STORY WRITTEN BY GARY GRAFF
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Aerosmith’s Brad Whitford and Ted Nugent band singer Derek St. Holmes didn’t get much of a chance to do their own band back in the early ‘80s.
Whitford rejoined Aerosmith not long after the release of the duo’s only album in 1981, scuttling the project — for the time being. The two remained friends, and Detroit native St. Holmes’ move to the Nashville area, where Whitford also resides, brought the two back together for a new album, “Reunion,” and is sending them back on the road.
“Y’know, Derek and I have been great friends since the mid-’70s and have always been in touch with each other,” Whitford, 63, says by phone from Nashville. “And once we were hanging out here together it was just the natural evolution of us sitting around and creating music, and it just got to the point of, ‘Wow, we’ve got to do something with this. We just went in and had a lot of fun with it, and it really shows.”
Whitford describes “Reunion” as “a classic rock record — modern classic rock” and predicts that “a lot of Aerosmith fans are really going to enjoy this record because all I ever hear is, ‘When you gonna do another ‘Toys (In the Attic)?’ When you gonna do another ‘Rocks?’ That’s What this album is. It’s very straight-ahead, stripped-down classic rock.”
It appears Whitford and St. Holmes are going to have time to keep Whitford St. Holmes alive and more consistent this time, too. Aerosmith’s North American tour plans for 2016 have been scuttled by frontman Steven Tyler’s desire to focus on his upcoming solo album during the year. The guitarist acknowledges that the decision is unfortunate, but says Whitford St. Holmes is a good silver lining, and they plan to keep the group highly visible well into 2016.
“We have absolutely zero expectations,” Whitford says. “Whatever happens with it is whatever happens. Our goal with this is just to be able to enjoy it and have a good time.
“We come from sorta broken bands in the sense that it always feels like somebody else’s agenda, and this is our thing and Derek and I are just enjoying being able to call our own shots and do what we want to do. So our goal is just to go out and have a good time and enjoy this gift of music that we’ve been given.”