Courtney Devores of The Charlotte Observer recently conducted an interview with POISON frontman Bret Michaels. An excerpt from the chat follows:
The Charlotte Observer: What did you think of C.C. doing "The Surreal Life" this spring?
Bret: There is no person I know of that is as surreal as C.C. is. You know how some people are able to turn on or off their craziness? His outlandishness is real, which makes me love him.
The Charlotte Observer: What are some of your best memories of Poison's 20 years?
Bret: I can remember my first gig opening for RATT and CHEAP TRICK. The only time I'd been in an arena was buying a ticket and sitting in the "ZZ" section. I'm glad that feeling stayed with me because I vowed to myself I didn't want to become jaded and bitter. I remember getting ready to go on stage with Steven Tyler and Paul Stanley; this was during "Look What the Cat Dragged In". I'm being cool but thinking: "If this guy only knew how many KISS albums I had."
The Charlotte Observer: You've done films and television and a couple of solo country albums, which is a bit surprising for a hard rocker.
Bret: I do what I like to do, then pray it's somewhat successful. Acting and directing is a lot fun. Country music is the same as rock. I grew up listening to country. Obviously you can hear it on "I Won't Forget You", "Every Rose" and "Something to Believe In". I listen to both. After I'm done listening to FOO FIGHTERS and ZEPPELIN, I listen to TOBY KEITH and KENNY CHESNEY.
The Charlotte Observer: What was it like judging contestants on "Nashville Star"?
Bret: I told them I would suck at judging (because) I want to help (the contestants). I feel like everyone's got some potential. I was that kid. I wasn't going to put Pavarotti out of business. Getting constructive criticism helped me.
The Charlotte Observer: How do you compare it to "American Idol"?
Bret: I give credit to Simon. He just says it like it is. The one thing I'll say about country music artists is they aren't propped up. All of them can play, sing and write. You give them any instrument and they can play it. You walk backstage at "Nashville Star" and hear people singing and playing. They didn't win a karaoke contest. "American Idol" has a huge show because they know how to entertain. Carrie Underwood did a great job. Bo Bice was awesome, Southern rock, which I love. They allowed that to happen. At least its music, not just a bunch of MILLI VANILLIS.