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Backstage With Tommy Shaw

LA Premiere Of 'Anvil! The Story Of Anvil' - Arrivals
(Photo by Kristian Dowling/Getty Image

When I was working in San Luis Obispo, CA I had set up a phone interview with singer/guitarist Tommy Shaw.

Tommy is best known for being in the group Styx and sang lead on some of their biggest radio hits; Blue Collar Man, Renegade & Too Much Time on My Hands. At this time, Tommy was promoting his new group, co-founded with Jack Blades of Night Ranger and Ted Nugent called the Damn Yankees.

Well, Tommy couldn’t call in til about 12n, so I set up the “phoner” with my midday guy. Come to find out the midday guy was a bigger fan of Ted Nugent then he was of Tommy.

So, with what has to be the shortest interview of all-time, here’s how it went down.

DJ: Well, we’ve got Tommy Shaw on the phone. Tommy, great to have you on the show.

TS: Thanks, Man. Great to be on.

DJ: So, tell me what it’s like working with Ted Nugent.

(pause)

TS: I don’t know, man. Why don’t you ask him!

(click)

And that was it.

Now, Tommy may have been having a bad day or, like so many other artists, had been doing interviews back-to-back, in 10 minute spurts all morning long and received this “gem” of a question more than once. Either way, it didn’t sit well with him.

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