Q&A - When do think the original line-up of Heart peaked on the road? Which bands do you have the fondest memories of playing with...?

I appreciate your accessibility to the fans for all these years. It's nice to see. Some musicians relish the chance to engage their fans and others seem to sequester themselves away. I can understand both approaches.

Some questions here for you:

When do think the original line-up of Heart peaked on the road? The best live show I've heard was probably spring of 1978, the California Jam 2 show. Was there a particular tour, gig or run of shows that stood out to you? -John G.

RF: Thanks for your questions, John. I think all the members of the band would agree that Cal Jam 2 was not our best show, just our biggest. There were many, many moments on the road that launched into a dimension that was other-worldly - transcendent. To name one city would be unfair to other locations, as, for instance, in Columbus, Ohio, we baked under hot lights too close to the stage. We were all dripping with sweat. The humidity in the over-packed room was so thick you could feel electricity running through the air. WE F*CKING ROCKED!

And in New Orleans, not long after they’d pulled the plug on us at Mile High Stadium, the Marshall Tucker Band had to try to follow us at an outdoor event. We rocked so damn hard there was no way anyone could follow us that day. By the time Marshall Tucker went on, the security fence in front of the bandstand had been demolished. The dominance was undeniable.

But my first instinct was to reply, “Heart’s peak happened in the year 2020, when Steve Fossen, Mike Derosier, Howard Leese, Ann and Nancy Wilson joined forces with Michael and Roger Fisher to put on one of the most incredible, energy-charged performances in rock history.

Heart spent some time opening shows and then time as a headliner. Which bands do you have the fondest memories of playing with (either opening or headlining) and which ones not so much? 

RF: Eagles were definitely one of the best bands we ever played with… Rush, still friends to this day, Van Halen, Eddie and I used to hang out once in a while, Little River Band (the nicest guys), Queen, they would stop in and visit every time in Seattle, for several years. Really, it’s kind of difficult to say. Most musicians are cool and we all appreciate the trenches we serve time in.

Ridin' down the highway
Goin' to a show
Stop in all the by-ways
Playin' rock 'n' roll
Gettin' robbed
Gettin' stoned
Gettin' beat up
Broken boned
Gettin' had
Gettin' took
I tell you folks
It's harder than it looks
It's a long way to the top
If you wanna rock 'n' roll

A lot has been made of the recent break-up of Heart. In the internet interview you posted a link to, you chose not to comment on the current spat. I don't blame you - it is a sad story and there's really nothing anyone can say about it. We weren't there and it's really nobody's business except theirs.

What I would like to ask you (since you have a brother and I have a brother, and I have found I can rarely go three days hanging out with my brother without us pushing each other's buttons) is to elaborate on what it was like being in a band with two siblings. You look as Oasis, the Kinks, the Everly Brothers and others and it's not often that two siblings can exist for so long together as friends when dealing with the ups and downs of the music business. Your take on it?

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RF: I think it boils down to intelligent choices. We all have the power, every second of every day to choose whatever emotion, sentiment we like. When people choose division, we all suffer, as we are each a microcosm of the whole. That’s why when someone asks, “I’m just one person…what can I do to help the world?” Well the answer is simply, “CHOOSE HARMONY!”

My brother Mike and I were around 13 and 15-years-old respectively, when  we realized that someone was going to die soon if we didn’t make some kind of peace agreement. So we made a pact that has held through to this day. We invented a new letter. It is a combined d and b… db. Any word that uses this letter is a word filled with humility, compassion, grace and love. Our names for each other in that pact became, “dbash.” That is the name of our company, dbash Productions, LLC.

Isn’t it all about personal evolution, and what we bring to our fellow humans, all members of the Human Tribe?

Thanks and continue the great posts and music!

-John G.

Q&A- "I’ve heard you mention before that there is a certain tea that you like to consume. Where do you find this and what is it called?"

 

Hi Roger, I’ve heard you mention before that there is a certain tea that you like to consume. Where do you find this and what is it called?  -Sean

 

RF: It’s called Human Tribe Tea, and you can get it at our website: www.RogerFisher.com/store

 

Thank you Roger.  I’ll put in an order tomorrow. So is that the answer to your youthfulness and vitality?  -Sean

 

RF: If I were a salesman I’d say, “Oh hell yeah! Ever since I started drinking this tea Bradley Dobos and I created, I’ve been getting younger!”

But since I’m a musician, I’ll tell you that I created the tea with the hope it would be beneficial to health in many ways, and I know it is. But youthfulness and vitality is, in my opinion, attributable to one’s genes, how you think, how you exercise, your relationship with sex, and what you put in your body.

I also believe that we write the story to our lives. When you write the story, “I’m going to have a fabulously joyous youth; be very lucky with the ladies; a rock star in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; and healthy, wealthy, and wise in my old age," then you increase the odds of that happening.

The story I’m writing now will reshape the world as we know it, in a life-saving, positive way. I’ll be amazed if these dreams can come true!

Q&A - "Your Rig in ‘77 -‘ 78?"

Saw you perform at the PNE (Vancouver) around ‘77 - ‘78. Curious, what was your rig in those days. You were getting feedbacks by holding the neck against a monitor or cabinet. Thanks (was a great show!) -Rick Knotts
 Guitarist Roger Fisher performs with Heart. He is shown waist-up, wearing a green suede shirt and a heart pendant. Photograph, 1977.

Guitarist Roger Fisher performs with Heart. He is shown waist-up, wearing a green suede shirt and a heart pendant. Photograph, 1977.

RF: Rick, you compliment me by assuming I’m able to remember something this far back :-) My memory was already wacky before entering the “Old Age” era.

I’m pretty sure at that point I was still using three rack-mounted 100-watt Marshalls (not sure which models, maybe Rick Erickson knows), and I had a 2-12” floor monitor on the front of the stage, facing back, to keep the sound from going to the audience, so it would be more controllable in the PA. Also, having the git speaker box at my feet and loud, I was able to get wonderful sustain and feedback.

I think that was the day you and I met. I felt an instant attraction to you because you were so unassuming, grounded, and intelligent. Since then, you’ve become one of my best friends in life. You’re an inspiration for all who know you. Love you, man! Ladeez and gentlehoods, Rick Knotts, from RAIL!

Q&A - "Do you ever get tired of people bringing up Heart stuff instead of focusing on your new music?"

I've know people who get tired of folks asking them about "The Old Days". In this case Heart. Do you ever get tired of people bringing up Heart stuff instead of focusing on your new music? There IS, after all, new music, and it's good stuff. Just something I've wondered about.  -Scott B.

RF: No, I don’t tire of attention being brought to the band Heart, in any context. I realize that it was a big deal, and there is a lot of mystery surrounding “The Old Days.” It’s comedically evident how little people know of the truth behind Heart when reading comments on YouTube vids, and comments on Facebook. People have all kinds of strange ideas about what did and didn’t happen I suppose that’s true for any entity in the spotlight.

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As for the new music… man, it’s a tough game to play these days, especially if you’re a rotting old codger. The fact that bro Mike and myself believe we have any chance of success in this day and age is somewhat laughable, but it is that belief that keeps us living and breathing this craft. Whether or not people love it and jump on the bandwagon to make it a “success” is kind of irrelevant, because we’re going to do it whether we’re “successful” or not.

I mean, define success. My definition is: get up in the morning with fresh ideas about how to make today’s projects and assignments be innovative, original, and fun. Work with my best friend in life. Challenge him. Be challenged by him. Come home, and be with my girlfriend in a happy relationship. Success!

And one day we’ll get to go play live, tour the world. But to get to that point, we live and breath our craft. And if someone likes it, that would be nice ;-)

Q&A - "If you could sit down and share a cup of tea with and talk guitars, whom would it be...?"

If you could sit down and share a cup of tea with and talk guitars, whom would it be and what question would you ask? -Darren S.

 

RF: Darren, I like this question because it brings up a point that many will disagree with: the whole guitar thing; gear thing, to me, is a distraction. I’m aware of what a wonderland it is for most musicians, but for me, it’s a rabbit hole that goes on indefinitely and eventually loops. Getting incredibly detailed, striving for perfection in tone and aesthetics is fine, but micromanagement can be a kind of addiction. 

I love the philosophy of, “pick up whatever instrument, put it through whatever amplification, and make it sound good.” If you can do that, you certainly have talent!

What is your bottom line for making music? Money; fame; power; sex? Mine is simply the joy of practicing; writing; recording; live performance; and reaching into the mailbox to pull that royalty check out. It’s about the JOY. When I found myself chasing my tail year after, hunting the elusive TONE APEX, I realized it can never truly be found. I decided to focus on the stuff that the guitar and amps produce: MUSIC.

So, who would I like to sit down and talk music with? Paul McCartney. I think we could write something amazing together, and I hope that happens someday, which brings up another point; why believe that something like that will never happen. By believing that it could, you’re opening doors that otherwise would be closed. You’re preparing yourself for something that would be challenging, and in doing so, are raising yourself in a special way.

I know… I’m an oddball. But, because of my silly beliefs and desires, I’m very active in the music industry, and very alive working to keep myself in a position to be able to stand on a stage and kick some ass ;-) 

Oh, and I’d ask him to write an anthem with me :-)