RICHIE KOTZEN Picks PRINCE As His 'Rock God': 'Nobody Performed Like Him'

March 28, 2021

Richie Kotzen was the featured guest on BBC's "The Rock Show With Johnnie Walker" during the "Rock God" segment. Kotzen picked Prince and stated about his choice: "One of my favorite artists of all time growing up was Prince. What really drew me in was once I realized that he was basically the mastermind behind everything I was hearing. The guitar player, the singer, the songwriter, the drummer — oftentimes the engineer, producer, arranging. And then, on top of it, his performing was just — nobody performed like him.

"I did have the privilege of going to his house years ago," he continued. "He rented a house in Los Angeles. And a buddy of mine that worked with him got invited to an Oscar after-party. And so there I was hanging out with all these people at Prince's house. And I was in the living room. They had everything set up. A band was playing, but the stage was low. And I was in the back, so I couldn't totally see who was up there. I knew Prince was up there. And my buddy says to me, 'Hey, did you see Stevie Wonder is here?' I said, 'No, I didn't see him. But someone was in there singing the hell out of 'Superstition'.' And my buddy's, like, 'You idiot. That was Stevie Wonder.'"

Kotzen is currently promoting the debut album from his collaborative project with IRON MAIDEN's Adrian Smith. Recorded on the Turks & Caicos Islands in February 2020, produced by Richie and Adrian and mixed by Kevin "Caveman" Shirley, SMITH/KOTZEN's nine-track opus is a consummate collaboration between these two highly respected musicians who co-wrote all the songs and also share lead vocals and trade off on guitar and bass duties throughout the record.

In February 2020, Kotzen released his 22nd solo album, "50 For 50", via his own custom label, Headroom-Inc. The three-disc collection is just what the title implies: a collection of 50 previously unreleased compositions produced, performed and written by Kotzen in honor of his birthday. It's the follow-up to his critically acclaimed "Salting Earth" album, which came out in April 2017 via Headroom-Inc.

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