By Jay Oakley
I'm sitting here with Ethan Brosh who is performing tonight with Red Dragon Cartel and Jake E. Lee. How's everything going man?
It's going great. Thank you so much for having me Jay.
How's the tour going so far?
The tours going amazing actually and the only thing is tonight is the last night so I'm going to go on stage in about 30 or 40 minutes and it's the last one. I'm really sad at the moment actually because it's been such a great tour. Jake is a really cool guy. His band is made out of really cool guys too and the crew. My band and their band all become really good friends and it's one of those things when something works out really well you know it and this has been really cool. I wish it would continue for many more shows but hopefully we'll do it again.
How long was the tour?
It was just about three weeks, fourteen shows but again hopefully we'll continue to do more touring with them.
So you have a current album called, Live The Dream that came out this year. Talk a bit about it.
This is my second solo instrumental record. I worked on it for two years. It was released earlier this year on a band new label called Rocker Records. The label is owned by Carmine Appice and this was a long process and I spent a lot of time and effort on the production side of this record. I tracked the drums to take the way it was done back in the day in a really good studio. I convinced Max Norman to come out of retirement to produce the record. Max Norman produced Ozzy's first three records, he did all the classic Megadeth records, he did Wicked Sensations by Lynch Mob so a real talent that's been out of the business just like Jake E. Lee for about twenty years. I convinced him to mix my record and he did a phenomenal job. We did it on a big ass SSL board to get the real sound and then after that Max and I went to Portland, Maine and went to Bob Ludwig, the greatest mastering engineer of all time and he mastered the record. I wouldn't know how to make a better sounding record then this because I worked with some of the biggest legends of the rock and roll record producers basically. I took my time tracking everything as good as I possibly could so this is definitely my best work to date and that's the record. We toured with Yngwie Malmsteen last year and I already played the tunes from this record and I did the same thing on this tour with Jake E. Lee and I couldn't be happier, what can I say. People seem to be digging it now more people need to listen to it.
I was actually going to ask you about your tour with Yngwie because didn't you tour with your sister (Nili) for that?
My sister was in my band, yeah.
Is she still?
No, she lives in California at the moment and she's working on her own stuff. I have my good friend Nate Montalvo playing second guitar which is what my sister did on the Yngwie tour and that's it. But the Yngwie tour was insane as you can imagine. Just over the top in every possible sense of the word.
Absolutely. Are your shows and your show tonight an instrumental show?
Tonight is an instrumental set yeah. I'm playing stuff from my first and second records and we might actually bust out a couple of vocal songs. Ya know we keep it fun, we joke around on the microphone, we keep it interesting. All the tunes are very different from each other so even though it's an instrumental band and people think that it's going to be boring but once they see us they see that there is a pretty big entertainment value to what we do so people end up digging it.
So you were in a band called Angels of Babylon with Rhino from Manowar and David Ellefson of Megadeth. How did that come about?
That came about from Myspace back in the day. I had a couple of old YouTube videos, the first ones that I made and it was just me jamming in my little studio and Rhino saw it and flipped out. And he asked me if I wanted to be in a band with him and Dave Ellefson from Megadeth and I was like, "Um, let me think about it for a second." (laughs)
A second's probably all it took.
Yeah, so we did that and released a couple of records. I only played lead guitars and nylon string guitars on these records but I think they're very good albums with really good song writing on them and I left the band just to pursue my own thing basically. Obviously Dave Ellefson went back to Megadeth and that happened four days after we released our first record so the timing for Angels of Babylon was not good. As a Megadeth fan of course I really enjoyed the fact that Dave Ellefson was back home basically.
I'm sure that you have heard of the sudden line up changes to Megadeth that they have kinda gone down to a half sized band.
Yeah I know I'm just praying to God that I'll be a part of the new line up. Honestly, nothing arrogant or anything like that but I think I would be the right guy to step up in there.
Is that something that if the phone was to ring you'd say, "Absolutely!" too? That's a band that you'd be very cool with going right to?
Absolutely, 100%. Yeah, it's been one of my biggest goals to be in one of these bands that I grew up listening to and be a part of that. One of those big bands that still do really giant shows and Megadeth would be amazing. I can only pray. I know Dave Ellefson and I talked to him about it so who knows I probably have a really small chance but you never know. Stranger things have happened.
I wanted to talk a little about you growing up in Israel. Talk a little bit about that.
I was there quite a while. I was actually born in upstate New York. My parents are from Israel and when I was a year old they went back to Israel so I spent most of my life there when I was growing up and then I moved back to go to Berklee (College of Music in Boston, MA). Berklee was amazing and now I go back every summer to be a teacher there. I love Berklee, I love the whole environment of so many musicians and music is the only thing they care about. During the year when I'm on the road you always deal with the music business and how hard it is. But I need it for my musical sanity to go back to Berklee and be around people where the only thing they really care about is music. They don't care about the gigs or their future plans or anything like that. Just being in that environment makes you want to practice more, play more, write more and do all those things. So as a musician I need that.
What do you listen to? Anything in particular when you're relaxing or have some time to yourself?
Nowadays I listen to Steel Panther. We almost went to see them when we had a night off but it was a 21+ show and my drummer's 19 so we couldn't do it. So yeah, Steel Panther but honestly anything that happened after 1992 I generally don't like. I'm just an 80s guy and that's just me. Steel Panther, by far, the greatest band nowadays. No one can touch them. My all time favorite band is Iron Maiden and of course all these bands like Van Halen and Megadeth, Whitesnake, Skid Row with all these guitar players that influenced me like Yngwie Malmsteen and George Lynch, Nuno Bettencourt, Greg Howe and of course Jake E. Lee. These are the people that I generally listen to. There's some flamenco guys that I really like. There's a guy named Vicente Amigo from Spain who I think is the greatest and Tommy Emmanuel who's a guitar player I discovered a few years ago and he's absolutely mind blowing. An insane acoustic guitar player.
Ethan, thank you so much for your time.
Thank you so very much.