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Articles Home » 2010 Articles » Mills, Tony - interview (March 2010)
 
Mills, Tony - interview (March 2010)
British singer Tony Mills is one busy chap these days. Well known of course for his tenure with SHY, Tony has in recent times branched out to all parts of the hard rock spectrum. You'll see his name associated with many familiar acts such as the aforementioned SHY, plus of course he took Tony Harnell's place in TNT where has been now for two albums. Chuck in a few unfamiliar names to many: STATE OF ROCK, SERPENTINE, DOCKERS GUILD, and you'll see that Mills is the man about town. The catalyst in all of this is the record label AOR Heaven, where most of these acts reside. State Of Rock's debut album 'A Point Of Destiny' was released by the label in January 2010, Serpentine more recently during March 2010, plus there is a heap of recording and production work tied up with both SHY and TNT. Kelv Hellrazer caught up Tony just recently to find out what's on his plate during the early part of 2010.

How did State Of Rock come about?
Georg Siegl from AOR Heaven in Germany called me. He basically wanted to see Robby Boebel from Frontline on stage again promoting a new product. Unfortunately, they had lost their original vocalist, and he wondered if I might be interested in getting involved with a new product and some performances. When I heard the music, I was pretty blown, so I said 'sure thing'. The album was written in eight weeks and in another month I was in Nuermberg performing with the band. It was a trip!


State Of Rock

Will State Of Rock be a one off or are there plans to make this an ongoing project?
A new album is planned for Autumn and live performances for this year are also being planned.

Prior to State Of Rock, had you heard any of Frontline's material? They've been described as the German Journey, and I was wondering whether Georg shoulder tapped you because he thought you might've been a good fit, given Shy's 'Excess All Areas' and 'Sunset And Vine' material?
I'd heard a few tracks over the years, but I don't think I ever had any of their albums. I don't know how many vocalists Georg thought about, it might have been a stab in the dark, I don't know, but it all seemed to gel together anyway.

Are you now becoming the UK's version of Jeff Scott Soto but with straight hair and equally prolific in terms of output?
What are you saying Kelv !?!?!?! (lol!). I don't actually work with that many people on stage, but I do a lot of different work in the studio for various artists. Anyway, I'm nowhere near as tall as he is.

Is it a case of have microphone will travel.. Bahamitzvahs etc
Well, I'll admit to the odd wedding here and there, I've even been asked to do graveside funerals, but I declined!

You seem to have been very busy in 2009.. what else do you have planned in 2010?
I'm currently working on an album by Douglas Docker in Milan. He's a classical pianist that has written a multi album prog rock epic, sort of a star wars of rock called 'The Mystic Technocracy'. A great record, with John Payne and Greg Bisonette performing on the album as well. Plus there's a new album out by Midlands band Serpentine that I'm fronting. Their new album 'A Touch Of Heaven' will be out shortly.


Serpentine

Is there any truth in the rumour of you dueting on the next Push LP - 'Reflections' cover version? Didn't you used to sing for them once?
No, there's no rumour in this. I sang for this band in the mid 80's when they were called Series Red. That was only because my close friend Nick Lloyd played guitar in the band. He is no longer involved, so I doubt I would be too.

Can we get an update on Shy and TNT?
Well the update on TNT is that we finished touring last December, and the writing for a new studio album is underway, I think we are six tracks in. Plans to tour again commence in June I believe. Nothing has changed in the SHY camp due to Steve Harris' illness and is unlikely to do so until he fully recovers. I have the album to record at home - as all the musicianship is all but complete, and it is on the list of things to do!


Does that mean that there might be a new SHY album before the end of the 2010 year do you think?
That is very hard to say. It's on the list, as I mentioned. I'm trying to get to it.

Talking of TNT, do you feel that TNT got an unfair rap when 'The New Territory' and 'Atlantis' came out? Some critics dismissed them immediately, while others thought they were pretty good.. what's your opinion?
A lot of it is off the wall if you're outside Scandinavia, so it was hardly much of a surprise. It works real well in its own domestic market, but is hard to swallow outside. I expected this. I don't really blame the critics in their individual markets, they were probably quite right in their opinions.

Are there any bands you would like to sing for that haven't approached you?
No. Although I wouldn't be adverse to fronting a Christian rock act.

In terms of the Christian rock genre, were there any acts out there that you enjoyed listening to? It's a genre that seems to have lost a lot of it's glamour and flair in recent years, though Stryper are back with a vengeance.. it must be said..
Not really, I have my own opinions and approaches to such things, it's very much a personal matter.

Is there a danger of Tony Mills world domination on the cards and every band on the planet will sound like Shy?
I doubt that very much.. hehe..

Is Andy Scott still your hero?
Actually, he was never my hero, Brian Connolly was. And thank the Lord for that!

Thanks to those whose images were used in this article.

 
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