hmv.com talks to... - March 11, 2022

"I’m very much a guitar, bass and drums guy..." - Bryan Adams tells us about his brand new album So Happy It Hurts
by James
James
by James hmv London, Bio "Like the legend of the Phoenix, I've just eaten a whole packet of chocolate HobNobs..." Editor, hmv.com

"I’m very much a guitar, bass and drums guy..." - Bryan Adams tells us about his brand new album So Happy It Hurts

Ever since his breakthrough hit 'Run to You' crashed onto the airwaves in 1984, earning itself a place in the first-riffs-you-learned-to-play-on-guitar hall of fame, Bryan Adams has built an enduring career that has seen him become one of Canada's biggest-selling artists of all time and an ever-present force in the upper echelons of the world's various charts.

Take the time he very nearly rendered both the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart redundant in 1991 with his hit power-ballad 'Everything I Do (I Do It For You)', which stubbornly refused to budge from the Number One spot on either chart for so long that onlookers began to fear the situation may be permanent (although it did eventually relinquish its stranglehold in the UK after 16 long weeks - Americans had to wait another fortnight).

His last two albums - 2015's Get Up and its 2019 follow-up Shine a Light - both narrowly missed out on the top spot in the UK Album Chart, peaking at No. 2, but this week he's back and will be hoping that the third time's a charm as he returns with his fifteenth studio album in all, So Happy It Hurts, which makes its arrival in stores on Friday March 11.

Ahead of its release Bryan took time out of his hectic schedule to answer some questions from us about his new album, his refusal to chase trends and his plans for a huge upcoming tour...

 

When did you first begin putting together material for this album?

“I had ideas floating around and a couple of songs that were booted out of the Pretty Woman musical that I liked, and a chorus or two. So when the lockdown happened I started assembling everything."

 

Was there any particular song that kicked things off on this record?

“I can’t remember exactly but it might have been 'So Happy It Hurts'."

 

Do you tend to have a clear idea of what you want to do with an album at the outset?

“Usually yes, but this time I didn’t because I’d been touring and not writing. The only blessing in this lockdown was I got the songs together and recorded them at the same time."

 

Obviously this is an album that was created during the various lockdowns, has all of that fed into the lyrical themes on this album?

“It was hard to resist, with all of our spontaneity ripped away from us, and us musicians not able to tour!"

 

Were there any musical reference points that have informed / influenced this record?

“I wasn’t trying to follow any trends, I’m very much a guitar, bass and drums guy, that is the only influence I follow.”

 

You’re 15 albums into your career now, how has your approach to making records evolved over that time, do you think?

“I wish I could’ve evolved a little more, but I’m more simian than I’d like to be. For example, I listened to a Cardi B record the other day and I was thinking I’d like to get one of those bass synths for my studio, but I wouldn’t know which one to get!”

 

John Cleese makes an appearance on the album – that’s an interesting guest feature, how did he get involved? Are you a Monty Python fan?

“John has been responsible for some of the best laughs I’ve ever had watching films and TV, and it was a joy to have him in the studio, he absolutely nailed it. Yes, big fan.”

 

You’ve worked with Mutt Lange again on some of the new record – obviously you’ve enjoyed a lot of success together over the years, what makes him a good fit for you as a co-writer?

“I dunno, it works. All I’ll say is you couldn't have a better team mate than Mutt. He’s an all rounder, a top musician, writer and an extraordinary singer too. I love when we get on the mic together and sing, it’s unreal.”

 

How many guitars do you own at this point? You used to play a Stratocaster a lot, do you have a ‘go-to’ guitar these days?

“I still run to my Strat, but my main guitar is a Gibson 1954 ES295, it absolutely rocks.”

 

We understand you’ve been back out on the road a bit since the lockdowns ended, how much of the new album have you been able to play live so far?

"We’ve been opening the show with 'Kick Ass', 'So Happy It Hurts' and 'Never Gonna Rain' have also appeared. So far the new songs are working.”

 

There are quite a lot of UK dates on this tour – including a couple of castles – anywhere you’re really looking forward to?

"The pandemic caused us to postpone so many shows, not once but twice. So let’s just say I’m looking forward to them all, it’s gonna be a great year tour wise. Meanwhile my heart is hoping the war ends soon.”

 

 

So Happy It Hurts is available in hmv stores now - you can also find it here in our online store

So Happy It Hurts
So Happy It Hurts Bryan Adams

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