ROGER HODGSON Interview, All star Band 2001

ROGER HODGSON Interview, All star Band 2001


Breakfast in America - with Ringo: Supertramp co-founder hitting road with Beatle
By Carol Feineman - Mon, Jul 2, 2001

2001 Summer Tour


Roger Hodgson thought his path would eventually cross with the Beatles', but he never imagined he would tour with one of them.

Thirty years later, that's what's happening.

Hodgson, Supertramp's co-founder and a Nevada City resident for 20 years, will join Ringo Starr's All Starr Band for a summer tour that begins July 26 in Ontario and travels through Sept. 2 across the United States.

The closest gig to Nevada County will be at the Concord Pavilion on Aug. 31.

Last December, Hodgson was invited to join the band as lead guitarist. He calls it a nice surprise.

Although Hodgson has to learn 20 songs in less than three weeks - with just 10 band rehearsal days before the first concert - he is not nervous about the tour.

"It'll be great to hear the Beatles' and Supertramp's music played on the same stage," Hodgson said Saturday from his studio. "I can't wait to see Ringo play 'The Logical Song,' " a Supertramp hit.

Two other Hodgson songs in the set will be "Give a Little Bit" and "Take The Long Way Home."

Hodgson, 51, grew up in England listening to the Beatles.

"They were always a huge influence," he said. "They showed me how music could touch people's lives."

"The Beatles gave me an ideal to shoot for," Hodgson added. "They showed me how much good you could do through music."

Hodgson remembers a quote by Starr that said if the Beatles had a message, it was love.

"I always wanted Supertramp to carry on that torch," said Hodgson, who played vocals, keyboard and guitar and wrote most of the group's hits from 1969-83.

Hodgson considers the All Starr Tour to be another opportunity "to bring back the ideal of love in music."

The tour's timing is also symbolic of what's happening currently in Hodgson's personal life.

With the breakup of his 22-year marriage, Hodgson said, he was in a deep transitional period and considered moving to Europe.

"Everywhere I looked around me, parts of my life seemed to be dropping away," he added.

Last January, a friend took Hodgson to a four-day retreat in Nevada City, sponsored by Heaven on Earth Ministries. Hodgson said the retreat "rekindled the spark in my heart. I realized here was a path that had the answers to the many questions I had sung in my songs for 40 years."

He credits Anandi Devi, the ministries' founder and his spiritual mentor, with helping him "get back in touch with my spiritual focus and passion for life."

"(Devi's) retreat is all about love and reconnecting with one's heart. It continues to have a profound impact on me," Hodgson said.

So much so, Hodgson said, that his new spiritual path is affecting his songwriting.

"For the longest time, I had hoped to take my music to another octave. I'm finally getting in touch with the deeper place in me where I can let the new music come through," he said.

Hodgson joins storied bunch of All Starrs

Roger Hodgson's in good company with previous versions of the All Starr Band, chosen by former Beatle Ringo Starr. The bands feature several of the top European and American musicians from the last 40 years.

The first All Starr Band, in 1989, included Joe Walsh, Nils Lofgren, Clarence Clemmons, Levon Helm, Rick Danko, Billy Preston, Dr. John and Jim Keltner.

Three years later, the second All-Starr band featured Lofgren, Walsh, Timothy B Schmidt, Todd Rundgren, Dave Edmunds, Burton Cummings and Zak Starkey.

The third lineup, in 1995, was Preston, Zak Starkey, Randy Bachman, Mark Farner, John Entwistle, Felix Cavaliere and Mark Rivera.

In 1997 and 1998, the band included Gary Brooker, Jack Bruce, Peter Frampton, Simon Kirke and Rivera.

The fifth All Starr Band was Brooker, Bruce, Timmy Cappello, Kirke and Rundgren.

The sixth All Starr Band included Bruce, Eric Carmen, Edmunds, Kirke and Rivera.

Besides Hodgson, this year's band is Sheila E., Greg Lake, Ian Hunter, Howard Jones and Rivera.

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