Monday 29 October 2012

Montreal bound Peter Frampton says life being sober has helped career blossom

Now that I have reached the ripe old age of 50, I am old enough to remember the days when I collected Peter Frampton’s albums and rocked to his hit song Show Me The Way in the 1970s.  The Grammy Award winning singer will be in Montreal on Monday, November 12 (8 p.m.) for the world premiere of his FCA (Frampton Comes Alive) 35 concert film at the IMAX Montreal Science Centre (2 de la Commune). 

Peter Frampton

While the event will raise money for the Saku Koivu Foundation of the Montreal General Hospital, Frampton will be unable to “show Koivu the way.” The former Hab was scheduled to be in this city last Saturday for a game between his Anaheim Ducks and the Canadiens. But the NHL lockout wiped that off the map. It is Koivu’s good friend, Côte St. Luc’s Steve Stein, who is steering the ship.  General admission for the film is $50. VIP seats, which include an opportunity to meet Frampton at a 6 p.m. cocktail, are $150. This also includes a DVD of the film, signed Frampton merchandise   and free onsite parking.  No tickets will be sold at the door. Go to for the details.

Steve Stein and Saku Koivu

I had a chance to talk to Frampton on Monday and he was pretty candid about the fabulous comeback his career has enjoyed this past decade.  In fact, he shared something with me that he says he does not usually talk about with journalists. “The last 10 years have been the best for me since I was a kid,” he remarked. “I have been sober for 10 years now and  that has enabled me to put everything in my life back into perspective. My music is blossoming and  I feel the creative juices flowing. I am writing constantly.”

 Frampton  says he knew he had a drinking problem and finally went for help. "Obviously if someone has this problem they need to go to someone," he said. "I did that. I really don't talk about this a lot."

Frampton also recognizes what type of fan base he has. “I have the hardcore fans who followed me when I started out and I am finding new ones,” he says.

Of the concert film, Frampton notes, “I have tried to find the best musical performances from as many different countries and cities as possible. My MO in choosing these tracks was to make this CD as representative as possible of the entire year of shows.’’

As for his upcoming date in Montreal, the singer sounded excited. “I’ve been coming to Montreal going back to 1968 with Humble Pie,” Frampton recalls. “I always have a great time there and I have a good following in the city. It was a particular honour for me to perform at the 2011 Montreal Jazz Festival. I even included a track on my new CD set from that concert.”

Frampton will not be singing here on November 12. “The only singing I might be doing is in the shower,” he laughed. “This is actually my first ever premiere of my own movie. It is pretty exciting and I just love the cause.” 

Over the last two years Frampton has toured the world in celebration of the 35th anniversary of his 17 million selling live album Frampton Comes Alive! Each stop was divided into two sets: the first featuring Frampton Comes Alive! performed in its entirety, and the second set including songs from throughout his career. His performances on the tour featured classics such as Show Me The Way, and Do You Feel Like We Do, as well as tracks from Frampton’s most recent albums, Thank You Mr. Churchill, and the Grammy®-Award winning instrumental album Fingerprints. The FCA! (Frampton Comes Alive) 35 Tour DVD film is the ‘best of’ the concerts. 

Presently Frampton is writing music for a ballet in Cincinnati, where he and his band will perform at the end of April. He  says his 2013 tour will be mapped out in a few months and he hopes Montreal will be on the list.

I complimented  the singing talents of his son Julian, now 24. "I have four kids," he says. "Three girls and Julian. He's sang with me on stage. Right now he is working on his music. It is difficult to get into music these days."

The Saku Koivu Foundation at the Montreal General Hospital still thrives in Montreal, although Koivu now plays for another hockey team. The Foundation was created to provide Montreal with a PET/CT Scan machine, which has now been purchased. However, the Foundation continues to support Saku's ongoing commitment to making cancer patients’ lives a less difficult experience. “I understand Saku Koivu is quite a hero there,”  Frampton says.

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