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Interview with Eddie Money

“Eddie Money- 3 Decades and Still Shakin’!”

					Eddie Money

Interviewed by Dave Felix
Date: March 2008

Official My Space site:

For photos from the show Click here

With upwards of 15 studio album releases, twenty-six top 100 hits, countless world tours, millions of albums sold worldwide, just over three decades of experience under his belt and an almost assured spot someday in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, New York’s own Eddie Money has just about done it all and has become a true legend in the music industry. Now at the age of 59, I am happy to say that this rock icon is very much alive and “Shakin’” even after all these years and is still taking his non-stop party on the road with dates scheduled all summer long. If you’ve never seen an Eddie Money show live, trust me… it’s one Hell of a party!

I had the honor of speaking with the “Money-man” himself just a short time ago and here’s what he had to say…

Dave Felix: Hello Eddie, it’s a great pleasure to speak with you. I’ve been a fan of yours for many, many years. Thank you so much for taking the time to do this.

Eddie Money: I appreciate that very much, that’s great!

Dave Felix: Since the early 80’s, I’ve caught your show at least a dozen times…

Eddie Money: Well thank you very much! Ya know, I try to make my shows sound like my records. I try to make my records sound very live. I do everything in one or two takes, ya know? That way when people see me live they won’t be disappointed. They’ll say yeah… he does sound like the record!

Dave Felix: Over the years, your tour schedule has remained consistently relentless but to this day, you’re still able to pack ‘em in night after night. To what do you attribute that success? Eddie Money

Eddie Money: Well, the public’s got a short memory, ya know? You gotta come out there with some hits and back there in the 70’s and 80’s, I always tried to make sure that on every record there’d be at least a couple of songs that were really gonna stick like a “Baby Hold On” or a “Two Tickets (To Paradise)” from the first record. Then on the second record I had “Maybe I’m A Fool” which was more like a disco hit, but come Hell or high water I was gonna make sure that I had hit records and I did manage to have 26 songs in the top 100 over the course of my career which is really fantastic. When I was coming out with my records, Columbia (records) was really a power house to deal with and, of course, my manager was the legendary Bill Graham so things worked out really well for me and it’s just great that I’ve had all that success and people remember that.

Dave Felix: After all these years, what keeps you going?

Eddie Money: To tell you the truth, I’m not a rocket scientist! I’m just a lead singer in a rock ‘n roll band and this is what I do for a living. I’ve got five kids and I love playing in front of people. It gives me a chance to go out there and play my saxophone a little bit and do some songs I wrote… I think “the man upstairs” has been very, very good to me. I feel very fortunate to have had the success I’ve had and I guess I’m still “milkin’ that cow, baby!” (laughs)

Dave Felix: Your family has always been (and still remains) an intricate part of your live performance as well and have grown into talented musicians themselves. What has it been like for you to be able to watch them grow and mature right in front of your eyes?

Eddie Money: I was hoping my kids wouldn’t become reliant on being musicians because it’s really a heart-breaking business. I was very lucky to have the success that I achieved but there are millions of musicians out there just as good as me who never really made it… and what have they got to back it up? The most important thing for me right now since I have a couple of kids in high school and my daughter already out of high school is to make sure they all get a decent education. Eddie MoneyMy daughter’s doing “Rock the Cradle” on MTV and her career is really taking off, then my sons are guitar players and drummers but I want to make sure they can walk through life with more than just a guitar pick or a pair of drumsticks in their hands.

Dave Felix: Now as I said, I have seen you over a dozen times through out the years and every time it’s just a great, great show and such a “party” atmosphere. Is there any such thing as a “bad” Eddie Money show?

Eddie Money: Yeah, it really is a party and we have a great time up there! As far as a bad Eddie Money show? I’m sure I’ve done ‘em… maybe when I was knockin’ down the “bevies” in the old days. Sometimes I thought I was great but I really wasn’t in my best form, ya know? But having Bill Graham as a manager, even if I’d go out and do some drinkin’, I’d still have that “I was at work” instilled in me. I believe in the work ethic like my father taught me. You don’t go to work stoned… you don’t go to work drunk or whatever, even if you’re an entertainer! So I’m sure there’ve been some bad shows down the line, but not recently. I’m out there giving 100% every night and I’m just hoping the people enjoy it as much as I do.

Dave Felix: Now sometimes when you go to see an artist that’s been around as long as you have, you can almost tell that they’re just “going through the motions,” so to speak but I’ve never gotten that impression after seeing your live performance…

Eddie Money: Yeah, I’ve noticed that. That’s how Lou Gramm was for a while there but he’s really gotten a lot better. But yeah, I’ve see it and I really don’t like to drop names but I’ve seen some pretty big acts that just don’t seem to be able to get into it anymore. I never do that… I even write a different set list every night just to try and keep my boys on their toes, ya know? Other than that, I like to flirt! I don’t cheat on my wife but I like the girls so it’s good to keep your weight down, not be smoking a million cigarettes or getting stoned or drunk all the time and the reward you get is being able to put on a great show! Maybe get a nice review in the paper the next day, sell a couple of t-shirts and I look forward to going to work! I’m tellin’ ya… it’s great!

Dave Felix: I understand you’ll be hitting the legendary STONE PONY right here in Asbury Park, NJ in a couple of weeks?

Eddie Money: Yeah, it’s a great club! I mean I’m like B.B. King, ya know? I go out there in the summer time and play to like 45 – 50,000 people playing with STYX and REO SPEEDWAGON but to me… it’s like B.B. King says, “There’s nothing like playing a hot club!” The intimacy of a club and the closeness of the people… it’s just so much better. I just love playing clubs like that.

Dave Felix: What can the fans expect as far as the show itself and the set list?

Eddie Money: I let the fans write the set list if you can believe that? I mean I was out there and I asked the fans, “You think you know it all? If you think you’re so smart then why don’t you write it?” And they did and let me tell ya, they were right! I mean I use to put “Two Tickets To Paradise” way on the back-burner at the end of the show but now, thanks to the fans feedback, we open the show with “Two Tickets To Paradise,” “Think I’m In Love” into “Wanna Go Back” and “Take Me Home Tonight” and I tell ya man, the fans really know what they’re talking about. I think I even got a good review in ROLLING STONE! (laughs) So it’s a power-packed show and I really get off on the fact that people still enjoy listening to the hits. I hope you get a chance to come on out!

Dave Felix: Oh, I wouldn’t miss it! With all of the hits that you’ve had, there are songs that are always pretty much a “gimmie” in your set list like “Two Tickets To Paradise” or “Baby Hold On.” Do you ever get sick of playing those songs night after night?

Eddie Money: I never get sick of playing the hits because part of the show is having people recognize the songs and if I ever start feeling that way with like “Baby Hold On” or whatever, I just think back to what a joy it was for me when I first wrote the song and how much a song like that can bring people back to a certain time in their life where they can remember hearing that on a radio somewhere… or at a prom or wherever. Songs like that have a way of connecting you with a certain time or place in your life… they’re nostalgic! It’s like me listening to Country Joe & The Fish or the first LED ZEPPELIN album. It brings me back to that time in my life. I like to reminisce and having all the hits that I’ve had and being able to put people in that frame of mind… it’s great! Watching peoples faces light up and seeing them get off on my music is more of a thrill than anything and that outweighs me ever getting sick of something.

Dave Felix: As well as your older audience, you seem to be able to attract a lot of younger fans as well. How do you explain that?

Eddie Money: I think it’s because they put me in “Guitar Heroes II” and that “Grand Theft Auto” game. I don’t know… I mean I run into all these fans that make up the populous of like “fraternity row” and they’re all loving “Take Me Home Tonight!” That song’s what, twenty/ twenty-five years old? But classic rock is timeless stuff! And there are just so many young people today that are getting into that… it blows my mind!

Dave Felix: You’ve done a lot of work with charitable organizations over the years and although I understand they must all be special to you in their own way, what has been the most rewarding experience you’ve had working with these institutions?

Eddie Money: Ya know, I do a lot of work with the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation which helps these kids that are born HIV-positive. They never had promiscuous sex with anybody or stuck a goddamned dirty needle in their arm and it’s tough to see these poor children who are born with a devastating disease like AIDS. But I visit a lot to these hospitals and talk with the doctors, the nurses and even the parents and due to the advancement in medicine, these kids are living a lot longer than they did just three or four years ago and my heart really goes out to them. Other than that, I am really partial to working with the marines and doing “Toys For Tots” and the “Make A Wish Foundation.” I really like working with kids, ya know? We’re doing this thing right now with “St. Luke” for the homeless. All these young families who can’t get jobs and then there’s these foreclosures happening all over the place and people losing their houses… it’s heart-breaking. If I won the lottery tomorrow, I’d still be out there singing my ass off and giving all the money away to people who really, really need it.

Dave Felix: Eddie MoneyOther than music, what do you do to relax?

Eddie Money: Well, I’m playing golf right now! I kinda play like “Stevie Wonder at night!” but I really do love the game… but I really suck at it! (laughs) Every time I hit the ball I say to myself, “Geez, I’m glad I can sing!” But I’m playing golf right now… we’re coming around the bend, I’ll probably pick myself up a Coca-Cola!

Dave Felix: Oh you mean RIGHT NOW?!?

Eddie Money: (laughs) Yeah, I’m on the golf course! But I quit smoking cigarettes on my birthday a couple of days ago so I’m really flippin’! I’m “jonesing” for a butt man let me tell ya! But I gotta stick to my guns, ya know? I’m not knockin’ down the “bevies,” I’m not smoking cigarettes anymore… I’m just trying to raise my kids and keep my wife happy, ya know? It ain’t a walk in the park; let me tell ya but hopefully it’ll be worth it in the end! It’s hard to fall asleep with the kickstand down, ya know? (laughs)

Dave Felix: I hear ya! (laughs) So what kind of music are you listening to nowadays and are their any new artists you particularly find appealing?

Eddie Money:
I like 3 DOORS DOWN… they’re a pretty good band. And I like MAROON 5, they’re good too! Then I like the band FUEL and my kids got me into the band INCUBUS. I listen to a lot of this new stuff because my kids have it playing on the radio… I’ll even go as far as to say I actually like the new Brittany Spears single. What can I say? I’m a sucker for a good hook! (laughs)

Dave Felix: How does it make you feel that you have actually been an influence to a lot of these new artists?

Eddie Money: It’s mind-blowing! It really, really is…

Dave Felix: What advice would you give to a new artist just coming up in the industry?

Eddie Money: My advice would be take more lessons than I took. I mean if I would have really practiced learning the saxophone, I could have been a David Sanborn, ya know? Instead of just Eddie Money! I mean I’m pretty good and people tell me I’m a pretty good sax player but I am playing things I know. I could never sit down and “jam” in any key like these professionals can. I’m not really a “virtuoso” so I would really tell young musicians that if you’re learning the guitar, learn as much about it as you can. Learn pentatonic scales, learn mnemonic scales, learn major scales… scales, scales, scales! And another thing I would recommend is to stay away from drugs. Whatever you do now IS going to affect you later in life. I tried never drinking before a show but afterwards, I was knockin’ down the bevies like there was no tomorrow and I had a bad experience with an overdose back in the 80’s. I was taking barbiturates and drinking… just stupid, stupid shit. Sometimes you think you’re invincible… like things are never gonna happen to you but life is a very vulnerable situation. It’s a precious commodity… cherish it.

Dave Felix: In all your years of experience, what’s the most important lesson you’ve learned?

Eddie Money: Let me tell ya, when it comes to lessons, I’m one stupid son-of-a-bitch! I’ve learned to keep my head on straight, not to hurt someone’s feelings and, to me, just to be as genuine as possible. I want to come across the way I was raised… I just wanna be “good people,” ya know? I want people to walk away and be like, “Damn, that Eddie Money’s a heck of a nice guy!” I wanna stay away from knockin’ down the bevies, I wanna stay away from cigarettes, I wanna raise my kids, be a better husband to my wife and just keep doing what I’m doing!

Dave Felix: Any regrets?

Eddie Money: Yeah, sure… I got a million regrets! Going through two wives wasn’t easy and that was all because of my abusing and stuff like that. Having a major overdose was terrible… I messed up my leg but everybody lives with their regrets, you know that. But, you do what you can…

Dave Felix: So what’s next?

Eddie Money: I got a new single out “Gimmie Some Water” with Vince Gill and it’s climbing the country charts, I got a new musical I’m working on for Broadway called “Two Tickets To Paradise” which takes place in the late 60’s like “Hair”… I got a lot of things on the fire. My daughter’s on this “Rockin’ The Cradle” thing for MTV and I hope she does well with that… she’s competing against Bobby Brown’s kid and Joe Walsh’s kid and a bunch of other celebrities kids so I’m excited about that. Things are going good and I really hope you get down to the STONE PONY… We’ll have a good time and make sure you tell Lee (Eddie’s manager) to take care of ya!

Dave Felix: Thanks, I will do that… As far as what you just mentioned about the new single out, I understand there may be a new album in the works as well? Eddie Money: Well, they want me to put together a country record… that’s what they want me to do but I haven’t really decided if I am going to do it or not. We’ll see what happens…

Dave Felix: What are you most proud of as far as the music industry goes?

Eddie Money: I guess all those gold records I have hanging on my walls! I’ve also got three really nice saxophones… I don’t know if I’m really proud of them, but I own them! (laughs) But I’m proud of the fact that I’m still around! And that I didn’t end up killing myself and I haven’t fucked anybody over which is great. I think that business has been good for me because I believe in karma. You don’t screw anybody around; you’re not going to get hurt.

Dave Felix: What would you most like to be remembered for?

Eddie Money: I’d like to be remembered for my music and maybe just the recognition of being a pretty good writer in writing songs like “Two Tickets To Paradise,” “Walk On Water,” “Baby Hold On,” “Take Me Home Tonight.” I don’t know if I deserve it or not but it would be a real accomplishment.

Dave Felix: Well that’s about it, thanks again for taking the time to talk to us!

Eddie Money: Thank you for a great interview, man! And come out and see us at the STONE PONY! We’ll hang out… it’ll be a good time!

Dave Felix: Thank you for a great interview, man! And come out and see us at the STONE PONY! We’ll hang out… it’ll be a good time!

Eddie Money: Will do… take care!

For MORE Tour Dates this summer here ! This is one party you don’t wanna miss!


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