Blue Oyster Cult are releasing their new live album “50th Anniversary Live - First Night” December 8th, 2023. We recently caught up with guitarist singer, Buck Dharma of the band to talk about the album. We began by discussing the fact that this album is part of BOC celebrating 50 years. Buck joked that “Some mornings it feels like yesterday, but some mornings it feels like 50 years ago.” Buck reflected on it being a great ride and how he hasn’t regretted a moment of his professional life. The album was made from the first night of three shows at New York’s Sony Hall. They were set up to mark the band’s anniversary.
The three nights each focused on a different album played in entirety. This album coming from the first night, as the title states, was the debut album that was played in its entirety. Buck spoke of going back to where they were when that debut album was recorded. He talked about playing like he did when he was in his 20′s. That took some work being his playing developed over the years. There was certainly work involved in going back that many years to play their first three albums. As much as BOC does play many songs from throughout their career, and they do consistently change up their setlist, they don’t play every song from those three albums routinely.
Original drummer and songwriter from the band Albert Bouchard was also a special guest at the shows. Buck said they did a couple of rehearsals together and then they did the shows. He said, “it was a little bit like riding a bicycle.” A natural question was, with there having been three distinct shows and this album being called first night, will there be other albums? Buck confirmed that “Second Night” would arrive come the spring and “Third Night” later in 2024.
With more live albums on the way, I enquired about the possibility of new studio albums. Buck did speak about a new studio album not that far off. But not an album of new material. It’s more about unreleased songs recorded during previous recording sessions for other albums. Some of the music even includes the five original members of the band. As far as “new, new music,” Buck said, “Never say never.”
We also covered gear, especially Buck’s easily recognizable Steinberger guitar. It’s a guitar that he has been playing since the 80′s. He said the guitar just suits him. we discussed that it’s part of BOC to see Buck with his Steinberger and Eric Bloom with his Gibson SG. Buck also mentioned sometimes playing a Kiesel guitar, also without a headstock like the Steinberger. Buck runs his guitar through a Strymon Iridium pedal into a Two Notes Cab M and then that goes through a Marshall amp.
Buck even mentioned a solo song “The End Of Every Song” that he sees coming out in early 2024. He said he was just working on a video for it. Buck took some time in here to mention BOC’s third guitarist Richie Castellano and how he was writing with Eric Bloom. He also mentioned Richie had worked with Jon Anderson of Yes fame.
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