Canadian-born rocker Bryan Adams is one of the most popular guys in the music biz and has been for a very long time. By the time his breakthrough album, 1984’s Reckless, was released, Adams already had several albums under his belt and had written a huge pile of songs dating back to his early days as a teenage rock band lead singer. The 57-year-old’s tunes kept him at the top of the charts around the globe, and his popularity has still continued to soar in places like the Far East, India and all over Europe where he still regularly plays to sellout crowds. Whether with his longtime backing band or as a solo artist playing acoustic, there’s always a lot more to the platinum and gold record wielding Adams than just a guitar. He’s been involved with many hit soundtracks and been celebrated as published photographer, too. Adams, who makes his home in England, is also busy trying his hand at scoring a Broadway musical in the forthcoming stage adaptation of the blockbuster romantic comedy Pretty Woman. Amidst his busy, hectic schedule, Adams took the time to answer some questions via email before a September 10 headlining set at Clearwater’s Coachman Park. Additional details on the show are available via local.cltampa.com.
After being involved in the music business for the better part of forty years, what is it about it that still excites you and inspires you the most?
The same things that inspired when I started, making songs and I love to sing.
So many musical artists who rose to prominence in the 1980’s have faded away yet a select few have been able to successfully hold on to a dedicated, passionate fan base. You’re right at the top of that list. To what do you attribute the type of loyalty your longtime fans have shown you?
I’m not sure, but I think it’s the music mostly.
As an artist whose vast popularity is worldwide, how does your fan base differ abroad versus in the United States and/or Canada?
It’s way younger outside of the United States. The USA hasn’t played any of my new songs since 2000, so that hasn’t helped!
You’ve performed in so many different countries around the world; are there any you haven’t yet played that you’d like to?
Oh, I’m sure there is [sic], we’re playing in Central America in October, a place I’ve never been
You’ve recorded and sang with people like Tina Turner, Sting, Bonnie Raitt, Sarah McLachlan and Rod Stewart. Is there any one in particular with whom you’d like to someday duet?
Sure, Lady Gaga and Beyonce just for starters.
Your latest album, Get Up is split between electric songs accompanied by a band as well as with acoustic performances. In recent years, you’ve embarked on both full band tours as well as on stripped down, acoustic tours. Was the album divided that way purposely to present the songs in those two distinctive formats?
The acoustic numbers were plopped on there by the U.K. record company just before the album went out, so it wasn’t my idea I have to admit.
Your tours and your setlists seem to be geared at fans from all stages of your career. You seem to be as eager to delve back into your earliest recorded output as you do in presenting your latest material. Your shows and the songs you perform live seem to span the duration of your long career. Is there a conscious effort on your part to do that?
Is there another way? You have to continue to be inspired as a musician, and that doesn’t happen from standing still. You have to keep moving and continue to create. As I said earlier, I’m in this for the same reasons today as the day I started. I love songs and I love singing
These days, your distinctive, raspy voice sounds as strong and powerful as it ever has. What’s the secret to keeping it sounding so commanding and fierce after all these years?
Thanks, I can only attribute that to the fact that I take care of my health, being a vegan was one of the smartest things I ever did for myself, I’m sure that the change in diet back in the 80s has added years to my life.
You always seem to be having the time of your life onstage and the rapport you have with longtime guitarist Keith Scott is always fun and spirited. How do you continue to make it fun for you, the band and the audience night after night?
It’s always been fun, but we don’t tour like other artists. I only do 10 shows a month and have toured like that since 2000, so we are always happy to get back at it, and happy to be at home too. Beige hotel rooms can do your head in after a while, so 10 days is plenty.
How’s’ the scoring of the Pretty Woman Broadway project going? In what ways is the process familiar or unfamiliar for you in relation to writing and recording a rock and roll album?
It’s going really well thanks, it’s entering a very exciting phase as we’re casting it now. September we have massive rehearsals with the cast, and it’s all happening rather quickly.
What can fans who may not have seen you live in a while expect from your Coachman Park show in Clearwater in September? How would you describe the Bryan Adams 2017 live experience in your own words?
It’s all the songs you know and love and some of the songs from my last album “Get Up”. You’re gonna love it.
Bryan Adams plays Coachman Park in Downtown Clearwater on Sunday, September 10. Ticket prices range from $20- $175 and can be purchased via local.cltampa.com.