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Mentally stimulated to do or feel something. Using inspiration for creativity.

Posted: November 6, 2023
Inspiration is the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.

One of the most intriguing questions of an interview, is who or what provided the inspiration for what you have accomplished in your career? That is a must have answer. All of us music heads, want to know. After all, everyone has been inspired by another artist on some level. It just depends on what you did, with what you learned. We not talking about duplication or replicating another artist’s style.

Inspiration doesn’t even have to be about the musical talent that one possesses. It could be characteristics or personality traits. It could be how a person handles themselves on stage, or in their personal life. Some of the most inspiring individuals do not look for recognition, or the spotlight. Many great artists were humble and were low-key. They lead by example, and let their actions speak for them. This type of individual is certainly going to inspire others to be better individuals or assist them with their creativity. Unbeknownst, to the inspirational source, it occurs without them having knowledge of it.

Have you ever considered if your level of performance or charter is an inspiration to others? Have you ever received feedback, or showed up in someone else’s interview? If not, maybe it’s time for some soul searching. Discover what it takes to be an inspiration. I guarantee you; it will be a game changer.

You might be wondering what it takes to be an inspiring individual or artist. A website called www.betterup.com had this to say:

What makes a person inspiring?

There are many characteristics that have the power to inspire and uplift those around you. You can learn how to inspire leaders and others with your courage, drive, creativity, or passion for life.

In the workplace, people look up to their leaders for inspiration and examples of how to approach their own challenges.

These are some of the many qualities of an inspirational person:

Believes in themselves and has self-confidence. Stands up for their personal values.

Doesn’t shy away from challenges.

Speaks up for themselves.

Handles difficult situations with compassion.

Is fair.

Admits fault and takes responsibility.

Refuses to accept unjust behavior.

Communicates clearly and follows up words with actions.

Aims to make a difference.

There are some very important qualities that stand out to Guitar Thrills Magazine. Ones that we look for in an artist to interview. One of them is not shying away from challenges. It takes boldness and courage to stand up to challenges. We all know that the world and the music industry is filled with them. The only way to become a successful artist is to stand up and face challenges, despite the odds.

We have always been intrigued by Lita Ford. Not only because of her dynamic skills as an artist, but what she has accomplished despite challenges.

 

ABOUT LITA FORD

Lita Rossana Ford (born 19 September 1958) is an English-born guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter. She was the lead guitarist for the all-female rock band the Runaways in the late 1970s, and then embarked on a successful glam metal solo career that hit its peak in the late 1980s. The 1989 single "Close My Eyes Forever", a duet with Ozzy Osbourne, remains Ford's most successful song, reaching No. 8 on the US Billboard Hot 100.

Ford was born to Harry Lenard Ford and Isabella Benvenuto in London, England; her father was British, and her mother was Italian. When she was in second grade, she moved with her family to the United States, eventually settling in Long Beach, California.
Inspired by Ritchie Blackmore's work with Deep Purple, she began playing the guitar at the age of 11. Her vocal range is mezzo-soprano.)
In 1975, at age sixteen, Ford was recruited by recording impresario Kim Fowley to join the all-female rock band The Runaways. The band soon secured a recording contract and released their first album in 1976. The band garnered significant media attention and the Runaways became a successful recording and touring act during their late-1970s heyday. Ford's lead-guitar playing became an integral element of the band's sound until their eventual break-up in April 1979.
In 1977, internal conflicts were erupting within the Runaways, who had by that time already parted ways with producer Fowley, lead singer Cherie Currie, and bassist Jackie Fox. Vocalist/guitarist Joan Jett wanted the band to shift to a more Ramones-influenced punk rock sound, while Ford and drummer Sandy West wanted to continue playing the hard rock-oriented songs the band had become known for. With neither faction willing to compromise, the band finally broke up in April 1979.
In 1982, Ford signed with Mercury Records and set about launching a solo career. Her debut solo album, Out for Blood, released in 1983, was a commercial disappointment. Her next release, Dancin' on the Edge (1984) achieved moderate success, and Ford's popularity began to rise. Dancin' on the Edge included the single "Fire in My Heart", which reached the Top 10 in several countries outside the United States. The follow-up single, "Gotta Let Go", performed better. Ford said in an interview that she recorded an unreleased album with RCA Records, and Tony Iommi did not perform on it.

Ford signed with RCA Records, hired Sharon Osbourne Management, and re-emerged with a more radio-friendly pop-metal sound. In 1988, she released her most commercially successful album, the self-produced Lita. The album featured several singles including "Kiss Me Deadly", "Back to the Cave", "Close My Eyes Forever", and "Falling in and Out of Love", a song co-written by Nikki Sixx of Mötley Crüe. The ballad "Close My Eyes Forever", a duet with Ozzy Osbourne, remains her most successful song, reaching No. 8 on the US Billboard Hot 100. Ford followed up the success of Lita with the album Stiletto (1990). Stiletto featured the singles "Hungry" and "Lisa" (a song dedicated to her mother). However, the album failed to match the success of her previous release. Ford's next release was Dangerous Curves (1991), which featured her last charting single to date, "Shot of Poison". Ford's final album prior to a lengthy recording hiatus was Black on the German ZYX Records.
By the mid-1990s, Ford had turned her attention towards raising her two young sons, causing her music career to become less of a priority. Following the release of Black in 1995, Ford did not release new material until Wicked Wonderland in 2009.
In June 2008, Ford re-emerged with a new band with Stet Howland (W.A.S.P.) on drums, playing several warm-up gigs under the moniker Kiss Me Deadly prior to Rocklahoma in Pryor, Oklahoma. In June 2009, she toured the United States and Europe with a new line-up on her last fourteen shows, consisting of former Guns N' Roses guitarist Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal, drummer Dennis Leeflang, and Deepfield bassist PJ Farley.
After a long recording hiatus, Ford released Wicked Wonderland on 6 October 2009, on the JLRG Entertainment label. In an interview with ExclusiveMagazine.com, Ford spoke about her new material: "I just wanted to kick ass! I don't know what's popular, or the flavor of the day. I just wanted the music to rock! The lyrics are very personal and that's it. I wasn't going to come out in sandals with hairy armpits!"
In May 2011, Ford promised to release a "real comeback album" later in the year with drummer Chuck Spradlin, saying that 2009's nu metal-inspired Wicked Wonderland was too much of a collaborative project. "A lot of people have told me that they want a real Lita Ford album, and I know what they mean. They are going to get it", she was quoted as saying at the time.
Living Like a Runaway was released in June 2012 on SPV/Steamhammer Records. True to her word, the album was much more in line with her earlier work. The title is also celebratory, as Ford had recently settled differences with her former Runaways' bandmates.
In November 2014, Heaven Below guitarist Patrick Kennison joined Ford's band.
In 2016, Ford released Time Capsule, a collection of songs she discovered on old analogue tapes from the 1980s, featuring recordings she had made with Billy Sheehan, Gene Simmons, Bruce Kulick, Robin Zander, Rick Nielsen, Dave Navarro, Rodger Carter, and Jeff Scott Soto.

 

 

INTERVIEW WITH LITA FORD AND GUITAR THRILLS MAGAZINE

GT: Hello Lita. We have been in the music industry for a long time. Long enough to know what it takes to perform at the level you do. You don’t accomplish what you have, without putting forth a lot of effort. In addition, you must have the ability to overcome obstacles and challenges. It also requires standing up for yourself when it’s not the popular thing to do. This is what inspires others. How important do you believe inspiration is in the music industry? How has the character traits discussed in this topic has helped you?

Lita: We all need inspiration at times. No matter your age or how difficult your past. You don’t have to be a little kid to look for inspiration. A guiding force or guiding light, some people never find it, which is not good, as we all need it to get so far in life and keep on moving forward. But life is hard, and you really can’t do it all by yourself. So, we look for strength in someone or something you admire or love, someone who has conquered major battles, doesn’t mean you are going to win them all, but at least you can try and if at first you don’t succeed, try, and try again!

GT: Do you think there has been an accommodating spirit in the industry to do whatever it takes to be successful, even if it requires giving into your personal believes?

Lita: Ha Ha there are ‘’no accommodating spirits in the music industry’’. Although at times the only ones who did give me a helping hand up have been some of the actual musicians, artists I have come across over my travels, as a lot of them seemed to understand the most. They were the most understanding and weren’t confused by a female playing guitar. I have come across a few evil ones too, who just want to be better than you, but that’s usually because they are intimidated by you. But mostly I feel very grateful to have been inspired by the good artists and completely disgusted by the losers.

GT: What sort of challenges have you endured? What enabled you to overcome them?

Lita: Being a ‘’female- guitar player’’ has been my greatest challenge, although I never really dwelled on the fact that I am a girl, I just only ever saw myself as a guitar player, and sometimes people just couldn’t see past the whole female thing. The 2 just didn’t go together. It’s amazing how blind some people can be they couldn’t digest both things, as people are conditioned to see what’s been laid out by society. AH….this is a girl…pin her picture on your wall…..AH …he is a guitar player, listen to what he is playing.

I always paid attention to the guitar players in my favorite bands, as a kid growing up, I never really gave the singer too much of a second look and acknowledged the singers last, but the guitar players, I listened to their every move and wanted to learn their solo’s, or riff’s, cord configurations were always interesting to me and were always a bit of a challenge. I loved the bands with the worst ass riffs! Big powerful guitars and strong solos with feeling. To me that was my greatest inspiration. The bigger the guitar playing - the bigger the inspiration.

GT: What is your mind-set like? Is it morals, is it the way you were raised? What helps you to be courageous in an industry that is not conducive to someone such as yourself?

Lita: My parents always supported me as a guitar player, working late, and far away trips. My Father came to every California show with his 6 pac or beer and my mother always asked me to play certain guitar parts for her. as she loved to hear the guitar so much. It rocked their world, ha ha, in more ways than 1, so, it rocked mine right back. They were my biggest fans and I believe that’s what gave me the strength to get through hard times and just be to LITA. They listened to my troubles when I needed someone to talk to, although they never told me how to handle things, they were just encouraging and supportive.

GT: Who were some of your inspirations as you decided to get into the music industry? Tell us what specific traits stood out to you about them?

Lita: I loved the adventure of trying to figure out a great guitar part. As for me I didn’t have the internet to learn things from and had to learn by record player by pushing the needle back in the grooves repeatedly until I could figure out a solo or riff, or song. I learned Led Zeppelin songs, and I learned Deep Purple songs, loved, and admired Johnny Winter and Michael Shenker. Emerson Lake a Palmer (From The Beginning) such a great song! I loved Greg Lakes beautiful guitar intro. How sloppy some of Jimmy Page’s solos were. It didn’t matter! Ritchie Blackmores double picking the strings and his use of the echoplex. The use of a wah wah pedal was huge for me and an instrument in its self. Learning from Shenker who cracks it open just enough so he can get that cutting edge tone. Learning a powerful vibrato….sort of like handwriting , everyone’s hand writing is different , there are no 2 vibratos that are the same. It is an individuality thing. I loved the noise Hendrix s rig would make then he would channel that noise back into a feedback or use his whammy bar to sustain a note and dive bomb. I mean, if you have feedback, take it and use it. Don’t let a good feedback go to waste. The more hiss noise and sustain you can get out of your rig the better I say. In the Runaways days I used to cross the channels on my Marshall to try and give it more edge and sustain. It was wrong and against the laws of good guitar playing hygiene, but if you don’t try things and blow #$%! up you are never going to learn how it works and what can I do with it…. Sometimes I would take everything apart and dismantle my guitars just to see how they go back together. Sorta like a car. Sometimes you would forget some bits. I used to plug my Gibson SG into my Fathers Sony reel to reel tape machine and slapped on the echo, as it sounded like God. Not what it was meant for, but it was still a powerful sound that was politically incorrect. Also, my favorite duo’s guitar players were Steve Hunter and Dick Wagner from Alice Coppers Welcome to My Nightmare era. They were magic together in so many ways, visually and musically, they played off each other so amazingly well. Ruled the stage and rocked the &%#$ out of the audience!

GT: When I refer to inspiration, it isn’t always about the music. Who songs have you covered during decades of performing? What is a deciding factor to cover a song?

Lita: One of my all-time favorite cover songs is Alice Coopers ONLY WOMAN BLEED. Written by Dick Wagner it was not only a song I felt I could relate to it lyrically but also a challenge to learn and preform on guitar. And not the easiest song to learn vocally either. But WomanBleed just resonates with me, and it is a great song!! I think if you have the balls to do a cover song, you’d better make it your own version, don’t try to copy what the original artist did with it, you need to own it.

GT: When you decide to end your music career. What do you want people to remember you for?

Lita: When I go to my grave, I want to leave my mark on this world, and for people to remember me as helping pave the road for others to follow, as it has been no easy journey. An inspiration in longevity and being glamorous in a not so glam business. I want my family, friends and fans to be proud of me and for all the new guitar players and music performers to follow, as they can look back and say…..Yeah Baby!! We can get some inspiration from LITA.

GT: How often do you get a chance to perform internationally? Where have you found your strongest fan base?

Lita: We don’t get overseas as much as we’d like, but a lot of that is due to the cost of travel, bring our gear and crew currently is astronomical. So, it’s got to be worthwhile. When we can’t overseas, the USA always rocks our world….

GT: Is there a particular region or even venue that you would like to perform at? If so, where?

LITA: I have been lucky to have performed a lot of the most incredible places, but there is still a lot of territory, and countries I have yet to step foot on… I can’t wait for that and looking forward to rocking those places!

 

GT: You must have performed with countless guitar brands. Is there a “go to” guitar brand? What guitar brand is your “go to” choice and why?

Lita: My favorite guitars have been my old Hamer Explorers, I have some of the first ones made, along with Rick Neilson of Cheap Trick who has a nice collection. I used them in the Runaways days and still use 1 Hamer live today. It is serial number 0048. I call him Pepper.

And, I have the creme of the crop BC Rich customs, mockingbirds, Warlocks and Rich Bich’s that are just like wearing your old favorite pair of jeans. Nothing like um!! They are the real deal, super heavy, solid mahogany, and maple, with rosewood and ebony fret boards, the electronics are smoking hot. DiMarzio Super Distortion pick-ups, preamps made by Neal Mosure, Khaler tremelo units that are the baddest and beefiest trem units, these guitars have a life all their own and are not for the weak of heart. They are powerful machines. Super baddassmthafkry! Made by the best of the best in the guitar world.

 

GT: When you perform live, what does your stage plot look like? Who does the decision making for you, or it a collaboration?

Lita: We just play and sing our asses off. It’s much easier not to travel with a load of stage props, so we rely on each other and a few accessories. There is no smoke and mirrors.

 

GT: We know you work with a band of musicians. How instrumental have they become in your success?

Lita: I have an incredible team; I have spent decades looking to find such amazing musicians and such and an incredible hard-working team. It’s like being in the military. Together we go to war on some of these road trips, travel experiences and live performances but we always come out alive and kicking because we’ve always got each other’s backs. Very important, if you are not a team you won’t get very far before someone gets killed or quickly replaced. Ha Ha …. True story!
Drums; Bobby Rock

Guitar; Patrick Kennison
Bass; Marten Andersson
Keys-on occasion; Michael T Ross

GT: It has been wonderful to interview you today. You have many strengths that both us and your fans adore. Undoubtedly, you will continue to leave a positive mark on those that you perform for. We hope that you will agree to interview with us soon. How does that sound?
Lita: THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING ME !! 😉 Great questions!! You rocked it!!

GT: Excellent. We look forward to it.
Lita: Can’t wait!!

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