Gary Hoey, world renowned rock guitarist has a collection of 18 albums to his credit, a number five Billboard rock hit with "Hocus Pocus" and is listed as one of the top 100 guitarists of all time.
In 2013 he took on the blues with his release through the Wazoo Music Group entitled, "Deja Blues." All original blues tunes which according to Hoey, "singing the blues has been near and dear to my heart."
His career has taken him on tours where he traded licks with legends Jeff Beck, Brian May of Queen, Ted Nugent, Joe Satriani, The Doobie Brothers, Foreigner, Styx, Stevie Vai, Peter Frampton and Dick Dale.
Hoey's latest release, "Living Like a Runaway" which he co-wrote and produced with Metal Queen, Lita Ford, has received rave reviews for SPV Records. Ford is a pioneer for women in rock and is a kick ass guitar player.
Hoey's music has been featured in films "Deck the Halls" with Danny DeVito, "Beethoven III", "Office Space" and scored the soundtrack to Bruce Brown's "Endless Summer II."
Examiner caught up with Hoey to find out more about his versatile career as a rock guitarist.
Examiner: Is Deja Blues the first time you ever performed the blues?
Hoey: "I grew up playing the blues, but Deja Blues was the first time recording a full-length blues album. Over the 17 albums I’ve recorded, there’s always been an element of the blues like on “The Truth” (American Made) and "Texas Son" (Animal Instinct).” The new album is mostly new material I’ve written except for two cover songs, “Going Down” and “Born Under A Bad Sign.” An element I love about the blues is jamming with other musicians and that’s why I invited some great guest artists; Johnny A, Jon Butcher, James Montgomery and Frank Hannon (Tesla)."
Examiner: Can you tell us what it was like to work with Brian May of Queen or the legendary Jeff Beck?
Hoey: "Touring with Brian May was like a dream come true that happened early in my career. He inspired me with the way he harmonized and layered his guitar sounds. And, ironically, a couple years later my album, “Bug Alley” was produced by Roy Thomas Baker who was Queen’s most influential producer. May was so great to work with, he even took me over to Japan for some dates. It blew me away when he let me play his guitar on stage with him.
Jeff Beck is probably my favorite and biggest influence on the guitar. Touring with him in 2010 was such a milestone. I used to show up early every day just to hear his sound check, which sometimes lasted an hour. I got married to an amazing woman, had 2 awesome kids and toured with Jeff Beck, I can die a happy man now."
Examiner: Your career has taken you so many places, what is that moment in your career that took your breath away?
Hoey: "Signing with Warner Bros Records in 1992 was a big deal for me, but when my single, a remake of “Hocus Pocus," hit the top five on Billboard’s rock chart, that took my breath away."
Examiner: How did it feel the first time you heard your songs on the radio or in a major film?
Hoey: "I was driving down Hollywood Blvd and all of a sudden I heard my first single, “Hocus Pocus.” I thought it was me playing my album, but when I realized it was on the radio, I had to pull my car over and I cranked it up. That was awesome! Scoring the music to Disneyland’s “California Screamin” roller coaster ride was an unforgettable moment in my career. Entering the theme park before it was finished, being able to ride the roller coaster to develop the music and receiving the actual blueprints to the ride from Disney was amazing. It was an honor to be a part of that history."
Examiner: You are one of the top 100 guitarists of all time. How does that make you feel and do you still have more to learn?
Hoey: "When I started out jumping around with a tennis racket, I never thought I would end up on a list of the best guitar players in the world. It makes me feel proud of the hard work I’ve put in. I’m still constantly learning and that’s what keeps me excited about the guitar."
Examiner: Tell us something you never told anyone else?
Hoey: "Whenever I eat a meal, I always leave the last bite on my plate. I don’t know why, it’s just a thing with me. LOL!"
On May 23, 2014, Hoey will be performing in Rockport, Massachusetts at the Shalin Liu Performance Center, 37 Main Street. Call: (978)546-7391
The Hoey discography includes:
Deja Blues (2013), Utopia (2010), American Made (2006) Monster Surf (2005) The Best Of Gary Hoey (2004) Ho Ho Hoey; Complete Collection (2003) Wake Up Call (2003) The Best of Ho Ho Hoey (2001) Money (1999)
Ho Ho Hoey III (1999) Hocus Pocus Live (1998) Ho Ho Hoey II (1997) Bug Alley (1996), Gary Hoey (1995)
Ho Ho Hoey (1995) The Endless Summer II Soundrack (1994) Animal Instinct (1993) Heavy Bones (1992)