MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP - Behind Locked Doors Page 4
By Martin Popoff

"I practice, and that's where I find something to work on. Usually the songs that I write are all by accident. When I practice, I bump into something I like and I put it on a cassette. They're usually ten seconds of pieces, and then when it's time to make the record, I listen to those pieces and whatever inspires me most, I take that and turn it into songs. And then when I'm finished the instrumental parts, I give that part to the singer and then he does the rest. So it's not really so much like, 'I met this girl and I wanted to write a song about her' or something like that. Everything I do, it's really all musical."

"Like I say, I always collect. Whenever I bump into something I like, I record it, and it's basically like a library that I collect. And when it comes time to make a record, I sit down and listen to all the ideas that I've collected over the year or whatever, then I pick the parts that inspire me the most. And then that inspires me to write the next part to it. And that's how I've done it all my life. And then I give that to the singer, which in the case of UFO is Phil Mogg, and then he just does whatever he feels is right to do with it."

One other theme that rings consistent - meaning, I've heard this from him before - is the fairly unique answer he gives when asked about his influences.

"Well, I would have to mention just older ones. Because I stopped listening to rock music when I was 18 years old or something like that in order to keep it exciting for myself. You don't want to overload yourself with that stuff." He then goes on to say that one of his favourite songs right now is Louis Armstrong's 'What A Wonderful World' and then substantiates his fairly outrageous claim by rattling off a bunch of influences and their records that all - to a man and 8-track - fade away by 1971. I've had two or three guys tell me something like this, but no one has ever meant it like Michael. And judging from his sinewy, unique guitar vision, this musical, accessible European gothic style light years more blissful than Blackmore or Malmsteen, his isolation and eccentricity have served US well, partly at the expense of HIS sanity.

MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP - Behind Locked Doors Page 5