Greg Fraser is a founding member of Canadian Rockers ‘Brighton Rock’ who first formed in 1982 and basically hit the bars all across in Canada by 1984. From there it was a record deal with WEA records which resulted in 3 albums being released all with three big time producers for each album which was mighty impressive!
Like many an act back than once the early 90’s rolled around Brighton went there separate ways but in recent times Brighton has been active with selective shows with the Original Lineup! Now in this day and age of rotating lineups its cool to see a band that started out so many years ago still playing together at certain select dates…
Do check out the live Brighton Rock album “Room For 5 Live” in which Greg plays some brilliant riffs of rock. It’s basically a Greatest Hits album but LIVE! All the hits plus some of the heavier stuff from the much ignored ‘Love Machine’ album!
Thanks to Fraze for doing this…
Take it away…
1-Greg! Thanks for doing this. Looking at the Brighton Rock website you guys were playing a ton of shows even appearing at the old Sleeping Giant Hotel here in Thunder Bay back on Aug 4th 1986! I think its safe too say by looking at those early tour dates Brighton Rock played every nook and cranny in Canada! Any thoughts on those early Cross Canadian Tours?
We played Thunder Bay quite a bit back in the day actually and always had a blast. Those early tours were exciting but some of those long drives were brutal. Back then there was no cell phones or anything so we had each other to entertain ourselves. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as hard as I did on some of those drives with all the ball busting and stories. The crowds were always killer across Canada too.
2- Your first full length album after the 85 release(EP) came in the form of 1986’s “Young Wild and Free” release which was produced by Micheal Wagner. Wagner has done some huge albums. Must have been a huge score for you guys to snag him on the debut?
Michael was a lot of fun and brought a lot to the table. He was very encouraging and was a total team player. He really was one of the guys and I learned a lot from him. Going to be seeing him once again early 2019 on the ‘Monsters Of Rock Cruise’ that BR are playing and it’s going to be great to reconnect after all these years.
3- From there a ton of shows played and in 88 comes “Take A Deep Breath” produced by Jack Richardson. The most success you guys had been with this album. A more commercial slant on the sound. Was that the main reason was to get current with the sound of the day?
Jack was actually involved with some of the pre-production of the first record and when Michael was not available for the second record Jack was a natural choice to take the helm. I’ve learned a lot of the art of songwriting from Jack and will be forever grateful for the guidance and knowledge he taught me. It was never our intention to try to be current. We wanted to sound a little different from the rest so we would stand out a bit. Jack helped us a lot with that. He is a legend and will be forever missed.
4- “Hangin High N Dry’ is a great song. That chorus is so catchy it will ring around in your noggin for hours after. How did that song come about?
Nothing out of the ordinary. I used to have a little mini studio that we would demo new ideas with and that was just one of the songs that stood out. We would demo lots of things but we strived to sound a little different. If something was great but sounded a little cliché or generic it was tossed. Hanging sounds like BR and no one else. Extremely proud of that one and it still sounds great today.
5- More shows followed in 88 which is crazy as you guys were in that tour album cycle for a few years. In 91 you guys put out the serious rockin ‘Love Machine’ album produced by Toby Wright. You guys ramp it up and it didn’t do what the previous album did sales wise. Was that do in fact of Grungemania sweeping North America at the time?
There was numerous factors. A lot of our supporters at the record company were gone and the new breed that came in did not care as much for us and would not promote the record. And we were in transition with getting new management which was quite difficult as no one was banging down doors for us like before. The grunge thing was just starting to take hold and our music was becoming out of fashion, so the writing was on the wall. Looking back I think we ended at just the right time, although at the time I refused to believe it.
6- After Brighton Split for a bit you joined Helix in which I caught you guys here back in 1993. That was a great band as it was you along with the Classic lineup with Dr Doerner on Guitar, I know Brian released the ‘It’s a Pleasure doing Business with You” Even though you guys were pictured in the album if my memory serves me correct none of you guys were on the album. Guess what I’m trying to say is was their any recording done with that line up?
You are correct. Even though we are credited, we did not play on that record. That record was written recorded and produced by Mark Ribler out of New York I believe. The plan for the next record was to use the same guy and process of which once again excluded the rest of the Helix band. It’s a shame because it was potent band and we never got to record together.
7-First album ever purchased?
I think it was ‘Meet The Beatles’ or maybe ‘The Partridge Family’ both of which I still have. I still have all my old vinyl from day one.
8-If You had to go with 5 all time favourite albums what would they be?
1. UFO – ‘Lights Out’
2. UFO ‘Obsession’
3. UFO ‘Strangers In The Night’
4. Led Zeppelin ‘Song Remains The Same’
5. Liona Boyd ‘with Andrew Davis and the English Chamber Orchestra’
9-Arena/Stadium show. What was the best gig you ever witnessed?
It’s a tie:
1. Van Halen opening & blowing Black Sabbath off the stage on their first tour in Niagara Falls NY 1978
2. Judas Priest with Whitesnake & Iron Maiden in Buffalo NY 1981
10-Feel Free to Plug whatever your currently up to! Thanks again!
You can check out all things Brighton Rock at:
Be sure to check out Brighton Rock in the UK in September at ‘Hull Metal Heaven’ & also on the ‘Monsters Of Rock Cruise’ in Feb.2019
It was great chatting with you.