Tool‘s frontman Maynard James Keenan talks about his side music projects. Maynard has stayed outside of Tool’s slow output cycle over the years, particularly with his Puscifer and A Perfect Circle projects.
Performing on stage as a musician can be a demanding task, especially when the artist has to deliver high-energy performances to satisfy the expectations of the audience. It can be even more challenging when the artist has been performing for several decades, and age has started to take its toll on the body. Maynard James Keenan, the lead vocalist of the American rock band Tool, recently spoke about the challenges he faces while performing some of the band’s more demanding songs in his 50s.
In a new interview with Steve-O‘s ‘Steve-O Wild Ride‘ podcast, Maynard reveals his projects and albums:
“Now that I’ve unlocked this little tool – no pun intended- Logic, I have this new thing now where I can’t finish my coffee unless I write at least a beat or a melody in Logic and send that off to Mat and Carina from Puscifer. It is like ‘here’s my morning coffee’. So, like at least three a week, I send them something so there’s this folder of like 40 things I’ve been working on over time. And I’m sending some of those… If it sounds like it’s leaning towards A Perfect Circle, it’s leaning toward Tool, I will send them. But I usually just get crickets back from those guys. So, like ‘that’s a cute riff, stay in your fucking lane.’
From the time that we started recording “V Is For Vagina”, until the day that we actually released it, the record industry fucking collapsed. So all the record stores were open when we started recording, when we released Tower and Virgin had all closed.
Like all those mom and pops had all closed. We were stuck with Target, Best Buy, K-Mart, and Target sent our albums back because it said vagina on it. I was like ‘what?’ ‘you don’t like vagina? I love them.’
I mean Puscifer’s an independent band, so I wrote the check for all that vinyl. And I did not only pay for the vinyl to be made, but to have the vinyl be shipped back to me, and then rent a fucking warehouse to put it in…. We sold it all, eventually. But like that was scary, to have 80,000 pieces of vinyl shipped back to you.”
Maynard James Keenan, who turned 58 last year, is widely regarded as one of the most talented musicians of his generation. However, as he admitted in a recent interview, performing some of Tool’s earlier songs that require high-pitched screaming and intense physical activity can be a challenge for him. He stated that he can still perform some of those songs, but he cannot do a whole set of them. This raises the question of whether age affects the performance of musicians, and if so, to what extent.
Despite the challenges that come with aging, many musicians can continue performing at a high level by making adjustments to their approach. For example, they may modify the key of a song to better suit their vocal range or change the tempo to allow for more breaks. They may also incorporate more rest periods into their performances or use techniques like pacing to conserve energy. These adjustments can help the musician deliver a quality performance while still being mindful of their physical limitations.
You can watch the Maynard’s latest interview below!