JAMES KOTTAK Says Reunited KINGDOM COME Is 'In It For The Long Run'
November 4, 2018
Shut Up & Rock On recently conducted an interview with KINGDOM COME drummer James Kottak. You can listen to the entire chat via the SoundCloud widget below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On how the ball got rolling for KINGDOM COME's 30th-anniversary tour:
James: "It's been kind of going off and on for two years, but in January of this year, we nailed down everything and got new management and an agent and all of that stuff. However, Lenny [Wolf, vocals] chose to retire and chose not to do this tour. That's when we brought in Keith St. John [ex-MONTROSE, LYNCH MOB] to do vocals, and it's been great."
On whether Wolf was in the original plans for the anniversary tour:
James: "He was onboard, and then he announced his retirement a year and a half ago. He chose not to do it. We were really disappointed, but we respected his decision and he gave us his blessing. We're up and running. We have the original four: myself on drums, Rick Steier on guitar, Johnny B. Frank on bass and Danny Stag on guitar. The original four members since day one. Keith, it's a tall order singing this stuff, but he's killing it."
On how St. John entered the picture:
James: "Me and Rick Steier had a band called WILD HORSES back in '90/'91-ish right after KINGDOM COME. We had a deal with Atlantic and we were auditioning all kinds of people and Keith came in for an audition and he got my vote, but unfortunately, I was outvoted. Sometimes you have to listen to your producer and the people at the record label, but I always had my radar on for Keith over the years. We'd see him out at clubs and jamming here and there and our paths have always crossed and it worked. He was the first guy that came to my mind."
On what fans can expect from a KINGDOM COME live show:
James: "For some reason, I think a lot of people have the impression that KINGDOM COME is all serious and we take ourselves serious, but we like to have fun, we like to have a big party. We have total interaction with everybody at the venue, whether it's big or small. We like to hang out after the show, we like to goof off. We like to make a good, solid connection with everybody because that's what it's really all about."
On KINGDOM COME's future plans:
James: "We want to do a little bit of everything. From this tour, we've done 12 shows so far. We got a pretty good grasp of what's going on out here on this level and we've had lots of offers coming in from Europe, England, South America, Japan. We already have more shows booked in 2019 in the U.S.A. The live thing is obvious. We do want to put out some new music, but we have to wait for legal reasons to do that. Other than that, the sky is the limit and we're in for the long run."
On whether he's "all in" for KINGDOM COME or has other projects in the works:
James: "I'm totally all in for KINGDOM COME because it's much bigger, way more, the preparation was five times more than I thought it would be. However, I do have my other band, A NEW REVENGE, that's Keri Kelli, Rudy Sarzo, Tim 'Ripper' Owens from JUDAS PRIEST. You know Rudy from WHITESNAKE. Keri Kelli played with ALICE COOPER. We've had an album in the can for two and a half years, trying to find the right label. We finally found it with an Australian label called Golden Robot Records. That album will come out in../ I want to say late January, February. We're shooting a few videos and the first single will come along in January. I'm super excited about that, because that's a little more hard rock with an alternative edge. It has great melody and killer, in-your-face type of stuff. It's a great album."
After its early run of success in the '80s, KINGDOM COME released several albums, with Wolf remaining the only constant member of the band. The group's most recent effort was 2013's "Outlier".