Rock vocalist extraordinaire Jimi Jamison is best known for being the lead singer in the legendary band, Survivor. He grew up in Memphis, Tennessee, and the city is near and dear to his heart. A lot of his influences came from the great music of the South. In a recent interview with Jamison, he talked about his start in music, Survivor and his new solo album, Never Too Late (Frontier Records).
In 9th grade, Jamison was playing double duty as a member of the a capella choir as well as a member on the football team. Some fellow players on the football team wanted to put a band together, so Jamison decided to join and it changed life forever as he knew it. “The music was so much fun, so much joy,” he said. Hailing from Memphis, music was in his blood, and his mother was always a huge Elvis Presley fan, so that didn’t hurt either. Earliest musical influences included Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Beatles, Sam Cooke, Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton and Johnny Mathis. Both vocalists and guitar players made big impacts on his life at a very early age.
His career took off in the ’80s band Cobra, a melodic hard rock band with a metal edge. He laughingly talked about how they were heavy metal at that time in Memphis. He also performed in an early band called Target. In the early eighties, Cobra disbanded and Jamison auditioned for Survivor. This move put him on the map as one of the best melodic rock vocalists to ever come out of the music scene.
Jamison has recently released his amazing new solo album, Never Too Late. Jamison said, “The album is really good. I think fans will really like the rocking songs. The album tells a story, and it’s a good story.” He is very proud of his latest endeavor, and rightfully so. The album is good from start to finish and fans will be extremely pleased with the outcome. The latest solo album differs a bit from the previous one. “This one is a little more rockin’, although the melodic melody is still there. I really got into this album emotionally,” he explained.
The album is full of emotion and it’s obvious the minute you hit play on your iPod. As we talked, he delved more into the emotions. “When I write, it just kind of happens…it all comes from my subconscious – things I’ve experienced. I’ve written a lot about dreams I’ve had, and will even find myself up in the middle of the night writing,” he said. One of his favorite songs off the album is The Air That I Breathe
, and he’s a self-proclaimed “mushy guy.”
Jamison has had some amazing experiences over the years. One in particular comes in mind: “Last year I was performing in Berlin, Germany. I performed in front of one million people. There were screens and speakers everywhere. I remember looking out across the crowd and seeing people everywhere. It was absolutely unbelievable,” he fondly reminisced.
There are many great things in store for Jamison’s fans. He is currently working on a tour, which will include some U.S. dates, and that will be announced soon. Also, he’s a movie star? You heard that right… Jamison will be starring in a movie with none other than Christian Slater, and he will not only have a part in the movie, but will also perform the title track called Havana Mine, which he wrote as well. The movie is filming now in Puerto Rico, and Jamison is working on the music for the film. “I get to dress up like a gangster and carry a gun. I’m looking forward to being the bad guy,” he said.
When it comes to Survivor, they have just completed their latest tour and are talking about recording another album. To keep up with the latest Survivor news, check out their WEBSITE.
Never Too Late features Jimi Jamison (vocals), Erik Martensson (guitar, keyboards, background vocals), Jonas Oijvall (piano, Hammond b-3 organ) and Magnus Ulfstedt (drums).
For more information about Jamison, or to purchase his new album, check out his WEBSITE.