Delve Into The Darkness: Interview With Rufus Tiger Taylor
April 3, 2018
Multi-platinum selling artists The Darkness will be making at stop at the Cleveland Agora on April 14th as a part of their Tour de Prance! North American Tour to support their latest album Pinewood Smile.
We had a chance to talk with drummer Rufus Tiger Taylor to discuss the bands upcoming show as well as his career and playing his first show with his famous father; Roger Taylor from Queen.
Greg Drugan: We are excited for Tour de Prance! Are there going to be any changes from the European to the American leg of the tour?
Rufus Tyler: Justin was battling with a health problem for the entire last tour which didn’t make his job very easy. He handled his health issues and all the shows like a champ, of course, and no one knew he was struggling apart from us. Since then he’s had it taken care of; a good recovery and now our spearhead is back to "hero form" and sharper than ever!
GD: What can fans expect from this show?
RT: Fans can expect a good old-fashioned live rock show. No clicks or backing tracks. Just a fun, energetic show, buckets of solos, loud setlist, even louder clothes and in my opinion the best frontman on the planet. You never know what he’s going to do next; every show's different.
GD: What is the main difference between European and American audiences that you have seen?
RT: It depends more on where you are but usually if you put on a good show they’ll give a good reaction. I guess there might be more snobby audiences in Europe than in the US. I can’t remember a bad gig in the States. Just like us they’re always up for a good time.
GD: The Darkness has put out another great album in Pinewood Smile. What is your favorite song on the album, and why?
RT: I like all of the main album, but if I had to make a choice it would be "Buccaneers of Hispaniola" or "Japanese Prisoner of Love." “Buccaneers" because it’s fast, punchy and heavy as hell. “Japanese" because it’s like a short rock opera with a big head banging ending!
GD: What is your favorite song to play live, and why?
RT: Probably “Buccaneers" because it’s like an angry, caged beast. We’re still taming it!
GD: Is there one particular item or thing that you have to take with you while you’re out on the road?
RT: My iPad! It sounds silly but there’s a lot of flights and travelling on the road so I use Netflix.....a lot!
GD: Besides your father, who are some of your musical influences?
RT: Taylor Hawkins and Dave Grohl are like older brothers to me; they always showed interest and helped out. Mostly just listening to all my favourite drummers.
GD: What is the first concert you ever saw?
GD: Do you play any other instruments besides the drums?
RT: Besides the drums I play more piano than anything else.
GD: When did you know that you were ready to get behind the kit and tour with Queen in 2011?
RT: I had already played a lot of the Queen songs early and Brian hired me for a couple of tours when I was 17. I had no idea I’d ever play with them. It was Brian and my Dad who made the decision to have percussion and more BVs throughout the set. I could also step in on the kit when Dad wanted to sing something, which we did a lot.
GD: How did you end up joining The Darkness? Was there an audition process?
RT: I was in Sydney at the time Dan called. He mentioned a mutual friend, Pete, who told them about me when they were looking for a new drummer. They had a press gig in London in two days. They were playing six or so songs from the new album. I had to learn them on the long flight home, then meet the guys for the first time and do the gig a few hours later! I guess you could say that was my audition, thrown in the deep end...sink or swim! Still the best way.
GD: What’s the best thing about being in The Darkness?
RT: We knew very quickly we all had similar humour both on stage and off. When you tour together a lot, that’s a big deal. There’s also nothing fake about the band, we write our own songs, play what we love, play it live and have a lot of fun doing it. For me that’s what it’s all about.
GD: Rufus, thank you so much for your time and we're excited to see you and the rest of the guys in The Darkness in a few weeks!
Be sure to catch The Darkness at the Cleveland Agora, they're one of the most fun live acts around! You can purchase tickets by clicking here.
Interview By Greg Drugan Photo Credit: Simon Emmett