This is a rush transcript from "On the Record ," June 10, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, HOST: Well, you've been waiting all hour, so let's get right to it. He's the front man of Poison, star of the reality show "Rock of Love." But now he has a brand-new project. Bret Michaels joins us live from New York. Nice to see you, Bret.
BRET MICHAELS, "ROCK OF LOVE" STAR: Hi, Greta. How are you doing?
VAN SUSTEREN: I'm very well. So you have a big solo album out. I just -- well, I guess I stole the headline. I was going to have you do the news. Tell me about your new solo album.
MICHAELS: It's a brand-new record. We -- and first of all, thank you for talking about "Rock of Love." We -- the show, first year it came out, and it was one of the only reality shows that actually had some reality in it. And it worked out pretty good, and we ended up doing a second year. And so in doing it, I got to put all my music in it, which is what really mattered to me in the end.
And so now the new solo record is called "Rock My World." Just came out this last week. And the video shot up to No. 1 on VH-1's "Countdown" and No. 4 this upcoming week on the "Countdown," which was amazing, considering there's not a whole lot of rock being played on there right now. So it's a great feeling.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right. So you've done the reality TV show. And you've certainly had a very long and successful career in music. Which is more fun?
MICHAELS: I've got to be honest with you. I -- all I've known my whole life -- and we were just laughing about it in here in the studio. We were laughing about, you know, just growing up and moving the pool table. I started when you moved the poll table away.
And in the metropolis of Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, played for the four or five people that would stay long enough to hear a set. And I've got to be honest with you: it's all I've known my whole life.
So playing music would come first. I never set out to be a reality TV star. But the truth of the matter is, I'm really enjoying it. And it isn't awful that there's 20 beautiful girls on the show and we get a chance to go out and date and have fun. And I've never known a time when a motocross race or a greased pig challenge didn't lead to true love.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, I just want to know that Laura Ingle, who's one of my colleagues here at FOX News, used to do a lot of rock 'n' roll reporting, and she's already e-mailed me about this interview. She's probably going to mob you for an autograph or something. But...
MICHAELS: She's awesome.
VAN SUSTEREN: She's -- see, I knew -- isn't that funny? I knew she would have hit you up for an autograph coming in.
All right. You're on tour. Do you like tour? Do you like concerts?
MICHAELS: I love, absolutely love to tour. And you know, when I was a kid, alls I thought about was going out. You know, I bought a guitar when I was very young and learned to play. And alls I thought about was going out on the road and playing music.
And I'm one of those people that really still, after so many years, 21 years now, I'm still really passionate about what I do. And I still get excited to go into my studio and just plug in the guitar and play music. And being out on the road is really what's a lot of fun to me.
And it's a shame, because a lot of the music business that surrounds it leaves you with an hour and a half or maybe two hours a night to play music, and -- and for me, that's what I jones for. That's the icing on the cake.
And -- but if you also want to continue to make it in the music business -- I tell a lot of young bands this, is that when you get a record deal nowadays, that's just a chip in the game. That's really just the beginning. A lot of them think when you get a deal, that they've -- suddenly, hey, I made it. And that's just the beginning. If you want to do it for long time, you've got to work real hard at it.
VAN SUSTEREN: I only have about 30 seconds left. You were diagnosed with diabetes as a young man. Has that made a difference? I mean, because it's extraordinary your success and there -- but I mean, to tour and have diabetes and to be so successful. Not that people who have diabetes aren't successful. But it's tough to deal with that.
MICHAELS: I totally know what you mean. I've been juvenile diabetic since I've been 6. I take four shots a day. And I had really great parents. They never scared me. They said, "Listen, here's the deal. You're going to have to work a little harder at it." And -- and my dad said to me, straight up, he said, "Listen, self pity doesn't work. Find a way." And I think that did make a big difference for me in the music business.
VAN SUSTEREN: And you sure did find a way; inspiration to a lot of people. And Bret, thank you. And I hope you make it out of the bureau without being mobbed by everybody up there.
MICHAELS: You got it. Thank you for having me on.
VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you. And good luck with your solo album.
MICHAELS: Thank you, Greta.
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