NEVADA- When you are one of the world’s biggest rock legends with essentially nothing to prove, it can be difficult to comprehend even the most minute case of failure.
Whitesnake frontman David Coverdale recently found himself in that position even over something as small as a crew having trouble getting him some vital tools to keep this rock god entertained due to an “evil” winter blast by his posh home perched 7,000 feet above sea level in the Sierra Nevada mountains which promises a stunning view of Lake Tahoe.
A local forecast is also calling for as much as a foot of snow in a storm slated for this weekend.
“The access roads have been closed because of avalanche or insane winds. It really is a crazy town,” phoned Coverdale from his recording studio.
COVERDALE: “They said we can’t get your pinball machine out. We can’t get your jukebox out. I’m going, just a second. Let me meditate on this. The druids dragged huge rocks to build Stonehenge for hundreds of miles! The Egyptians built symmetrically perfect pyramids! Get a chainsaw and hack some steps out of this ice. And they did! It’s coming down today. I’m so excited!”
Of course, Coverdale has many things to be excited about these days, including the recent release of “Shut Up & Kiss Me”. It’s the lead single off the upcoming album “Flesh & Blood.”
“Radio is starting to pick up on it now, which is superb. It sounds great on the wonderful compression that is American FM radio and Sirius,” the witty Englishman said.
“My record company are thrilled. My band are completely energized. The response has been terrific!”
Fans across the spectrum quickly took note of the classic white Jaguar Coverdale is driving in the video, before parking it outside an evening establishment appropriately called “Club Snake.”
He says it’s the exact same Jag model Tawny Kitaen is dancing on in the legendary 1987 video for the smash hit “Here I Go Again” and was kept in an air-controlled environment for all these years, just waiting for a special return.
In “Shut Up & Kiss Me” the band rocks the club inside while outside, a new generation of fans marvel at the storied car, with some woman extending the indoor dance party to the car as well.
“They were all going, ‘oh God can we take a picture with it?’ The car, even with the young people in the video, was still an iconic treasure,” he said. Coverdale even broke out the same jacket he wore in the ‘87 video too.
“Thank God I can still get into it cause it’s going back a bit.”
The past-is-present-again theme doesn’t stop there. Coverdale recently unveiled Whitesnake’s 35th Anniversary box set for the 1984 album “Slide It In”, which put the band on the map in the United States with hits like “Love Ain’t No Stranger” and “Slow an’ Easy.” It contains a poster of the album artwork, along with booklets featuring rare photos of the band during the production sessions.
“The 35th anniversary’s a big big deal too, and a very emotional one as I’ve literally, we’ve lost 50 percent of the band that created that record; have moved on to greener pastures bless them. Bless their memory,” Coverdale lamented.
Drummer Cozy Powell, keyboardist Jon Lord (also the godfather of Deep Purple), and guitarist Mel Galley have all since passed away.
Though feeling plenty energized and no doubt thankful to be alive at a time when so many of his industry peers have left us in recent years, Coverdale himself has not gone without some health challenges. He had major knee problems after performing in pain for years.
COVERDALE: “I had a horrifying degenerative arthritis that I should have done something about earlier but using injections and band-aids and whatever the hell, until they just didn’t work anymore. Had I not had the surgery I would have found myself in a wheelchair, no doubt. I’ve been able to kind of put a mask on it as it were for tours and performing until 2016. And I was working in South America going, ‘Oh my God my knees are killing me.’”
Finally, it came time for two separate surgeries on both knees in 2017, forcing him to scale back activity while he recovered. He then worked up the strength to commit to a two-month summer tour with Foreigner.
COVERDALE: “We had a great time out there and my knees worked perfectly; to the point where it gave (me) the confidence to tell my agents, yes book a Whitesnake world tour and feel confident about it and very excited about it.”
Fast forward to today, the Serpens Albus (Whitesnake in Latin) will soon start rehearsals for a 2019 campaign across America with a Philadelphia-area stop set for the spring. Coverdale could not be more thrilled.
“All of this energy that’s all swirling around now, it’s all positive and all preparing us for what I think will be one of the most successful tours that we’ve done.”
Coverdale originally formed Whitesnake in 1978 after a quick stint as a solo artist once he left Deep Purple after a successful three year run.
The Snake’s soulful, bluesy rock of the late 70s, gave way to the big hair, huge chorus-laced guitars, gargantuan drumming and power ballads of the 80s. It cemented Whitesnake as the titular flag-bearers of the era of excellence and excess.
Fans will also appreciate how longtime drummer Tommy Aldridge adds to the nostalgia, since his return to the band in 2013.
Whitesnake will play Parx Casino on Thursday, May 2nd. The new album “Flesh & Blood” drops wherever you can buy music on May 10th.