– Hi Danny Vaughn and thanks for dedicating us part of your time and attention. Your professional career started during the late 80’s when you were the vocalist for WAYSTED and formed TYKETTO. What are your memories of those years?
As far as Waysted is concerned, that was my education. I learned a lot about what to do and what not to do in this business. I went from playing in a covers band doing nearly an entire set of Iron Maiden songs to opening up for Iron Maiden!ﾂ Forming Tyketto was the next phase in my education. It was no longer a situation where others were making the decisions but we had to take the responsibility for it all on our own shoulders. Two very different mind sets.
– With WAYSTED you recorded just one album entitled «Save your Prayers», you joined the band as a replacement for Fin Muir, one of the WAYSTED founding members. Was this hard for you? Then singer Fin Muir returned to WAYSTED in 2003 and nowadays is the band’s lead vocalist. What are your thoughts about this?
Funnily enough, Fin joined me on stage in Grimsby during one of my solo acoustic shows just a couple of weeks ago. We hadn’t seen each other in 20 years and it was a great experience. He sang â€œHeaven Tonightâ€ with me and he sounded great. When I first replaced him it was a Little strange but it was all band politics that had nothing to do with me. I was ust the new guy trying to get my reputation made. I still love Waysted. Great rock and roll band.
– Then you decided to form TYKETTO. What prompted you to do this? Did you think you needed something new? And, what’s the reason behind the name of «Tyketto? What does it mean?
It doesn’t actually mean anything. We saw it spray painted on a wall in a really rough section of Brooklyn we were driving through and we just thought, sounds cool, let’s have that! When I left Waysted I thought that people would be pounding my door down looking to offer me work. I was dead wrong. So after a while I realized that if I didn’t get off my ass and make something happen that I’d be alone in my room forever! Luckily, I had met Michael Arbeeny a while back and I had a good feeling about him so he was the first person I called.
– Though you formed TYKETTO on the late 80’s, your first record was released in 1991. Nowadays that effort named «Don’t Come Easy» is still considered a Hard Rock masterpiece. Many musicians state each album they release is like a son for them so, would «Don’t Come Easy» be the gifted son for you? What are your thoughts and feelings on this opus?
If you are the person that creates something I don’t think that you, yourself think of it as something amazing and special. Well, it’s special to YOU because it’s your songs that you’ve been crafting and working on and dreaming to have recorded, but I think very few people finish a rock abum and think to themselves: «This is an opus! It will last forever!» I think we just feel proud to have completed what we set out to do and we hope others will like it. If DCE is a masterpiece, it’s in the ears of the listener.
– And now the miracle has happened: a TYKETTO’s reunion with the original line-up, you will even soon release a brand new record entitled «Dig in Deep». Are you digging in deep into the musicality of TYKETTO with this piece?
I certainly think we have. The most important feature of this abum is Brooke’s guitar work. He’s been away from the public spot light for a while and he has grown so much as a musician. He has a lot to show and I think he did a remarkable job.
– How did this reunion happen? Who come up with the idea of recording a new album after 18 years? Was it easy to work together after so many years? And what could you tell me about this new album and its recording process?
Like all things we do, it happened quietly and without any prompting from outside sources. What was nice is that we’ve always had an open door with Frontiers Records so we were under no pressure at the start. We knew that, if we wanted to make a new album they would be there to help us out. So it began with a simple phone call. We decided to get together, quietly, just to see if we still knew how to write songs together. If nothing came of it then no one would be the wiser. But, if it worked out, and it did, then we would start telling people that we were serious about going forward. It’s never easy for us to work together. We are very passionate people and strong willed so sometimes our various visions for how things should sound and get done will clash. But at the back of that is that all of us are looking to do what is best for the band, not for ourselves.
– You also have a successful solo career under the name of Vaughn or Danny Vaughn. You have recorded three studio albums and three compilations or live albums. I have always loved your «Fearless» with masterpieces like «A Million Miles of Road» or title track «Fearless». But «Soldiers and Sailors on Riverside» and «Traveller» are amazing records too. Which one do you think is your best solo album? And are you planning releasing new material for your solo career anytime soon?
It’s impossible to say which of my own albums I would call my best. All recordings are like snap shots. It’s capturing a brief moment in time. I think «Traveller» is my greatest labour of love because I was involved in all aspects of that album; writing, recording, art work, producing, doing the budgets, etc. I got to experiment in the studio more on that album tan on any other I’ve done and I love the whole recording process.
– You also recorded two albums for FROM THE INSIDE, the last one came out in 2008. That was a really good project made in Frontiers. Is there any chance of making FROM THE INSIDE reborn soon?
That’s really up to Frontiers. I would do another one of the songs were good.
– In 2003 you took part of the Gary Hughes’ Rock Opera named «Once and Future King» taking the role of Sir Lancelot. Did you feel the power of the knight? How was the experience of singing on a Rock Opera like that? And what do you think about Gary?
Gary is a very talented writer and it was the first time I’ve stepped into someone else’s album and followed their direction to make a song work. It was a great experience.
– You toured with the best THE EAGLES’ cover band ever, named ULTIMATE EAGLES, the successor of ILLEGAL EAGLES, formed by yourself, Chris Childs and lesser-known artists. Michael Lawrence, Christian Phillips, Ryan Aston and Chris Wright are awesome musicians and I’m amazed about the top notch quality of these unknown artists, especially with Lawrence’s voice. How did this idea arise? How did you meet your mates? What do you think about them? And are you a huge fan of the original EAGLES?
I have always loved the music of the Eagles. They have been there all through my life and their music is often much more complicated than it sounds. It’s hard, but rewarding work to get the songs sounding as good as they do live. The other members of the band may not be so well known on the rock stages but these are not «local» musicians. All of them have world class experience. Christian Phillips has won UK Bafta awards for scoring music for the BBC, movies and television. Ryan Aston has toured the world drumming with Bonnie Tyler and Abbamania as well as being one of the most sought after session drummers in the UK. Chris Wright was named the top guitarist out of his graduating class of 2,000 players at Guilford and he, too, is a very sought after session player. Michael Lawrence has toured up and down the UK in various stage productions as well as The Commitments and The Blues Brothers Shows. All of these guys are at the top of their class.
– I had the pleasure of seeing you with ULTIMATE EAGLES in Barcelona. I went with my THUNDER t-shirt with a funny, joyful and elegant devil at the forefront (he is a great friend, haha). I could sew Chris Childs was surprised and you talked and joke with him about my special friend. That shows your huge sense of humour and your great personality, for me that’s one of the most important things on stage, but it seems lately something hard to see. How do you feel about your live shows and how do you and your mates manage to show always such happiness on stage (and thanks for that!)?
I think that comes with age, I’m afraid to say. When you are Young and things happen for you (if you are lucky) you tend to think that you were always going to get that success no matter what. As if you deserved it. But now I ﾂ realize that this isn’t the case. You can have all the talent in the world and never be noticed. So I am very aware of how lucky I am to be known and to have fans all over the world. I’m not a super star. I’m not David Coverdale or Joe Elliot or Bon Jovi, who would be recognized anywhere, but I still was lucky enough to get my music out all over the world and, more importantly, I’m lucky enough to be able to make some kind of a living playing music and singing. That’s why I smile so much. That, and the fact that I am now in the most wonderful marriage that has changed my life and shown me just how happy I can be.
– By the way, I know that was your first time in Barcelona. What are your memories of mi town? Did you like it? Will there be any chance of coming to Spain again on a tour with TYKETTO anytime soon? And maybe Barcelona or Madrid are two of the possible cities on the TYKETTO’s touring schedule?
I have been wanting to see Barcelona for so long and was really looking forward to seeing some of it but, the down side of my job is that sometimes I only get to see a place out of a car window. What I saw looked beautiful. A very modern, international city. Very alive and active feeling. I hope to come back soon. Yes, Tyketto will almost certainly be doing one or two Spanish shows in October. I’ll announce those as soon as I know they are confirmed.
– Talking about such, I know you are now living in Marbella (Málaga); what made you move there? What’s the reason behind leaving in Marbella? Are you learning Spanish?
I would really appreciate it if you would NOT print this. I don’t want where I live to be out there for the general public please.
– That’s all Mr. Danny Vaughn, thank you for your answers and time. If you would like to say something else, is your time.
I think that we have covered everything! Thank you for waiting so long to see us play and thanks to the Spanish music fans for always being so joyful and so welcoming and passionate about music!
Alex M. Romero