TRIUMPH's RIK EMMETT Discusses Rumors Of 2011 Tour With VAN HALEN

July 14, 2010

Sean Patrick Dooley of recently conducted an interview with guitarist/vocalist Rik Emmett of Canadian rock legends TRIUMPH. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below. You've been doing a lot of press these days for TRIUMPH's "Greatest Hits" package. How's that been going?

Rik Emmett: Well, I've still got some more stuff I've gotta do tomorrow, then I'm free. Nothing but interviews day after day for a little while, 'cuz I promised those guys as part of the whole reconciliation reunion thing that I would help out in the promotion of their greatest-hits package when they finally got it to market. I've been talking my stupid-fool head off in the last couple of weeks. You do get kind of sick and tired of talking about yourself, but this is kind of nice, too, just to get the chance to finally talk to somebody at Gibson in the face. It's great.

We're scheduled to go for a dinner tonight with a couple of guys from Live Nation that have flown into town and want to take us to dinner. I'm sure there's going to be some sort of a pitch. The rumors that have been sort of blowing in the wind are that VAN HALEN want to go back out yet again next year, but they're going to need some sort of support to make the packaging a little more interesting. Because TRIUMPH hasn't really ever toured in any kind of a nostalgia way, I think Live Nation kind of goes, "Oh, yeah, you guys would be perfect for that." So, we'll see sort of the size and the shape and the glitter of the golden carrots that they have. How do the other guys in TRIUMPH feel about it?

Rik Emmett: The drummer, Gil Moore, is not really keen. He runs the Metal Works Studio. He started an offshoot thing as many as ten years ago where he has a school as sort of an adjunct to the studio. The thing kept growing and growing. Then he opened up his own sound and lights production end of the business, so he's got a little empire where he's got these three businesses that he runs. He's making all kinds of money and has all kind of business stress, 12-hour days in the office, that sort of thing. So, I'm not sure he's going to be sort of willing to put his pen down or his laptop or whatever it is that you put down and pick up the drumsticks and go out and want to be a drummer again. We'll see what happens. Seems like Gil has always had that entrepreneurial side to him, even in the early days of TRIUMPH.

Rik Emmett: Oh, yeah. When the band first started and I first met them, Gil was running sort of a quasi-P.A. rental business out of his garage. Even when he was a kid in high school, he was a bit of a wheeler-dealer. He was literally buying and selling used cars when he was still in high school. When I met him — and I would have been 22 or 23 at the time — he already had a house that he was living in, and he was renting out space to other musicians who were living in this house with him. The guy had a house, three or four cars in his driveway that he was buying or selling, he had a garage that was just full of crap — old P.A. bins and racks of power amps and stuff. Yeah, he was always into that stuff. He loved that side of things of the music business. A born entrepreneur!

Rik Emmett: Yeah, I give him credit. In terms of being a guy in a band, his skill set was invaluable. We literally ended up kind of managing ourselves. Practically, he would road manage the band from time to time and function as a tour accountant if we needed it. Nobody could get away with anything because Gil was always kind of hip on the kinds of deals that everybody was making with sound and lights providers and truck drivers, and he knew the business as well as any manager in the business. He was a good guy to have in the band, you know?

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