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Talking Music (Scott Ian Feature)

Monday, 03 June 2013 Written by Heather McDaid

With festival season almost upon us and summer doing its best, June through to August can be a dry spell for gig-goers not keen on fields. There's a warm-up show here and there, and the occasional blinding tour to keep non-festival goers satisfied, but it's a time crying out for something different.

Thankfully, Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian has something in store for us this year. His 'Speaking Words' tour is currently winding its way across the country, offering snippets from over 30 years at the forefront of American metal.

Ian was also part of the 'Rockstars Say The Funniest Things' shows in October and November 2012, provoking jealousy across the board from those unable to snag tickets. Duff McKagan of Guns N' Roses talked about his own book 'It's So Easy (And Other Lies)' and Fozzy's Chris Jericho spoke about his time as both a rocker and a WWE star, including stories on Zakk Wylde and Ozzy. Ian initially worried about a lack of preparation, but those fears proved to be unfounded. With the great reviews that followed, it's unsurprising that he would want to take the show on the road and that fans would be rallying around in the same excitement.

There's just something different about spoken word tours. Take Slipknot's Corey Taylor as an example. His 'Seven Deadly Sins' book tour proved to be a huge success because people were given the chance to see him in a new light. Stone Sour allowed him to be more light-hearted on stage, and in a similar vein his spoken word tours allowed him to simply spin yarns, joke and laugh. He also has some intelligent views on more serious matters, like religion, but never attacks someone without turning the point back on himself. 

Watching the man behind the mask talk about how the final Harry Potter movie was rubbish compared to the book, or how Justin Bieber is completely different to Rebecca Black, it's easy to see why spoken word tours are becoming popular. They offer a new way to see a musician, and a chance to put questions to them that you've been hoping for an interviewer to ask for years. 

There is one name in the field looms over the rest, and that's Henry Rollins. Over the years there have been many calls for Black Flag's longest-serving vocalist to return to music, but he has instead blazed on with his pioneering spoken word tours.

Rollins balances political views, personal anecdotes and his own sense of humour on a range of subjects, such as his experiences with racism as a child, military suicides or his views on dating: 'I want a woman who can sit me down, shut me up, tell me ten things I don't already know and make me laugh. It doesn't matter what you look like, just turn me on.' Ever wondered what Rollins thought about rap and modern rock music? 'I wonder what came first - the shitty music or the drugs?' 

Behind all the jokes there is a drive and passion in how he talks that makes him a must-see in the spoken tour world. Here is a man who can inspire through devotion to his causes, or the heart he puts into hard-hitting stories.

You can own his spoken wonders on disc and have him nattering away in the background as you go through your day to day business. He is a personal standout in the musician-turned-speaker realm, and one many would likely aspire to be like in terms of success and popularity.

These musicians all reinforce that spoken word is another way to tour, one that allows the speaker a blank canvas. Some bands pack messages into their songs, others save it for their interviews, but here, in this arena, musicians have a platform and a new way to connect with fans. It's more direct and more personal, and it's certainly a fun thing to be a part of.

So, as Ian travels around the UK to bring his own stories to our cities, it seems a fair time to hope that more rockers, and musicians in general, follow in their footsteps. Having been to talks from authors and comic artists, public speakers and politicians, there's a lot of potential in music. No two shows are ever really the same, and for fans it's a chance to get closer than ever before.

Scott Ian UK & Ireland Tour Dates are as follows

Tue June 4th 2013 - NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE Cluny2
Wed June 5th 2013 - GLASGOW Arches
Mon June 10th 2013 - BOURNEMOUTH O2 Academy Bournemouth
Tue June 11th 2013 - LONDON Garage

Click Here to Compare & Buy Scott Ian Tickets at Stereoboard.com.





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Scott Ian, co-founding member for legendary New York thrash outfit Anthrax, will be heading out for a full UK ‘Speaking Words’ tour next May and June 2013. The tour comes in light of his highly successful spoken word evening at The Garage, London last month.
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