By Marianne Behm
I'm sitting with Andy McCoy at a table of his favorite restaurant in the heart of Helsinki. All the spring he has been ultimately busy recording and mixing the upcoming Hanoi Rocks album. Now, when it is beginning to be finished he has the luxury to chill down a bit, chat a while and enjoy a cup of fresh cappuchino. The weather couldn't be any better, sun is still shining even if it is around 8 pm (in the midsummer sun only goes down at midnight even in the southern parts of Finland). Andy seems literally excited when he talks about the upcoming Hanoi album and making of it. Let's see whats going on in the camp Hanoi Rocks 2007.
Andy, it's been a while, great to see you! You're looking good and relaxed. What's up and how are you doin'?
Well, as one might say , I'm f....in' fantastic, thanks! The new album is in the can and can't wait to play the stuff live.
Awesome! As to the background and influences, which kind of bands did you listen to as a kid?
Thru' my past, started in the sixties - Chuck Berry and Little Richard were major influences. Then my older brother brought in the Acid Rock of 60's with Led Zeppelin and everything else. My first self bought record was a T-Rex 45 called “Ride a White Swan”.
Classy stuff! If you should name few, who would you mention as your biggest influences?
I s'pose The Rolling Stones (and don't it show). Early AD/DC. Flamenco music. And can't forget Nushrar Fateh Ali Khan pure magic!
What was your dream when you were young boy? Do you still have dreams?
I've only played since I was 4 (born October 11th 1962). So, I suppose I wanted to be a painter because music would had been too obvious.
Painting, that is something I was just going to ask about. Well, we all know that you’re a marvellous guitar player, but we hear you’re also an excellent painter. I’ve seen some of your artwork on your websites?
Yeah, you can see some of my work at andymccoy.com gallery. I was supposed to study and become a pro painter. Thinking 'bout it now, I still could.
You certainly have unique style when it comes to music and guitar playing, but not only that: you also have very well known and recognizable style in clothing. Where do you buy your clothes?
I have my stuff made tho' I design myself. In the early Hanoi days when we were dead broke I used to make all our lether stuff. Actually I just made some pants and a jacked this spring first time in 'bout 15 years.
Nice, hopefully we'll see some of those on stage. Ok, let’s get back to your music… Seems you’ve very busy this summer with many upcoming festivals. Let's hope that the weather stays sunny. What is your worst festival memory?
I take the good with the bad. That way it levels out to......zero, I suppose, haha.
Hanoi Rocks recently released a new single, "Fashion." How long have you been working on this single?
This idea was in my drawer for some 4-5 years. The work itself, to put it together I mean, didn't take more than 10 minutes.
Tell me about the song "Fashion." Where does all your inspiration and creativity come from? Is there some secret ‘prescription’?
Fashion is actually an anti-fashion statement. There's no secrets, I'm inspired by the city, the people, traffic etc.
What kind of guitars do you play? What’s your favorite guitar ?
My favorites are Les Pauls, Firebirds and 335's (Gibsons) plus ol' Epiphones and handmade stuff collected thru the years.
How would you describe your guitar playing style?
Haha me? You tell me.
What are your goals for the future?
Goals, hmmmm my goal is to play y' some mean Rock'n' Roll.
That's a deal :) But are there any plans for a tour of the U.S.? This fall?
The plan is late fall, by the latest early next year. And man I can not wait, but Hanoi is a pretty big machine, somethimes hard to get started.
You've been in the music business for a long time. Do you have any advice for youngsters and for those just getting their start?
Yeah, the first thing that comes into my mind is that don't ever sign your publishing rights away.
Is there anything you’d like to say to the SugarBuzz Magazine’s readers?
Love you all! Can't wait to show you were so many bands got it from. P.S. I'm an old world boy ;)
Much thanks for your time and have a kick ass summer!!!
Thanks to you - I wish you all love and success!
Special thanks to Teemu 'Steven' Virtanen