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Q & A with Songwriter Graham Russell of Air Supply

Performing for 37 years now, Air Supply makes a stop at The Canyon Club this Friday as part of their year-long US and world tour.

Iconic pop duo Air Supply with lead singer Russell Hitchcock and songwriter Graham Russell will be performing at  this Friday at 9 p.m.

Fresh from the noteworthy release of their 25th CD "Mumbo Jumbo" and their newest single "Sanctuary," the Australian duo has been making performance stops recently in Mississippi, Texas and now California. 

Their creative partnership is 37-years strong, producing classic hits such as "Lost in Love," "All Out of Love," "Making Love Out of Nothing at All" and "Now and Forever," to name a few. 

They are constantly on the road with more than 150 shows worldwide from Canada to China and from Israel to Ireland, with no signs of slowing down. 

In between shows and rehearsals, Patch caught up with Graham Russell for a quick chat and an enticing preview of this Friday's show.

Patch: What can your fans expect during your Canyon Club show this Friday?

Graham Russell: Performing in Agoura Hills is such a thrill for us. We’ve been coming to your great town for four or five years now.

We’ll be playing a lot of the big hits that fans expect like “Lost in Love,” “All Out of Love,” among others. We are good about always delivering on the ones that people want to hear, but we’ll have new songs too like “Sanctuary,” “Everywhere” and at least one other brand-new song.

We swap them around. We move things around and try to keep things fresh. A lot of it also depends on how much time the venue gives us or if it’s open-ended.

P: Rumor has it that you and your “better half” Russell Hitchcock have never had a fight or even a disagreement. What makes the two of you tick? How did you manage to get along for 37 years?

GR: (chuckles) It’s not a rumor. It’s a fact. Russell and I have never had an argument. We’re both very level-headed individuals with distinct roles. I’m the songwriter and he’s the lead singer and we fulfill both roles perfectly. Those roles are never compromised and there’s no spotlight-hogging.

I’ve been a master songwriter for over 50 years. I’m happy to be in the shadows or playing the guitar or the piano. That’s perfectly fine with me. Russell as the lead singer is always front and center. I’ve asked him to write songs a few times in the past but he doesn’t want to. So see, there’s really been no reason for us to argue. We’re both giving individuals who like to compromise and work things out.

P: How do you keep it fresh and how do you stay inspired to keep writing all these ballads?

GR: It’s a discipline, just like going to the gym or any kind of passion. I will myself to write everyday, even if it’s just a few verses. I push myself and tell myself that if I want to be good, I have to do it everyday. It’s important in any career to be strict and disciplined with one’s self. I believe my greatest songs are yet to come.

As for inspiration, every moment I’m awake, I get inspired. In restaurants, planes, trains – I have a take on everything. I believe that wherever you are, there is a message for you. For example…In Biloxi, Mississippi, I saw rose bushes everywhere. That triggered memories because my dad used to grow them. So I wrote a poem about it.

Everything’s a trigger. Sometimes, I’ll play my guitar and nothing will happen right away. I’ll just enjoy it. When I “let go,” that’s when a song comes.

P: What would your fans be surprised to know about you and Russell?

GR: Ahh…that we’re just two normal people who work and enjoy ourselves? We do have separate lives. We hardly see each other when we’re not working or when we’re “off the road.” 

I have been married for 26 years with four grandchildren. Russell has no grandchildren. So I’m a little ahead of him on that one. (chuckles)

P: Aside from your tour, what else is “in the works” for Air Supply? What else would you like to accomplish?

GR: We have a Broadway show coming up – “Lost in Love,” that is based on the song. We’ve had three successful readings for that and rehearsals will start in September. This fall, we’re also releasing a DVD of our show last year in Israel.

I would love to have a song in a movie that wins an Academy Award. I know everything will come if you’re patient and work hard. I think our biggest achievement is our ability to perform “live,” travel the world, perform at a high level and still remain incredible friends who can write and produce great music together...and in doing that, bring happiness to a lot of people - we are living that.

Click here for more information or to purchase tickets for this Friday's show.

Leah nichole October 06, 2012 at 05:45 PM
Hi guys. Hi russel hitchcock. I am leah, nashville tennessee. 9 yrs old, acting training for 2 yrs now. Met vince gill and amy grant 4 times in person in nashville. My goal is to meet more singers and actors to encorouge and boost me along in my career. I would love to meet you all. Email me if you can at leahnichole08@yahoo.com. Love to have some contact. You all rock. Love ya all and your music

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