FOZZY's CHRIS JERICHO: 'Not As Many People Watch Music Videos Anymore'

March 28, 2024

In a new interview with The Mistress Carrie Podcast, FOZZY frontman Chris Jericho spoke about the success of the band's latest standalone single, "Spotlight", which was released last October via Madison Records/The Orchard. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Yeah, it's amazing because if you look on the charts, it'll show you how many weeks each song has been on the chart. I think 'Spotlight''s at about 20 weeks now, which is five months and change, which is huge. To get that type of longevity, and if you know anything about rock radio, when you start getting spins, then you try and get other stations, and you've gotta keep the plates spinning all across the country to continue to get those plays, to get those numbers. So for us to be in the Top 10 five months in just shows that this song has some serious legs, it's got some longevity and it's got some traction. So it's great, man. Our last single, 'I Still Burn', I believe was the most played song on iHeart Radio. 'Spotlight''s on the charts after 20 weeks, is No. 1 for six weeks on the secondary rock charts, which is like smaller cities around the country. Wherever you get that type of pull, you know you've got something special. And we're really happy, not just with how 'Spotlight''s become another Top 10 hit for us, but the fact that it's been on the charts for months and months and months, which means people are still digging it after all this time."

Jericho also talked about the music video for "Spotlight", which was filmed by Exceleration Media and Firefly Drone Shows, who are recognized as the innovation leader in the drone light show industry. The clip features hundreds of live drones that light up the night sky to co-star in this first-ever drone show music video. It's a full-out assault on your eyes, ears, brain, and remaining senses, as Jericho braves the elements.

"The thing is, for me, it was all on green screen, which is even weirder because you're just by yourself," Chris explained. "There's not even any drones. Those are actual real drone shows that they do, but it's kind of projected behind me. So when you're sitting there, there's camera people and there's lighting people and there's band people and there's management people and there's social media people and you're just sitting there kind of lip syncing the words. It's hard. It's hard to do. It's not the easiest thing to do. It's a great video, but it's not like you just show up and do it once or twice; you've gotta kind of mime this and provide this energy and jumping and kicks and spins five or six or seven times. So you're doing that for pretty much an hour straight, and it's quite the cardiovascular aerobic workout when you're all said and done."

Chris then discussed how the importance of making music videos has evolved in the two and a half decades since FOZZY's inception.

"It's interesting how the culture has kind of changed," he said. "I've noticed that 20 years ago, people stopped buying records because you could get music for free on streaming, so that kind of changed things. And then, video shows disappeared, so videos were played on YouTube, and you can see the views on that. [FOZZY's music video for 2017 hit single] 'Judas' has, I think, almost 70 million views. But then a few years after that, not as many people even watch videos anymore. It's gone back to all streaming, so you have to adapt with what's going on in the culture. We probably won't even do a video for the next song, unless we have some really crazy idea, because people just aren't watching as much as they did before. So it's interesting to see how technology makes people's habits change."

"Spotlight" was helmed by FOZZY's longtime producer Johnny Andrews (THREE DAYS GRACE, ALL THAT REMAINS, HALESTORM) and sonically refined by mixer Jacob Hanson (VOLBEAT, AMARANTHE, ARCH ENEMY).

Last July, FOZZY guitarist Rich Ward told Diesel of Greenville, South Carolina's 93.3 Planet Rocks that "Spotlight" is "a fantastic song. Anyone who's known me for any length of time always knows I'm [a fan] of dance riffs. I mean, [my longtime band] STUCK MOJO was just a dance band dressed up in evil, heavy metal riffs. I've always been a fan of both. And partially [that was because] I grew up in the late '70s, early '80s in the disco era. That was what music was popular; that was the most popular soundtrack, the most popular album when I was a kid. And I Is loved dance music — Donna Summer and KOOL & THE GANG. These are people that put out albums that I was always in love with. And I loved Dick Clark, I loved America's Top 40, but I also loved 'Soul Train'. This is part of my DNA."

He continued: "So, this new song is a heavy metal dance song. It's just perfect. It's so suited for who I am as a guy and as a musician, as a songwriter. Jericho loves it. It's [producer] Johnny's [Andrews] kind of brainchild. So we're all dunking basketballs; [we're] so excited about it. 'Cause any time you have a new that everybody's on board…

"When you have a band and there's a lot of personalities and people involved in it, there's always somebody who's holding their nose, going, 'Okay, yeah. Okay. New song. Sure.' And they're trying their best to like it, but they don't really, and they're putting their best face forward on this," he added.

"Everyone loves the new song. It's a super-rad song."

FOZZY's latest album, "Boombox", came out in May 2022 and featured the aforementioned song "I Still Burn", which is closing in on three million views on YouTube. It also included the Top 10 singles "Nowhere To Run" and "Sane".

As previously reported, FOZZY will embark on a 25th-anniversary tour this fall. The trek will start October 3 at Madlife Studios in Woodstock, Georgia and run through October 21 in Cleveland, Ohio. Support on the tour will come from THE NOCTURNAL AFFAIR and CLOZURE.

In the spring of 2023, FOZZY spent time on the road with UGLY KID JOE as part of the latter band's first tour of the United States in 27 years.

In January 2022, FOZZY parted ways with longtime drummer Frank Fontsere and replaced him with Grant Brooks (THROUGH FIRE).

Fontsere was a founding member of FOZZY, having formed the group in 1999 with Jericho and Ward.

When FOZZY announced Fontsere's departure, the band said that he was "stepping down to focus on his family and other projects."

FOZZY is Jericho, Ward, Brooks, Billy Grey (guitar) and P.J. Farley (bass).

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