In a brand new interview with the Brazilian journalist Igor Miranda, former GUNS N’ ROSES and current SONS OF APOLLO guitarist Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal revealed that he has spent some of the coronavirus downtime working on a new solo instrumental album.
“I haven’t done a full instrumental album since 1995, so it’s pretty overdue,” he said (as transcribed by SOUNDERGROUND.NET). “And I’ve been working on that slowly while doing everything else and collaborating with people and doing all kinds of other things.
“I tend to put myself last,” he continued. “If I have a load of work to do, rarely will I say, ‘Nope. Can’t do that. I’ve gotta work on my own thing.’ I’m trying to do that more, because my own album is never gonna get done, because I’m always putting my own things aside and saying, ‘Oh, yeah, let me help you with that. Let me do this with you.’ So I’m trying to put myself into that equation as well and say, ‘Oh, let me do something for me,’ and not forget about me and my own music. So I’m working on that. I’m slowly getting there. Hopefully next year I’ll have an album to release of my own music, I’m hoping.”
Thal joined GUNS N’ ROSES in 2006 and appeared on 2008’s “Chinese Democracy”, an effort which contained music that had been written before he came into the group. The disc took 13 years to make and was only a modest seller, moving just around half a million copies.
Thal never officially announced his departure from the GN’R, but a source confirmed to Detroit music writer Gary Graff back in 2015 that the guitarist had been out since the end of the band’s second Las Vegas residency in 2014.
Thal later revealed that he was focusing on his solo career and other projects after spending eight years playing in GUNS.
Thal is currently a member of SONS OF APOLLO, which also features drummer Mike Portnoy, keyboardist Derek Sherinian and bassist Billy Sheehan. SONS OF APOLLO released its second studio album, “MMXX” (pronounced: 20/20),in January 2020 via InsideOut Music/Sony.
A year ago, Thal told “The Chuck Shute Podcast” that not being able to play live shows during the pandemic had affected his outlook on the touring lifestyle.
“This break has been quite a reflective time for a lot of people, and I think it changed a lot of people’s perspective on things,” he said. “For me, I don’t wanna tour anymore. I don’t wanna tour so much.
“Being home for the first time for so long and reconnecting to family, and to myself, and to be in the studio every day, be creative again, as opposed to just living this life of 24-hour increments with…
“I wanna keep making music, and I’m not gonna spend so much time on the road,” he explained. “It’s no life; you don’t have a real life. It’s not how I wanna live anymore. I’ve done enough of it. And I’ll still go out and play, but now I’m pacing [myself]. I’m saying ‘no’ a lot more. I used to spend my whole damn life just living out of a suitcase. That was no fucking life at all. Everything passed me by, and I missed it all. And I’m not doing that anymore.”