Interview 2/4/2003

1) Is it true that on this Cd you are playing the whole tracks through without punches? In other words one take?

Michael Harris: Yes, they are each one take, but definitely not the 1st take. I would rather do a lot of takes to find that "magic" than record a punched comp take, so one take is the way I have cut the majority of my solos for years now. I feel complete takes are more honest, and have more feel than trying to fix every little glitch. And these were challenging, being 6min+ tracks.

2) What amp(s) were you using on this recording?

Michael Harris: All trax were recorded through a Line 6 POD, and all effects were from the POD as well, other than an occassional cry baby.

3) What guitar(s) were you using on this recording?

Michael Harris: All trax were recorded with my purple Hamer Scarab 2, which has a tad more bite to it than my blue Scarab, and a slimmer neck. I hadn't recorded with that guitar for quite awhile, so thought I would use it on this whole project.

4) What do you consider the highlights of your playing on the Cd?

Michael Harris: Incorporating some jazzier type licks with a cleaner tone, and some bluesy stuff as well. I have been working a lot of clean jazz breaks into my music for quite a few years now, and this Diginet project seemed like it could benefit from that also, instead of me using a distorted tone all the way through.

5) What is your favorite track(s) and why?

Michael Harris: Since I didn't name the tracks, I always have a problem remembering which is which, but I believe "Prisoner of Time" is one of my faves because it had the least amount of takes and the most feel and coolest tone. The slower tunes were also fun to play, such as "Day of Doom" and "Destination," for the feel factor.

6) Do you enjoy playing with just bass and drums in a trio format?

Michael Harris: Yes, most of the bands I've been in over the years have been 3 piece formats, and I love the space that creates. It is also difficult, especially live, to mix two guitars properly, which are obviously 2 instruments fighting for the same sonic space. I'd rather hear one guitar breathe.

7) We hear rumors you have a new vocal Cd coming out and you are doing the vocals? Please give us the lowdown?

Michael Harris: Yes, I have been working on it for quite awhile, but have been plagued with health problems and slowed down by constant work on my home studio. But we have finished recording my brother, Brians' drums, and he did a fabulous job. The music is quite diverse, like most of my releases, ranging from acoustic to prog to metal, and incorporating melody throughout. I've been singing ever since my 1st band, but never thought I would record a vocal CD. It has been great fun and a learning experience. I am presently recording my final tracks on my Pro Tools setup at home.

8) Any live dates planned in the future?

Michael Harris: I plan on playing around the Dallas/Ft Worth area within a few months, and then in and around the Ohio area after the Cd is released.

9) You have had a long and storied career. What is the single most satisfying moment(s)?

Michael Harris: I guess some highlights from the performing end of it would be when Arch Rival opened for Bad Company in a 15,000 seat arena in '91 and when my solo group opened up for Satriani and Vai in '97. Also it was cool when "Collision Course" from "Defense Mechanizms" was the "pick hit of the week" on the whole Z rock network. I think the most satisfying facet of music to me is the creative end of it though, as I do love performing, but the sound is never right, and I love the end result of recording, but the process is too tedious and painful. But the moments of creative inspiration can be like magic when they happen right.

10) What does the future hold for Michael Harris and his musical endeavors?

Michael Harris: I have several musical projects in mind. I guess a lot will depend on the success of my upcoming vocal recording, so after that is released, I will have a feel for what to pursue next!

Cd $9.99!

Other recordings by MICHAEL HARRIS available thru Leviathan Records mail order:

Southern Gentlemen Joe Stump Chastain David T. Chastain Zanister CJSS Joe Stump's Reign of Terror Vainglory Kenziner Leather Michael Harris Candlemass John Hahn Full Circle
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