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Can you describe your experience as a singer/songwriter and was there

any other career you thought about?

I started my career with 10 years as an ad agency producer, writing and recording jingles and scoring TV commercials. I then opened my own studio, and continued writing and recording. At one point I got burned out, left the business, and took a break. Music is all I’ve ever known, so the thought of a different career path was not appealing to me. A few years later the bug hit me again. It wasn’t long before I was writing and recording again, and here we are.

Can you walk us through your creative process when writing a song?

It all starts with a melody in my head. Sometimes I’ll have words, sometimes not. Then I’ll sit down with a guitar or keyboard and workout a chord progression. Then I leave it. If I comeback the next day and can still remember the melody, then I figure it’s memorable, and I’ll keep working on it and record a demo. If I can’t remember it, It wasn’t a strong enough idea to start with.

As far as lyrics, I do use an app on my phone to hold lyric ideas, and I’ll always go there once I have a solid melody to start working with. Then it’s just like putting together a puzzle.

How do you handle constructive criticism or feedback when it comes to

your music?

That’s a tough one. I learned back in the ad agency days not to get too attached to anything, because sometimes a client will want to change something and it will need to change whether you think it’s a good idea or not. My job was always to take the feedback and try to make it work without losing the integrity of the song. Is it easy? No. But oftentimes the end result is better than it was before the change. With Ludlow Creek, we are doing a lot more writing as a band, so our songs can go though lots of changes with the input of all five of us. You have to keep your ego in check!

Can you give an example of a project where you worked collaboratively

with others in the music industry?

Our song Stoney Lonesome Road is a great example of that. I have a very good friend who is a great writer. He sent me the lyrics for that song and I worked up a demo. Then it sat for a few years. As we were looking at songs for Which Way Is Forward, I introduced the song to the band. Together we added a bridge and reshaped the form of the song a bit, and added new instrumentation. The end result is much better than the original demo.

How do you stay current and relevant in the ever-changing music


It’s a tough industry. Just getting your music heard is an uphill battle. I watch, I read, and I listen. I just try to stay aware of what other artists are doing. And everyday I find some little thing that I had no idea about, that is extremely helpful for getting our music out there.

Can you name some of your biggest musical influences and how they have

inspired your own music?

For me, it was The Beatles. I saw them on the Ed Sullivan show, and I knew was going to be a drummer from that moment on. I love that they wrote pop songs, rock songs, love songs, and everything in between. Although I’m no Lennon/McCartney, I try not to second guess my ideas and just write whatever comes out, no matter the style.

Can you describe a time when you faced a creative block and how you

overcame it?

I try not to remember those times! But creative block can happen anywhere, anytime. The one thing I do to try to keep it from happening, is not try too hard. Don’t push it. Let things flow. if it isn’t happening, try working with a writing partner. Often that will break the spell!

How do you ensure that your performances are engaging and memorable for your audience?

The only way I now to do this is just give it your all, and have fun on stage. If the band is having fun, the audience will too. I once heard a great interview with drummer Bill Bruford of Yes and King Crimson where he said “somedays the music shows up, and somedays it does not.” He’s so right. Sometimes no matter how hard you try, no matter how much effort you put into it, that magical thing that happens when the band hits the stage just doesn’t happen. You just have to shrug it off and keep going.

Can you discuss your experience with recording and producing your own


I’ve been lucky to be able to do this, but there are definitely some pitfalls. The first is balancing the engineering side of things with the creative side of things. I can get so caught up dialing things in, that the creativity gets squashed. There is also the issue of how long it takes to record and mix a record. I find myself getting to a point after the recording process that I loose my objectivity. Because of this, I prefer to work with a good mix engineer and a good mastering guy. Six ears are better than two!

How do you balance the artistic and business aspects of being a


It is extremely hard to manage that balance when you are trying to do this on your own. I’ve tried, and I can’t do it. There are just too many hats to wear. I’m blessed to be in a band where we share responsibilities, so no one gets discouraged or burned out, and together we can celebrate our wins, and our losses.


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