Thank you Ted Leonard for the Interview, thank you Enchant.
Hello Ted Leonard, nice meeting you at BAR Fest Pre Show, awesome concert, one of the best of my life, thanks for this interview for PerfectProg.Com
1- How was born the super talented and top band Enchant? Back in the late 80's Doug Ott joined a band called MaeDae that was comprised of Michael Geimer(original keyboardist) and Paul Craddick(original drummer) and Brian Cline. They soon after changed their name to Enchant just before Brian Cline(singer, bass player) decided to leave. Enter Ed Platt and lastly me in about '92.
2- You got an excellent voice, one of the best in progressive rock and metal, how and where you perfected your voice?Well, thank goodness that musical appreciation is completly subjective. Thank you for the kind words. I have been singing all my life, but didn't really take is seriously until I was about 16. I thought I was pretty good until I recorded "Blueprint of the World," that's when I realized I should take some lessons and try to improve. I still feel like I'm improving in certain areas.
3- Are you working in new material?Me?, Yes. I'm doing a solo christian rock album that will feature Nick D'Virgilio drums(Spock's Beard drummer, lead vocalist) as well as Sean Flanegan from Enchant. The album is not really very progressive but is musically adventurous none the less and very melodic as you might expect from me.
4- Why the Lack of live shows?Good question. Involvement in this band has never been very financially lucrative so we all have to pursue making a living elsewhere. At this stage in our lives that leaves little time to get together and stay productive. It's a serious bummer, because whenever we get on stage together it's a beautiful thing. There's always a ton of energy and we always come off stage saying "why don't we do this more often!!!"
5- Enchant is all about feeling, can you tell us how can you do this?Well we play to our strengths when we write. It became clear to us early that our strength is putting across emotion. I can't(and don't try to) compete with James Labrie's range or Russell Allans power, but I've always felt like I could interpret and 'sell' a lyric, and to me that's the most important responsibility of a singer. Doug approaches his guitar solos the same way. We both show flashes of technical prowess but for the most part we try to emote with our respective instruments.
6- How you became Enchant`s front man?I answered an ad in a local music magazine that read "Steve Hogarth where are you." I had no idea who Steve Hogarth(Marillion's lead singer) was but they listed Rush and Queensryche as influences so I thought it was worth a call. Anyways I think I was the first of 40 or so auditions that came in well prepared and could sing near the correct pitch so I got the gig.
7- Long way with Enchant, no changes in the line up since the Blue Print of the World, How’s has been the relation with your band mates? Well, we have had some changes. Paul Craddick our original drummer left after "Juggling 9 or Dropping 10" and Mike Geimer our original keyboardist left shortly before that. They were replaced by Sean Flanegan on drums and Bill Jenkins on keyboards. We still enjoy getting together to hang out so I guess we're doing all right.
8- We saw you in BAR pre-fest and you radiate a really friendship between your band mates and an awesome coordination, how can be reached that?In our genre of music there are a lot of guys who can play brilliantly from a technical standpoint, but for some reason don't really try to put on a show when they're on stage. We've always felt a responsibility to the audience to entertain by every means available. So you will never see us standing still and studying our shoelaces we put it ALL out there when we play live.
9- Which are your favorite Enchant songs and why? What inspires to write these charming and moving songs?This week my favorite songs are the 'ble' songs (Despicable and Invisible) from "Blink of an Eye". Real life experience is what we write about. Whatever moves us emotionally we figure will likely move the listener as well. Invisible depicts a crippled homeless man and has some really moving lyrics. Despicable I wrote about my father so every time it gets to the middle section I get angry and bitter all over again, but, you know, in a healthy sort of therapeutic way.
10- A lot of feeling in your songs, this is the Enchant’s trademark, why you preferred this kind of music, I mean, you got amazing technique, will you make new albums in the same vain? Or you will play heavier? We all love elements of heavier music and we love elements of melodic music. That's why we have always been, and will always be stuck somewhere in the middle. Technique is a great tool to have, but if you rely too much on it you will get lost in the hoards of other musicians who think this is a sport instead of an art form.
11- Besides Enchant, what do you and your band mates do? Obviously you all have families and other occupations in life, can you talk a little about this? Is this affecting Enchant’s live performances and music writing? We all have real jobs. Doug and Sean are home appraisers, Bill works in r/d for Korg, Ed works for Chevron and gets free gas(BASTARD!!!), I own a window cleaning business....I can't tell you how much fun that is........because it's not.
12- Please talk us about Thought Chamber? How you involved in this project? Which are your plans with this band? By the way, another facade of your voice, we like it so much too7 years ago I was home with my daughter(an infant at the time) for about 4 months. I got really bored since she slept most of the time. I started perusing the internet and came across an ad that Michael Harris had posted looking for progressive rock singers. I figured I met that criteria to some degree so I responded. We started exchanging files while still pursuing our own respective musical projects. For this reason, a lot of time passed before we amassed enough material to make an album. Honestly, I didn't think much would come of it until Derek and Rob from Haji's Kitchen got involved. The material gained alot of intensity with their parts added and suddenly I thought "hey, we might have something here."
I think we're all planning on waiting to see the response and demand to dictate how much time and effort we will continually dedicate to this project. If nothing lasting comes of it I still have enjoyed the experience and think it's a refreshing and truly original addition to the prog/metal music scene.
13- We have several polls in our website, please select your favourites I like the best singer poll of course, because I faired pretty well on it..........for the record I voted for Russell Allan too.
14- There’s something that you want to share with your fans? Thanks a lot! ENCHANT fans rule!!!! Flat out! We appreciate all of the feedback and encouragement we've received over the years and have thoroughly loved to have gotten to know so many of you! Visit our forum at: http://www.ultimatemetal.com/forum/enchant-198/
Thanks man keep proggin'
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