Jimmy Fulp of Roxy Blue
Interview by Andrew Daly
Scott Trammell may have played on Roxy Blue’s 1992 classic Want Some? but no matter; in the here and now, Jimmy Fulp is bringing the thunder for the revitalized Tennessee outfit.
Of course, this isn’t Fulp’s first rodeo. Moreover, it’s not his first run to glory with Roxy Blue’s frontman and primary songwriter, Todd Poole. Fans of ’90s alt-rock and post-grunge will recall that Fulp co-founded Saliva with Poole and Wayne Swinny in the wake of Roxy Blue’s mid-90s demise.
And while Fulp and Poole’s tenure as members of Saliva didn’t last, their friendship did, leading to Poole calling Fulp in to handle drum duties when Trammell departed after the band’s 2019 comeback record, Roxy Blue.
These days, Roxy Blue is milling away on its several-years-in-the-making follow-up to Roxy Blue while steadily increasing its live schedule. But still, there’s much work to be done to bring Roxy Blue’s hard-hitting message to the masses in the modern era.
During a break from the action, Roxy Blue’s Jimmy Fulp beamed in with ClassicRockHistory.com to dial back to his origins on the drums, first meeting Todd Poole, joining Roxy Blue, and more.
As a young musician, what first attracted you to the drums?
My dad had a band called The Jive Five. I was probably four years old and just fixated on the drummer. Next thing you know, I get a drum set for Christmas. Then I discovered Kiss, and it was all over; Peter Criss, Phil Rudd, Bun E. Carlos; those were my guys.
Who else influenced you as you got older?
As I started progressing, I was listening to Stewart Copeland and Neil Peart, who are both such amazing drummers. And then, Tommy Lee, Robert Sweet, and Vinny Appice made their respective marks on me as a teenager. But I’m more of a guitar fan; Eddie Van Halen, Randy Rhoads, Ace Frehley, Angus Young—I love those guys. I can play guitar some, but I wish I could shred [laughs].
What were some of your early gigs where you cut your teeth?
I used to play in country-rock bands when I was 14. I lived in a small town in Northern Kentucky, and there weren’t many people my age playing rock ‘n’ roll. I would spend my weekends in Indiana playing music all weekend. In 1990, I joined Play Rough. We traveled all through the Midwest for a couple of years. This is the band I moved to Memphis, TN with.
Take me through your joining Roxy Blue. How did got first meet Todd Poole?
I first met Roxy Blue in 1991. The band I was on the road with played Memphis quite regularly. One night, Todd walked in like he owned the place, and we were like, “Who is that?” The scene was really alive, and we moved to Memphis the following year. After Roxy Blue split up in 1994 or so, I was in a band with Todd and Wayne Swinny called Saliva. Our first gig was opening for Tesla! Todd and I hooked back up and started recording with the band 714 in 2012.
You replaced original drummer, Scott Trammell. What did you bring to Roxy Blue?
Scotty is an amazing drummer! We are friends and run in the same circles. For the Want Some? era stuff, I try to keep it as close as possible to what he played. Some extra things I bring to the table are a recording studio and backing vocals, and I also co-produced and mixed the 2019 self-titled and the new record.
Is Roxy Blue planning on hitting the studio soon?
I actually recorded and mixed the last record, and we are finishing up the new record, which will be released later this year. This new record has some great songs, man! I can’t wait for everyone to hear it.
What was the first gig with Roxy Blue like?
It was great! We did a benefit show for Patrick Francis of Tora Tora in 2016. He was battling cancer at that time and is doing great now. I filled in for a show in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, in February of 2020, played an East Coast run, and we opened for Cheap Trick in Memphis.
What other passions do you have? How do those passions inform your music, if at all?
I’m a very passionate Los Angeles Dodgers fan! I try to make my way out to L.A. at least once a year to catch a game. Thank God for MLB TV!
What sort of gear are you using?
Very similar setups in the studio and live. For live, I use two rack toms and one floor. The only difference with the studio kit is a second-floor tom. I keep the studio kit mic’d and ready to go for recording.
If you could have a drum battle with any artist, past or present, who would it be?
John Bonham of Led Zeppelin. He would go first, and I wouldn’t even play [laughs]. Just being in the room with him playing would be amazing. He’s the GOAT.
What’s next in all lanes?
We’ll be releasing this record and playing some shows! I’m ready to get out and make some noise. Stay tuned, everybody. We’ve got a lot of awesome stuff in store in the world of Roxy Blue.
Jimmy Fulp Of Roxy Blue: The ClassicRockHistory.com Interview article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023
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