- Interviews
Axe's Bobby Barth

Bobby Barth is the guitarist, producer and songwriter in Axe. The band that have produced a brand new album after 15 years of just 'hanging out'. But he hasn't been idle in the meantime. Bobby runs his own production/management company, has built his own studio, and recently produced and helped new U.S act C.I.T.A break out a couple of good albums.

So Bobby, it's been a long time between drinks for Axe, eh?
Hey Andrew, no Man , we always got together to drink , we just didnt record!!

So what led you guys to reform?
We had always stayed in touch with the idea of someday going into the studio, but it never worked out, schedule wise, until this year.
With a few of the records I have produced doing pretty well, MTM asked about an Axe reunion record, I called everyone and we stocked up on beer and cut the record.

It doesn't sound like you have skipped a beat! How was it to get back in the studio after all thses years?
I was amazed at how much better everyone played, how much more mature they were, music wise...and age wise...If we could have been this together back in the 70's and 80's we could have chined the world. It was like we had never been apart, Edgar emptied ash trays , I yelled, and Teddy got pissed and went to sleep. The new guys didn't know what to think.

Yeah, great!? You have not been a stranger to the studio in recent years besides Axe. How did you get involved with the band Caught In The Act?
C.I.T.A. came to my attention right after my stint with Angry Anderson, the week I got back from Sydney, an old buddy called from Colorado and asked me to produce a demo for a band he booked, I flew out from L.A. and fell in love with the band. It was like going back 20 years and looking in a mirror. At a time when everyone was doing Alternative crap, C.I.T.A wanted to do songs, what more could I ask for ? I got them a deal in Europe and Japan, and have been looking out for them ever since.

Both their albums ahve had a positive response, has it been a positive experience for you?
Yes, its been great for both of us, unlike a lot of young bands who think they know everything, and are to stubborn to ask for help when they find out they don't, C.I.T.A has been open to work through what ever needed to be talked about, and have been like pros from day one.

How about their future plans, will you be involved again?
My company, Barth/Turner manages C.I.T.A., so I take an active interest in all parts of their biz. We will be going back in the studio this summer to do their 3rd record.

It sounds like you may have had some influence over the band.Does it help for a young band to have a guiding hand such as yourself?
Depends on the guiding hand. Axe had one, and it guided us into a brick wall going about 90 miles an hour. I think I have less influence than you might think, it just happens that we like the same music. The C.I.T.A guys were all Axe fans and started out learning melodic rock songs as young kids.

Are there any other acts you are or have been working with?
I do about 4 albums a year, right now I am working with a pop band called the Tremors and it should be out later this year, also a southern rock band called The Red Rock Roosters, also due this year. There is one other band we are just starting called Wishdoctor, its kind of a 9 inch nails / C.I.T.A., its gonna be fun.

Any you would like to work with?
Angry Anderson, I lost touch with Angry after I left the band and I must tell you I think he is one of the best guys on the planet, if someone has an e-mail for him, let me know. I would put him in the studio anytime... and thats a little easier now that I own the studio.

Back to Axe, what plans do the band have?
10. We are working on songs for a new Axe record late in the year (to start anyway). And we may try to tour Europe in the fall. Bob Harris (Axe) and Danny Martinez (C.I.T.A.) and myself went to Germany in March and did some acoustic gigs, we had a killer time, so I would do that again in a heartbeat.

What do you think about the scene there at the moment? I am seeing and hearing a slow return to classic rock.
The scene in the U.S. sucks, it has become a crime to know how to play your guitar...tune...or write a melody. I agree that it is slowly coming around, I have seen this twice before.

How has the response been to the album, in the US and in Europe.
In Europe its doing great, and here in the U.S. we havnt really released it properly, our company sells only over the internet, and the business is good.

What part if any, does the internet play for you, the label, and the band?
As I said before we market all of our acts via the internet and the N.E.H. Records website we all love the net, it helps us to be able to talk to the fans and find out what they are thinking.

What are your plans for the future? Anything you would like to do?
We plan a CD later this year, and I just want to continue to produce and write until I get sick of it.

Anything you would like to mention or plug?!
Just want to invite everyone on the web to come and visit the NEH web site!

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