OZZY OSBOURNE's 'Crazy Train' Reimagined By STEVE STEVENS And THE STRING REVOLUTION
January 30, 2022
Los Angeles-based label Tallest Man Records has released a stunning flamenco-tinged cover of iconic rock anthem "Crazy Train" from THE STRING REVOLUTION featuring Steve Stevens. This collaboration came together to pay tribute to the legendary guitar player Randy Rhoads and in particular his love for classical guitar. Stevens has always been an admirer of Rhoads's, and THE STRING REVOLUTION, which is led by Janet Robin, has a special connection to Rhoads. Robin was his only female guitar student when she was nine years old.
"When I was told that Randy Rhoads was to be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame I was thrilled," says Stevens. "Long overdue but so deserving. As I was contacted to contribute to a reimagining of Ozzy's 'Crazy Train'…in my mind, I had one requirement, that it not be in any way similar to the iconic original version. Upon hearing the track two things struck me immediately, it works so well as a Spanish guitar piece, and that Randy would have loved it. It's widely known that Randy was a beautiful classical guitarist, even continuing lessons through his Ozzy days. I hope we did you, proud buddy."
THE STRING REVOLUTION is four professional virtuoso guitar players who create distinctive sounds with their guitars: mimicking percussion, special effects, melodic grooves, bass lines, and more. They share a passion for many different musical styles and guitar techniques which has given THE STRING REVOLUTION a unique sound. This is evident in their studio recordings and live shows. A clear dedication and hard work ethic for the project brought THE STRING REVOLUTION together. In addition to Robin (who was named in the "Top 50 Acoustic Guitarist Bonus List" by Guitar Player magazine, 2017),who is also an acclaimed touring guitarist with the likes of Lindsey Buckingham, Meredith Brooks, AIR SUPPLY, and many more, THE STRING REVOLUTION is comprised of award-winning Austrian nylon-string guitarist Markus Illko, Swiss multi-credited producer, songwriter and guitarist Daniel Schwarz, and underground Los Angeles indie darling, artist and guitarist Art Zavala Jr.
"In arranging 'Crazy Train' with THE STRING REVOLUTION, we really tried to keep the energy and vibe of the original but we wanted to put our own stamp on it," says Robin. "As my guitar teacher Randy Rhoads used to say to me. 'Don't try to play like me. Play like yourself.' I really took that to heart and I feel TSR was on board with that same kind of thinking: be true to the original, but put a new, original spin on it. And that's what I think we did."
Rudy Sarzo, who played in Ozzy's band alongside Randy, said: "First time I heard Randy Rhoads play classical guitar was while we were both teaching at his family's music school, Musonia, during breaks between students. Shortly after, his compositions and recordings with Ozzy of such classics as 'Dee', 'Diary Of A Madman', 'Revelation Mother Earth' showcased his passion for classical guitar. Steve Stevens's 'Crazy Train: A (Flamenco) Tribute To Randy Rhoads' is a magnificent rendition of this heavy metal classic and gives us a glimpse into the musical style Randy might have been playing today."
Rhoads's sister Kathy Rhoads Dargenzio said: "Listening to THE STRING REVOLUTION's version of 'Crazy Train' puts a huge smile on my face! Janet Robin was one of Randy's students back in the day. To see and hear my brother's influence is bittersweet. He would have loved this. Thanks, Janet and the band, for keeping his flame burning bright! Nailed it!"
Stevens is one of the most original guitarists to emerge from the '80s rock scene, best known for his 41-year partnership with Billy Idol, his work on Michael Jackson's "Dirty Diana", his Grammy Award-winning performance on "Top Gun Anthem" and his work with Vince Neil on "Exposed". Stevens has also lent his unmistakable sound and style to many hit records, including Pink's "Try This", Diana Ross's "Eaten Alive", Joni Mitchell's "Chalk Mark In A Rainstorm", Robert Palmer's "Don't Explain", THE THOMPSON TWINS' "Here's To Future Days", Ric Ocasek's "This Side Of Paradise", Peter Criss's "Let Me Rock You", Juno Reactor's "Shango", "Hokata" and "Pistolero", Kyosuke Himuro's "Beat Haze Odyssey", Steve Lukather's "Lukather" and on his solo outings with STEVE STEVENS ATOMIC PLAYBOYS' "Atomic Playboys", BOZZIO LEVIN STEVENS's "Black Light Syndrome" and "Situation Dangerous" and the critically acclaimed solo releases "Flamenco A Go Go" and "Memory Crash". Stevens's catalog of hit songs that he co-wrote and performed alongside Idol includes "Rebel Yell", "Eyes Without A Face" and "Flesh For Fantasy". They sound as fresh and relevant today as the day they were released, as evidenced by being recently covered by artists as varied as Miley Cyrus, GREEN DAY, QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, HIM, BLACK VEIL BRIDES, CHILDREN OF BODOM, DOPE, DAUGHTRY, SUM 41, BLINK 182, DROWNING POOL, MURDERDOLLS, DEATHSTARS and THE DONNAS. Stevens co-wrote on the most recent Idol EP "Roadside", produced by Butch Walker featuring collaborations with hit-songwriters Sam Hollander, Tommy English, Joe Janiak and Grant Michaels. Stevens is currently working on new music with Idol and will be hitting the road with Idol this spring on their U.S. arena tour JOURNEY, then on to Europe where they will be playing major festivals in addition to dates where Idol will be supported by THE GO GO'S, then on to Rock In Rio alongside GREEN DAY.