Rock legend Glenn Hughes is hitting Belfast again this Thursday, much to the delight of his fans. A performer since his first band in the Seventies, Hughes – and his astonishing voice, which many would say is getting even better with age – has performed with several big names in the world of rock and metal, from Tony Iommi to David Bowie. Melanie Brehaut had the chance to catch up with the busy Hughes and fire a few questions his way.
►Hi Glenn, welcome back to Belfast! What keeps you coming back to our fair city?
I love Belfast … Really glad to be playing there on Thursday night!
►A bit of history first: you began performing in bands in your teens; you were obviously bitten by the music bug early! Who were your inspirations back then?
I was junior at school, so it was the Beatles and the Stones… Then came Detroit USA. I’m a rocker who loves Soul music.
►Since then you have performed with a frankly astonishing list of artists, from Tony Iommi to Deep Purple and Jason Bonham. You clearly have a thirst for playing and a collaborative streak a mile wide! Who’s been your favourite to perform with?
The list is expansive… From Stevie Wonder, Tony Iommi and David Bowie… It’s always a pleasure to work with artists who allow me to sing and play out of the box.
►You’ve obviously been very busy of late with the likes of California Breed and Voodoo Hill, but there’s been no new solo material since 2008’s ‘First Underground Nuclear Bunker’. Any plans to release another solo album anytime soon?
I’m super busy in 2016 playing live, so I’ll have to wait and see when I can get back in the studio to do my first solo record in 8 years. Black Country Communion and California Breed were strong records. I’m inspired to create something new.
►Do you prefer performing live or studio time?
To be honest … It’s all about live shows now for me…
►This tour you are also bringing along the fantastic Doug Aldrich. How did that come about?
I have known Doug for 20 years. My dear friend Ronnie Dio introduced me to Doug when they were playing together and then Doug went on to play with my brother David Coverdale. When I put my band together there was only one guitar player on my list… It was Doug.
►What’s next for you? Anything you can tell us about?
After the European run I go to the far east in December then I start my North American tour in March.
►What do you think of the state of the rock and metal scene in 2015? Do you side more with Gene Simmons (‘rock is dead’) or Henry Rollins (‘shut up, no it’s not)?
I play music for one reason.. It is a healer… My music will never die, because it’s inside of me.
►Finally, what advice would you give to anyone trying to make a living as a musician?
Music is chosen and given to those who carry the message … It’s a life of wonderment.
Thanks very much for your time Glenn, and have a great gig in Belfast!
Catch Glenn Hughes at the Limelight this Thursday with Doug Aldrich, with support from Jared James Nichols:
See Hughes’ website for other information and tour dates: