I feel very inspired even before we land in Australia. We've been on two planes. One from Atlanta to LA that was five hours. Now another from LA to Sydney, Australia that is roughly a 15-16 hour flight.
I've really been abducted by recording and all things related. I've been studying studio gear in my off time. I've been researching why certain microphones have a particular sound and what instruments they sound best recording. The idea of mastering recording is basically impossible. The variables between preamps, microphones, instruments, musicians, studios and songs are never ending. The reason why I'm mentioning this is because I've done about 14 hours of research while on the flight. I downloaded a bunch of magazines and movies about recording, or being in the studio. I can definitely feel myself growing as a musician. I often get inspired, but I haven't been consumed by something like this in a while. I have a feeling this consumption might not ever really leave me. The last thing I got into was studying BMW and Triumph motorcycles. The motorcycles was a way for me to get outside of music and think about something else. I guess I'm the type of person that constantly needs input. I get bored easily. I'm also very into to learning. Anyway, back to inspiration!
I watched a documentary about the making of Pink Floyd's legendary album Wish You Were Here. It's unbelievable how good the words and melodies are to all those songs. The arrangements and sounds are among the best ever recorded, but the songs are stellar. You can really feel the pain of the loss of their fellow musician Syd Barrett.
Next, I watched the Black Crowes Cabin Fever documentary. I found it to be very cool watching this documentary. For one, the Black Crowes were one of the first bands that my Uncle Don turned me on to a long time ago. So their music has this weird resonance of my childhood. Also, I've had the pleasure of hanging with guitarist/songwriter Rich Robinson and drummer Steve Goreman. So seeing these guys in action after I've met them is pretty cool. The whole two-disc live album was done at the late Levon Helm's studio in upstate New York in front of a live audience. It was recorded and filmed. Levon's studio is a gigantic barn that he does live performance/jams at called "Rambles." I never made it to one while he was alive, but the people who did live to tell about it with dropped jaws and smiles in their eyes. I've been thinking about building my own rehearsal place/studio for some time now. What Levon created in his studio/barn is my perfect creative sand box filled with angel soft sand. I like playing music where money, or any other intention, is not involved. After you've been doing it for a while as a living, you rarely find your self performing with other people just for the hell of it. I would love to have a place where musicians came to retreat and they played for an audience of friends and the only thing that was exchanged was killer music and expression. I might be either stupid, or the child of hippies, but either way that is a dream of mine.
After that, I watched a Lenny Kravitz documentary about the recording of his latest album. I find him to be a very talented and creative guy. Seems like it's a lot of work for him to balance being normal and living a rock star life. He built a studio near the Bahama islands and recorded most of the album there. It's a real deal, bad to the bone expensive. I wouldn't say lavish, but it's not a chicken wing shack with guitars and microphones laying around either.
During the flight, I read an article in Sound on Sound magazine, which if you are into music and haven't picked up a copy of that magazine especially on the iPad it's pretty freaking awesome. One of the writers had an article on the idea that musicians and recording enthusiasts are hypnotized by the ideas that vintage gear is better than the new stuff. Seeing as I've spent the last two months with my head either in a magazine or online researching new and vintage gear, I was interested to see what he had to say. In the end, the message was that it's all about making music. The heart and soul is the song and the performance and conviction of the release of both of those. Amen.
I can feel a new creative spark rising inside of me. I'm very happy. I've been a pretty lonely person for a long time. I mean, I'm fine with that and was fine with it, but over all I wanted to share love with someone like I've seen my parents share. I have that in my life now. Amen. I've learned from her so much about what really loving someone is about. Especially loving every part of someone, even the bad. She loves my bad by the way haha. I had to learn that.
The band is doing great. I'm very proud of all my brothers in the Zac Brown Band. I'm proud of the people who work hard to get us down the road. I'm proud of of the wives and kids who love us even though this life ain't easy. I'm proud of the fans for letting us do what we do and loving us for that. Amazing feeling by the way.
I'm excited about the future of Amy Giggles and my giving back to children through my creative writing. I've been working very hard on my off hours meeting with teachers and school officials. I've combined forces with Kennesaw State University in GA to help form a team around the project. Through working with KSU, I found a guy who believes in the project and has connections in the school industry. Together we are gonna try to get the message of confidence, self-respect and respect to others into whatever schools that are interested. I believe in kids, and I believe that I can help. So here we go. Phase two of Amy Giggles.
So we just successfully landed in Sydney, Australia. It's official, we are here. Excited to see what unfolds and play some killer music. ZBB does a good job at getting stoked to play for new crowds. Here goes nothing.