Legendary Rock Interviews: As a QUEENSRŸCHE fan, I was happy to hear of the news about the settlement and actually think it has the potential to be a rare win-win situation. Are you as relieved as I would imagine to move forward?
Geoff Tate: It feels really good to be done with it. [Laughs] To finally come to agreements and terms and close that whole chapter for good definitely feels good. It means I can move forward and I am very excited about that. I’m feeling good about it and am excited to move on.
Legendary Rock Interviews: Do you think there were some fans who were withholding their loyalties, so to speak, while waiting to see how the dust settled?
Geoff Tate: You know, I never really thought in those terms, because it honestly was a really difficult thing to get through, and one that took up a lot of my brain space and kind of…. You know, I’m a creative person and I live my life in that space, creating music and shows and presentations…. That’s how I live. The whole dispute was really like an anchor, in a sense, because it kept me from throwing myself into the creative environment that I normally live in. So, now that it’s done and we’ve reached a settlement, I can just take a deep breath and move on and get back to what I like doing, which is to create.
Legendary Rock Interviews: In the past three or four years in interviews, there was a lot of back-and-forth between you and Michael Wilton, Scott Rockenfield and Eddie Jackson about their creative contributions to QUEENSRŸCHE over the years. Obviously, they were clearly contributing to their latest album, but is it fair to say that both you and [former QUEENSRŸCHE guitarist] Chris DeGarmo honestly were doing as much of the heavy lifting as many people believe over the years?
Geoff Tate: When you have a band, that group of people comes together for a number of different reasons, [and] in our case, it was musically, Chris and I had a very strong, clear vision of what we wanted to do musically, and that vision was really about not having boundaries as to what we created. We wanted to write and present music that we imagined rather than what other people expected or thought we should do. That gave us a real positive jumping-off point for the band and everything we did that followed. We never really wrote records to conform to what other people or other bands did, we wrote records that we loved and felt strongly about. That was always Chris‘ and my vision, and being the kind of personalities that we are, Chris and I, we just did that and the other guys in the band fell in line with that, they were comfortable with that setup, and that’s how we operated for many, many years. It wasn’t like we were dictators or land barons keeping the serfs out of the fields or anything like that. [Laughs] It was not like that, it was more that it worked well, we enjoyed what we did. I’m speaking of Chris and I, and it worked so the other guys in the band were fine with that for a long, long period of time.
Legendary Rock Interviews: So it wasn’t an out-and-out battle royal for songwriting credits but at the same time it wasn’t the democracy that the guys say is so important to the band now that you’re gone?
Geoff Tate: No, it was never a democracy on the creative end of things… It was always a matter of, “OK, who has the idea that everybody thinks is the strongest?” If you didn’t have an opinion on it, well, then you didn’t have an opinion on it, and most of the time that was the case — there just wasn’t a strong opposition to anything, and to be honest, that’s still the way it was all the way up to, oh, 2012 with the split. It was always, “Oh, okay, great idea. Let’s run with that. Do you have anything to add? No? OK, well, let’s go with that then.” [Laughs]
Read the entire interview at Legendary Rock Interviews.