McKay interview [October 04]
Al, we love your work with Earth, Wind & Fire, especially your current
concerts with an outstanding rhythm section. In your opinion, what is the
difference between the Al McKay Allstars and the original group Earth, Wind &
Al: Well for one thing we don’t have such a large stage production as EWF…they’ve
been doing it a long time…we give what we have…live music played and sung by
live singers and musicians.
SG: Your wonderful last studio album ‘Al dente’ features 12 tracks including a
selection of hits from your long-running tenure as a member of Earth, Wind &
Fire. Do you have plans for a new album and what can you tell us about the
tracks on it? We hear rumors that a new album is scheduled for 2004. It will
probably contain a song written by Maurice White and yourself, that was born
during the recording sessions for the EW&F album "The Promise". Can you tell us
Al: We are working on a new project now. Maurice and I tried to get together to
write something last year…but nothing came of it. There is a song that I wrote
for EWF that they passed on that will be part of my new CD. All of this I mean
with no malice or demeaning factor about it… they are still my brothers…
Please tell us about your plans for the future (tour etc).
Al: ….Only time will tell…………plans are in the works!!!
From where do you get the power to work fresh and funky on stage every day?
Al: God is first!!…than much rest as possible and large amounts of
Thank you Al for the interview. More about Al at
Pleasure interview [August 2004]
Multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and producer, known affectionately as "Mo
Pleasure", began playing acoustic piano at the age of four and by his early
teens, Mo mastered several instruments including bass, trumpet, guitar, drums
and violin. More info at www.morrispleasure.com.
Morris and Peter/Surfers Guide are
talking about Mo’s new solo album ‘Elements Of Pleasure’.
Surfers Guide: You are playing so many instruments on your new album. Do you
have a favorite instrument?
Morris: I love playing music in
general….. doesn’t matter what instrument…… but if I have to pick….. the
Bass… touches my heart directly… ever since I saw Verdine White with Earth
Wind and Fire in 1976 for the first time…… I knew right away that I wanted
to be a bass player.
SG: Why did you choose ‘In The Stone’, by the way one of my favorite EW&F songs,
for your album?
Morris: In The Stone.. has always been one
of my Favorite EW&F songs… i remember the first time i heard it…. I went to
the record store and waited in line as they took the Records (yes records 🙂
out of the box… took it home… and i was amazed at the song… the
arrangement….. the message..in 1993 I did a demo in my LA apartment of In the
Stone…… this is when I first met Philip Bailey…. he came to my place …
and I played it for him… he told me "You should put this on your own CD
someday" he passed the demo on to Maurice White… and a few months later they
called me to join EW&F I couldn’t believe it…..so…. 10 years later… (of
course i redid the track) Her it is! It’s extra special to me because my good
friends Sonny Emory and Larry Dunn … from EW&F are on the cut….. I wanted to
do something different with it… so I added a South African flavor intro….
and had it go into a House party feel…
Is the song ‘Marocco’ on an EW&F album or is this song written by you and
Maurice White only on your album?
Morris: Maurice and I wrote Morocco
together about 3 years ago… originally we were doing a writing session for
Earth Wind and Fire…… but we hadn’t finished the song… I finished it
later… named it… and put it on my own CD. It is not on any EW&F CD’s.
SG: Which plans do you have for the future (tour, CD etc.)?
Morris: Right now… I am concentrating on promotion of this CD… I will be
touring with my Band Elements and I am working on alot of studio projects that
you will be hearing about soon…… including the next Mo Pleasure CD….
I just want to thank all of the EW&F fans worldwide.. who have supported me when
I was a member of the band… and still support me…..now that I’ve departed on
a solo music career….. PEACE !!
SG: Mo, thank you very much for the
interview here on ‘The Surfers Guide To Earth, Wind & Fire’.
interview in Goldmine Magazine. "I’ll Write a
Song For You: The Music Of Earth Wind & Fire" [January 1998]
A comprehensive interview with Maurice, Verdine and Philip by Chuck Miller of
White interview in Electronic Musician. "Shining
Star" [October 1997]
Maurice White is interviewed
by Michael Molenda in an article called Shining Star in the October 1997
issue of "Electronic Musician". The majority of the article is a question/answer session
with Maurice about his activities in the studio. An excerpt from the article reads,
"Luckily we were able to get the incredibly busy producer and music exec to share his
production concepts with Electronic Musician readers. Sitting in his new studio, with equipment boxes still
littering the main tracking room, the 30-year veteran spoke with all of the enthusiasm of
a brand new artist. It was obvious why his music is filled with joy."
Gunnar Homdrum 1996 © 2004