New solo album shows PRiSM’s Al Harlow is more than a spaceship superstar
Rock band PRiSM are proud to be here for the long haul, having made music for over 40 years.
His most enduring hit, that of 1977 Superstar Spaceshipis a Star Wars-influenced song used as a wake-up song for the crew aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery final mission.
Guitarist Al Harlow – who joined PRiSM the year after the song was released – says he continues to be surprised by its enduring success as well as the band’s other hits.
“It’s strange to think you’ve gone down in the history books,” he said. “Sometimes when I’m shopping in a supermarket late at night, I hear one of our songs coming through the music system and I’m like, ‘Well, that sounds familiar. Oh, it’s me. “
On the coast12:08PRiSM Rocks Al Harlow’s New Solo Album
Harlow is not one to rest on the band’s laurels. He continues to make music and his new solo album, Al Harlow: NOW , was released on Monday. What is the source of its longevity?
“That’s what I call the too-stupid-to-quit philosophy,” he joked. “If you stick with it, you’ll keep doing it.”
PRiSM proved to be a launching pad for other successful musical careers.
Drummer Jim Vallance, who wrote Superstar Spaceship, formed a successful songwriting partnership with Bryan Adams. He also wrote songs for artists like Aerosmith, Heart and Roger Daltrey.
Bruce Fairbairn produced the band’s early work and went on to produce hit albums for AC/DC, Bon Jovi and Aerosmith.
Harlow wrote or co-wrote eight of the 10 tracks on his new album. Last title of the album, way of the worldwas co-written by Adams and Vallance, whom he describes as “a one-man prince”.
Harlow had performed with PRiSM until the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Last spring and summer, the band played a few outdoor dates before COVID-19 restrictions returned. He hopes to get back on the road soon.
Harlow said he’s seen the crowds at his shows evolve over the years. When he meets fans, he finds that the fandom has been passed down from generation to generation.
“I started hearing, ‘You know, my older brother and sister put me on your records,’ he said. “Then it became ‘My mom and dad were big fans of you.’ So I’m like, ‘My grandma and grandpa told me all about you.'”
At a time when countless musical styles and genres are available on streaming services, Harlow’s approach on the new album was to play to his strengths and make what he calls “a straight-ahead rock album.” .
“I say anything goes, so let’s do what we do and do what we do best,” he said.
More information on Al Harlow: NOW can be found on the Harlow website.