Zak is Gone  

RockHard Germany, January 2001
by Matthias Breusch
translated by Yvonne Kluitman
corrected by Aaron 'Vegeta' Covarrubias


Zachary Stevens is no longer the leadsinger of SAVATAGE.

One of the strongest and varied voices of the last decade is drawing back into his private life. The young family father whishes in future, as is being told, to be there more for his daughter, and fears the upcoming long tour of the band in the coming year.

On September 19th, just a few hours before he should take a plane from Tampa to New York to sing the vocals on the new album "Poets and Madmen", he told producer Paul O'Neill he was leaving the band after 8 years. Innitially Zak would sing around half of the "P&M" songs.

Mountain King Jon Oliva on his turn, just landed in Florida to spend a few well earned days off with his family after living months in the barracks of the studio, completely lost it as the telephone rang. Although he hardly had a chance to relax for 5 minutes, it all of a sudden was: "Get your ass on the next plane back! You have to sing the rest of the album also!"

Good bye good mood. Also because Jon just picked up his long waited toy from the cardealer. "I took my brand new firebird to the nearby gas station, filled it up, drove another 5 miles and that's it. When I call home now and ask how the car is doing, my 17 year old scamp tells me "fine dad, the car drives like crazy." What can I say? Thanks."

Zak, who was revealed earlier as a hotelmanager, now earns his living as an insurance agent.
As bass player Johnny Lee Middleton tells: "He worked his way up in this business quite quickly, after all he has a college degree in the pocket and always was a very clever boy."
Basicaly the Savatage door stays open for Zak. There never were any kind of personal differences. For future studio sessions, especially the TSO ones, he's definitely invited to work with us.
Johnny : "He can always come back if he really wants to. We won't stop him. But I think it won't happen."

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