There is a new rock band that everyone needs to be on the lookout for. Josh Todd, best known as the charismatic front man for Buckcherry has a new project called Josh Todd & The Conflict. The new band has recently signed with Century Media Records and have many exciting things on the horizon, including a new album. The band was recently launched with Buckcherry guitarist Stevie D., drummer Sean Winchester, and bassist Greg Cash. Their debut album Year of the Tiger (Century Media Records) will be released on September 15th. Josh Todd and The Conflict is nothing short of an amazing, dynamic project from one of the best known voices in hard rock music.
Screamer sat down recently with Josh Todd to talk about the new band, his songwriting process, what fans can expect over the next few months and much more. When asked what made him want to put another band together, he said, “Passion. I wanted to make new music. I wanted to make another record. Buckcherry hasn’t put out a record in two years and it’s time for me to make new music. I’ve always wanted to put together a project that was heavier and more along the lines of my roots. That’s what The Conflict is all about,” Todd explained.
Todd didn’t start out thinking he would be a professional musician. In fact, as a kid, he was always into surfing. When asked what made him want to be a musician he said, “It was the writing that made me want to be a musician. I had a lot of dysfunction going on at home at the time when I was a kid,” Todd stated, “My first passion was surfing. I grew up in Southern California and I wanted to be a professional surfer.” However, his life changed forever at fifteen when a band at his school asked him to be their lead singer. This is something that he had never done before, but decided to give it a try. “To this day I don’t know why they asked me to sing because I wasn’t a singer,” he laughed. The band played punk rock and he wanted to write an original song on the spot, so he asked the band to give him a riff and put pen to paper and did just that. “It was a horrible song but it was like that moment changed the course of my life. I had a lot to get out and that was my outlet. It was amazing,” he said.
Todd is a very talented songwriter who has written many hits for Buckcherry over the years. It’s no surprise that his songwriting is some of his best with this upcoming album because of the passion he has towards the new project. He spoke candidly about the songwriting process and the influences behind his music. “I write all the lyrics and melodies to all my songs and then I collaborate with someone. For this album, that was Stevie D who’s also the guitar player for Buckcherry, and a longtime friend of mine since I was nineteen. We’ve known each other for a long time and we’ve really worked on our songwriting chemistry,” Todd said. He and Stevie D worked on songs together and this is what made up The Conflict. It was the way the band came about.
Todd uses his many life experiences, both good and bad, as his influences for songwriting. For instance, he explains the reasoning behind the song Fucked Up. “The motivation behind Fucked Up was that my life was kind of in disarray. Everything was fucked up. A lot of people that I knew for a long time were not being upfront with me and were just being, in my opinion, just shitty people. It was really a lot to go through, but whenever things like that are going on, songwriting has always been a great equalizer. It’s the reason why I do this. It’s my outlet and I just need a lot of peace inside. You can kind of see what is going on in my life throughout the record. It’s always a reflection about what is going on personally. The other challenge is to create something that other people can relate to as well,” he explained.
Todd states, “Stevie D and I wrote all the songs and it was a long time coming. He also co-produced the record with Erik Kretz from Stone Temple Pilots and we had a lot of fun doing it. After working with Stevie beating a lot of the songs into shape we started understanding our songwriting language. Stevie is a well-rounded musician and we are in the zone on this one…this record is a divine intervention with a lot more to come.”
The band has recently released the first video for the title track Year of the Tiger. The video was directed by Chris Cuffaro (Pearl Jam, George Michael) and is the first of three videos filmed in Los Angeles. The other two videos will be released later this year. “Chris Cuffaro and I have known each other for a long, long time, and he’s actually the person who introduced me to my wife…he’s such a lovely human being and really talented,” Todd said. He and Cuffaro got together for an acoustic show and they reconnected at that time. They talked about Cuffaro working on his videos and he did just that. “He made the performance videos for Year of the Tiger, F*cked Up, and another one for Erotic City,” he said. Erotic City will be released in the coming weeks.
The first song that will be released to radio is called Rain. It has not yet been released; however, Screamer received an advance copy of the album and it’s a hard hitting rock song that will be sure to please the fans. “It’s a really cool song and that’s the one that we are putting a lot of our big money into, and we’re actually doing a concept video right now for Rain. We’ve already done the performance part…it’s coming out cool and that’s going to drop August 15th when the song is released to radio,” Todd said.
Todd talked about how the music business has evolved over the years and has some advice for those who are trying to break into the business. The music business is very different today than it was back then. For young people who want to get into the music business today, he gives this advice: “You better be passionate because it’s not as easy to make great money anymore in the music business, so if you think you’re going to be rich and driving around in a limousine…it’s a lot of hard work. I encourage kids to first of all be passionate, be great at your craft whether that be singing, songwriting, playing your guitar, whatever. Be extraordinary and don’t rely on electronics to get you by…and make sure you get a good lawyer.” Great advice from someone who knows the business inside and out.
Buckcherry is on a hiatus right now with some changes that have been made in the band. Todd said that the next album will be in another two years or so. For the moment, all of his focus is on Josh Todd and The Conflict.
The album Year of the Tiger can be pre-ordered now on iTunes and Amazon as well as on the band’s website, so be sure to order yours now. “It’s a great album and everyone is going to be pleased. We are ramping up on the touring which will be coming up,” he said. The band will be touring all over the U.S. this fall. Right now they have a show coming up with Bush and then they have another show scheduled in Vegas with Frankie Perez.
This new project is just what Todd was looking for – something that was more reckless and heavier. The songwriting shows this, as it is something that has definitely come from the heart and soul. He states, “We are coming to every nook and cranny of the world to pulverize and mesmerize, put it on, turn it up and go kick ass. These guys are great people and amazing players and it comes off live in a big way. You don’t want to miss it.”
Be sure to check out the new album because it will not disappoint, and watch for a show coming to your city soon. The band had a lot of fun making this album and it’s evident in the music. Todd states that this is one of the best albums he’s ever done. Fans will undoubtedly feel the same.
Josh Todd – Vocals
Stevie D – Guitars/Back-Up Vocals
Steve Winchester – Drums
Greg Cash – Bass