JUDAS PRIEST Guitarist RICHIE FAULKNER On Sharing His Love Of Star Wars With Fans - "It's Good Fun, I Hope People Dig It"; Audio
June 4, 2020, a month ago
Judas Priest guitarist, Richie Faulkner, recently conducted an interview with Bryan Reesman for the Side Jams podcast to talk about his love for the Star Wars franchise. The topics included Faulkner's special guitar picks, the collectible items he covets and seeks out, his love for the original trilogy and views on subsequent films, the Extended Universe, what kind of Star Wars cameo he would like to do, and even some discussion of the Alien franchise.
Interview excerpts follow:
Bryan Reesman: I’ve noticed you have a lot of Star Wars themed guitar picks that fans have been collecting.
Richie Faulkner: "That's just something that I've been doing over the last few years to give something to the fans. It's a bit of fun. They're officially licensed [to us] by Lucas Arts so we can't sell them, which makes them all the more exclusive . If you make something like that and put it up for sale, it loses its exclusivity, so I basically do a run per tour. I think it's been bounty hunters and there's also been some ships. People have asked me if I can sell them but that takes away from the fun. You've got to be there, you've got to be close enough. You've got to catch it, that sort of stuff that goes with a heavy metal show in the flesh. There's a lot of things you can do these days on YouTube. You can watch a live show, you can watch whatever, but you can't recreate that live experience. Plus sliding in Star Wars wherever I can, that's always important."
Bryan Reesman: Other picks you've made include the Millennium Falcon, a TIE Fighter, and a stormtrooper helmet.
Richie Faulkner: "The Stormtrooper helmets, that was a long time ago. The main ones so far have been the bounty hunters. I've made some that haven't actually made it to tour. I've got a couple of prototypes that don't even exist, so I lose track. There's Slave I. The Shuttle Tydirium, I don't think that one made it out. Some things also translate different to print on something that small. It's good fun, man, and I hope people dig it."
Bryan Reesman: Are there any Star Wars items that you've collected over the years, and are there any things that you're looking for?
Richie Faulkner: "I'm into troopers and Boba Fett mainly. I'm a big fan of Sideshow Collectibles, and they do great pieces. But the main ones are stormtroopers, Boba Fett, Obi-Wan, sometimes Vader. I prefer things without a face. I mean, these sculptures are fantastic, but to me it looks like the character but not the actor. It's slightly different. I collect a few lightsabers. There's a company called Master Replicas. I think they lost the license a few years ago. You can still get them but they're stupid expensive now, so [I've got] a few of those. When we're on tour, I either go guitar shopping or model hunting. Sometimes you go to Japan and get limited edition records and bootlegs verus the States or Europe. You're going to get a different assortment of what's available [in different collectibles], so it's always exciting to go to different areas and cultivate the hobby. I'm a fan of Boba Fett and a fan of Donald Duck, my favorite Disney character, and a few years ago there was actually a limited edition Boba Fett Donald Duck, and it was a killer combination."
Discussing his fandom for the original series but not the latest trilogy: "You're going to get generations of people who grow up with the original film, the original book, the original album, whatever it is, and it's just inherent in all this stuff. You're going to get purists, you're going to get people that don't care, you're going to get younger generations that grow up with their version of it and the cycle repeats. It's a natural thing, man. But we'll see what they do with the future of the trilogy. I love The Mandalorian. It was generally well received. It was Star Wars without being attached to the Skywalker saga so tightly. It was good fun, good characters, and introducing some of the EU lore in there as well with the Darksaber at the end. I think that was introduced during The Clone Wars by Dave Filoni and the other guys. So they're making all that canon and we'll see where it goes from there. That's an exciting prospect because it takes the pressure off."
Listen to the full 28-minute podcast here.
NECA's VP and creative officer Randy Falk also created a special Jedi action figure in Richie's likeness that can be seen here.