World-renowned keyboardist Derek Sherinian (SONS OF APOLLO, BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION, ex-DREAM THEATER) – considered one of the most significant keyboard players of the modern era – has launched the first single “Empyrean Sky” from his new solo album, “The Phoenix”, his first solo LP since 2011’s “Oceana”, which will be out on September 18.
The track features Sherinian and drummer Simon Phillips joined by Ron ‘Bumblefoot’ Thal on guitar, Jimmy Johnson on bass and Armen Ra on theremin. Listen to the single below.
As mentioned, Sherinian has teamed up with drummer extraordinaire Simon Phillips, who not only plays drums but also co-produced and co-wrote the album:“It is always an amazing experience to be able to work with Simon,” Derek says. “He’s been a hero of mine for ages, ever since I heard him playing on albums with Jeff Beck and Michael Schenker. And he is such an invaluable part of the way this new record has come out.”
“I truly feel that this is my best solo record to date,” he adds. “Simon and I put a lot of energy into the writing, and I am grateful to all of the great players that contributed to this recording.”
There are a number of guests featured on “The Phoenix”, as has been the case in the past for Sherinian, on both guitar and bass. Some have become regular contributors to his solo sessions, people such as bassists Tony Franklin, Jimmy Johnson and Billy Sheehan (Sherinian‘s band-mate in SONS OF APOLLO), plus guitarists Joe Bonamassa and Zakk Wylde. In addition, others are welcomed into the fold for the first time. For instance, there’s master guitarist Steve Vai.
“Steve Vai has always been on my hit list,” Derek says. “But it was when I played keyboards on the ‘Generation Axe’ tour of Asia in 2017 that I asked him to play on my record, which he gladly accepted.”
Also present are Derek‘s SONS OF APOLLO band-mate Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (ex-GUNS N’ ROSES) and Kiko Loureiro (MEGADETH). “Kiko and I have known one another for about 20 years,” Derek says. “But this is the first time I’ve had the opportunity to play with him.”
“The Phoenix” features eight tracks, including a cover of Buddy Miles‘s “Them Changes”, and will be released as a limited-edition digipak CD, 180g LP + CD and as a digital album.
“The Phoenix” Track listing:
- The Phoenix
- Empyrean Sky
- Clouds Of Ganymede
- Temple Of Helios
- Them Changes
- Octopus Pedigree
Sherinian‘s far-ranging talents have been much in evidence through the music of Alice Cooper (who once called him “The Caligula of keyboards”), DREAM THEATER, BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION and current band SONS OF APOLLO. Moreover, proving just how much he is demand to work with rock royalty, Sherinian has also toured and recorded extensively with KISS, and Billy Idol, proving his classic and hard rock pedigree, whilst also being voted No. 9 in Prog magazine’s greatest keyboardists of all time.