NEAL GRUSKY (Takara)
Takara are back
with a new album, 'Invitation To Forever', a new vocalist Gus Monsanto
(ex-Adagio) and a new label Prog Rock Records. Over to main man Neal Grusky for
What are you
currently up to?
Well as you know we just finished up our new album "Invitation to Forever"
We are now just
promoting it heavily. Once the album hits the streets on November 18, we will
continue to promote, and then of course begin looking into shows, and tours. We
are really hoping we may have a chance to perform at some of the big summer
festivals that come around. We of course are hoping just to get out there and
start playing live.
Could you briefly update readers on what has been happening in the band since
2001's 'Perception Of Reality'?
After many years of working very hard in the music business I felt after
"Perception" I needed a break. This gave me a chance to reflect on what was next
for Takara musically.
As things were
progressing in my off time/writing time, I was blindsided by the very unexpected
passing of my Father. Slowly as I began to regroup myself, and my thoughts I
began to miss, and desire to do a new album.
I knew with this
album that it had to be special, and after all the time off there would be
expectations just purely based on previous albums, and rightfully so. I truly
hope that this album will fulfil all the expectations all of you might have had,
just based off how the previous albums sounded.
Could you take us through the new album 'Invitation To Forever'
Each song for me most always starts musically. On "Invitation to Forever" it was
no different. I come up with a hook, or riff and build around it from there. The
strange thing for me is that sometimes I write a song so fast I cant even
remember the whole process, it is almost like you become a conduit for higher
source to channel through you. I have heard other writers say this same thing,
so I know it's not just me.
How did you hook-up with Prog Rock Records?
My friend Nicky Baldrian mentioned them to me. He thought it would be a good fit
for Takara, and it has been.
How do you view the current music scene? Have you seen an upswing in interest
over the past couple of years in melodic/hard rock?
I have been watching what is going on, and I must say it is nice to see the
resurgence again after so many years. It goes without saying I am more than
pleased, as are many other artists who have waited to have an opportunity to
release their music to an interested audience.
How did you get your first break into the music business? What piece of
advice would you pass onto budding musicians?
I got my first break into the music business when I decided to start sending my
demo's overseas. To my surprise after I did this I had a deal in months. Before
that, in 5 years of nothing but hard work, and the word "No" from every major
label here in the U.S.
How did you hook-up with ex-Adagio vocalist Gus Monsanto?
I posted a news blog melodic rock website stating that Takara was seeking a new
lead vocalist , and Gus saw it, and emailed me. As simple as that.
What have been the most memorable live shows for you and why?
The most memorable live show was in Germany in 95' Jeff and I did a series of
live acoustic sets that went over amazingly! Great vibe, and audience!
What do you like doing with your spare time outside of music?
I like to travel, go to the beach, and just hang out with family.
Message for your fans...
Hey gang! thanks for all your support and patience over the years.
We hope our new
album rocks your socks off. Feel free to let us know what you think at our
November 2008 Jason Ritchie.
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