OnlineHost: Your hosts tonight are AOLiveMC10 (Rusti I) and AOLiveMC7 (SheilahMM).

OnlineHost: On June 3, 1997, Epic Records released the "Greatest Hits" of one of the most popular and influential bands of the rock era: Boston. This 16-track anthology includes not only Boston's best-known and best-loved ebony porn songs, but also three brand new Boston songs recorded and produced by group founder, guitarist and composer Tom Scholz.

OnlineHost: Tonight, while on tour, Brad Delp (vocals, guitar, keyboards) joins us to discuss their latest projects and their tour, encompassing more than forty cities in the US and Canada. Welcome!

AOLiveMC10: Welcome to AOL Live Brad Delp.

BDelp: Great to be here!

AOLiveMC10: Ready for some questions from your fans?

BDelp: I sure am.

AOLiveMC10: Here's our first question.

Question: Brad, I'm a big fan of Boston and being a singer myself, I really admire your singing ability. I wanna know if you had singing lessons, or is it just raw talent?

BDelp: I have never had any singing lessons. I got in my first band when I was 13 and I guess I learned to sing from mostly Beatles records when I was a kid.

Question: Brad what have you been up to? I live in Boston and think you are great

BDelp: If you live in Boston you may have heard of a band named Beetle Juice. That is a band I started with some friends mostly for our own enjoyment and I spent the last couple of years playing Beatle songs in clubs mostly on weekends.

Question: Who are some of your musical influences?

BDelp: At the risk of being redundant, the Beatles, of course. For singers I have always been a fan of Stevie Wonder. And lately, I have been hooked on an album by Richard Page, who was the former singer for Mister Mister.

Question: Brad, can you tell us what to expect from the new tour?

BDelp: Well it should have been the 20th anniversary tour but, because Tom hurt his hand last year, it will be the 21st anniversary tour! We will be playing, of course, almost all of the old songs as well as three new songs, which are included on the greatest hits record.

Question: Of your three new songs, which is your favorite?

BDelp: It is one I don't sing, and it is called "Tell Me." And it sung by Dave Sikes, our bass player.

Question: Does Boston have any additional recording commitments to Epic? I'm hoping for a new CD of all new material, or a live CD.

BDelp: I don't believe that we have further commitments but there has been some discussion among the band about possibly doing some live recording . We recorded numerous shows from our 1987 Third Stage Tour and we also recorded the 1995 tour, as well.

Question: Hi, Brad. I heard that you did a song for a movie that your son was in. Is this true, and is this song available to the public? See you in Columbia, MD and Allentown, Pa.

BDelp: Looking forward to seeing you, hopefully. What row are you in? It is true my son was in a locally produced film called "The Runaways." The song that I sang was written by Gary Pihl, the guitar player in Boston, and it is called "Hold On." I have no info at this time as to where you can see this film. I think they are still looking for distribution.

Question: Brad, I'm curious about the evolution of the band both musically and personnel-wise. What do you think of the Boston sound now as opposed to 20 years ago, and how about the chemistry of the current lineup?

BDelp: I am very pleased with the current line-up, especially for me. Having Fran Cosmo to help me out, particularly on the high notes. He sings them they way I used to sing them when I was 25. As far as the music, all credit goes to Tom Scholz. It is very tough to come up with a unique sound, which I think Tom was able to do.

AOLiveMC10: Brad, let me jump in here for a moment. I just want to tell everyone that a tour schedule can be found at Keyword: AOL Live. Just click on the Brad Delp bio and you'll find all the dates.

Question: What were you feeling when you wrote "Peace of Mind?"

BDelp: I wish I had written "Peace of Mind," but that was actually written by Tom. It is basically about people struggling up the corporate ladder and I think his displeasure at that process. At the time he was working at Polaroid in their R&D department and I think the music represented an escape for him. "Peace of Mind" touched on that.



Question: What single made you realize that you were now big time band? How long after its release did you realize this?

BDelp: We went on our first tour two weeks after the release of the first Boston record and before that tour ended we were headlining Madison Square Garden. That was when the power of radio was really impressed upon me. That was pre-MTV, of course. And the fact that people were singing along with about every song really impressed me.

Question: What does the band do in between shows for fun while on tour?

BDelp: One thing that Tom will be doing this year involves his latest passion -- ice skating! He already has our tour manager scouting out ice rinks nearby our gigs. I may be joining him myself. Growing up in New England I have ice skated since I was a little kid and it is fun for me too -- also good exercise.

Question: Is there any chance for a video of Higher Power? What a great song! You and Fran sound great together!

BDelp: First, thanks for the compliment. It is possible, probably unlikely. Given that the single is already released and we won't have time on tour to get a video done.

Question: Brad, where about did the band "Boston" originate? And did you know the members before the band was brought together?

BDelp: I did know a couple of the guys, Fran Sheehan and Barry Goudreau. Tom was the only member not originally from Boston. He is from Toledo, Ohio. But I met him when he was attending MIT -- I was not.

Question: Why does it take so long between albums. Looking forward to new one when it comes out.

BDelp: I guess we are like that wine company, we don't want to release any wine before its time. Basically, Tom is very meticulous, and that is probably where most of the time consumption comes into play.

AOLiveMC10: Brad, can you give us an idea of how many hours you spend on an album?

BDelp: My hours are relatively few, compared to Tom. Tom's studio is at his home. I only come into work when it is time for the vocals but Tom, being writer, arranger and producer, is there every step of the way. Which is why I am a better golfer than he is!

AOLiveMC10: That explains it! On to our next question.

Question: We are members of the Boston.org mailgroup. We learn a lot from the group but there is one question they have never been able to answer. Who sang "Sailin' Away" on Barry's solo album? Brad or Barry? (See you 7th row in Chicago)

BDelp: I will be looking for you! And the answer is ::drum roll:: It is was me! It was me, excuse typing. Although I like the song, it was not one of my finer vocal efforts. I wish I could have taken another stab at it.

AOLiveMC10: Brad, that drum roll seems to tell us that you get online at times. Do you?

BDelp: Yes, I do! As a matter of fact, I think my kids may be lurking somewhere out there in cyberspace, maybe eavesdropping on us.

Question: Hey man! How yah doin'! What kind of guitar do you think is the best? And what amp do you think is the best?

BDelp: As far as amps, Scholz Rockman. I am a bad person to ask about guitars. They let me play rhythm guitar in the band but they don't let me try and tune it.

AOLiveMC10: Brad, this question goes back to your being online.

Question: Do you visit the Boston.org webpage? What do you think?

BDelp: I think the people who set it up did a great job. I have met Rachel whom you probably know if you have seen the page, and Tad is presently working with the band on this tour.

Question: Hi Brad, been a big fan since 78. Does Boston still support Green Peace ?

BDelp: Yes. Over the years we have supported a number of organizations ranging from human rights ones to PETA. Once again, credit to Tom Scholz for taking the initiative but the band is very sympathetic to these causes.

Question: Is it true you and Tom are working on a new song to debut on the tour? Have seen you 3 times -- I have loved every show.

BDelp: I am amazed at this question because I only found out about this new song two nights ago. You have great sources.

Question: Hi, Brad. I've been singing and playing for some years now. The club scene, be it small time (for me) is fun every time I get out there. Do you ever have nights when it's hard to "get up for the gig?

BDelp: Yes. Until the actual gig itself. There is something about a new crowd every night that can make material you have been playing for months feel fresh again.

Question: Do you guys have any prospects for an opening act on this tour?

BDelp: Mostly it will be an Evening with Boston as was our 95 tour. I have noticed on our schedule that we are playing a couple of all-day festivals, and I am sure there will be other bands at those. I really do not know who they will be, however.

Question: Do you know what Barry Goudreau is up to lately? Any plans to work with him again?

BDelp: I had a great time doing the RTZ project with Barry but the label did not pick us up for a second record. I have heard that he is currently working on a small film playing of all things a musician. I think they are filming up in Vermont. The other members of RTZ have been playing with Peter Wolf formerly of the J. Giles Band and are on his latest solo album.

AOLiveMC10: We have time for one last question.

Question: Brad , what is the future of the band? Will this be the last tour?

BDelp: That is hard to say at this point. We have been so busy rehearsing that we are focusing all of our energy on this current tour which begins July 1. I guess only time will tell. I am sorry I can't be more specific at this time.

AOLiveMC10: Brad, do you have any closing comments for your fans?

BDelp: I would like to thank everyone for joining us tonight. I feel very lucky indeed to have the opportunity to go out and play for all of you people after 21 years. You are very fortunate in life if you love your work, which we all do here. Thanks once again, and Keep Rockin'!

AOLiveMC10: Thank you for an interesting and informative session, Brad Delp. And thank you to our audience for their great questions.

OnlineHost: All good things must come to an end. Time is up for this event.

OnlineHost: Copyright 1997 America Online, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

More about this Event: 06/23/1997 Boston's Brad Delp (AOL Live)

On June 3, 1997, Epic Records released the "Greatest Hits" of one of the most popular and influential bands of the rock era: Boston. This 16-track anthology includes not only Boston's best-known and best-loved songs, but also three brand new Boston songs recorded and produced by group founder, guitarist and composer Tom Scholz.

Boston was founded by Tom Scholz, an MIT-trained engineer and senior product designer for Polaroid whose home demo tapes led to the formation of the band and their signing to Epic Records.

Released in the fall of 1976, the group's Epic debut album "Boston" peaked at No. 3, but remained on the Billboard Pop Album chart for more than two-and-a-half years. Two decades later, "Boston" still holds the RIAA record as the best-selling debut album of all time. (The album was recently certified 16x platinum in the US). "Boston" spun-off the Top 5 single "More Than a Feeling," and two additional hits, "Long Time" (No. 22) and "Peace of Mind" (No. 38).

The Rolling Stone Album Guide states: "Boston's soaring combination of high-tech metal guitar punch and smooth pop vocal hooks quickly became the cornerstone of Album Oriented Radio. But as slick as it sounds, 'More Than a Feeling' also strikes an uncommonly resonant emotional note."

Two years later, Boston released its second Epic album, "Don't Look Back." This No. 1 album includes the No. 4 title single and two other hits, "A Man I'll Never Be" and "Feelin' Satisfied." Following the recording of "Don't Look Back" (now certified 7x platinum), Tom Scholz invented a new type of guitar mini-amplifier. He dubbed it "The Rockman" and successfully marketed this and other sonic inventions through his company, Scholz Research & Development.

Boston released their next album "Third Stage," in October 1986 on MCA. Featuring Tom Scholz and Brad Delp, "Third Stage" topped the Billboard chart for four straight weeks. With sales of over four million copies, "Third Stage" produced the No. 1 single "Amanda in Love" (No. 20). In June 1994, Boston released a second MCA album, "Walk On," which was quickly certified platinum.

Boston's "Greatest Hits" includes the hit singles "More Than a Feeling," "Feelin' Satisfied," "A Man I'll Never Be," "Long Time," "Peace of Mind," and "Amanda." Also featured are the classic album tracks "Rock & Roll Band" and "Smokin'" from "Boston," "Party," from "Don't Look Back," "Cool the Engines" from "Third Stage," and "Livin' For You" from "Walk On."

But it is the three new recordings which will be of greatest significance to the band's longtime fans. "Tell Me," "Greatest Hits'" opening track, is a memorable and melodic ballad written by Tom Scholz. It is followed by the Scholz/David Sikes composition "Higher Power," a potent rocker which takes addiction and recovery as its lyrical subject and features the signature voice of Brad Delp along with newcomer Fran Cosmo. The third new track is a storming instrumental medley of "The Star Spangled Banner" and Scholz's own "4th of July Reprise."

On July 1, 1997, Boston will begin a major headlining tour encompassing 40+ cities across North America. The personnel for the tour are Tom Scholz (guitar, keyboards, pipe organ, vocals), Brad Delp (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Fran Cosmo (vocals, guitar), Gary Pihl (guitar, keyboards, vocals), David Sikes (bass, vocals), and Curly Smith (drums, harmonica, vocals).

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