(UFO, Spread Eagle, and Sebastian Bach)
Shannon Wilk - What was your introduction to rock music?
Rob DeLuca - “When I was a little kid, my parents bought a Volkswagen camper and there were a bunch of tapes in it. Not anything heavy, but the Beatles and Creedence Clearwater Revival and Elton John - things like that. That was probably the first rock music I heard.”
Shannon - When you were starting your band Spread Eagle, what was your vision for the band? Have you accomplished that?
Rob DeLuca - “The vision was to take over the world, so we haven’t accomplished that. But also the vision was to always remain honest and to release a type of hard rock that was very identifiable to us and us only and we did accomplish that. We weren’t trying to reinvent the wheel, but we wanted to have our own voice within the genre. I think in that regard, we are succeeding. We are getting more popular every year too. Maybe it is happening, maybe we are taking over the world.”
Shannon - What are your goals for the future of Spread Eagle?
Rob DeLuca - “We want COVID to end, we want a clear path forward for not just Spread Eagle, but for all industries and specifically all performing/large gathering industries. We want to know how we can tour and be amongst other people in a safe manner so we are able to tour again. We are planning to continue to make new music too.”
Shannon - When you sit down and write a song, what is the process like for you?
Rob DeLuca - “I feel there shouldn’t be any one process because that could put you in a corner where everything sounds similar, but I feel like I’m smart enough where if I do the same process, I will consciously try not to repeat myself. With that being said, sometimes it will start from a lyrical phrase or a melody, but typically it starts with me sitting down with a bass and riffing. In any sport, people say they get into a zone, so for writing, I just get into a zone and things start to happen. Then I’ll record snippets and go back and listen to them and select the best ones and I’ll continue on the best ones until I have all the parts of each song. So that’s usually my process.”
Shannon - Can you talk about how it feels to go from being a fan of UFO to now being in the band?
Rob DeLuca - “It’s pretty cool, I still really appreciate it after being in the band for 12 years. I’m very lucky to be in a band that has legendary status. I saw them live at the Tower Theater in Upper Darby, PA when I was in high school. It’s a great band with great songs - the songs are just undeniable. When people go to see them, they walk away being moved by the songs. That’s what it’s all about, I guess, to inspire people or move people with your songs and to make them emotional. It’s fun and I’m definitely a lucky guy.”
Shannon - What has been your favorite memory being a member of UFO?
Rob DeLuca - “I think recording records with them because it cements my association with them a little more. There are a lot of bands that don’t make records anymore or they make records that aren’t very good and sometimes touring members don’t play on the records. The music industry has changed so much and making records is a smaller part of it. The records are still very important to me so being on the UFO albums is a big deal.”
Shannon - Do you believe in UFOs?
Rob DeLuca - “I do not. It’s not that I don’t believe in them but I don’t know much about them and I would be lying if I pretended to. From my experience, I’ve never seen one and until I do see one, I question it.
Shannon - With the final UFO tour coming to a close, what are your plans for the future?
Rob DeLuca - “Well I plan to continue forward with Spread Eagle. We released our latest record, ‘Subway to the Stars’ in 2019 and it got the best reviews of our career which was encouraging to keep making records. I’m a stubborn guy and I’d probably continue making records anyway, but when people are reacting strongly and saying they want more, it is encouraging, I can’t lie. I will also continue touring with Sebastian Bach as much as possible. Supposedly he has some dates later in the year but with COVID, we’ll see what happens. So I plan to stay creative and happy - which I am very much - and to keep moving toward wherever I’m going.”
Shannon - If you could play with any musician alive or dead who would it be?
Rob DeLuca - “Malcolm Young. I think he embodies rock and roll more than anyone I’ve ever seen, heard, or experienced. That essence of rock and roll was found in him and if I could, I would like to get as close to that as possible.”