SIXX:AM have always been a band more the sum of their parts rather than a vehicle for their world renowned bassist Nikki Sixx.
Comprised of Sixx, DJ Ashba and James Michael, SIXX:A.M are a rock band in their own right, relying on the power of their music rather than individual personalities to set their boundaries.
They are responsible for some iconic music over the years, with the bands’ soundtrack to Sixx’s book The Heroin Diaries catapulting them into the limelight and responsible for hits such as Life Is Beautiful and Pray For Me.
They have released an acoustic album as well as four other studio albums, with the band’s latest release a hits package that goes hand in hand with Sixx’s latest book The First 21.
Vocalist James Michael sat down for an entertaining chat with HEAVY to discuss the album and almost anything else we threw his way.
“Hits is a collection of some of our more popular songs and fan favourites,” he began, “and it’s been a real exciting prospect to put this album and to be honest with you any artist that gets to the point in their career where they’re able to do a greatest hits album, they’re a lucky artist. I feel very lucky, we all feel very lucky to be at this point of our career where we can release an album like this. We’re all very happy guys right now.”
While some may think putting together an album celebrating a band’s lifespan is an easy proposition, Michael stresses the point that it is not as cut and dried as just selecting the tracks that did well commercially.
“Any time you call an album hits or greatest hits you’ve got to include your radio singles on there,” he said, “so that was the easy part of the decision-making process. We put the singles that SIXX:A.M fans know best, but then what we did with the rest of it was… it was really a collection of fan favourites. Whether it was songs that really went over well live when we were touring or songs that people have streamed a lot and obviously reacted well to, so it’s a good eclectic collection of songs. Some of them have never been on the radio at all, but we would consider them hits to our fans. That’s how we came up with it, and it was a fun process to do. It was a neat experience to go back over all of our albums and revisit each of those records and dust off the memories and be reminded of what the recording process was like and what the writing process was like. It was a really great experience, and ultimately it just made all three of us feel very proud of what we’ve done over this last decade.”
In the full interview, James talks about the process of remixing some of the songs for the album and what that entails, the original songs and how they represent SIXX:A.M in 2021, the piano vocal of Life Is Beautiful, Nikki’s book that was released three days prior to the album, Nikki Sixx the person as opposed to Nikki Sixx the public figure, singing about someone else’s life experiences on the book soundtracks, producing and mixing his own music and staying objective, SIXX:A.M’s future plans and more.