked with Queen and the all star SAS Band. How did you first come to work with these guys? Have you been approached to front Queen for their South African date in the autumn?

It's quite a long story, but in short, it was from heavy persistance that allowed me to prove myself & what I do, from there I've been invited to do more with them all. It's been a great ride I hope will continue & also grow with.

8. What has been the best career decision you have made and why?

Taking a leave of absence a few years back & coming back stronger than ever now!

9. What do you do in your spare time outside of music?

There's not much spare time juggling my solo thing, Talisman, Queen appearances & SAS Band, but I love basketball, water sports & snowboarding.

10. Message for your fans...

U all rule, U all make me what I am, U keep me thriving to reach 4 the stars & 4 U I dedicate every bit of my success to!!!

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Interview © 2004 Jason Ritchie/
Format and edit: The Music Index.

All rights reserved.

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