|As the original singer of Australia's most legendary rock band, Dave Evans will forever hold a spot in the rock and roll hall of fame. This is not only because of his pilot position of the steamroller known as AC/DC, but because of his swift departure after a short tour and a notable song in "Girl Can I Sit Next To You?" |
Dave Evans is now resurging and I had an opportunity to catch up with the wonder from down under to talk about his glittered past and the leathered future....
So let's rehash a bit of the past...the story goes your stint with ACDC was shortened b/c of your glam style... And there's been some "vegetable tossing" throughout the years..so what really happened?
D.E.: LOL !! The finger pointed at me for the short lived glam look is probably because of embarrassment now from the actual originators. When we first started we looked the same as every other band in Australia at first - jeans and shirt/t-shirt look - but just before we were to do our film clip for CAN I SIT NEXT TO YOU, GIRL?, the Young brothers explained to the rest of us - myself, Neil Smith and Noel Taylor (by now our third bass player and drummer) that Angus would put his age down three years to 16 and wear a Schoolboy's uniform and Malcolm would wear silk jumpsuits and boots like a glam kind of airman and that he wanted the rest of us to come up with something outrageous to really make an impact on the Australian public with the release of our single. Neil Smith came up with wearing a crash helmet and dark glasses and jodhpurs like a tough motorcycle cop and Noel came up with an outfit that represented the joker out of a pack of cards. I wanted to epitomize the ultimate rock star look coming out of the UK at the time and wore skin tight pants and boots and tops like English band, SLADE, and striped jacket and scarf like Rod Stewart. This worked a treat as the Australian public though we were a new British band to start with and when we were interviewed on tour some of the journalists were surprised to find out that we were Australian. It didn't matter to us as we were a hit! Actually Angus is the only one who continued with the glam outfit and the schoolboy outfit is now legendary.
|"Most aspiring band members dream about touring and some are lucky enough to actually get that chance. Then the reality sets in."|
You picked up the pieces quickly and moved on to head up several classic bands of your own, but do you ever look back and wonder what if? Of any of your bands, which was the most satisfying?
D.E. I have been fortunate to have been in several kick arse Aussie bands over the years including RABBIT (often described as wildly hedonistic) and Dave Evans and Thunder Down Under. I guess the best time on and off the stage was with the boys from RABBIT although I have enjoyed the other line-ups too as each band was original and gave me the opportunity to write and record new music and to work with some great rock musicians around the world.
Art, especially music can unify people, who may have different fundamental beliefs; it is a way to communicate. Can you think of a particular song or performance that was the most unifying?
D.E.: Not any particular song as I have co-written songs with members of most of the bands I have been with so this in itself is unifying in the delivery of the performances.
When you compose a song where do you get your ideas from and how does a song evolve?
D.E. Most songs are written from personal experiences which make for conviction when recording and performing the material and make it "real" for myself and easy to communicate the feel and the story of the song to the audience. As I am usually singing or humming melodies as I go about my daily business LOL!!, sometimes a song just appears and I have to write down the idea or it is lost. I have woken during sleep with a song going on in my head and have written down the tune and some lyrics before falling asleep again. I have actually recorded a few of these "dream melodies".
Speaking of songs, do you think the songs from the first single you recorded (especially Can I Sit Next To You Girl?) will ever get re-released? Do you have any plans to re-record them?
D.E. Rockin in The Parlour has been released on and Albert's Music label album quite a few years ago. I am not sure what it is called. The original hit, CAN I SIT NEXT TO YOU, GIRL? should also be released as it is where ACDC all began and was voted Australian single of the year. The fans love it. I performed CAN I SIT NEXT TO YOU, GIRL? Live at The Bon Scott Celebration Concert and it was recorded and released on the live CD from that concert.
So tell our readers more about being the King of All Badasses? Any trophies or stories associated with your title?
D.E. Well someone once said that it wasn't that I am "famous" but more "infamous" for whatever reasons and my performances are also described as very powerful and emotionally charged and this is what the fans have called me here in the USA after seeing the performance and meeting me afterwards. Badass is a term that means "really bad" and that as we all know means "pretty good" really but with real attitude. As a group of macho German fans said to me after standing in the front row at a performance ‘When we stand in front of you, we get scared – but we love it "?????
What do you plan to do or are already doing to gain more exposure and fans? Has the Internet helped spread the word about you, your music and your history?
D.E. The internet has been invaluable in so many ways with the whole world open for communication for business contacts and for the fans. I plan to keep touring as long as I can as live performing is something that I have always loved and the fans mean everything to me as without them being an artist would mean nothing.
Could you take us through some highlights of the past twenty years?
D.E. In the nineties I tried something a little different and went into acting, live on stage in some small productions and landed lead roles in a few "B production" movies that went straight to video. I usually was typecast as the "bad guy" but these roles gave me the opportunity to exploit the dark side of one's personality and I must admit that I scared the hell out of some of the other actors who hadn't met me before and only saw me on set as I was getting into character and then seeing the character created "in action". I had to bring some of my rock n roll albums and photos to the set on one occasion to let them see that I was not really a callous, brutal killer. LOL !! Also my first visit to Europe as a performer was an eye opener. I lived in Munich, Germany and toured there and in Austria and Switzerland and really loved the great reception I received and to see the European crowds rocking hard from teenagers to some in their fifties. It was gratifying to receive the great reviews as I had no idea how I would be received there. Also it has been an honour to have been invited to participate in the Bon Scott Celebration Concert last February in Perth, Western Australia, with some of Australia's best rock bands and musicians to raise money for a statue of the late, great, Bon Scott. I will be flying back to Australia this February once again to perform in Perth at the unveiling of the statue concert.
So let's talk about lead singer disease...is there a cure and if not, is there a certain enjoyment or push that comes from the fans that look up to you?
I don't describe myself as a lead singer especially these days as I write a lot of my own material and perform with a backing band. At the moment I am based in Dallas, Texas, with The Badasses, my current backing band.
Tell us about your latest projects? What is 2008 looking for Dave Evans?
My latest album, SINNER, has just been released in the USA and Canada and my management is looking forward to touring me here very soon. I am now compiling new material for another album.
Of your discography what is your favorite live and studio album?
D.E.: The Bon Scott Celebration Concert live album is great and a slice of real Aussie Rock. My current album SINNER just kicks some serious butt.
A lot of people don't fully appreciate what it takes to live life on the road and literally sing for one's supper. What wisdom, hard and soft, have you gleaned from touring?
D.E. Most aspiring band members dream about touring and some are lucky enough to actually get that chance. Then the reality sets in. They are away from family and friends, wives or husbands plus the comforts of home. It is ok for one or maybe two nights but if the tour is in weeks or months then it takes its toll on so many. This is when band members have to face the hard truths. Can they handle it and so often the answer is - No !! It takes a special breed to enjoy the rigors day in day out of touring and having to be disciplined to be able to perform at your peak night after night with little sleep and interrupted meal times plus the traveling. Inexperienced bands think that it is all about them and party to excess leaving the performances very much wanting. They forget that it is about the fans and the performances and the true saying that you are only as good as your last performance. One, find out if this life is for you and then Two, make it about the performances and the fans and the rewards will come back to you a hundredfold. Burnout for the inexperienced is commonplace from concentration on too much partying and not enough on the performing for the fans. There has to be a healthy balance to know when to let your hair down and when not to.
What inspires you to perform?
D.E. I don't know really. It is just in my blood. My father was on stage, singing and acting in local amateur shows when I was a boy and performing just runs in the family, I guess. We were always singing at home when I grew up and it was just something that we all enjoyed individually or together until I discovered rock music and then it was more just with myself or with my sister as my father couldn't stand it as was the case with so many kids who discovered The Rolling Stones, The Kinks etc at that time.
What are the top 5 discs in your cd changer?
D.E. I don't' have any permanent cd's that I can't live without if that is what you are asking as my musical taste varies for my own enjoyment. The greatest influences though are bands like FREE and LED ZEPPELIN.
Having been in this business for the long haul, how do you keep it interesting to yourself after all these years? What keeps moving you to create this space every week?
Every audience is different and a challenge. I never take any audience for granted and they deserve the best from me every time and besides, it is my passion to perform and have been since I was a child.
How would you define the word success?
Success is when a person sets a goal and achieves it. The thing to do then is set another goal and then to achieve that and so on and so on.
Who are your musical influences? (Site specific examples.)
I enjoy many genres of music but personally I was inspired by the Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Troggs and then later after leaving school, Free, Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple.
Is there any particular band or artist that is currently inspiring you?
LOL!!! Not anyone new really but I am lucky enough to be able to inspire others right now.
Any final thoughts for our readers?
D.E. Rock is an attitude and a way of life and not all people ROCK!! To your readers I say - "WE ARE ROCK and PLAY THE MUSIC LOUD" !!