We caught up with Chris over the weekend to talk about this and everything else happening in the world of Mr Beautiful...
So you’re headed down under to tour with Steel Panther … That will be an explosive combination! Have you ever toured with Steel Panther before?
Ah, no we never have, I think it’s going to be a good mix up because both of us are very much the type of band that demand our audiences to have a great time. It’s a great mix as far as attitude, as far as entertainment value and we are looking forward to it. We were just here in Australia in February for Soundwave and had a great tour, our fan base is growing, it’s a real honor to be invited back, we are excited to be here, we are actually in Brisbane right now.
What keeps you coming back to Australia and what was it like for you touring with Soundwave?
A: It was probably one of my favorite tours of our career because it was so well organized, to do five stadium shows in the course of 7 or 8 days or whatever. Just the magnitude of the tour… the way it was organized, the hotels the flights and we did a couple of Sidewaves that went great as well. There was so much stuff going on and so many different bands, I was just really, really impressed with how everything was taken care of by the Soundwave people. Just the shows themselves, we had amazing crowds every day, I mean we were on very early, I think at like 2 or 3 in the afternoon or so and we were drawing… I think Melbourne and Sydney had 8 or 9 thousand people at those shows and then right when we were done the places would clear out as they went to the next band. I remember one night we played to 7 or 8 thousand people and the band after us played to like 80 and I’m not even kidding. I think we became a destination band, we have a great fan base in Australia, we have been coming here since 2005 and I think people were coming to specifically see us and then moving on to whoever else they wanted to see. I think Soundwave was really happy with that and that’s why they are bringing us back later to play again. So we are really honored, really stoked, we love Australia, great fans, we are ready to rock.
Tell me a little about ‘Sin and Bones’
I mean the record is over a year old now and this is actually the last leg of the tour. I mean after these shows are done…December 14th will be the last show in Sydney, that’s the end of the tour so we did about 17 countries and I think about 130 or 140 shows. When you get to those numbers on a touring cycle you know that it as a success and that the record was received really well and this is our first release on Century Media and this was our first big step after doing a lot of crazy stuff with Chasing the Grill, so we really, we knew this cold be a big step forward for us … I mean the “best album of our career”, we really worked hard to do that and I think we succeeded and you could tell that by the way that the record was received and how the songs go over live, I mean the majority of the set is from ‘Sin and Bones’ and people are going nuts for them. I was a big success for us and it was a great step forward.
Is there a concept behind the album?
Well we really wanted to make it, our version of the Black album and what I mean by that is the Black album is a very cohesive unit of songs, it’s very well put together, all of the songs have a similar tone and a similar mood and a similar vibe and we wanted ‘Sin and Bones’ to follow that. We wanted to make it a musical journey that would take people somewhere, from song 1 to song 10 but also have it diverse but still make it a ‘Fozzy’ record and what is do best are very heavy riffs and very melodic choruses and we were really able to focus in on that. I think that’s one of the reasons why it did as well as it did.
You have been touring off the back of your latest album ‘Sin and Bones’ for a while now… When do you actually start recording the new album?
We start recording in January, I think January 15th is when the drums start and our plan is to have it out in May or June. We have a really good plan and Century Media is behind us… like I said we have a lot of momentum so you want to keep that running and continue to do so.
Where would you like to see Fozzy in the future?
A: Just keep doing what we are doing and continue to grow and you know at this point we have toured with Metallica at Soundwave and the next tour we want Metallica’s job, I mean that’s the way I think every band in the worlds should look, if your not going to be the biggest band in the world then why do it. I just want to continue to grow and continue to spread the word and a lot of people that didn’t like Fozzy before because they hadn’t herd us, now they have checked us out and it kind of blew them away so there is a lot of new fans that are just joining us and of course there are a lot of amazing old school fans as well. So we want to continue to grow, continue to play bigger and better shows and continue to make bigger and better records. I think that’s the best thing that any band can do is to continue to take steps forward and you want the steps to be bigger than the last one, that’s all you can ask for.
When I was a kind, I started playing in bands when I was 12 and I started wrestling when I was 19 so I was always into music and wrestling and I always wanted to be both and never really saw the reason why not to at least try to do both. I kind of built my life around those two passions and wrestling kind of took off first but I still always continued playing in bands and writing songs. It’s just kind of an extension of what I have always done, I have always been in a band and I have always been into wrestling and here I am 30 years later from a 10 year old kid still doing it so I’m really fortunate that I had two dreams and have both of them come true.
You’ve obviously taken time out of the WWE ring to concentrate on other projects like ‘Fozzy’ and your new web series, “But I’m Chris Jericho” … tell me how did that all come about? What was the idea behind it?
Well, I mean, I actually left WWE back in 2005 to go back to Hollywood to study acting and kind of was going through a lot of funny things, where just because I was Chris Jericho, world wide super star in WWE in some of these auditions it doesn’t matter, nobody really cares. You know there would be 10 people there with the same look as me all there to read for one line for CSI or whatever... these pretzels are making me thirsty… thanks.. next! Really? I’m Chris Jericho don’t I get another try? So I came up with this comedy world where Jericho gets ‘blackballed’ from wrestling and has to try and make it in acting… so I thought it would make a funny curve your enthusiasm… rest in development type of show and pitched it and pitched it for about a year and a half until we finally sold it as a 10 episode web series that’s up right now on ‘But I’m Chris Jericho.com” It’s been a huge hit, it turned out really funny and people dug it so it’s going great between that and Fozzy and the podcast which just started yesterday, I’ve got a lot of cool things going on.
Tell me a little about your books… of which I hear you have a new one coming out… what inspired you to write them?
Well, I mean I always wanted to write a book and I wrote and autobiography in the first one I did back in 2007, I have a lot of stories to tell so I kind of designed it to be a trilogy. That’s kind of how it was, I have written every word in every book and really enjoyed writing them I’m actually in the fourth draft of the third book as soon as I finish hanging up with you so it’s a lot of work to do, I have been working on it every day since August 9th so that’s four months of solid writing every day to get it to this point but it’s my story so I can’t just let anybody do it. I’m excited to make it a hit; the first two were best selling books.
How is it that you survive working the way you do and holding up your image…What’s your secret?
Well I just don’t put any limits on myself as a person or as a performer, its something that I feel that I can do and feel that I can do good. Like I said I always wanted to write, always wanted to wrestle, be in a band and kind of made it my life’s goal to be all thee of those things and acting and everything else, that comes in-between. I’m excited to continue doing what I do.
I honestly do have to ask this and sorry to all of the males out there that are going to read this… what do you have to say to all of your female fans in Australia?
I was just laughing yesterday about this, we were flying over here and on the plane there was at least a dozen pretty girls and I always thought Australia has amazingly gorgeous women, I don’t know what that is. Maybe because all of the convicts came here a hundred years ago and maybe convicts are hot but it’s always a blast to cone to Australia and there’s always a lot of beautiful girls around which makes the shows so much more fun. If you had the choice between a thousand sweaty guys or a thousand sweaty girls, I’ll take the girls anytime and especially when they’re Australian girls… that’s definitely another benefit about coming back to Australia again
Out of all of the people you have worked with in your career, has there ever been anyone that has really inspired you?
Well, I was always a big fan of Sean Michaels, he was a huge inspiration to me when I was a young wrestling fan. As a musician I love Metallica and getting a chance to tour with Lars and James was massive for me, so it’s always cool when you meet your hero’s.
What’s next for Chris Jericho?
Well, as I have said this is the end of the ‘Sin and Bones’ tour, we finish this on December 14th, go home for the holidays and next year it’s podcasting, it’s new book and it’s starting to record the new record in January amongst all of the other things that I have going on but they are the three main ones for right now. I think 2014 is going to be just as busy or if not busier than 2013 was.
If you had to pick one song that would be the theme song for your entire life … what would it be?
A: Ah, from an intensity stand point, Battery by Metallica, I just love that song, it’s one of the most energetic songs that just really speaks to me, maybe not lyrically but musically any time I need some energy or want to get into a certain take on the world type mode, that’s the song that I always listen to.
Interview by Shannen Murphy