Tom Scholz wondered if he’d ever finish Boston’s ‘Life Love and Hope’: ‘It was hard to keep myself focused’

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Boston’s new Life Love and Hope project had a lengthy gestation period, even by this famously slow-moving band’s standards. It didn’t help either that, over the years, Boston has become a one-man operation run by Tom Scholz.

Boston famously took eight years between Don’t Look Back and 1986’s Third Stage, something then considered an incredible amount of time. The group lost Fran Sheehan, Sib Hashian and Barry Goudreau along the way — though Sheehan received a co-writing credit on the aptly named “Cool the Engines.” There were then eight-year stretches between Third Stage and 1994’s Walk On and then again between Walk On and 2002’s Corporate America. By the time Scholz finished the new Life Love and Hope, however, more than a decade had passed — and stalwart frontman Brad Delp had died, as well.

“It was a very long project,” Scholz admits, laughing. “Very long! The hardest part was keeping myself focused on the individual songs that I was working on, as it wore on, year after year.”

When the long, long, long-awaited new album finally arrived last December, it included four leftover or reworked Delp vocals, including a remaster of “Didn’t Mean to Fall in Love” and a new arrangement of “I Had a Good Time,” both of which had been part of Corporate America. Such is Scholz’s painstaking attention to detail that, even after having taken so long to finish that 2002 project, he was still determined to keep polishing certain songs for inclusion on its follow up.

Scholz admits that there were times when he wondered if he’d ever finish Live Love and Hope.

“It was hard, sometimes, to keep myself focused on an end result,” Scholz tells 105.7 WAPL, “because it was just taking so long that I began to think there would never be an end — that it would never actually turn into an album. When I actually saw, physically, the album cover and a physical CD, and a physical booklet after everything was finally completed at the end of 2013, I was elated. I had sort of forced myself not to think about the eventuality, because I was never really sure whether or not I would even finish it.”

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