Cheap Trick Frontman Opens Up About His Current Club Tour, Family & The Future
So you know how sometimes you don’t realize how much a cultural phenomenon that’s kind of been on your radar forever means to you until it’s staring you in the face? That totally happened to me this weekend when I figured out that Cheap Trick frontman Robin Zander was scheduled to play at a small but brilliant club called The Birchmere less than one mile away from my home just outside of Washington, DC.
Of course I bought tickets immediately. For instinctively, I have been in varying degrees of awe of the guy since I was a teen. That’s like 30-plus years. But it’s not something I spend a lot of time thinking about because I don’t hear about him much.
It is strangely easy to forget how awesome — and important — Robin Zander and Cheap Trick are when you’re talking rock ‘n’ roll — or just Things That Are Cool. And it’s similarly easy to forget that Robin himself is arguably the greatest, most perfect rock star ever. EVER, people.
Just try to find a photo of him online where he doesn’t look absolutely fucking 100 percent cool in the (ahem) FORTY YEARS of photos that exist of him on the Internet. Try to find a homemade bootleg from a show where he sounds or looks not amazing. You can’t. Because he rules. And for that very reason, I went to see him last night. Not in an arena, but in a small club. Not backed by his fellow legendary Trick-sters who could fill clubs in their own right, but by… well… his children.
And today, thanks to a fortuitous exchange with his ridiculously accommodating representatives that I almost didn’t bother to initiate, we spoke about it all.
CJ: Hello Robin Zander! Where are you, and what are you doing?
RZ: I’m having lunch at the Brio right now looking out at the USS Constellation in Baltimore Harbor.
CJ: I love Baltimore. Tell me about this solo tour you’re doing. Why now? You’re not promoting anything, right?
RZ: No, I’m not promoting anything. This is just some down time from my day job with Cheap Trick. It’s the first time in 40 years that I’ve done anything like this. I wanted to go out and play songs that I’ve never played before from some of my solo efforts. It’s also kind of a coming out party for my son, Robin, who is a budding artist and has recorded some tracks of his own. Plus there’s the fact that, you know, I’m not getting any younger and it takes a little bit for me to get it up (laughs) when it comes to touring so this really helps in that I’m sort of exercising my vocal chords to stay ready for Cheap Trick.
CJ: As you know, I saw the show last night in DC and I was going to say — you brought along …read more
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