23
Jul
10

TOM COCHRANE-INTERVIEW-THE NORTH IS GOD’S COUNTRY-BY JOHN EMMS

I RECENTLY SPOKE to Tom Cochrane and Andrew Cole..Here is part of the conversations
Tom Cochrane is a Canadian icon who just happens to also be inducted in Canada’s Walk of Fame, The Canadian Music Hall of Fame, The Order of Canada and holds honarary doctorates from Brandon University, and humanatarium and charity awards too many to mention
Andrew Cole is one of the 2 or 3 most promising new artists to emerge on the North American music scene in the last 2 years. He moved to Canada from Liverpool England in 2004. HIs first single Out of My Head was written by Cochrane and it’s the only song on Cole’s cd Cole did not write himself. That song is now in heavy rotation on Much More Music
Cole is also managed by Tom Cochrane’s wife Kathleene. I took one listen to Cole’s new cd Why We Wonder and was hooked on how genuine and soulful the music sounded.
John-Your album Why We Wonder is impressive on the first listen. But why did it take 2 years to record it?
Andrew-Thank you. I had a vision in my head of how I wanted the recording to sound like. I had worked hard on the songs by myself. We recorded a lot tracks, and I scrapped it. It was not what I wanted. After that I recorded with Bill Bell as producer and guest players like Colin Cripps and Ken Greer. But I had to wait on their schedules and that took time. On top of that I arranged and co-produced the cd, which took even more time.
John-How did you hook up with Kathleene and Tom Cochrane?
Andrew- Barry Roden a great Canadian photgrapher was taking pictures at a Gibson guitar clinic where I was endorsed. He took some photos of me and eventually we became friends. He said I know some people, and then handed me a copy of No Stranger Tom Cochrane’s last cd. I had no idea who Tom Cochrane was. Not a clue. I liked the cd.
Later I got a call from Kathleene and also spoke to Tom. I asked him where he played. He said oh just around. I still new nothing when he picked me up in the car, and I thought were going to a gig at a pub. The joke was on me, he took me to Air Canada Centre where he was playing with John Mellencamp in front of a sold out crowd. So that was funny.
John-How are you Tom? Heck while I was waiting for you to call, the hospital called and asked me to come in for some tests.
Tom-Gee John let’s make this the nutrution part of our interview because I was just at my doctors a while back and he informed me that I had to ‘smarten up” I have lost 30 pounds in 5 months, and I have more energy on stage than ever. I also get to enjoy my golf game (Cochrane is good friends with Mike Weir) and does Weir’s charity classic tournament every year) So yeah I hear where your coming from
John-There is a connective tissue to your albums and songs.Your classic videos like Good Times about family etc. I thought about that because I spoke to your daughter and wife previous to you and I getting together
Tom-Well the map that has been created by my upbringing is imprinted hopefully into my songs. My dad was my biggest hero and possilby still is. Maybe it’s being Canadian. We have an openess about us. It creates space. I think my songs also have that space. I have been told they still sound good even after all this time.
John-Your right I played my grandson the video for Life Is A Highway. He loved it and had heard the song in the Disney/Pixar movie Cars (600 million gross) He thought it rocked more than the Rascal Flatts version
Tom-(laughs) Great, yes it’s my most popular song but if I had to pick my faves it would be Big League or Ocean Blue. Having said that the residuals from Socan have been nice for Life is A Highway (laughs)
John-You live part time in Austin Texas I’m told?
Tom-Yeah maybe 4 months a year. But I love Canada in the summer. Hands down my favourite place. Heck we are going to be up in Kapuskasing. I love Northern Ontario. It reminds me of Lynn Lake in Mantoba (Cochrane’s birthplace).The north of Ontario is God’s country and I’m not just saying that.We are going to take the tour bus up and I’m looking forward to playing. I hope your coming to the show
John-You do so much charity work. It seems you have never comprimised your music or your work with World Vision etc. How do find the time?
Tom-I make the time because I have to remind myself how lucky we are to be living here in Canada and in the developed parts of the world. It comes down to how you carry yourself. The “Highway’ analogy is apt. You spread the good will and fortune you have as you drive down the highway of life. You cant be looking left or right you.Keep your eyes on the road, or your going to crash
As far as the songs I have tried to make them timeless. I am a storyteller. I’m comfortable in that role, but yes for festivals we bring the rock n’ roll. My inspiration is Neil Young. He stands beyind his words and music. He seems do it all. And very well I might add.
John- I think to many Canadians you do the same Tom.
Tom-Thanks John. It’s been a pleasure. I will see you on Saturday.
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