RON 'BUMBLEFOOT' THAL has completed work on his first instrumental solo album in nearly three decades
In a brand new interview with Brazil’s Ibagenscast, former GUNS N’ ROSES and current ART OF ANARCHY guitarist Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal spoke about the progress of his first solo instrumental album in nearly three decades. He said in part. “I started working on an instrumental album, because every time I write a song and want to make it instrumental, I come up with a nice melody and then I’m, like, ‘Oh, I’ve gotta sing that.’ And then it ends up being a vocal song. And then there’s really not a lot of melody in the guitar part… So this time it’s, like, I just put a big piece of tape over my mouth as I was writing and coming up with ideas. And that’s it. I did put out two songs — I put out two instrumental songs in 2019 and 2020… So now we’ve got this new album, which has been done for months, but I’m just so busy with the other bands and things and taking care of them that it has slowed down the main business part of what I’m doing. Musically, the album is done, and now it’s just about finishing the artwork and making the animated music videos.”
Elaborating on his plans for the album rollout, Thal said: “I have a guy that’s making a video game for the first single that you can play — like a simple little video game where the song is playing and you’re playing this video game along with it. So I’m trying to do things that’ll make the album fun for people and not just listening, but actually participating in some way — more of an experience for them. So I’m doing all of that. And it’s holding up releasing the album. I wanted this album out two years ago. And the last time I did an entirely instrumental album was my first one on Shrapnel Records in 1995. So it’s gonna be almost 30 fucking years by the time this thing gets out. And I’m not getting any younger. I’m worried that I’m gonna die before this thing comes out, and it’ll never come out. So that will be coming out.”
Bumblefoot went on to say that his upcoming solo LP will feature “a couple of nice guests”. But he clarified: “Not too many. I didn’t want it to be this whole big, every song having someone. So I just limited it to three guitar players, a keyboardist, a drummer, besides Kyle Hughes. He played on the whole album and he is just the most amazing drummer. He’s incredible. There is nothing this guy cannot play and he’s the best. He’s my guy. He’s my go-to guy.”
Thal joined GUNS N’ ROSES in 2006 and appeared on 2008’s “Chinese Democracy”, an effort which contained music that had been written before he came into the group. The disc took 13 years to make and was only a modest seller, moving just around half a million copies.
Thal never officially announced his departure from the GN’R, but a source confirmed to Detroit music writer Gary Graff back in 2015 that the guitarist had been out since the end of the band’s second Las Vegas residency in 2014.
Thal later revealed that he was focusing on his solo career and other projects after spending eight years playing in GUNS.
Thal spent a few years recording and touring with SONS OF APOLLO, which also featured drummer Mike Portnoy, keyboardist Derek Sherinian and bassist Billy Sheehan. SONS OF APOLLO released its second studio album, “MMXX” (pronounced: 20/20),in January 2020 via InsideOut Music/Sony.
This past September, ART OF ANARCHY released a new single, “Vilified”. The song is taken from the band’s third studio album, “Let There Be Anarchy”, which will be released on February 16, 2024 via Pavement Music.
Joining founding ART OF ANARCHY members Jon Votta (guitar),Vince Votta (drums) and Thal in the band’s new lineup are vocalist Jeff Scott Soto (YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, JOURNEY, SONS OF APOLLO) and bassist Tony Dickinson (SOTO, TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA).