LIMA — Loud N Lima is bringing a huge amount of rock talent to Lima next weekend. One such talented artist is Geoff Tate. He played with Queensryche and is currently touring with his band Geoff Tate’s Operation Mindcrime.
When his agent called to tell him he was going to play Lima, he originally thought Lima, Peru.
“Wait, wait, wait, it’s not Lima, Peru, it’s Lima, Ohio. Lima, Ohio? I’ve never even heard of Lima. I’ve been all over Ohio but had never heard of Lima, so this is going to be fun. I can’t wait to see it. I’m looking forward to it.”
Tate is familiar with the talent coming to Lima.
“Some of them go way back to bands from my past and artists that I’ve met along the way,”said Tate.
Tate has been playing music for 50 years now. His parents indulged their 9 year old.
“They saw that I was interested and as good parents will do they gave me the exposure to music lessons. I wanted to play the guitar. I said, ‘Mom I want to play the guitar.’ She said, ‘Well, you can’t. You have to learn piano first. You take a year of piano and then you can play guitar.’ And so I took a year of piano but then I fell in love with the piano. I just never got interested in the guitar so I just kept the piano going. I was in school band, junior high, high school, up until I left school and became a professional musician,” said Tate. “I think as people we are exposed to certain things in life and that exposure makes an impression on us. When it comes to music, I was definitely called to be a musician when I was very young and felt a passion for it, and you know, it’s never left me, it’s really never, ever left me.”
Tate listened to music from all genres.
“Well, you know I grew up in that wonderful time of 1960s and 1970s which was a magical decade. Really amazing music coming out of that time. It was a whole different era. It wasn’t the corporate era of the ’90s and 2000s, it was more, I guess bands and artists were encouraged to branch out and try new things, and that’s what really happened. There was a lot of experimentation with music, much more than we found later on in time. It was a wonderful time. We grew up listening to everything from Otis Redding and Diana Ross and the Supremes to Jimmy Hendrix and Yes,” said Tate.
Tate enjoys the craft of music, whether he’s performing or writing.
“Oh heck yeah. As a composer and writer you are constantly stretching and trying new things and experimenting with your craft. You work at it. A house builder never builds the same house the same way. He constantly improves and works on different things. As a writer, you are originating the idea so you are taking from all of your different resources and pulling from that to create your idea. It’s a constantly in an evolutionary process. A lot of people probably think and I’ve heard people say this before, they think of music as a one-time thing. You just do it the same way each time and why can’t you do it the same way each time. Well, you could but it would just pretty much wreck your soul. Then you’d be a cog in the machine and you’d just be making a product and that’s not what we like to talk about. We like to think that we are making something new and expressing ourselves,” said Tate.
While the entire world loves a song, the artist that wrote the song writes it for himself or herself.
“It’s a completely selfish endeavor. I don’t think any artist ever sits down at the piano and goes I’m going to write a song for humanity. You just don’t do that. You write a song from your soul, from your heart based upon your experiences. Then you share it with the world. And the world either embraces it, or they never hear it. That’s kind of the way it is. People kind of adopt the song, the song becomes the soundtrack to their lives, it becomes a memory that they associate with their own life. In fact they kind of just take your song and do whatever they want with it. They interpret it the way they want to interpret it, and it’s usually quite a bit different than the artist initial reasoning behind it,” said Tate.
Along with his enjoyment of music, he enjoys traveling as well.
“I love traveling. I’m a travel junkie. I’ve been doing it almost all my life. I’ve played in 63 countries around the world. You should see my phone book with all my international contacts and friends, and I’ve got family in Germany and Ireland. I have five daughters and four of them have married Irishmen. I’ve got a ton of family in Ireland now. I love traveling and even if I’m not playing, I still love traveling. I just find it inspirational,” said Tate.
Tate just enjoys life in general.
“Everything I do, I do because I want to do it. I love traveling, I love touring, I love playing music, I love writing music, so when I’m not traveling, I’m in the studio usually making another record, or right now I’ve been working on my daughter Emily’s record. She has a new band, Til Death Do Us Part that we’ve been putting together and working on. They are going to be opening on my tour. I’m doing that and recently my wife and I bought a new house. Well, it’s not a new house, it’s 110 years old. We like old houses, and so we bought a new house for us and we have been remodeling it and re-designing it, kind of bringing it back to its golden aged splendor,” said Tate.
He likens playing to an audience to a religious experience.
“Well anytime you play music in front of people, it’s always a pretty amazing experience because there’s this energy exchange that happens between people and that’s really amazing. It can actually really border on sort of a religious experience,” said Tate.
“I love playing festivals. We’re looking forward to playing,” said Tate.
Reach Merri Hanjora at 567-242-0511