Photo by Jim Conners
Interview By Jeb Wright
Classic Rock Revisited caught up with Aussie rock chick Laura Wilde right before a sound check in Boise, Idaho. We fell in love with this lady last year when she released her debut album Sold My Soul. Barely old enough to know better, young Wilde has a passion for real rock and roll, whether it be heavy, glam or punk. She mixes it together and serves it up loud and proud.
In this interview Laura talks about learning from the pros, the every changing music industry and her love of all things Lemmy!
Check out the videos and click the links to learn more about a young woman doing her best to keep real rock and roll alive and well.
Jeb: What’s up girl? I wanted to take a few moments and see how the career is going.
Laura: You remember me? Awww. We are in Boise, Idaho getting ready to do a sound check for our tour we are on, opening for Ted Nugent in 2013.
Jeb: Nuge had you out last year and now you’re back.
Laura: We are back for our second stint with Ted Nugent. In May and June we did a Fuel tour. We are like touring pros now!
Jeb: How did Nugent Part II come to be?
Laura: It was not planned. I was on a phone call with Ted’s manager in January and I was just thanking him for having us out. He asked us to come out again. I was thrilled and said, “Yes! Yes! Yes!”
Jeb: What did you learn from opening for a pro like Nugent?
Laura: After watching Ted’s shows every night he really showed he is a force to be reckoned with onstage. His playing ability and his showmanship—everything about his performance is flawless and energetic. He expresses his personality, his heart and his soul through his music and that is something that I am trying to do. I certainly learned a lot from watching Ted Nugent.
Jeb: No matter what else he does, even causing distractions, Ted’s soloing is something to behold. He takes his rock and roll seriously.
Laura: It is an amazingly captivating performance.
Jeb: Are you the only other band on this Nugent run?
Laura: We are the only other act for most shows, but I think we are doing a few dates with Tesla as well. I think Tesla will join Ted in Detroit and somewhere in Ohio. We are going to have to work extra hard and deliver an even higher standard playing with two bands like that.
Jeb: Are you happy with the reaction you’ve been getting?
Laura: I am very happy with the responses we have been getting. We are playing about half songs from our album Sold My Soul and we are doing half new ones. Live performance is my passion. To me, that’s what it’s all about.
I just play live and opportunities arise from doing that. For instance, we were just invited to play The Vegas Rock Music Awards in August and that came from one of the shows we played in Vegas previously.
Jeb: Sold My Soul is an independent release. What have you learned about the music industry?
Laura: This is a crazy industry. At the end of the day, it is really like any other industry; you have to make money. We work extra hard to sell CDs and merchandise. It is so great to tour and be able to do that.
Jeb: I can see the music business wanting to change you. You have a look, a sound an attitude and you could be put into their mold. Are you tempted to do that?
Laura: For me, it is about playing the music that you love and taking your influences and making them into something that is your own and having a good time doing it. I think it was Oscar Wylde that said, “Don’t try to be anyone else because they are all taken. Just be yourself.”
Jeb: You’re young. Why do you play such old school based music?
Laura: I think that comes from the music I listened to growing up. It was a heavy influence on me and that is what I lean towards. On the new album we have been experimenting with some new sounds which might make it fresher. We are allowing our punk and glam influences come out. It’s a little more punky but its still rock and roll.
Jeb: Do you get intimidated playing on the same stage as such iconic players?
Laura: There definitely is that feeling, which you have to put to rest or your brain will scramble and you’ll forget your own songs throughout your performance. Once you put those feelings aside then you can just appreciate that you’re there at all and just try to give the best show ever.
Jeb: What punk artists influence you?
Laura: I like the Sex Pistols, The Clash and then newer bands like The Vines and The Hives. A few of those influences creep in.
I just try to write songs with objective ears. I am my harshest critic. I don’t want to play garbage so I work on things more and more until I am happy with it.
Jeb: There is a lot to paying your dues. Playing a half hour set every night and traveling is tough.
Laura: Sometimes we do solo shows and we get more time to stretch our legs. If we are playing to three people, or three thousand people, then we have the same energy.
Jeb: Do you do all originals or do you do any covers?
Laura: We do have a cover in our thirty minutes, believe it or not! We are paying homage to our Australian rock and roll forefathers, AC/DC. We play “Jailbreak.” It is one of those where you have to be an AC/DC fan to know that one. It was not one of their biggest hits but it is a serious rocker.
Jeb: What is next?
Laura: I am very excited to share the new music that we’ve written so we want to get back in the studio and do another album and get back out there. I want to put the new songs in the live set. I want people to listen to it. It has a different perspective.
Jeb: You said you had some glam influences. I am thinking T. Rex, Ziggy Stardust era Bowie…am I too far off?
Laura: Oh no, that is exactly what I’m talking about. Iggy Pop, Slade, T. Rex…all the old Glamtastic bands.
Jeb: That is a great term. “Glamtastic.” Did you make that up?
Laura: I just made it up right then.
Jeb: You should do a Glam covers album called Glamtastic.
Laura: That could be very cool. I’m going to keep that in mind.
Jeb: How old are you?
Laura: I’m currently 23 years old.
Jeb: Oh God, you’re younger than my daughter. She’s 24.
Laura: You should bring her to one of the shows!
Jeb: I am going to sound like the creepy old guy here…but you’re very pretty.
Laura: Thank you very much.
Jeb: In the hard rock world that can be a double-edged sword. How do you handle the male oriented, testosterone filled world you’re in?
Laura: I am all about the music and playing the music that I love. I take all of that stuff with a grain of salt.
Jeb: You have a hard time with your age group taking music as seriously as people in my age group did.
Laura: I think it has changed and evolved. You no longer have a vinyl album cover, instead, people buy a T-shirt. I think things are more merchandise driven and less music driven now by tangible bands. It is each to their own and everyone likes different things but things have changed.
Jeb: You are waving the flag for real rock and roll and I salute you for that!
Laura: Well thank you very much. I do my best. That is the kind of music I love and that is what I stand for. I will just keep playing rock and roll and let the fans decide what they think about it.
Jeb: What kind of guitar are you playing on the back of your CD?
Laura: That is a Gibson Flying V and I put chrome pickup covers on it so it looked like a spaceship. It had a mirror on the front to reflect the light. It was really cool and it was like its own light show. Now, I’m playing Dean Guitars. I really love them.
Jeb: Last one: Is that a Motorhead shirt underneath your jacket?
Laura: It is a Motorhead shirt. I am a huge Motorhead fan. I have had the chance to hang out with Lemmy who is very cool.
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