Richie Kotzen announces new album Salting Earth

Richie Kotzen
Richie Kotzen

Richie Kotzen has announced that he’ll release his 21st solo album in April.

Titled Salting Earth, it’ll launch on April 21 via Kotzen’s own Headroom-Inc label and will be followed by a 16-date US tour.

The follow-up to 2015’s Cannibals is described as a “one-man production” with added background vocals on the track Make It Easy provided by Julia Lage.

Kotzen explains: “It’s really not deliberate when the record is finished and suddenly I’m the only performer on it. It actually comes out of my process of writing and documenting my ideas.

“It started back in the late 80s when I had a makeshift studio in my parents’ barn. I grew up fairly isolated, and I soon realised in order to get this music out of my head and on to a format where I could listen to it, I’d have to figure out how to do it alone.”

Salting Earth features the track Grammy which surfaced last year. And Kotzen reveals it came to him “in the oddest way at the most inconvenient time.”

He continues: “I basically woke myself up with the chorus melody in my head, and in my haze, I knew that if I didn’t at least record the idea, it would be forever lost.

“I ended up programming a simple drum beat, and then recorded the acoustic guitar. The lyrics pretty much wrote themselves. By 6am, the song was finished.”

He adds: “I was going to do more overdubs, but I kept playing it over and over, and I just felt like there was something so personal coming out of the speakers. By messing with it, I’d likely destroy the magic – so I left it as it is.”

Kotzen spent much of 2015 and 2016 with Mike Portnoy and Billy Sheehan in The Winery Dogs. They released their second album Hot Streak last year.

Richie Kotzen Salting Earth tracklist

  1. End of Earth
  2. Thunder
  3. Divine Power
  4. I’ve Got You
  5. My Rock
  6. This Is Life
  7. Make It Easy
  8. Meds
  9. Cannon Ball
  10. Grammy

Richie Kotzen 2017 US tour dates

Apr 21: Agoura Hills Canyon Club, CA
Apr 22: Pasadena The Rose, CA
Apr 23: San Juan Capistrano Coach House, CA
Apr 25: San Diego Brick By Brick, CA
Apr 28: Las Vegas Vamp’d, NV
Apr 29:Scottsdale BLK Live, AZ
May 01: Denver Oriental Theatre, CO
May 03: Moline Rascal’s Live, IA
May 04: St Charles Arcada Theatre, IL
May 05: Westland The Token Lounge, MI
May 07: Whitesburg Appalshop Theater, KY
May 09: Pittsburgh Altar Bar, PA
May 11: New York B.B. King Blues Club & Grill, NY
May 13: Annapolis Rams Head On Stage, MD
May 14: New Hope Havana, PA
May 17: Bethlehem Musikfest Cafe, PA

The Six-string Interrogation: Richie Kotzen

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.