If there is
an artist that you have the chance to check out - make sure it is the
wonderfully charismatic, warm-heart Californian Melodic Rocker, Johnny
Lima who burst onto the scene in 1996 with his self-titled Debut.
f you dig the
heyday fun-times of Bon Jovi (83-89) and supreme guitar playing then
Johnny is the man for ya!!!
the man in concert at Maximes, Wigan at The Gods Festival, 2000 and
been a fan of him ever since he took the stage. A great guy to chat
with too - as the following interview implies:
1a. When you first got into Rock music what were
you listening to?
My parents bought me my first Kiss album in '74. So as far as I can
remember, that's when I got into rock music.
If they did influence you, then in what way?
Kiss showed me that rock 'n roll is more than just a style of music.
It's flash, it's showmanship, it's an attitude. I love it!
2. What's the story behind the production of the
1st album - was it a rush job or was it down to money?
It was down to money and inexperience.
3. What songs are you most proud of on this album
and why are you re-recording it?
I really like "Here For You". That song still gets me to this
day. I'm re-recording the album because I've been getting tons of emails
from people wanting the album. Now and Then/Frontiers wanted to release
it, and I said it's fine with me, but I'm re-recording it. I don't like
the production, and since I have my own studio now, it won't cost anything
to record it. The artwork will remain the same though.
4. How were you introduced to Frontiers Records
and why did you choose to sign to them?
Mark Ashton called Suspect studios when my first album was released.
I don't know the extent of their conversation. All I know is, Mark showed
some interest. A few years later when I was in the studio recording
"Shine On" I contacted Mark to let him know that I'm a free
agent, and need someone to release the album in Europe and Japan. I
liked the direction the company was going and that was my main reason
for signing them. Mark's easy to work with and that's important too.
5. On the second album 'Shine On' - what influences
are behind the following songs?
My Country 'tis of thee - and do you have some sort of connection to
the Vietnam War?
That song was inspired by the movie "Born On The Fourth Of July".
I don't have any direct connection to the Vietnam War, but I've read
a bit about it, and I really didn't like how the Vietnam Veterans were
treated. So it's basically from a Vet's point of view. Although that
song is pretty un-patriotic, I'm very proud of our country and I'm very
proud to be an American. We're a great country and I'm really happy
to see the free world coming together in these terrible times.
That was just a tongue and cheek kind of song. It's fictional. Never
happened in real life. I just thought it would be fun to write a song
about these young teenage girls who look like they're in their twenties.
Good thing I'm a married man, cause if I wasn't, I'd have to check identification
cards before I went on a date. HAHAHAHAHA!
Only the Strong Survive?
This is just a positive reinforcement type of song. My parents were
always supportive of my dreams and ambitions. They taught me never to
give up, always believe in yourself, and always remember that weak people
always finish last.
Leavin' In The Mornin'?
This song is pretty self-explanatory. A one night stand. We've all had
'em, and we all love 'em. HAHAHAHA!
5. How long have you been working alongside the
band 'Teer'? How did you get together?
I just worked with them last year for the Gods 2000 show. Mark Ashton
set all that up.
6. Do you present the songs to Teer to learn or
do you work on songs from scratch with them or work off basic ideas
that both parties have?
I sent them a CD of the songs I planned to do for the set. So, they
basically rehearsed them a couple of months before the show, and I spent
a week in Florida rehearsing with them. I thought they did a fabulous
job, and most importantly we had a great time. They're awesome people!
7. Will Teer always continue to be your backing
band - or can you see yourselves going your separate ways in time -
depending on popularity?
No, I don't think Teer will be backing me up in the future. It's not
a matter of going separate ways because we never intended it to be more
than a one off gig. Dan and I have talked about working together on
his solo album, but we'll see how things work out. It's really hard
being that we're on separate coasts.
8. Who are your influences as a guitarist? How
long have you been playing? Are you classically trained at all?
My main influence was Ace Frehley of Kiss. He's the one that made me
want to pick up the guitar in the first place. I don't really see myself
as a guitar player though. More a songwriter. I've been playing guitar
for 18 years, but again, I'm a songwriter. So I worked on my songwriting
craft more than guitar gymnastics. That's why I always have guys come
in to the studio to lay down guitar solos, cause I feel I'm not as good
a soloist. However, on the new album, I'm doing a couple of guitar solos.
Nothing fancy. Just some cool melodic licks.
9. What's the studio report so far on 'Made in
California' and the re-recording of the debut and will it have any bonus
tracks that were intended for the original at all? Does it seem at all
weird to be re-recording the debut - if so in what way?
Well, I'm just about at the halfway mark with "Made In California".
Hopefully I'll be done with it by the end of the year. My son is due
in the middle of December, so who knows if I'm going to want to record
so soon after he's born. I'm really excited about being a father, and
family definitely comes first before music. So I'll just say that "Made
In California" will be done when it's done. But I'm going to try
really hard to get it finished by year's end. I'll start recording the
debut soon after. So the debut will be released sometime at the end
of 2002. I've got some other things up my sleeve for 2002 also, but
you're just going to have to wait for the official news. Sorry!
10. How do you feel if people say you sound like
Jon Bon Jovi?
Jon's a great singer, so that's a great compliment.
11. Do you have a future tour planned? If so -
when and where?
No plans yet. However, Now and Then want to get me over to England for
the Gods show in 2002. Maybe they can throw in a couple of other shows
while I'm there. I'd like to tour Portugal as well since that seems
like the place where I'm getting most of my radio airplay. We'll see
what the future brings. Right now I'm just worried about the new album
and the new baby. Everything else doesn't matter to me at this moment.
12. Who would you most like to tour with and why?
Aerosmith. Because they are the GREATEST rock band and I think I'd learn
a lot from Steven Tyler. He's the rock star of rock stars. There's no
13. What do you get up to outside music?
Right now I'm just getting the baby's room ready. I never knew how hard
it was to paint a room until I started painting my son's room. If it
was just white it would be ok, but my wife wanted Blue and Yellow and
that was more of a bitch then anticipated. But it looks good.
14. How did you meet Z-Records artist, Danny Danzi
and how long have you known each other- do you socialize much?
I met him over the Internet. I think we've known each other for a little
over two years now. We've become great friends and we socialize quite
often. He's a genuinely great guy. I wish him nothing but the best.
He deserves it.
15. What's your favorite tour story incident?
Well, everyone knows about the little sh*t fit I threw when the lights
went out at the Gods show. Some people are still talking about it. Let
it go already! HAHAHA!!
16. What do you most enjoy playing live or studio
- or do you like both for different reasons?
I really enjoy the studio. More than playing live believe it or not.
I feel so at home in the studio. I love creating music. I love every
aspect of making a record. Playing live is just too stressful for me.
I worry too much when I'm on stage. Does the band remember the change
we worked on? How did that lyric go again? How come I can't hear the
damn guitar? Is my hair alright? HAHAHAHA!! So if I had to choose between
the two, I'd choose the studio.
17. If you could jam with any artist - who would
18. Which dead rock artists would you love to
bring back and why?
If I could bring back the dead, I'd bring back my brother. F*ck the
artists. There's plenty of great one's still alive.
19. What are you favorite albums from other artists
The Tories (The Up Side Of Down) - Great songwriting always does it
for me. This album is still my favorite after a thousand listens.
Def Leppard (Hysteria) - Awesome songs, awesome production, and awesome
memories. You know it's a great album when it still sounds fresh after
so many years. It's been what? 12 years now? Unbelievable.
Anything from Aerosmith - After all these years they still look and
sound better than any rock band half their age. I think every band should
strive to be like Aerosmith.
20. What would you most like to be remembered
Being a great Father, Husband, Son, and Songwriter. In that order.
Thanks for your support Glenn!
Thank you Johnny,
for such a warm honest interview - Looking forward to your new album
and re-recording of the debut.
Go and enlighten
yourselves a bit more and check out Johnny's website - www.johnnylima.com
via our links page!!!
Also, you must
check out the interview with Danny Danzi (who told me about Johnny in
the first place - and thank god he did - I'd be missing out big style
otherwise. Feel free to check out Danny's website also - www.dannydanzi.com
via our links page.