PHIL X: A COOL HEAD AND A QUICK DRAW

 

By  JENNIFER PRICCI   June 26, 2017

 

For Phil X, it started like any typical day would at Henson Studios in Los Angeles. Inside the teak-burnished Live Room of Studio D, Phil is blocking out a piece of music he’s about to lay down for yet another one of Billboard’s top recording artists.

 

And he’s killed it. All the session musicians have killed it. The Producer’s love it. The Artist loves it.

 

However, there’s a Record Label Exec on the burgundy couch in the D Lounge who appears to be suffering from a bout of Demo-itis. He wants to know where his tiny guitar lick went from the second verse.

 

Phil, routinely eager to please everyone within ear shot, says “no problem!”  He simply plugs in and lays it down again. Making everyone happy in an imperfect world is difficult at best, but when you’re a “Hired Gun,” this is how the job gets done: You lay it down until everybody loves it.

 

But this day is a little different. Grammy award-winning producer John Shanks will stop by. Phil has seen Shanks inside Henson’s storied walls plenty of times. Shanks himself has a studio there. But to Shanks, Phil was just another guitar player rockin’ a curiously amusing black t-shirt. And to Phil, Shanks was just another talented producer with a knack for guitar-driven pop. Until Shanks walks in to Phil’s Studio D:

gordon-brown

 

“You’re a funny motherfucker,” said Shanks. Getting Phil’s attention.

“What?!” 

“I just couldn’t stop watching your YouTube videos last night. Not only are you funny but it sounds like you can play and sing anything.” 

 

“Cool. Thanks man, it’s nice to meet you.”  

 

And that was their total exchange until the phone rang two weeks later. It was Shanks.

 

“I think I have a gig for you Phil, I can’t tell you what it is over the phone but come to my studio tomorrow...”  

 

*  *  *

The entertainment industry is famous, bordering on the notorious, for embellishing the truth. In the biz, everything’s on the table: fantasy, imagery, fluff, persona… it’s all good.

 

But there's another kind of embellishment, one that distorts events, turning real life into fake news for entertainment’s sake, like the term “Hired Gun,” for instance. Put another way, while similar, it ain’t your Father’s Gunfight at the Saddle Ranch Corral.

 

“Being a Hired Gun is like an old western,” says Phil. “It’s kicking the saloon doors open, taking on the bad guys. I love the term. Your instrument is your gun, it’s a great analogy.”

 

The artist is correct. It is a great analogy. But not when you conjure up a cinematic enhancement to an image of the Old West.

 

Unlike in the movies, easy shots were missed. The men just kept firing until they emptied their pistols. Onlookers were often hit. People didn’t know who “won” until the smoke cleared. But perhaps the most notable exaggeration – and the reason why Phil’s interpretation is so apt – is because it’s not the “fastest gun” that wins the battle. More than speed, it’s a “cool head” that provides the kind of enduring accuracy that survives. It’s the single most valuable asset for any gunman. In the Old West or New. 

 

And a cool head is what makes Phil X one of the hottest session and touring musicians on the scene.

 

*  *  *

When Bon Jovi released their 14th studio album This House Is Not For Sale last fall, it marked their first release without Richie Sambora. Very quickly, the band took the new music out on the road, first with a series of four intimate Listening Parties that showcased the entire album, followed by a two-month run of North American arenas. 

The post-Sambora Bon Jovi now features Phil X on several of the new album cuts. Phil X already had touring experience with the band, subbing for Sambora in 2011 and 2013, lending the band a talent for guitar so technically advanced that if you’re not paying attention you’d be fooled into believing it’s simplistic. So when it came time to assign a new lead guitarist to the vacated spot, the choice was clear.

What is not so obvious, however, is what the changeover entails. The upcoming documentary Hired Gun: Out of The Shadows, Into The Spotlight pulls back the curtain on more than 35 world class musicians all of whom have been hired for session and touring work. Combined, these musicians probably have had a hand in every album you’ve purchased post-1970, musicians you’ve undoubtedly seen on tour and likely never noticed. Simply, they are the go-to players standing in the shadows of your favorite stars, an indispensable part of the music you love.

Hired Gun, being screened nationally in select theatres on June 29th and available on DVD, BluRay and Video On Demand on August 1st, is a behind-the-scenes look into the highs and lows of touring life, the demands of session work, the reason why some ‘kill’ and others are left for dead, a glimpse into the kind of dedication required to seamlessly blend into the backdrop of some of rock’s most iconic musicians.

Phil X, who has recorded with such notables as Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Chris Cornell, Tommy Lee, Kelly Clarkson, Chris Daughtry, TRIUMPH, a list that would run the length of your typical screen credits, was invited by long-time friend and colleague [Producer/Guitarist] Jason Hook (5 Five Finger Death Punch) to participate in the film.

I caught up with Phil earlier this month in Red Bank, New Jersey while he was in town rehearsing with the guys. Over a couple of black Grande Americanos, we talked about life with Bon Jovi, what it means to be a hot session player, and writing, recording, playing and singing in his own band – Phil X & The Drills.

You’ve been a highly sought-after session player for quite some time. When would you say your session work really took off?

Around 1999 I was asked to come in and play on Tommy Lee’s solo record, Methods of Mayhem and it started snowballing after that. But it was when I did the Daughtry record in 2005 that things really took off. Everybody wanted the guy that did the Daughtry record. 

And it’s funny because people got specific; ‘Hey, can you bring the acoustic guitar you used on the Daughtry record?’ ‘Sure,’ I’d say. It got really specific.

The work I did on that album… making a heavy-sounding record with rock-n-roll guitars truly musical… it was special. This became my calling card.

 

What kind of “calling card” do you think a musician needs in order to be a successful Hired Gun?

 

Obviously, you want to end up on the short list… and everybody wants to be on that list. So you have to stand out.

 

I know a bass player who gets a lot of sessions in Hollywood just because he knows where to order lunch. People are like; ‘let’s get that guy, he knows the best places.’ It’s not even about bass anymore at that point, right? 

 

… People like people and I make people laugh, make everybody feel good and I do the job. Which is; I’m handed a piece of music, I listen and now it’s what can I do to make it better? How do I make the verse more dynamic? How do I make the chorus the payoff? And how do I do all this while complementing the vocal because it’s the vocal that’s king. 

 

Have you ever been fired?

 

… I don’t think so. Liberty DeVitto (Billy Joel) says something really amazing in Hired Gun, ‘in rock-n-roll you don’t get fired, you just don’t get called back’. And that happens but I don’t think that’s ever happened to me. 

It’s interesting you mention Lib. His story in Hired Gun is particularly heartbreaking and really drives home what a thankless job this can be. For you as a musician, I imagine this work is incredibly fulfilling. But is there another side of it where you may wish: ‘It’d be nice if people knew who I was.’

Well, it’s like [being] a Superhero, right? It’s nice to hear a thank you, but you don’t expect it. You just want to save the world. 

So, you compartmentalize what you’re doing and remember your job; to take this artist’s record to the next level. And get paid. And provide for your family. And that’s the bonus.

But you get to make music… And I get to leave feeling creatively productive. And I feel good. That’s the bottom line. I think if you go in with a different mentality, like; ‘why don’t people recognize me at the airport?’ then you’re going to be frustrated. 

Your first gig as a Hired Gun – technically – well, is it fair to say it was for your Dad? He being an accomplished Bouzouki player and needing a guitarist… even if you were only seven.

Well first, you have to be paid to be a Hired Gun and my Dad never paid me, but yes, my Dad influenced me greatly as a child. Not much in the technique department but in musicality and being an entertainer.  I remember one time he said, “Son… you can’t just stand there. People want to see something special as well as hear something special.”  

 

Then next time he saw me he asked, “Ok… What the hell you doing up there? Gymnastics?!”  

Needless to say, I found a middle ground that made him proud.

 

I’d say so. How is it that you got the gig with Bon Jovi?

 

Jon Bon Jovi called John Shanks because they’d worked on so many records together. Jon said; ‘You know everybody. Who’s the guy who can step in and do this’?’ Shanks was like ‘you gotta get this guy Phil X.’ 

 

I didn’t audition. It was just on Shanks’ word that I was the guy. 

So, this was in 2011, when you were temporarily filling in for Richie. And then you filled in for him again in 2013. But on Bon Jovi’s last tour, you’re really the guy now. You’re the lead guitar player. In your opinion, how has the dynamic of the band changed through what was a fairly difficult time for – not only Jon – but for the other members as well?

 

Well Jon’s become so easy-going on stage because the band delivers night after night. We’re rockin’ hard and working hard.

 

[And] he makes mistakes too. Then he’ll look at me with a bit of a smile and go; ‘yeah, that was me.’ He’s become that [easy going] guy… it’s an incredible time to be on stage with the band. It’s just awesome.  

I love the dynamic between the two of you, there’s an undeniable frontman/lead guitarist chemistry. As founder of Phil X & The Drills, what would you say is the biggest difference between being on stage as a frontman and being on stage in a supporting role?

 

There’s a huge difference. I’ve noticed that it doesn’t matter what the hell is happening on stage, people are watching Jon. I could be whipping out the solo of all solos and if he’s in the stands, nobody’s watching this [Phil makes an air-guitar gesture], which is amazing. He commands that and deserves [that acknowledgment]. 

 

I read this really cool Harold Ramis thing when he did stand-up. He said “it’s all about killing. But not only killing the audience, it’s killing the next comedian and the comedian before you, [making] everybody forget everybody else."

 

So when I go on stage with The Drills, that’s my job. [But] when I go on stage with Bon Jovi, that’s Jon’s job. 

 

And as an accomplished artist yourself, can playing somebody else’s catalog night after night become creatively frustrating? Is there something you do to make sure your Hired Gun work stays interesting and fun while also making sure you don’t lose sight of your individuality? 

I know how important your dic-taphone is to you when it comes to putting down ideas for your own music as they come to you.  Will you show me some of the last ideas you had?

My dic-taphone … These are the last few ideas I have going on here [scrolling through phone]. You know what’s funny? Some of these are called “Super Cool Riff with A Voc Like the Devil” or “Killer Super Low Sync Octave Riff” here’s “Cool Swing Melody and Chords.”

 

A swing melody. You have a 6/8 on there?

I do have a 6/8 on here! And… I have a song called “Broken Arrow,” “If the World Was Upside Down,” “Find A Way to Feel Whole” …

“Find A Way to Feel Whole” … that almost sounds like, well most of your songs are kind of happy. 

I have angry songs [and laughs].

You do but you don’t really have sad songs. Generally they’re upbeat. But what if you have an idea that starts to become difficult to write; “Swatted Fly” for example. It sounds like there’s a lot of pain there. 
 

 

I know how much you enjoy connecting with your fans through music. And you enjoy talking with fans before shows. Now that's one thing at The Viper Room but you can’t exactly roam the concourse at Madison Square Garden. So how do you satisfy that desire then?

Again, it goes back to being the front guy and being the side guy. I don’t [always] need to go out and work the crowd.

My ex-wife and I had a band called Powder. When you move to Los Angeles from Toronto to be in a band, you quickly realize that people from all over the world move there to be in a band. Open up LA Weekly and there’s 20,000 bands playing every week, 200 clubs with five bands a night, Monday to Sunday. You have to stand out. I learned the whole “stand out” trick then. 

In the beginning, you get on the phone and call all your friends; ‘Can you come to our gig? Can you come to our gig?’ – just so there’s bodies in there. And they come – even though they don’t want to – but in the end they’re glad they did. 

The shift becomes; when you know everybody in line because you invited them versus walking out front and you don’t know anyone in line. And they all came to see you. And you can still walk around and be “just some guy.” Then it turns into; you don’t know anybody in line, but they all know you. And this is just going tier by tier by tier.

You had this great momentum with Powder, you’re building an audience in an impossible market. So where were the record labels?
 

It is a weird industry. Almost weirder now. To what extent do feel new media compromised the arts. For example: Any artist big or small is able to pull up streaming data from the many music subscription services. And this can be helpful, when used the right way. But if you take that data and put it in the label’s hands, or a writer's hands or producer’s… they can just start writing carbon copies of hit songs instantaneously. Do you feel creativity in this business has been compromised? Is there a way you use new or social media to inform your own decision making when it comes to your craft?

 

The music “Business” has always been a compromise. It just changes color. I love mini albums, EP’s, just 20 minutes of music to cover an average America's time in the car going from point A to point B. That's why The Drill’s first two CD's were as such.

 

Before the third album, We Play Instruments N Sh!t, I tweeted a question to our fans: “A new CD is coming. Do you want a mini album or a full-length album?” The answer was 80% full-length so my love and intention for the mini album was thwarted by our fans. And that’s great, that’s what they wanted, that’s what they got.

 

The cover art for We Bring The Rock 'n' Roll was an art contest. I love when fans feel a part of the creation process.

Speaking of being part of the creation process, you have a number of endorsement deals where you’re highly involved. How did that come about?

The endorsement thing is wonderful and can be lucrative. If you’re with the right company you truly feel like you are part of a family. 

Framus was the first guitar company that offered to build me the guitar of my dreams with no compromise.  Prior companies always told me they could do this but couldn’t do that. And it was usually a very important element that I required that got the big fat “no.”  Framus is a group of incredible people making incredible instruments.  They even call me as a consultant when they’re working on something new.  

Friedman Amps was a joint effort where I was in [Owner/Founder] Dave Friedman’s shop playing my guitar into just a chassis he was sitting in front of - soldering iron in hand – switching components in and out. Until this alligator clip went from point A to point B and voila! Magic!

The one thing I can tell you for sure is that it’s way cooler if they come knocking on your door than if you go knocking on theirs.  

And I know you have your own line of pickups.

 

Yeah, it’s pretty amazing. With Arcane, [Owner/Founder] Rob Timmons and I just started talking and geeking out over pickups. He wound a pickup by hand just for me and I was amazed, mostly by the difference in the character of a pickup hand wound in a small shop as opposed to a machine in a factory. The first one – my PX90 – was so great I started selling it in my online store.

 

Then came the PX100 which is a PX90 in a humbucker size, followed by my humbuckers the PX-8 and PX SUPER-8. All on sale in my store, all in most of my guitars.

 

The two words I can use to describe my pickups is speak and respond.  They speak to my ears and respond to my hands. 

I love talking to you about gear. But what I find truly interesting is that you’re actually a rather “bare bones” player. Yet you’re still able to achieve the most unbelievable tones. For the most part, no whammy bar, one pick-up, two pedals…

Being a “bare bones” player actually originated from the desire to run and jump around and not be stuck at a pedal board.  I can get whammy effects from “behind the nut” pulls and tuning peg winding and crazy vibrato effects from my hands.  I get different sounds from sparkly clean to fuck-you-angry to the famous “Woman” tone with just my volume and tone controls and where I pick on the guitar between the bridge and the neck and how hard I strike the strings.  

 

It really wasn’t something I practiced in my bedroom growing up. Just the product of a sound I’d want to hear at that moment.

You also get very creative with your guitars…

 

Yeah, I’ve been known to use a torch or paint thinner to get a different look to my guitars. It’s not the whole new “induced” aged, relic-ed, checked… etc look. It’s more of a delicately “beat to shit” look. Sometimes you just don’t want a guy walking up to you and saying, ‘Oh, I have a guitar just like that.’ Because really, you don’t, and if you do, you’re a copycat motherfucker [laughs.]

And there's what's people come to know as my "Drills guitar" which is just covered in stickers.

Let’s talk about The Drills. In 2003 you started Phil X & The Drills while Powder was still hot on the scene. What was it that made you look for another project? 

During the early days of The Drills I was doing the Powder thing and needed another canvas. I wanted to sing things that [Ninette] wouldn’t sing. So I thought I’ll write these really cool, short, poppy songs and find a band or a young kid to deliver the message. The more I started doing demos, the more I realized that there’s no kid who can deliver this message like I can. I felt it just had to be me, I wanted it to be me.

Before the first record, I wrote 11 songs in 11 days that actually branch out across all three of our records. I wrote “Air Hockey Champion Of The World,” “Beautiful Apartment,” “Evil Robot” – which will be on the next record – “Live On The Moon” – which was on the second record - “Sunny Days” … It was like Peter Frampton writing his two biggest songs in one afternoon. It [was] just an explosion. 

[At the time] I had a cassette deck in my truck. I was working in the mail room at Zappa Records in Studio City. I would bring lyrics in to share with my friends Isky and Scott. Then I’d go home from work, program the drums, wake up the next morning, record the guitars, the bass, the vocal, background vocals, mix and master it really quick and drive into work with the song in my cassette deck. We called it “the truck tape.” 

So, I’d go in and they’d be like ‘what do ya got today?’ And I’d play them “Evil Robot” and they’d be like; ‘what the fuck?’ The next day I’d play them “Middle Finger” and they’re like; ‘what the!?!’ And the next day, “Air Hockey Champion” … ‘I don’t get it’ they said. ‘You’ll get it tomorrow’ [laughing.] 
 

On your first EP, Kick Your Ass in 17 Minutes (2009), and your second EP, We Bring The Rock ‘n’ Roll (2011), you hear your sound evolve. But I think it’s on your 3rd album, We Play Instruments N Sh!t (2012), where you hear the most significant progression. Talk about how The Drills have grown over the years?

 

It seems like a growth, doesn’t it? … The funny thing is, I don’t think it is growth as much as it’s letting other influences in. [But] obviously, as an artist, you still want to show growth from record to record.

On the first record I wanted to do two-minute songs, no solos. I was keeping that stuff to a minimum. I wanted it to be intense, almost live sounding. But lyrically I wanted it to be on the same page; that’s “Middle Finger,” and “I Wish My Beer Was As Cold As Your Heart.”

The next record … I wanted to be even more live. It was a little more frantic, less controlled than the first CD. Technically, we did the first record all to “a click,” so it’s on a grid. On the second there was no click, that’s why you can hear the unbridled power of “We Bring The Rock ‘n’ Roll,” a really fast song that speeds up, slows down a little then speeds up again. On “You're Not Happy 'til I'm Not Happy,” I wanted the end to sound like my favorite Van Halen One--stuff that sounds like a band doing this jam at the end. So we were in the studio and our drummer just breathed fire into the end of this thing. I was going off, the solo is at the end, and then I just [ended the song]. I thought that’s exactly what I wanted. And I got it.

We Play Instruments N Sh!t is almost a combination of the two. There’s the power of jamming but there’s also songs to a click. As for songwriting, this is how I felt – with the first two records being EP’s. If you’re doing a full length record you can’t have 11 “Middle Fingers” on it. There’s a few of those but there’s also a whistle song - I never had done that before. I wasn’t overproducing, but if I wanted a cello? I got a cello. I also wanted a cheerleading section. I was working on a record with two girls – talented songwriters, singers, really awesome – and I asked them if they could come into the studio and give me some cheerleading and they did. There’s also a song in a different time signature. We’re usually a 4/4 band, pure rock ‘n’ roll, but “Freakshow Acrobat” was a left turn for us. As far as songwriting goes, I went out there. *

You’ve been flying under the radar somewhat with this band. Is there a place or time you can point to and say ‘this is when I started to be taken seriously’?

 

I think it was the Internet. The Fretted Americana videos took my demographic and just blew it up all over the world. I found that out when we did We Play Instruments N Sh!t. I put out a pre-order on the website and when it came down to shipping, it was me and [Bass Player] Dan (Spriewald) with stacks and stacks of manila padded envelopes filled with CD’s.

 

I realized then that only 20% of the packages were going to the United States; the rest were going all over the world. From Thailand, to Madrid, to the UK and Scotland, to Spain -- everywhere in Europe, Japan and China, just everywhere. It was amazing! 

And then, what really hit me was … last July, we went to Slovenia and played a Beerfest in front of 5,000 people. There were people singing the words to “Air Hockey Champion of the World.” I was blown away. 

It’s a little late in the game to feel like you’ve made a point. Because we started The Drills in 2003 and we only have three records out and the last one came out five years ago and I want to shoot myself when I think about that, because I’ve been working on the 4th installment since 2014. 

Well, you’ve been a little busy.

[Laughs.] Yeah. And we have 12 drummers on the next record. Because there’s a different drummer on each song and everybody tours and works so it took two years to record. But now we’re in mix mode and stuff like that.

Can you ballpark a possible drop date? Drills fans are clamoring for this…

 

I’d like to say Christmas. It would be nice to do it this year.

 

Are there any upcoming Drills dates you can share with us now?

That’s been hard to juggle. We’ll be performing in Germany in October and sometime this fall, October or November, we go to Calgary for a fundraiser. After that it’s hard to say … I gotta put my mind into it, like ‘ok, I can go do The Drills now.’

 

We did that Lucky Strike thing a few weeks ago, the Hired Gun film pre-premier party… But I’ve just done two months straight with Bon Jovi. I’d become a different guitar player, a different singer, and when we rehearsed… I’m thinking my hands aren’t working, my voice isn’t working, what the fuck is going on? But then I get out of my head, I’m ready to do the gig, and everything works.

I’m hard on myself. Everybody is. Jon’s hard on himself. Jon’s harder on himself than anybody else. I’ve learned a lot from him. Even when I started doing the first couple of shows with Bon Jovi… I’d watch him front the band and I’m like; ‘that’s how you fucking front a band.’ And he’s in the ring for 2-1/2 hours, 3-1/2 hours in Europe. He works his ass off; that’s how you do it. 

Yes. Jon Bon Jovi is a phenomenal frontman. But you are also someone with rather commanding stage presence. Is exercising restraint in your supporting role difficult?

 

[It] becomes very second nature. I’m very well aware of my parameters. Occasionally, I’ll step out. It won’t be over the top, but it may be something that I do or play – like we started playing “New Year’s Day” a lot from the new record – I can’t help but pogo. And pogo is not a Bon Jovi thing. But I’m playing a Flying V and I’m pogoing. And that’s stepping out of the parameters. Because it’s a fun song. And it’s oozing out. Let it.

Here’s a crazy hypothetical: You’re in jail, serving a life sentence for … “awesomeness.” You get a one-night-only get out of jail free card. You get to play one show. Is it Bon Jovi for 50,000 people or The Drills for 500?

The Drills for 500.

I’ve said this many times. It was 2011 and I had just done 13 shows with Bon Jovi. The last show was in St. Louis. It was a great show. Jon let me sing the second verse of “Wanted Dead or Alive” for the first time. He said ‘hey, it’s your last show because Richie’s coming back, why don’t you do that?’ That was really awesome… Five days later, The Roxy, 300 people, The Drills. It was as invigorating. Maybe even more so. 

The only thing that sucked was maybe carrying my own gear [laughing.] Like ‘where’s [guitar tech] Takumi?! I need Takumi!’  

 

This last tour, you’re the guy now. Richie’s not coming back. The Hired Gun film also features Jason Newsted, who played bass for Metallica following the death of Cliff Burton, as well as Brad Gillis who replaced Randy Rhoads of Ozzy Osbourne’s band after his untimely death. Both Jason and Brad discuss how difficult it was to step into the shoes of a beloved musician.  Jason Newsted gave Brad Gillis lots of credit, saying ‘not everybody is made for that’. The situation is not the same but I imagine you have faced some of the same challenges… the challenges that come along with ‘Who is this fucking guy?’ 

Here’s the thing: Richie is a great songwriter, a great guitar player, has a great voice. And I can’t do all that. Because I’m a different singer, a different player. I haven’t written any of those songs. So my job is about doing my part to make the whole band great -- not exactly what Richie would do because I can’t be Richie, and I can’t be me. I’m really this guy in the middle that just did his job.

 

What took it to the next level was being on a billboard, or on the marquis as you pull up to the venue, or on a t-shirt. I was at the NAMM show before the tour even started this year, and this kid came up with a vinyl of the record, opened up the jacket and asked, ‘can you sign by your picture?’ That was amazing. That took it to the next, next, next, next – level for me. 

As for the acceptance thing, there was that transitional period when signs changed from “Where’s Richie?” to people putting X’s on their hands and holding their arms up to form an “X.” Jon pointed to someone doing that once, like ‘hey look!’ And everybody’s got their arms up, and there’s a crowd of them, and signs “We Love Phil X” and “Phil X Is The Best.” 

 

That transition was an amazing feeling but even in 2011, when they were saying that I was filling in for Richie, the media was writing; "Phil X Replaces Richie Sambora.” And it started to piss me off – it was getting twisted. So I tweeted; “I wish the media would stop saying that I’ve replaced Richie Sambora. Richie’s coming back. I’m just helping the band out through a tough time.”

 

And that wasn’t some chess move like ‘what can I say to get the fans on my side?’ But that’s what happened. Fans legitimately felt ‘this guy’s cool; he doesn’t want Richie’s job, he’s just helping the band out.’ And that helped me. And of course the next thing was ‘well, let’s see how this guy is doin’?’ And they’d go on YouTube and see... I was also doing a good job. 

Not once if anybody’s asked – or have I ever said – “I’ve replaced Richie Sambora.” 

… Because I don’t feel that I have. I feel like it’s a band and it’s a bit of a different band now. It’s still called “Bon Jovi” because, well, fuck, that’s the singer’s last name.  

*  *  *

For more information about Hired Gun: Out of The Shadows, Into The Spotlight and to purchase tickets to the June 29th screening, visit www.hiredgunthefilm.com

Hired Gun: Out of The Shadows, Into The Spotlight is coming to DVD, BluRay and all Video On Demand Platforms on August 1st

Pre-order Hired Gun on DVD or BluRay on Amazon or Get Hired Gun in HD on iTunes today!

HIRED GUN OFFICIAL TRAILER

 

Portions of this article originally published 2017-06-25 in NJArts and www.njarts.net

CONNECT WITH PHIL X

 

PHIL X SESSION CREDITS

 

TRIUMPH, Tommy Lee, Avril Lavigne, Kelly Clarkson, Orianthi, Adam Lambert, Rob Zombie, Chris Daughtry, Alice Cooper, Thousand Foot Krutch, Chris Cornell, Halestorm, Our Lady Peace, Theory of a Deadman, Apoctolyptica, Scott Stapp, Bon Jovi

PHIL X TOURING CREDITS

Randy Coven, Aldo Nova, TRIUMPH, Tommy Lee, Randy Rhoads Remembered, Gavin Degraw, Stewart Copeland, Bon Jovi

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

PHOTO CREDITS


Alice Kordsmeier
lightscmemories / Heather Donovan Photography
Ceól Photography
Linda Wake-Garza Photography

ADD'L PHOTO SOURCES


Phil X Official Fan Club
Phil X on IG

* Additional sources: NerdLush

Jennifer Pricci, a Jersey Shore music enthusiast, is a contributing writer for many New Jersey arts publications including Chorus & Verse, New Jersey Stage and NJArts.net.  A self-admitted name-dropper, Jennifer’s articles tend to cover those she holds in high esteem -- with a goal of paying homage to local talent in addition to enticing and educating readers.  For this reason you’ll rarely find a negative review written by Jennifer; constructive criticism at best.

 

Jennifer Pricci is a Marketing Professional with nearly 20 years of broad-based experience combining both brand and agency side successes; perhaps most notably driving the campaign that secured sponsorship for ClearChannel’s iHeartRadio Theater Presented By P.C. Richard & Son in New York City.  

 

On the performance side, Jennifer has appeared as part of a barbershop quartet at Carnegie Hall, The Alamodome in San Antonio, the Superdome in New Orleans, The Times Union Center (formerly Pepsi Arena) in Albany and more.    

 

In 1999 Jennifer founded her own marketing agency; PHANTOM POWER, a fully integrated marketing firm serving the needs of local musicians and small and mid-sized businesses throughout the Tri-State and beyond.

 

For more information about Jennifer Pricci and PHANTOM POWER Marketing visit www.phantompowermarketing.com