NWOBHM LEGEND AND JAGUAR-MASTERMIND GARRY PEPPERD gave ZT an exclusive interview, covering the past, the present and the future!
1. How does it feel to be playing Heavy Metal in 2011? How does it differ from the 80s (and do you still wish to return there)? Does the fire still burn?
It feels good and I’m grateful to still be playing it in 2011 at my age!! I’m also grateful that there’s still interest in the band after all these years, we’re having one of our best years ever. It differs greatly from the 80’s, most of the places we used to play are long gone, others have opened up of course but probably not in the same numbers, and of course the internet has changed music forever. On a personal level I find things are much more of an effort to do and having a young family finding the time for the band can sometimes be difficult. Do I wish to return there? Sometimes I guess, if only to correct mistakes we made and wrong decisions we took!! The fire does still burn, we’ve had some great shows this year, particularly our first show in Athens, it was crazy!!
2. A lot of bands of the NWOBHM era have reunited in recent years, with varied success. Did you know some of these guys personally back in the day? What are your thoughts on these reunions?
Although we played with a lot of other NWOBHM bands first time around we were only really friendly with two, Raven and Venom, initially because of the Neat Records connection and in Venom’s case because of seeing them regularly at Neat’s studio Impulse, in fact Cronos used to work there. With Raven we became friendly with them as we regularly played with them in Holland and built up a rapport. They were great guys and we all had a lot in common. As regards reunions I have no problem with that, after all we did it back in 1998, if it sounds good and it’s fun then why not.
3. How did the release of the old demo/live material come about? Are you happy with how these releases turned out?
I had an e-mail out of the blue from Majestic Rock Records who had obtained a copy of a Dutch show from December 1982 and wanted to put it out on CD. They told me the quality of the recording was ‘superb’ so I trusted them on that. The album came out as ‘Holland 82’ and it turned out that it was a bootleg, a copy of which I’ve had for many years, and as such the quality of the recording is not that great. We weren’t too happy about it but I guess it does capture a very raw manic show and people tell me they like it so it’s OK. Following on from the ‘Holland 82’ release Majestic Rock managed to convince me that it would be a good idea to put out a series of archive material, we got as far as Volume 1 before the label went bust, without paying us a penny!! Great eh?
4. Theres word of a new Jaguar album. Anything you can reveal about this? Any working titles perhaps? Does it follow the same road taken by your 2003 album Run Ragged?
There’s been word of a new Jaguar album for years, ha ha!! We’ve now got a break from gigging and we’re hard at work writing. It’s been the first opportunity for a while to get our heads down and work exclusively on new material as we’ve always had to be rehearsing a live set. It’s coming along pretty well and there’s no shortage of ideas, we’ve also started looking at possible recording locations too. I guess it will follow on from ‘Run Ragged’ very Jaguar sounding, whatever it ends up sounding like it’s got to be as in your face and as aggressive as possible!
5. Whats next for Jaguar? Have more gigs been planned for the rest of the year besides of the trip to Germanys Headbangers Open Air?
Well as I’ve said there’s the new album to get sorted which really is our priority at the moment and yes of course HOA in Germany in July, that should be good as the last time we did it was back in 2001. There are a few more shows in the pipeline for later this year and we’re starting to think about festival shows for next year. Really though we’ve got to get this album out as we’re starting to make Boston look like workaholics, ha ha!!
Thanks for the interview!!
Jaguar will play the Live Evil Festival taking place at the Camden Underworld 22-23/10/2011
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