P&P - Your contract apparently called for 10 albums in five years. That's physically impossible.
Scholz - "This guy (at Epic) wanted me to churn out a record when all there was, was two songs and a lot of junk. When it became apparent that I wasn't going to do that, I think that kind of got his goat.
"A lot of people were shocked that I was able to prevail in that CBS suit. They're a billion-dollar company, for God's sake. I hadn't gotten most of the money owed me, so I didn't have a war chest to fall back on for lawyers and all that. There were all sorts of opportunistic people lining up to finish me off. I have a lot of enemies today because I won."
P&P - The suit set a legal precedent, and now labels are more careful with contracts. Do artists appreciate what you went through?
Scholz - "They know what I had to go through in order to succeed and that I actually completed an album (1986's 'Third Stage') while it was going on. That was actually my favorite part of it. These (label) guys didn't know - they're so removed, and they're don't know or care where this music comes from.
"They apparently thought that they could stop me by choking off what little income stream I had and somehow that would keep me from going into the studio. What they didn't realize was that I had made all these records in my basement pretty much by myself.
"After all this time and after I don't know how many albums were sold, like 20 million later, they apparently had no idea that these were just me working in my basement studio. I guess they thought I had to have huge advances to go into a big production studio with crews and musicians. I found that to be the most ironic thing of all."
P&P - Then MCA puts out "Third Stage," it goes No. 1 and the single "Amanda" goes No. 1. That must have been sweet revenge.
Scholz - "Irving Azoff (then the head of MCA) took a huge chance on me, doing that. He did a great job promoting that album, and it did really well."
P&P - Are you following the current movement, led by Sheryl Crow and Don Henley, for artists' rights?
Scholz - "I don't know the exact details, but it really would be a great idea if there was something formally put into law. It's easier now to win those kinds of cases, but (artists) still go broke trying to defend themselves because these big corporations don't notice a $5 million legal bill. ebony porn That's not a darn thing out of a billion-dollar budget.
"You really can't defend yourself because the U.S. legal system created such a huge financial burden for the accused. It's very unfair. Theoretically, you can recover attorneys fees, but realistically, they don't award those very often unless it's a really clear-cut case. So, pretty much if one of these companies takes aim at you, you're going to lose, whether you win or lose the case.
"Now you can see why my favorite phrase these days is 'corporate America.' If anything bad happens, I just say, 'Yep, corporate America.' "
P&P - I just have to know, though: Did you know what you were signing when you hooked up with Epic in 1976?
Scholz - "I wasn't a lawyer, and my legal advice came from a real-estate attorney, and it was apparent that there was no one else who had my interest at stake. They were clearly out for themselves.
"Historically, it's almost accepted fact that people in artistic fields are not only bad at the business end, they really don't want to be good at it. We are sitting ducks for those who are not particularly talented and love the idea of taking advantage of somebody else's work. That's a bad situation that will always exist."
P&P - Tell us about your new group members, Kimberly Bahme and Anthony Cosmo (son of singer Fran Cosmo).
Scholz - "She's incredibly talented. She's the sweetest, most normal person I've ever had. (Guitarist) Gary (Pihl) and I were out looking for drummers, and we were checking out this band at a local place that was here from Nashville. He had this gorgeous blond singing backup and guitar; she didn't hit a bad note all night and really stole the show. Afterward, we went up and talked to her. She had no attitude, a breath of fresh air. We told her we had enough guitar players in the band, but if she wanted to join and play bass, she could do that. A few weeks later, she contacted me. She said, 'I bought a bass at a hoc shop, I have a CD and I'm learning the songs. I'd like an audition.' She's an awesome songwriter. If we had found her a little sooner, I'm sure she would've had another song or two on this, in addition to the one she did.
"Anthony contributes three songs on the album, including 'Turn It Off.' He's very talented. You know, it's great to find people who can make such a large contribution to what I'm doing."
THE FIRST RECORD I EVER BOUGHT: "I didn't buy records; I just borrowed them and didn't return them. I do remember that I used to listen to the very original Iron Butterfly album, not 'In-a-Gadda-Da-Vida.' I also really liked Blue Cheer; if anybody heard that today they would realize that there's nothing new heavy-metal rock today."
THE FIRST CONCERT I EVER WENT TO: "I think it was Led Zeppelin. It was a lot of fun."
THE WORST JOB I'VE EVER HAD: "I used to weed petunias for a landscaper. That's when I knew I had to go to college and develop a career."
BWF (before we forget): The Boston album discography - "Boston" (Epic, 1976); "Don't Look Back" (1978); "Third Stage" (MCA, 1986); "Walk On" (1994); "Corporate America" (Artemis, 2002).
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