SAVATAGE Interview Page 5
By Bob Nalbandian
SW: It is pretty amazing to think that underground metal bands here in the US who were formed in the early '80s, such as Savatage and Manowar, are still monstrous in Europe, South America and other parts of the world.
JON: We showed up in South America and there were 6,000 people waiting for us at the hotel. It was crazy! I'll tell ya though, I'm really pleasantly surprised with the scene here in America. We sold out the first of our eight shows of the tour. The promoters didn't even think we'd do 200-300 per night yet we were selling out 800 to 1,200 seat venues. It looks good out there right now.
SW: Does the band still live in Florida?
JON: Half the band does. We also have a place in NY that the band keeps, Chris stays there, and I'm up there most the time anyway.
SW: Now when the band plays live, do you do the full orchestration?
JON: Oh yeah. I do it all, man. I play everything on keyboards live, I don't sample anything. I refuse to use sampling machines, so everything is sung live and played live, if it's an orchestra thing, I play it on keyboards. Believe me, it's a lot of work! (laughs) It's a full day at the office.
SW: How many CDs does Savatage have out now?
JON: Fourteen. And it's still going strong. We got a new deal for five CDs in Europe with SPV, so there will be at least five more Savatage albums. We're gonna be here for a long time to come!