China Blues Interview

This Southern California rock group completed their personnel lineup in October of 1988. They're currently performing in the Los Angeles area trying to land a record deal.
Guitarist Brian Steams, along with bassist David Stearns and lead vocalist John Bennett all spoke with us about the adventures of trying to get ahead in Hollywood.

Q. When you guys moved from Massachusetts to California, what were you expecting? Were you surprised at all, how the "Pay to Play" Club business works in L.A.? How do you deal with that?
Brian - About a year and a half ago we first started playing out. We had to pay a lot of money for our shows. We used to support lousy bands and pay $1,000 for it.
David - But, we've worked our way up, these last six months. We've been headlining every show we've done. It's working out pretty good for us. We don't have to pay right now. We're getting paid at the door, which is helping out a real lot. We've got a good fan base.

Q. Are you guys in a position to support yourselves through gigging out?
Brian - Well, no. We don't make enough money yet to quit our jobs. We all work day jobs. Me and John work at Fredericks of Hollywood.

Q. What's going on with the group at this time?
Brian - We're planning a Japan
tour, since we're getting a lot of recognition over there. We're trying to schedule that.
David • We're going back in the studio again, and do another three songs for a demo. We're still shopping. We've got a couple of labels that want some more material. So, we're gonna try to" rush back in and get a couple more songs on tape.

Q. In your press kit, you talk about yourselves by saying, "You might notice their songs are marketable. You might be blown away by their exciting and captivating live performance." Suppose people aren't impressed. Then what do you do?
David - Well, the feedback has been pretty good so far. We're constantly updating our press. Our response has. been really good.
John - We're not afraid of negative criticism, it'll just help us improve.
Brian - I don't want to seem cocky or anything, but we haven't heard too much bad stuff about us. Everybody seems to like what we're doing, and the people who don't are just jealous, and can take a hike.

Q. What premiere hard rock clubs are you headlining?
David - The Big 3 on the strip right now, The Roxy, The Whisky and Gazzari's.
Brian - Doug Weston's world famous Troubador. We're headlining all the clubs out in Orange County, the Marquee, Jezebel's, the clubs in the Valley.

Q. How dedicated are you guys? How long are you prepared to wait for a deal?
John - There's no set schedule.
Brian - Until our bill collectors put us in jail. We're gonna hang in there for as long as it takes. We're all young right now. We're all in our early twenties, so we got a lot of time. It feels like it's ticking away, but we're ahead of the ballgame. It's just a matter of time, and it's not that far away.

Q. What do you think separates "China Blue" from everybody else?
Brian - That's kind of a hard question. Every band thinks they're unique, but we are. We don't try to follow trends. We don't get the Billboard Charts and see what's Number One. We just do our own thing. We always write. We're just real happy with what we're doing., and we all get along really well, and everybody lends a helping hand.

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