Doro – Still TriumphantThursday, 14th September 2017
Dead Rhetoric: As you continue on, when you do these special tours…do you find a wide diversity in fan ages? As in older fans bringing their kids along?
Pesch: Yeah, it’s like the whole range is there! From people who loved the Burning the Witches album, which was the first one [Warlock] and now young fans…if it’s all ages, sometimes kids come along. When they hear “All We Are,” oh my God! I saw a couple YouTube videos that people have sent me, like someone’s daughter seeing the video for the first time. It’s great! Sometimes some young metal fans, like 14-15year olds, they don’t know the whole repertoire. They maybe just know the last, Raise Your Fist record and may not even know the old Warlock stuff. It’s always exciting to get people hooked on some great stuff.
On our last tour, we played a lot of songs off of Raise Your Fist, and then we did an autograph session and someone asked if we had another record out. I said, “Yes, we have 17 records out and 5 DVDs” and they couldn’t believe it. He said, “Would you marry me?” So I said, “Hey, dude…you are 17 years old! We have 17 records, I think maybe you are too young [laughs]!” But he was so loving and it was so great. I thought, “Man, I can’t wait until he hears all the other great songs!” Every record has some killer songs on it. I wondered if he had any of the Warlock stuff. I love it when they are young and coming in [to metal]. People – younger or older – I just love it.
I just want to make people happy; it doesn’t matter where they are from. Music is in your heart, and if you can touch people’s heart and soul [that’s great]. I realized when I started in the ‘80s, there were only metalheads…everyone was heckling me like crazy. Tons of people were doing the same thing – they all had the jean vest on with the patches. In this day and age, you get maybe 20-30% of the die-hard metalheads. The rest of the people wear other stuff…sometimes I miss the ones with the jean vests and the patches, because I know they are the die-hards. I think metal is in good shape; it’s doing really well.
Coming from all the festivals – there’s tons of festivals. Wacken sells out one day after announcing the line-up…it’s good, worldwide. We play in many more countries than we did in the ‘80s. Like Russia. We couldn’t even think about it in the ‘80s. I know The Scorpions did it, but they were the only band who were probably allowed in there. Now we are touring almost every year, and it’s much wider. Metalheads in Thailand, China…it’s so cool!
Dead Rhetoric: You collaborated with Amon Amarth on their last album for “A Dream That Cannot Be.” What drew you towards working with a more extreme act?
Pesch: I like all kinds of metal genres – from death metal to hardcore to traditional metal. I was born and raised with British heavy metal. But I love Arch Enemy; I love Amon Amarth; I love Abbath – he’s such a cool guy! I like extreme metal a lot, and with Amon Amarth, it started in Wacken a few years ago and I thought, I love these guys! Johan was such a great, fun person. I was standing there, watching the show, and in my mind I thought I would love to do something eventually. After the show, about a year later I got a phone call and an email from Amon Amarth asking if I would like to do something on the new record. I thought, “Oh my God, I can’t believe it!” I guess there was a mutual feeling – maybe good chemistry that we could do something together. So I said “Oh yes!” I was totally excited. When I was sent the song, I loved it.
We got into the studio in Burmingham and we spent a few days and had so much fun. Everyone was there and cheering me on, with big smiles on their faces. Olavi, the guitarist, and Johan…they really liked it. So I played the Summer Breeze Festival and I sang “A Dream That Cannot Be” with Amon Amarth because they did a special show. I think it got recorded – so we saw eachother again and it was a great show. I love Amon Amarth – I would love to do many more things with them. I think they are a great band. I think they have the momentum right now – they always have so many fans at the front of the stage, even at biggers festivals that have like 4-5 stages. It’s great to be a part of that too.
Arch Enemy – I love their new record and I love them. I love Alissa, and I loved Angela Gossow as well. They are one of my favorite bands of the more extreme metal. I like Kreator…Mille, I think he’s a great frontman. I love other German metal bands, which I grew up with. Bands like Destruction – we are all great friends too from touring all over the world…but it’s not only the European metal scene, it’s all over the world. But at the moment, Sweden has so many fantastic bands coming up! It reminds me of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal in the ‘80s. It’s totally happening over there.
Dead Rhetoric: You do a number of guest spots and have others accompany you on your releases – do you view metal as family?
Pesch: I’ve been doing this for so many years, starting out in the ‘80s – good connections and deep friendships with all the bands and musicians. When I toured with a band, we almost always stayed friends. Judas Priest and W.A.S.P., Motorhead – we always stayed close friends, even if we didn’t see each other too often. There’s always a feeling when you do something together. For me, it’s the lifelong connection.
With W.A.S.P., I remember it was my first time with W.A.S.P. in England – I just got off the Judas Priest tour, which was long and I wasn’t used to it. It was in the middle of the ‘80s and I didn’t know how exhausting it was for a singer. I just kept talking all day and doing interviews, so I was so sick when I got to England. I will never forget Blackie Lawless, he saw me sitting on the stairway. We didn’t have our own dressing room because it was a club tour so only the headlining band had a dressing room. He asked if I was the singer of the support band…if I was Doro. He said I looked very sick, and I told him I was exhausted. He told me I could lay down in his dressing room and would tell the rest of the guys just to let me sleep for a while. He gave me all kinds of medicine and let me rest until it was time for me to go on stage. I took a deep nap and I felt like a million bucks. I never forget this story, because he was so kind. Usually, if you know the support band is sick, you try to not get infected…if there is a cold going around on tour, it can be brutal. You can put the tour and shows in danger. But he was so cool – just to give you one story. Stuff like that is unforgettable.
People support each other, and I’ve been witness to many of these deep friendships and connections. All the people I work with, or people who work on our DVDs or anniversary concerts – I always stay in close contact. Working on something together – it’s something you’ll never forget. I’ve only had great experiences. I didn’t have a situation that didn’t work out. It was always working even better than imagined. For the new record, we are working on getting some great guests – it will be something unexpected and nice.
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