Tim Owens: Let’s Call Him JACK THE RIPPER
Did you ever see the movie Rockstar with Marky Mark Wahlberg in it? Rockstar is based on the life of Tim Owens (Yes it is. Watch the fucking movie.)-an ordinary average guy from Akron Ohio. Tim was minding his own business singing in a Priest tribute band-when BAM, he was hired by THE metal band-Judas Priest. Priest rehires the legendary Rob Halford and-BAM, he becomes the replacement vocalist for new SPV heavyweight Iced Earth. Rip is no replacement. Every band would have wanted to score a performer that landed a gig with Judas Priest. Needless to say-Rip has no hard feelings and still counts Rob Halford among the five greatest singers of all time. I love the nickname Ripper-But Tim is no baby Halford. He is a powerhouse in his own right. His voice will slice and dice you, precisely (listen to The Glorious Burden). So Mr. Owens, we are renaming you Jack The Ripper because it fits EVEN BETTER. -Here is what he had to say:
MI: What is your birthday?
Tim: September 13th.
MI: How did you get together with Iced Earth?
Tim: The last singer left and I did vocals for them on the side. After Judas Priest and I split I joined Iced Earth.
MI: What’s your favorite track off of the new album?
Tim: Hollow Man because it has this crossover feel to it and good harmony.
MI: Tell us about your musical history.
Tim: After I graduated high school I started playing in a band. I was in a couple of cover bands and I was in a couple of original bands. I was in a Judas Priest tribute band and about a year after I quit that band I made it into Judas Priest.
MI: Does it feel weird to see something like your life story in a movie?
Tim: Originally it was supposed to be. They contacted me in New York and wanted to make a movie about my life and then decided to make their own movie. They wanted to make it a cheesy Spinal Tap sort of thing, so we pulled away from it.
MI: Do you have a message for Judas Priest?
Tim: I still talk to them. We’re still friends.
MI: Is Ice Earth going on tour anytime soon?
Tim: We are. We’re going to Europe in the middle of March and we will be in America starting at the end of April.
MI: What should everyone know about each of your band members?
Tim: I don’t know them good enough yet!
MI: Tell us something you want us to know about you.
Tim: I’m just a normal guy from Ohio.
MI: What’s the most memorable show you’ve ever played?
Tim: When I played Cleveland when MTV was there and all of my family and friend were there.
MI: What’s the most fucked up thing you’ve seen on tour?
Tim: One time we ran over a skunk with the tour bus and it got stuck in the wheel well and it burnt up so bad that inside the bus it burned our eyes and smelled disgusting.
MI: Have you ever inhaled?
Tim: Yes. I don’t do that now though.
MI: What are your thoughts on legalizing drugs?
Tim: Marijuana…. I wouldn’t legalize anything else though.
MI: Who do you think the 5 greatest vocalists of all time are, including yourself?
Tim: Elvis, Ronnie James Dio, Rob Halford, and Chris Cornell.
MI: Where do you get your inspiration as a musician?
Tim: I get my inspiration from looking around and seeing everything.
MI: Where were you when 9-11 happened and how did it affect you?
Tim: It affected me greatly. I was in Mexico and Judas Priest was on their way to an airport in the morning to fly to America and start a tour. The tour was cancelled, all the press was cancelled and everything else. I was stuck in Mexico for a week.
MI: If you could design a memorial for the victims what would it be?
Tim: I’d put the same buildings back up and see what they think of that.
MI: What do you think about US involvement in the Middle East?
Tim: I’ll support our troops, no doubt. Everyone has their opinion and everyone thinks they’re right. Should we be over there? I don’t know. I’m not a politician.
MI: We album has had the greatest influence on your life?
Tim: Screaming For Vengeance by Judas Priest.
MI: What are your thoughts about Arnold being governor?
Tim: He’s a pretty smart guy supposedly, so he should be able to do a pretty good job.
MI: Tell me a joke.
Tim: I don’t know any jokes! (That you think you can tell-I know you are a Virgo.)
MI: How has the music business treated you through out your career?
Tim: It’s treated me pretty good. It can always treat you better. I haven’t been screwed too badly yet.
MI: Do you see Iced Earth on future packaged tours?
Tim: Definitely not Lollapalooza, but I definitely would go on Ozzfest. The problem is you have to buy your way onto Ozzfest most of the time.
MI: What do you think about the old MTV as compared to the new MTV?
Tim: It’s changed with the generation. I can’t stand rap music and I can’t stand the stupid shows they have on there.
MI: What do you think about the new brand of metal coming about these days?
Tim: I like it. I think that stuff is a bit heavy for me, but they’re good bands. My favorite music is old school metal. I’d like to hear some young American bands doing it. As long as it has the word metal in it, I like it.
MI: What do you think it would take to have the old metal come back?
Tim: There’s still an interest. I don’t know if it will ever come back huge but that’s the glory of it because it will get bigger. If it peaks out again it may disappear. Metal never dies. A lot of new bands will be gone tomorrow.
MI: How did you get the nickname Ripper?
Tim: I sang it. I sang the song The Ripper and they just started calling me it.
MI: What CD do you have in your CD player right now?
Tim: Either Iced Earth or my own stuff.
MI: Tell us about the solo stuff you’re working on.
Tim: It’s old school type stuff. It’s just heavy metal. Maybe a touch of modern.
MI: When do you plan on getting this new stuff done?
Tim: First I have to get signed. Once I get this demo tape finished my manager will send it out to the labels and we’ll see which ones would be interested in signing. I’d like to stay with STV. I’d like to get it out by the end of the year.
MI: What’s your favorite movie?
Tim: Breakfast Club.
MI: What advice would you give to someone just starting out in the business?
Tim: Go to college! Don’t give up music but go to college.
MI: If you were stuck on a desert island with one book, one CD, one kind of booze, and two people, what/who would they be?
Tim: Michelob Ultra. I don’t drink liquor. I would bring my wife and my son. For a CD I would bring Judas Priest.
MI: What pisses you off most about the world today?
Tim: TV. The sexual content and language that’s on TV is way overboard.
MI: Do you see your son following in your steps?
Tim: No. I see my son becoming a golfer. I have a 15-year-old daughter and I have her golfing. I’d like my son to go to school and be himself.
MI: If you were God for a week what would you change?
Tim: I would bring all the troops back. I’d have 9-11 never happen.
MI: Do you believe in psychics?
MI: Do you believe in reincarnation?
MI: Why don’t you believe in reincarnation?
Tim: I just don’t.
MI: Have you ever had a paranormal experience?
Tim: I think maybe I have. I feel like sometimes that I have.
MI: What person would you bring back from the dead?
Tim: I’d bring my cousin Mike back. He died when I was a kid. He’d be pretty excited about my music career.
MI: Name two groups out of the 60’s that you feel have been important to the evolution of music.
Tim: Obviously the Beatles and Jimmy Hendrix.
MI: What do you think the best thing to happen to Rock ‘n’ Roll is?
Tim: Jimmy Hendrix’s guitar playing because it’s changed a whole lot of guitar players. It brought a whole new style.
MI: Whom in the world would you most like to dump a bucket of flesh eating ants on?
Tim: Bin Laden.
MI: What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Tim: My son.
MI: If you had one million dollars to donate to charity, what charity would it be?
Tim: The Tim Ripper Owens weekend of fun charity (laughs). No, I would donate to the MS.
MI: Tell me about the worst job you’ve ever had.
Tim: Water proofing basements. Digging concrete up was pretty hard.
MI: If you could have lunch with anyone, living or dead, who would they be?
Tim: I would like to have lunch with Elvis.
MI: If you could be a super hero who would it be?
Tim: Invisible Man. There’s a ton of things I could do.
MI: If there was a movie made about your life whom would you want to play the part and what would the theme song be?
Tim: I would want Don Knotts to play me and I would have the theme to Three’s Company.
MI: What message would you like to send to your fans?
Tim: Go buy the Glorious Burden album. It’s probably the best vocals I have ever done and quite possibly the best record I’ve ever sung on.
MI: What is your favorite quote?
Tim: He’s crazy like a fox.
MI: What’s the web address for the band?
Thanks Tim. You rock, and I know that Marky Mark and his funky bunch can’t lift a finger to you when the vocals hit the mic. We hope to see you live in the states soon.
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