Legend of rock ‘n’ roll can’t run away from roots

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Lita Ford was meant for rock ‘n’ roll.

After starting her career in the 1970s in the all-girl rock group the Runaways, Ford has carved out a spot for herself in heavy metal.

Rising to fame as a solo artist in the 1980s, she was one of the few women in rock music and constantly battled for footing in the male-dominated genre.

“It’s been an intense climb to get the respect that I’ve got,” she says during a recent interview from a sound check in Pittsburgh. “It’s been a journey, and I feel like it’s beginning all over again for me. I have so much more to say, and I want to let people know that I never went away and still rock as hard as I always have.”

After nearly three years away from the music industry, Ford’s new album, “Living Like a Runaway,” was released in June, and she couldn’t be happier to be back. She is currently on tour with Poison and Def Leppard.

“We’ve had quite a hell of a tour so far,” she says. “It’s been very eventful and fulfilling for me. We’re on the second leg and I can’t wait for it to get better.”

Ford’s says the album took her about a year to put together. The first recording day saw the first snowfall in New Hampshire in 2010, and the last day took place nearly a year later.

“What we had to do was break up the recording due to my schedule,” she says. “I would fly back for a couple days at a time to record. It was a tiring process for me because I was always on the go.”

Ford says during the days slotted for the recording studio, all focus was on the record.

“We really kept focus because I wanted it to be out in time for this year,” she says. “So there was the pressure of the deadline and I put pressure on myself to make it an amazing album.”

Ford says the new album is more in line with her earlier work than her 2009 release, “Wicked Wonderland.”

“I hadn’t made a true Lita Ford album in a while and it’s kind of something that has been waiting around,” she explains. “It’s as if I had been on a deserted island for a decade and I had a lot of built-up rock and roll. With that in mind, I could do nothing but write and think about music. At one point it was flowing out of me so fast, that I had to contain it and make sure all of the songs were good enough to release.”

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