Kix is a legendary band from Hagerstown that has one of the biggest followings in the Baltimore area. In August they released Rock Your Face Off, their first album in nineteen years. I spoke to lead singer Steve Whiteman about the new album and his life in music.
Q: First off I would just like to compliment you on how great the new album sounds.
A: Well, thank you very much!
Q: Did you feel like after all this time away it would be hard to not
only write a new album, but write one that fans would be satisfied
A: We were worried about not having Donnie Purnell in the band to
write, but we wrote songs in our other bands away from Kix that
justified our potential. We wanted the album to sound like a Kix album,
which meant sticking to our humorous, fun and clever direction.
Q: Did you expect the album to be as successful as it has been?
A: I hear it has good reviews, but music doesn’t really have a
defined success to me like it did when we first started. Now music has
broadened into multiple mediums.
Q: Performances can be very physically demanding. How do you manage to keep up your energy every show?
A: I’ve just never stopped performing. I work out every day and make it a goal to take care of myself.
Q: I’ve noticed that bands out of the Baltimore area such as Kix and
Crack the Sky have a very devoted hometown following. What do you think
it is about the area that causes this?
A: It’s a very loyal area. Once you latch in, you’re in for life.
Ravens and Orioles fans are the same way. Music venues like Hammerjack’s
were the places to be when we started and they connected everyone.
Q: How did you first get into singing?
A: The Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show really started it all for me. I
would sing along with my favorite artists and just loved to do it.
Q: Did you always want to be a singer?
A: I started as a drummer at age eight and would sing backing vocals
but never wanted to be the leader. Music was my first love, so I always
knew that was what I was going to do.
Q: What is the biggest advice you would give to a young aspiring musician?
A: If you really love music, worry about being passionate and driven and you can achieve anything you want to.
Q: How does it feel to hear your music on the radio and be interviewed on shows by music stars like Alice Cooper?
A: It’s still amazing to me. I was humbled to be interviewed by Alice Cooper as I have always been a fan of his.
Q: Which means more to you – the success of Blow My Fuse or the response you are getting almost 20 years later with Rock Your Face Off?
A: I thought were done in 1995. The new album was more surprising. We
had high hopes after getting back together and it used to be a grueling
process and not as much fun. It has become much more enjoyable now, and
the fan response has been ecstatic.
Photo from: http://metalodyssey.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/kix-steve-whiteman-publicity-pic-01.jpg