Interview with BILLY STARK STONE & RICO BLYTHE Rock&Roll after Rock&Roll...

RocksFanzine: Who are in the band? Explain us something about Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe story.
BSSRB:  Right now the band is exactly what the name is… Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe. For recording purposes Billy is the Vocalist and Rico is Guitarist, Bassist, Drums (programming, etc) and we both co-produce. The Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe story is we are trying our best to make a Rock and Roll band in the year 2017 (and beyond) as exciting as we possibly can. Through and through. For the full background about us best to go to our website and peruse around there awhile.

RF: I found a clear mixture of sounds in your music. Sometimes it’s pop, others I listen punk, power sound, jazz, rock, even disco music. How you define your music and style?
BSSRB:  Wow! That’s quite a list of influences you are attributing to us. Jazz? Really!!?? That’s a new one for us and power sound is a genre/ label I have not heard of. Well, to answer your question which is somewhat multi-layered …………like most others (I use the word most very lightly) we don’t like labels and being defined by a particular genre, even though I get it and why it’s done now.There is so much out there and if you go into a supermarket and want a certain product you’d like to know what aisle it’s in. If I want a jar of peanut butter it doesn’t help me to be wandering the household supplies section. Having said that we consider ourselves Post Rock and Roll Rock and Roll…Rock and Roll AFTER Rock and Roll.
One of our main points is that everything that has happened had to have happened before we could come along and put an exclamation point on it all. We are influenced by everything even the things we DISLIKE. I don’t see us as some weird underground niche thing that you have to “GET’… either you love or us and think we’re the coolest thing going or you absolutely hate us and think we are the worst thing going.There’s is no room for the middle ground. So, in conclusion I totally understand and appreciate you seeing us as pop and rock and punk (whatever that may be HA!HA!) and disco music etc…but we do consider ourselves a ROCK AND ROLL band first and foremost…Two four letters words that it seems one dare not utter now. We will obviously be fleshing out the band when (and IF) ever play live.

RF: You are from different places in the world. How was the encounter?
BSSRB: How was the encounter? Very nice I must say. I hate to keep saying GO TO OUR WEBSITE for the full story but honestly it’s rather difficult to answer this succinctly. But in brief I was in NYC and Rico emigrated from his place of birth Panama and moved to NYC and he had been attending shows of my first band ‘The Blessed’…we go to know each other a little and when that band needed a new guitarist (after a revolving door of guitarists in and out) guess who was the next to be called up?

RF: Our readers would love to discover how started your adventure. In what way you decided begin to play? And what’s the common point to decide working together?
BSSRB:  A lot of these questions really require a book to answer and are quite detailed, so I would suggest going to our website and reading our bio’s etc that will really go into all this in depth​​. The adventure started when I decided to become a Rock and Roll singer when I was ten years old and for Rico when he picked up a guitar at age thirteen.

RF: Your way of working — the way you writes music — changed much since you began, or you enjoy exploring with new sounds and styles?
BSSRB: Changed much? Not really…it has become more solidified. By that I mean we have known each other quite awhile and have written in numerous ways…now w/ 21st century technology and what not we are able to utilise all that and use it to our advantage. I think our songs resonate now more than ever and feel like we are finally hitting our stride and we have so many things we want to do. Someone needs to add a few more months to the calendar year. So many ideas so little time. What Rico and I listen to is such a vast range of everything and then some that I liken it to a couple of mad scientists in a laboratory w/ these huge vials.’Oh, let’s put some of THIS in there and maybe a pinch of THAT and BOOM……… Voila! A cool song comes out. Also we are so tuned into each other that we know what we are aiming for so we know what to bring to the table. The only thing we don’t allow is the word NO. We try everything and if doesn’t work then no big deal. We are not purist’s in any sense or definition of the word. How you arrive at the destination and whatever vehicle you used to get there is irrelevant…all that matters is what it sounds like when it comes out of the speakers.

RF: Our readers they are avid to discover different sounds to impact them. Why do you think you’ll be able to hit it where other artists (even famous) have failed?
BSSRB: Well. if an artist is famous did they fail? In our case I think we are the right thing at the right time. As I said everything that has happened had to happen before we could along and I think everything has happened. I feel we are in a period where the the mundane is celebrated and the mediocre applauded. The bar has been set so low that karaoke singers and cruise ship-esque bands are being hailed as brilliant and geniuses and artistic innovators that those words have completely lost their meaning. Now, I would never say we are any of the latter but there has been such a cultural shift that music is no longer viewed as anything else but another diversion. Also I think the Broadway-ization of pop music has been one of the worst turn of events to occur. I have NOTHING against Broadway but Broadway is good for Broadway. Country music rather New Country music has taken up the Rock mantle and is more and more like the corporate rock of years ago. So, if we say Rock and Roll is give or take around 60 years old (and I personally believe Rock and Roll is the world’s oldest and very first music but that’s a whole other conversation) we would like to say ,HEY, we’ve been down this road before and we know where that road leads to and that one so let’s try THAT one over there and see where it goes.

RF: What about your lyrics? Which things you consider in your words?
BSSRB:  Ah, the old what are your songs about question. Love songs; they’re all love songs HA HA! I have no idea what they are about ,I just write ’em I don’t decipher them. Of course I know what they are about but don’t like to spell everything out. One person might get a totally different perspective than what you were implying so just listen to them and draw your own conclusions. I don’t think they are THAT vague and cryptic that one needs to have a code book to make heads or tails of them but I WILL SAY that if one does wish to dig, some of the lyrics do have some layers and do reveal themselves in other ways if you turn them this way or that or maybe not and I’m just full of sh*t

RF: Your “eclectic rock sound” is competing with all this other classic rock bands. You feel that the audience is open to this kind of style?
BSSRB:  Eclectic eh? Well I think we are just as classic as can be as well as having a firm grip on what year and what CENTURY we are in. We haven’t taken this version live yet so can’t answer you on that. As I mentioned earlier either people really LOVE us or really can’t stand us which is cool and the way it should be. It’s funny, the ones that have so far been the  most negative toward us are the doofus hipster blogs who can’t wrap their heads around us because no one has told them to yet. I see the bands they do feature. And I’m not one to put down anyone ( regards to apperances) but some of these bands look like they just got off work from their job at a copy shop. Even gas station attendants have a cooler look and they all sound like they are rehearsing for their performance slot for some day time talk show. Ha! One blog told us we need to be more ‘Modern’ ugh! When you use the word ‘Modern” your expiration date has long past. It’s like it’s 1955 and they are hearing Little Richard for the first time after years of listening to Pat Boone and  Patti Page. The cool ones gravitate toward it but the know nothing know it alls just get even MORE confused. We must be doing something right.

RF: Tell us how was the recording process of your -very original- clip
BSSRB:  Our recording process as of now….consists of Rico recording the music and then in NYC we do the vocals and mixing and then for mastering we send them to Yoram Vazan of Firehouse Studios in Tel Aviv. Yoram has been a good friend of mine for years and is one of the best engineers/mastering engineers around. Now the whole writing process is a different process altogether. If you want see the behind the scenes of the making of the Revolution Rerun Video go to our website-sign up and we’ll send you a free download of the making of the video.

RF: What other things are really important in your life — apart from music — that help keep you motivated?
BSSRB: Oh the usual, my family, spirituality, faith observance, good TV, good movies, good books, good etc etc

RF: Are you preparing a next tour? Where?
BSSRB: Well we haven’t toured YET and WHEN and IF we will be playing live…subscribe to our YouTube channel and join our e-mail list @ our website for our comings and goings. We have a lot planned and you’ll be the first to find out.

RF: If our readers they want to buy your music, where they can do it?
BSSRB: All the usual suspects: iTunes, Amazon & Googleplay

RF: Thanks BSS & RB. It was really great to talk with you. Good luck and success!
BSSRB: Thank you . It’s been real!

BSS & RB little

Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe

Rock, Alternative, Hard Rock
From: New York, NY, USA

Label: Unsigned

Band Members

  • Billy Stark Stone – Vocals
  • Rico Blythe – Guitar



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