Interview with Joe Bonsall

with Joe Bonsall of the American Music Group… THE OAK RIDGE BOYS
 Photo credit: Jon Mir


Music has many new fans throughout Europe who may be hearing about
you for the first time. How would you describe yourself and the music
you play to someone who has never seen or heard you?
Bonsall:  The
Oak Ridge Boys have a long and storied history. We have sold 41
million albums worldwide and have charted over 50 Top 10 country
songs with the majority of these reaching number #1 We still play
about 150 concerts a year and four part harmony approach to country
music has become legendary. It is true that we have not toured in
Europe for many years but we hope to do more in the very near future.
I think our music and our career and our longevity will be very much
appreciated by European audiences.
 Photo credit: David Bean
How was the last year for you? What were your highlights?
Bonsall:  Our
Highlight of 2013 was celebrating 40 years of the 4 of us singing
together as The Oak Ridge Boys. Every town and every show was a huge
event. So as we go slamming into 2014 we are more energized then
 Photo credit: Jarrett Gaza
What is your latest CD and how’s it doing
Bonsall:  Our
latest project is called BOYS NIGHT OUT LIVE and will drop on April
15th on Cleopatra Records… The worlds largest independent
label. BNO is made up of 14 of our biggest hits rocking live and will
be released worldwide in CD format downloads and on Vinyl by
Do you write the songs yourself? If not, how do you go about finding
the songs for your CD? 
Bonsall:  We
have written just a few songs over all these years. Mostly we depend
on the greatest song writers in the world who are right here in
Nashville TN. These writers have always been very good to The Oak
Ridge Boys and we are very thankful to them for their incredible
talents. They have written our entire career!
What is the difference between your last CD and your current one? 
Bonsall:  Our
roots reside in southern Gospel Music so our last album BACK HOME
AGAIN reflected a tribute to those roots whereas the new BOYS NIGHT
OUT project reflects 14 our biggest hits done live. 
What will your next single be?
am not sure if Cleopatra will go with a LIVE single but you
know it might be cool to release a live version of our huge hit
ELVIRA… people STILL just love that song so hey… just maybe it
could hit again!!
What kind of songs do you like to record the most?
Bonsall:  We
have always been fond of picking very positive and uplifting and
romantic type songs. We are just not that good at singing about
drinking and breaking up and crashing the pick up truck into a train
songs. Besides… there is enough artists out there who ARE good it
so we tend to rely on the fun and positive side of things.
Bonsall:  Hard
to answer. Every song represents a special time and moment in our
history. The Ya’ll Come Back Saloon was our first big hit and will
always be special. Songs like Thank God for Kids, Elvira, Bobbie Sue,
American Made, Never Hurts to Hurt and so many others are all very
special to us!
How much creative control do you have over your music?
Bonsall:  We
have ALWAYS had 100% creative control. We have always been wide open
however to the positive input of those around us be it a record
label, management or even our families!
What do you think about today’s music industry?
Bonsall:  I
enjoy great songs and great singing… What a concept huh? I think
Country Music is greater today then ever before. So many talented
kids out there who have taken our whole genre to the highest level
possible. I am proud of all of them and I am happy that The Oak Ridge
Boys have placed so many stones upon that mountain over the last 40
If you had the chance to change something about the music industry,
what would it be?
For me personally? More girls singing!! I am tired of hearing
guys on the radio… I prefer women! I mean we have Taylor and Carrie
and Miranda but I am weary of guys singing about trucks and beer and
girls. That is just my humble take on the matter! 🙂
As an artist, you so many tasks such as recording, touring,
interviews. What do you like best, what’s your favorite activity?
Bonsall:  We
love going on stage and taking our music LIVE to the folks who have
come out to hear us sing. Most all we do including this interview is
a means to that end. SINGING! It’s all about SINGING! This is what
I sincerely believe that folks are going to love BOYS NIGHT OUT….
It is LIVE and ROCKING and it is the songs people love to hear by The
Oak Ridge Boys!!! 
for giving me the time to talk a little here!! Much appreciated. I
know we have many friends in Europe and it is my hope that we will
tour there sooner then later. Folks can keep up with us online via
our website or
FaceBook or
on Twitter @oakridgeboys You can follow individual OAKS as well
@joebonsall (me) @duaneallen @wlgolden @rasterban
Lamitschka for Country Music News International

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