Are you on the list? Get Backstage!
May 6, 2022

Interview with Anderson East

We had the pleasure of interviewing Anderson East over Zoom video!

GRAMMY® Award-nominated Alabama-born and Nashville-based singer, songwriter, and performer Anderson East has released his new album M.W.N.D. / F.A.M.E. The reimagined recording of...


We had the pleasure of interviewing Anderson East over Zoom video!

GRAMMY® Award-nominated Alabama-born and Nashville-based singer, songwriter, and performer Anderson East has released his new album M.W.N.D. / F.A.M.E. The reimagined recording of his critically acclaimed studio album Maybe We Never Die is available to stream and download beginning today HERE via Elektra/Low Country Sound.
Last year, East reimagined, recut, and re-recorded his fifth full-length offering, Maybe We Never Die, live in one day at the legendary FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, AL as M.W.N.D. / F.A.M.E. He was accompanied by his bandmates, GRAMMY® Award-winning producer Dave Cobb, and a handful of close friends including Natalie Hemby, Taylor Goldsmith of Dawes, and Foy Vance.
Regarding M.W.N.D. / F.A.M.E., East shared, “It’s amazing how easy it is to make a record after you’ve already made it once. This was fun, and it’s a scrapbook of a moment. We’re used to making records with everyone in the same room. It was nice to revert back to that. I just wanted to be around people and go play something. We decided to go to FAME for a day, because it’s one of our favorite rooms and the people are incredible. It felt very natural to fully simplify Maybe We Never Die at a place we enjoy.”
Maybe We Never Die initially captivated fans and critics last year. The album arrived to widespread acclaim from Forbes, NPR Music, Rolling Stone, Southern Living, American Songwriter, and more. East delivered unforgettable performances of the album’s lead single “Madelyn” on Late Night with Seth Meyers, CBS Saturday Morning, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and celebrated the album’s release with his 49-city Maybe We Never Die Tour of North America, which wrapped earlier this month.
Now, M.W.N.D. / F.A.M.E. represents Anderson East at his most vulnerable, vibrant, and vital.
ABOUT ANDERSON EAST:
GRAMMY® Award-nominated Alabama-born and Nashville-based singer, songwriter, and performer Anderson East has always seamlessly trafficked between heritage soul, Americana, gospel, R&B, blues, roots, and rock. Following his independent debut Flowers of the Broken Hearted [2012], he continued to hone his voice and vision on Delilah [2015] and Encore [2018]. In addition to eclipsing 100 million streams, the latter yielded the single “All on My Mind,” which notably garnered a 2019 GRAMMY® Award nod in the category of “Best American Roots Performance.” In between sold out headline gigs in historic venues such as the Ryman, he delivered soaring and scorching performances on Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, TODAY, Late Night with Seth Meyers, PBS’ Austin City Limits, and more. Maybe We Never Die arrived to widespread tastemaker acclaim in 2021. Forbes raved, “Maybe We Never Die is fit for dancing through the end of the world,” NPR noted, “his hefty vocals seem only more urgent in this subdued setting,” and American Songwriter praised, “characterized by his gentle,

We want to hear from you! Please email Tera@BringinitBackwards.com.

www.BringinitBackwards.com

#podcast #interview #bringinbackpod #AndersonEast #MaybeWeNeverDie #FAME #NewMusic #zoom

Listen & Subscribe to BiB

https://www.bringinitbackwards.com/follow/

Follow our podcast on Instagram and Twitter!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/bringinbackpod

We'd love to see you join our BiB Facebook Group

Transcript

Hello! It is Adam. Welcome back to bringing it backwards. A podcast where both legendary and rising artists tell their own personal stories of how they achieve stardom. On this episode, we had a chance to chat with Anderson east over zoom video Anderson east was born and raised in Athens, Alabama, and he talks about how he got in music. Grew up in the church, started to sing and play guitar at a very early age, wrote a song for his seventh grade talent show wrote and performed a song for seventh grade talent show. He later moved to middle. Tennessee, went to middle Tennessee state university became a music engineer, but he had always been recording music on a four track. 0 (1m 7s): That's where he started out, began playing around the Nashville area. He talked about putting out his first couple of records. The huge moment when he was playing a sold-out show at the basement in Nashville and signing a record contract on the same day, you hear about that album Delilah, the follow-up record Encore and all about his latest record. Maybe we never die, which was started during 2019 and 2019 into the beginning of 2020. And the whole record was done completely different than he's ever done an album, but him and his band went back into the studio for one afternoon and rerecorded the whole record live live at fame. 0 (1m 48s): So there's maybe we never die. And then maybe we never die. The famed version, which is a completely re-imagined version of the record. All done live in one afternoon. You can watch our interview with Anderson east on our Facebook page and YouTube channel at bringing it backwards. It would be amazing if you subscribe to our channel like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and TechTalk at bringing back pod. And if you're listening to this on Spotify, apple music, Google podcasts, it would be amazing if you follow us there as well, and hook us up with a five star review. 2 (2m 25s): We'd appreciate your support. If you follow and subscribe to our podcasts, wherever you listen to podcasts, 0 (2m 31s): We're bringing it backwards with Anderson east some I'm Adam. And I appreciate you doing this, man. Hey, thank you, Adam. This is about you, your journey in music. And of course, we'll talk about the record and the, the new, you know, re-imagined version of the record, the, the live version you guys did. Cool. Sweet, awesome. Well, all right. All right. As that column's to say something cool. We'll just rock and roll into it. So talk to me about where were you born and raised? 3 (3m 5s): I was I'm from Athens, Alabama. 0 (3m 8s): Okay. 3 (3m 9s): Yeah. 0 (3m 10s): Are you in your Nashville now? Is that what I saw? Okay. I live in the area as well as those. Yeah. I actually recently moved here from California, San Diego. 3 (3m 21s): I don't think you're alone in that. 0 (3m 23s): I know what's crazy is we moved here February of last year and like everyone I was running into, they're like, oh yeah, of course. You're from California. Like, I'm like, what are you talking about? And then like, there's this whole surge of people that were moving here from California that I hadn't honestly had no concept that that was even a thing that was happening until I got here. 3 (3m 45s): Yeah. We parents like the fastest growing city, one of the fastest growing in the country. So it's been a wild transformation since I've gotten here. 0 (3m 56s): Yeah. I'm sure you're looking at it like, okay, get outta here, but 3 (4m 3s): Everything's good by me. Ma'am, 0 (4m 5s): We'll talk to me about growing up and in Alabama, was that like, 3 (4m 11s): You know, it was a pretty small town, you know, it's a, it's another one of those places it's getting bigger by the day. But you know, it was, you know, very close knit community and, and, you know, one of those Southern towns with a church on every corner. So we were a drag county up until fairly recently. So there was no like cars or couldn't buy booze or anything like that. So the, the exposure to music was pretty limited. I think, you know, those and music go pretty hand-in-hand 0 (4m 49s): Or like bars that you could probably play at, you know? 3 (4m 53s): Yeah. We, we never had any of that. Like the closest we had was there was like a church, youth group coffee shop that would do like a, like a coffee house thing on like one Wednesday, a month or something. And all the, you know, kids that were in bands would show up and, and play that. So, so yeah, it was just kind of like a, a musical desert, you know, it's odd being like, you know, that close to, to muscle Shoals and things like that. But I dunno for me, I was just, just willing to kind of absorb anything. 3 (5m 35s): I could get my hands on back then. So, you know, I was working at the, the local Sam goody and all that growing up. 0 (5m 46s): That's cool. The Sam goody, man, I haven't heard that name in a minute. So I did see or read that you're from a pretty musical household though. I mean, having not many places maybe to see it, but I like in the church was huge for you and your family, right? 3 (6m 3s): Yeah. You know, I was, I was there every time the doors are open and was always in some kind of choir, some kind of, you know, performance of some type and, and, you know, I still stayed, you know, I'm a huge lover of gospel music and all of its very various forms. And I don't know if it seems to be like the, the consistent thing I can always come back to and, and kind of recharge the batteries definitely been in that, that frame for quite a few months now 0 (6m 37s): Was I'm sure that was probably what the first place is. You were able to perform. I mean, especially like with music and 3 (6m 44s): Yeah, yeah. You know, it was even my mom was the piano player. And so I was kind of always just around those, those kind of classic hymnals and, and, and my folks, my grandparents were, you know, you know, really into Everly brothers and, you know, Floyd Kramer and all that kind of now classic Nashville, sounding, gospel and records. I definitely seeped in very heavy. 0 (7m 18s): Did you pick up hand-on early age or was that something you started playing when you're young? I mean, due to your mom playing 3 (7m 25s): Yeah, mom. Yeah. Mom was the player player of the family. And we were living with my grandparents for a little while when I was younger and, and I had taken up guitar and was all kind of pretty self-taught and had a rudimentary understanding of, of music and theory. And, and she's always played just by sight. She can, you know, sight read Beethoven if she needs to allow, you know, I was trying to learn like, you know, hi mom, what's a, what's a D chord or something on the piano. She's like, I don't even, I don't know what a chord is. So it was this, like, she couldn't w we weren't speaking the same language when it comes. 0 (8m 6s): Right. 3 (8m 7s): Yeah. 0 (8m 7s): That's really interesting. But you were playing guitar. When did you start playing guitar? 3 (8m 13s): I think I probably Started somewhere in around fifth grade. I don't know how old you are. 0 (8m 22s): 10, 11 years old, 3 (8m 23s): Something like that. Yeah. I was the kid, you know, my, my folks split up when I was pretty young. So, you know, all of my, I would go to each of their houses, like every other week. So I was literally carrying a Marshall half stack on a Dolly to school with me. I could transport it back and forth. 0 (8m 44s): Wow. It didn't want to go with the combo. I am. 3 (8m 49s): Oh, man. Now back then, 0 (8m 54s): For sure. It's funny to think about like 15, maybe even longer now years ago, like the half stack was the thing, like, if you're going to play anywhere, a venue or whatever, it was always like, got to get the half stack and have the head. And like now you'll see people on stage with just like a little combo lamp. That sounds amazing. 3 (9m 12s): Oh yeah. I mean, I've resorted all the way down to, you know, taken out these digital units. Like, man, my back hurts. I'm tired of carrying this heavy shit around. 0 (9m 23s): Right. Exactly. Well, that's awesome. I saw also that you wrote a song really early. You're pretty young and performed like an original song at your school. 3 (9m 34s): Yeah. We are like a middle school, talent show. We, me and my, my friends, we had our, I had a band and yeah, I wrote a, I wrote a song for that and I can't really recall what it was, but it was no doubt, incredible, 0 (9m 54s): No, no recording of it anywhere. 3 (9m 57s): There might be a VHS tape somewhere in the archives, but I haven't been hired to go dig that up, but they were only gonna give us one song to play in. And when we, as the rebellious young men that we were decided to hell, we're going to play free bird to these. 0 (10m 13s): You really 3 (10m 16s): Don't think we were. I think we were able to get like the lyric part done, but I don't think we were confident as musicians enough to, to really get at that, to really nail that ending. 0 (10m 25s): I handled that handle that solo there, but still, that's funny to go into free bird like that. Yeah. That's, that's great. 3 (10m 34s): Nevertheless, we didn't women, so yeah, 0 (10m 36s): Really, even with an original song, 3 (10m 38s): Even with it, 0 (10m 40s): Cause that's pretty impressive. I mean, especially seventh grade going and then going up there in front of all your peers, which I always find is funny when people tell me that their first performance was like, oh yeah, the first time I was saying was that the school talent show, I'm like, that's the people you're going to see every day for probably at least the next five, six years. Like I would think going into a coffee shop, the 20 people that you maybe have never met or whatever we'll see would be a lot easier, like first gig. 3 (11m 10s): Yeah. Well, I've definitely done my fair share of those, but you know, when your social standing in middle school, isn't too high, you don't have anywhere to go but up, so 0 (11m 19s): It 3 (11m 21s): May help things out. 0 (11m 23s): Did you continue, like after you wrote that first song and you know, did this the seventh grade talent show, is that something that you just kinda got the bug and you just kept writing from there on out? 3 (11m 32s): Yeah, it was, you know, being the, there wasn't any place to like play and, and, you know, God bless my friends at the time that I just kind of condom all into band instruments so that nobody really had the, you know, deep passion to, to get out there and play. So, you know, for me, everything was always kind of revolving around recording and okay. So I just, I always just wanted to make records and, you know, was just fascinated with that. And then it just so happens that, you know, to be able to record something, you have to have a song to record. So kind of everything that, that I've done, you know, in life is always stemmed back to, to, to get in, to record it. 0 (12m 18s): Okay. And did you, was that something you were like, did you buy like a four-track early on or like how'd you start recording? 3 (12m 24s): Yeah, I've got it. I actually still have it. It's a Tascam portal, one Little four channel tape recorder. 0 (12m 33s): So you started, when, when did you start using that? Like in high school or, 3 (12m 38s): Yeah, that was probably like eighth grade some something around that middle school and, you know, and that was kind of right when, I guess probably like home computers were starting to become a thing too. So, you know, we, we would drive to the Barnes noble or whatever the bookstore was and I would buy all these like mix magazines and, you know, there'd be all these, you know, huge consoles and I'd be like, there's a computer there and somehow they're getting the sound in the computer. So there was just like, you know, the N there was no YouTube to learn any of this shit and sure. 3 (13m 20s): So, yeah, I, you know, seeing all these like boxes of gear and you're like, I think you plug chords into the back of them and, oh, sorry. Somebody is trying to interfere with me, but hopefully it's still running. 0 (13m 34s): I didn't even hear anything. 3 (13m 36s): Okay. Good deal. But yeah, I was just always just so fascinated with, with gear and, you know, just how to make all of it work and how to make, you know, that tape sound like a Michael Jackson record whenever I would go play it in the car. And, yeah, that's a pursuit that I'm, I still haven't gotten there yet. 0 (13m 60s): Like when you record yourself on these tapes, what is it something you pass out at school or, you know, kind of, or would they all kind of just for you? 3 (14m 8s): You know, I, I think I played one during, like, I don't know some kind of like class presentation or something like that. And, and then I learned my lesson. I was like, I'm never doing this again. That was, that was terrifying and awful. And, you know, it's just some tiny little, you know, speaker from, you know, 1999. I'm like, yeah, we're not going to do this anymore 0 (14m 36s): To school where in a Murphysboro. Right. For, 3 (14m 40s): Yeah. Yeah. You learn 0 (14m 41s): How to record Right out of high school. Did you go, did you go to college there? 3 (14m 47s): Yeah. Yeah. I went there, I guess I was 17 whenever we did that. And you know, my parents were like, you're, you've got to go to college or you're just going to end up being a loser. And so I found out that you could go to school to sit in a recording studio. And I was like, well, if that's how we're going to play this, I'll teach you. 0 (15m 11s): Right. 3 (15m 13s): Yes, I did that. And yeah, it was, it was a good experience. You know, I learned, I learned, you know, at least just the technical proficiency to be dangerous with, with what I was doing, you know, I met some, some of my really close friends that I still work with quite a bit. 0 (15m 32s): Wow. Were you playing out in Nashville at all around that same time or were you mainly focused just on learning the recording process? 3 (15m 41s): Yeah, I was, I was kind of just playing anywhere that, that they would have me and, you know, there was, you know, luckily there was a few hotel basements that were doing, you know, kind of open mic nights and stuff like that. And, and then I was, I was working at a, a studio down on music row that it's no longer there from our friend Daniel. And it was just like, this is, this is what I want to do. This is where I want to be. You know, that same studios where they recorded the, the Budweiser frog commercial. 0 (16m 20s): They were really 3 (16m 21s): Nice. I found out the tapes for that in the basement. And I was like, that's crazy what a claim to fame this place is. 0 (16m 28s): That's amazing. That's really funny. So you're out working, they're still doing the thing and you put an EPE out right. Under a different name. 3 (16m 40s): Yeah. I put, put a few things out there that was just kinda, you know, always, I dunno, they're kind of like, I guess business cards to, to let you go play a show, you know, that was 0 (16m 52s): Okay. You had 3 (16m 53s): To have something, if you wanted to go, you know, travel the Southeast and play to nobody at least have to have some credentials, I guess, going in to do that 0 (17m 3s): Or that you knew how to play something. 3 (17m 5s): Yeah. It was like, pleased. Believe me, I couldn't do this. 0 (17m 8s): Okay. And with that, what did you end up switching it to Anderson Easton, putting out a record, or like when did that transformation happen? 3 (17m 20s): I guess I was still, still in college. 0 (17m 24s): Okay. 3 (17m 24s): Doing that. And yeah, I've just always kind of tried to build up some kind of emotional distance between myself to, to at least be, I don't know, to, to be a little more comfortable or be a little more honest in some kind of twisted approach. 0 (17m 44s): Okay. And what would you say, like, what would you say, like the first kind of big moment for you? Or when did you start seeing your career really happen? 3 (17m 57s): I don't really know if there was like a defining moment. I think there w I, I played, I guess it was right before Delilah came out and we were playing the, the basement, the basement here in town and okay. Yeah. It was like, I went out to dinner and like sign the paperwork for, for a record deal. Okay. When played a, a sold out show and it like, and it wasn't my, my friends that were in the crowd and I was like, Jesus, this is crazy. All these, I got one over on all these people. 3 (18m 39s): And it was, you know, only like a hundred people, but, but it was a pretty, pretty big deal for me. That was, that was pretty nasty. 0 (18m 47s): I mean, obviously you attracted the attention of the, of the label before signing the contract. Was that on that first record that you'd done? 3 (18m 58s): Yeah, that was, we kinda just went ahead and made, made that record without a kind of any plans, again, dislike the, the business card to go out and play shows and, and yeah. It just kind of, it worked out and some people liked it enough to, you know, take a shot on us, so 0 (19m 20s): Landed with the right people. And you did what you did in two halves or there's two, one recorded in Nashville, one in LA. 3 (19m 28s): Oh, no, that was a, that was another project before. Yeah. Yeah. That was, that was super fun. You know, that was kind of the first like, like actually, you know, Going outside of like whatever my immediate means were at the time to make something and, and, you know, it was, it was super cool, you know, got to play with some, some amazing guys, some of the, some of the guys from counting crows around that, and Bob Wasserman played bass and Don Huffington played, played drums. And like, why do I tell play guitar? So it was just like, wow, I, you know, I'm actually around people that are legit doing it. 3 (20m 14s): And, and so it was a, it was a, it was a great experience. It was a big, big learning experience and definitely poked a lot of, a lot of holes in, in kind of just my craft and, and what I was trying to accomplish. So it was good. It was a good learning experience. 0 (20m 33s): Was it intimidating being around people that had been doing it for awhile? Like, I mean, the guys were kind of crows, like, et cetera. 3 (20m 39s): Oh yeah. It was absolutely terrifying being, you know, 19 years old and, you know, in a city that's for me, incredibly uncomfortable. And, and then just around these, like, you know, real heavy hitters. And so it was a, it was definitely intimidating, but everybody was incredibly welcoming and, and, and really kind and really complimentary and it, so it, it, it gave me encouragement to keep pushing on with it. 0 (21m 7s): Sure. Wow. And once you signed, like you're telling us about the, you signed the deal and you have a sold out show at the basement, once you signed this record deal. W what kind of, what changed from there? Like, you know, moving forward, like, okay, I signed the paperwork, it's a deal. Like, how do you, like, you know, what kind of lands with that? 3 (21m 28s): I think for me, you know, you know, I've never been, you know, kind of like the, the radio artists. So I was, I was a little scared to kind of jump into all that, but the way it ultimately ended up was providing us the opportunity to, to go on the road and stay on the road and have, have support there until we got our own, our feet underneath us. And so that's kind of, you know, really where, where I started figuring things out was, was, you know, playing, you know, 200 shows a year for the next four or five years. 3 (22m 11s): So, 0 (22m 11s): Yeah. Wow. And with, with the sec, what would you say, like a milestone would be from that, the next record Encore? 3 (22m 23s): Yeah. It was kind of, you know, just the progression of, of, of playing to where you're, you know, you're doing every kind of opening slot you can get with, with everyone, anyone that'll take you. And then, you know, I think that was kind of the first, like, major, major, like headline tour and, and, you know, the, the, the, the anxiety and, and fear of like, you're, you know, sitting backstage before the show going cinema, going to show up to this, like, what is, what are we doing here? 3 (23m 3s): And some just random town halfway across the country. And you're like, there's no way. And then you walk out there and there's actually people there. And, yeah, it was kind of a, just an odd realization that I don't know, I guess that, like, it was at least resonating with some folks and enough for them to, you know, spend their nights with us. 0 (23m 27s): Do you still have of, it sounded like you kind of had like an imposter syndrome type deal going on where, you know, you'd get to a tiny, like, is anyone even going to show up here? Like, do you still kind of have that fear or no? Oh, really? Okay. 3 (23m 39s): Oh yeah, yeah. Yeah. It's like a, I dunno, I'm not like, like kind a, kind of a throw and go kind of guy. Like, I like to be hyper prepared and feel like I've, you know, done all the groundwork before I get to any kind of situation, but yeah. You know, going, you know, especially, you know, coming up in Nashville and being around all the people that are, that I was, and still am like, they're the best, like, you know, like, they're like, literally you can go like walk down the street and see like the best guitar player, like on the planet. 3 (24m 23s): Like the best song writers are here. Like the best producers are like, so when you're walking around, like, I don't have any business being around these people. And, and so, you know, your Uber drivers are probably better songwriter than you are, 0 (24m 40s): But I see what you're saying, 3 (24m 43s): Bartender down at this joint, when you used to go to that, I mean, could literally mop the floor with anybody. And it's just like, just they're slinging Budweisers all night and some, so, yeah, it's just kind of, I've just tried to, you know, be able to hold my own and, and, you know, feel like I've, I can at least, you know, hanging in whatever situation that I get presented with. 0 (25m 12s): Sure. And with like, what would you say, I mean, you said you were playing 200 shows a year for the next five, five years or so when you look at, where were you when, when, you know, 2020 happens, the world shuts down. Cause I know you put out, maybe we never died last year, and then obviously this new version of it, I want to talk to you about, so like where were you at when that happened and how did that then lead into that record? Or were they songs you wrote during that period? Or were they done prior? 3 (25m 40s): Yeah, it was a, it was a little mix of both. We started a couple months before everything went down. I mean, we, the way we kind of normally make records is, is like, we'll go on tour for a couple months and then have our, we could two at home. And so when we're home for those two weeks is when we were, we would usually be making the record and then we'd go back out. And it's sort of like this time, like we were literally on a cruise the week before all the lockdowns and everything. 0 (26m 16s): I think you got off a cruise ship because those are the ones that were stuck out. 3 (26m 19s): Yeah. That was like that, that diamond princess thing where like we were on a boat, like watching the news about this other boat being trapped at sea and all this shit. So 0 (26m 30s): That's crazy. 3 (26m 31s): Oh, anyways, we were kind of doing that back and forth. And then, you know, I was thinking that w that the record was getting, you know, somewhat done. And, you know, we, we were working out of the small room over at Southern ground and, and then like, literally the world just turned off like one afternoon. And so I was like, well, I guess we're going to put a pause on making this record. I don't, you know, cause we still had shows lined up. We were supposed to be like, oh, we got like two weeks and we'll be back out there and then we'll finish this thing back up. And, you know, two weeks turned into two months and excuse me, we're just still writing. 3 (27m 18s): I finally was like, you know what, you know, I w I was writing all these songs that were like, oddly, foreshadowing, everything. And, and then once, once it all kind of culminated, I was like, well, fuck this. We gotta, I gotta write some just happy stuff or just something that makes me like excited and, you know, get my mind settled away from the realities of the situation. And so just kinda like stuck, I had a little room up at RCA and it was just, you know, in there just like tinker and stuff, like, you know, sounds I can make like right in front of me just cause you couldn't be around people. 3 (27m 59s): So we started kind of just taking that approach of, of like, you know, the writing process ended up turning into the recording process. And then we tried to, you know, do this back and forth dance of trying to, you know, re-introduce some humanity into it. So it was really, it was, it was an odd, it was an odd experience making that record and kind of uncomfortable at times just cause, you know, I didn't necessarily have that skill set that that one needs like making that kind of record. And so I was having to learn all this new stuff, which was, which was great. 3 (28m 41s): And, but yeah, that's kind of, you know, that whole, you know, dance of, of making something, you know, in, in an isolated kind of way. 0 (28m 56s): Is that kinda what like led into the idea of then doing this fame studios record? 3 (29m 2s): Yeah. So we went down pretty much for like when the, when all like the lockdowns and everything lifted and people were starting to relax a little more. I, it was just mainly, it was just a selfish thing for me. I was like, man, I just miss being in a studio with my friends and, and you know, we were talking, I was like, well, what are you going to do? Shall we just do, like, I don't know, like acoustic version of something or what, and, and, and Dave was just like, Hey man, let's just, let's go down to fame, just recut this thing in an afternoon. 3 (29m 44s): It's like, hell yeah, sign me up. So we just went down there and cut, you know, all 11 or 12 songs that day. And, and it was great. It was like, oh, I've missed this so much. Just, you know, being around such great people and great musicians and in such a, you know, place that I love and respect so much, it was, it was just kind of like reintroduce ourselves to back into the world again. So it was really fun. It was really great. And yeah, really happy with how it turned out. 0 (30m 17s): Yeah. I mean, the record sounds amazing was the first, like when you put it out, not the first one, but you know, the version that wasn't recorded at the same studio, you said that was done pretty much all it was, it all done remotely. Like you'd write something and send it. And like you said, the back and forth dance was that whole how the entire record was finished. 3 (30m 37s): I mean, there was, you know, like our keyboard player, Phil, he, he helped produce it along with Dave and myself. And so, you know, we would kind of, we'd all kind of, kind of get together for, for a day and kind of work on the, like a little roadmap of, of what we were doing and then filling out kind of, you know, bounce things back and forth off each other. And then we get a couple tunes under our belt and then we all just kind of meet back up again and assess, you know, what the damage was and then kind of add and reduce things. And, and, and then, yeah, we would do kind of a, kind of like we did everything slightly backwards. 3 (31m 24s): So like, you know, drums and bass were pretty much the last thing on the record. 0 (31m 29s): Wow. That's interesting. Especially with timing and everything. 3 (31m 33s): It was really, it was really hard because, you know, I was doing a lot of programming and, and, you know, just manipulating things on my own. And so, and again, I wasn't very good at it. So I was just having these super waving, like you'd still be working and say like, you know, like an eight bar phrase and, you know, within that eight bars, it was moving a lot, you know, around the beat, but it was moving a lot in a very predictable manner. And so once you kind of, you know, written the song and kind of gotten some, some basic tracks going, you know, you're, you're stuck in that little time, you know, the irregular regularity of the time. 3 (32m 19s): And so it was this really interesting thing of like, you know, coming back with, with actual drums and getting it all to make sense within this kind of loose, but very rigid framework we had already built. So it was just, yeah, it was just, it was definitely a learning curve making it all work. And, but I think at the end of the day, it still comes out feeling human. And that was, that was the goal 0 (32m 50s): With, with the songs, was the fame studios with the first time you had performed them all together, like in a, like an alive setting. And was it hard to kind of transfer, like translate what you had been doing all kinds of, not all over the place, but all virtually and then made back together and then apart and meet back together. And now you've got to come up with a record or how to play the whole record through together. And not only that you did it in an afternoon. 3 (33m 17s): Yeah. It will. You know, we were, we were joking the whole time. I was like, damn, it's super easy to make a record once you've done it to say the first time, you know? 0 (33m 26s): Well, yeah. Even, but even that though, I mean, to think 12 songs and the way it was kind of done it, wasn't like, okay, you sat and played a song like who cares the first song and kind of banged it out that way, but then to have the whole band together and set it all up in that setting, that's been really incredible. 3 (33m 45s): Yeah. Well, I, you know, that's just kind of a, you know, a Testament to, to really how, how Dave, Dave Cobb works, you know, and, and that's pretty much how, you know, all the other records were made was just, you know, human beings sitting in the same room with each other and, you know, after, you know, two or three takes of it, you pretty much got it. So yeah, if you're at least, you know, not having to change arrangement, you know, to, you know, you know, perfect like the song structure, anything that, that's the thing that usually takes the most time, but, you know, if you already have that stuff ironed out, then you can just go play and then you're just, you know, trying to be conscious and aware of just how things feel. 3 (34m 33s): And, and then just having the, the discipline enough to know when, when you, when you got it, 0 (34m 42s): Is that kind of like, like having trust obviously in something like Dave Cobb, who's a legend going, okay. That was a great take. That works. 3 (34m 50s): Yeah. Yeah. It's, it's rare to find that kind of trust in people. Well, with him, you know, we've been friends for long enough to where I can fully respect and, you know, listen to his opinion, you know, the, the band rival sons, like it's like one of my favorite stories is one of my favorite songs. I think it's Jordan, I think that's the name of the song, but it's incredible. And the vocal performance is just absurd and that's the first take, like the whole thing first take. 3 (35m 33s): And, and, and Jay has said that, you know, it was like, he wanted to do it again, you know, to, to really get in there and explore. And Dave was like, Nope, you're done. And Jay's one of the best singers ever too. So, you know, to, to just be like that, just aware of a performance is, is really something. 0 (35m 56s): Yeah. Wow. Just now you're not doing it in. Sorry. That was perfect. Maybe, I guess you got to take the guys, you know, word for it, obviously. Yeah. Wow. I have just a couple more questions. I'm curious. You said that you're writing more like, you know, down songs. I mean, I dunno if you use the word down, but you said like, you want, you got to a place where you wanted to write more like upbeat, like happy ish Downing songs. Like how far into the record were you and like, do you remember what song kind of you wrote that changed that First one? You're like, oh yeah, this is more upbeat. 3 (36m 34s): Yeah. It was falling was, was the, the song that kind of disliked. We took a different turn and it was like, let's just do something fun. Okay. It was, it was mainly just me, me and my buddy, Trent Dabbs. We're just sitting around one night and yeah. That things kind of fell out by accident. And I don't even think either one of us thought that like, I don't know, it was like a record song. It was just like, let's just make something. So we don't go crazy today. And then, you know, we were listening back to it. I was like, Hey, am I really liked this song? Like, I think, I think it's actually good. 3 (37m 15s): You know? And, and so we, you know, just kinda tweaked on a little more and, and I'm majority, majority of everything on that, that track was just from, you know, that, that evening of us just, you know, sitting in that closet, just tinkering away and drinking whiskey and crossing our fingers. 0 (37m 33s): Yeah. I know he did a great job, man. That's a rad song. And with the, with the fame studio thing, you have some features on it. I mean, just the right off the bat, you have Vance joy on the first song 3 (37m 45s): And 0 (37m 47s): Oh boy, Vance. I'm sorry. Yeah. Who I've actually recently interviewed and I dunno, I said advanced joy, but yeah, Floyd Vancey, who's incredible songwriter and singer. Tell me about getting, was he actually there with you or is that something that you punched in? 3 (38m 1s): Yeah, that one, I, you know, he was, he lives in Scotland, so, so I just sent him to that, that track. I was like, please sing on this. And he was very, very gracious and yeah, full has been like, he's, he's been an incredible friend, but I've, you know, he's, he's like one of my musical heroes. I love him to death. And I, I think he's one of the, the, the greatest singers and writers ever. And yeah, I, I met him like 10, probably over 10 years ago now. And it was right when his record came out. 0 (38m 36s): Okay. 3 (38m 37s): But we were at this like a folk festival in Canada and I pretty much just like fanboyed in him. And I was like, man, I'm going to be your friend. I don't know what else to tell you. And so, and he like, you know, we, we sat around and drank and talk that whole night. And then he was like, Hey man, I'm playing the show tomorrow, come be in my band. And I was like, 0 (39m 2s): Wow, 3 (39m 3s): This is nuts. So yeah, he had never heard me sing or play or anything. And I was just said, yeah. And so here we are fast forward all that time. 0 (39m 15s): That's incredible. Yeah. He's such a fun like Chad, I mean, I talked to him for a, for a long time. Like he, he just, he has some crazy stories about like ed Sheeran, like seeing him when he was like 12, 13 years old. And like, obviously he's on his label now. And I guess ed Sharon told him, like, you can put out, I'll put out every one of your records, like, he's that big of a fan of his and just said, I don't care what you do, whatever you want to do. It was, you know, I'm not looking at sales. Nothing like, yep. I love your song writing. And I'm going to put out any record that you ever want to release. And I was like, wow, 3 (39m 48s): I've gotten big love for ed for just that, just that reason that to make sure that, that he's always got an avenue to make, make whatever he wants. And, and he hasn't disappointed thus far. 0 (39m 60s): No, he, I know that's the thing too. It's like, you probably will never put out a bad record, but the fact that he doesn't even have to worry, like you have like the biggest star on the planet right now telling you do whatever the hell you want. I got you. It's insane. But thank you so much for doing this. I really appreciate your time. I love the record. I love the, the live version. I can't believe that was done like honestly in one afternoon that blows my mind. 3 (40m 28s): Well, thank you very much for listening to it and thanks for talking and thanks for the good questions, man. 0 (40m 34s): Thank you. I have one more quick one for you. If you have any advice for aspiring artists, 3 (40m 44s): If you can do anything else to do that, but if not, then just do it and, and, and have fun doing it. Because my trumpet player, Ben always has this like totaled dad joke and I fucking hate it, but it's true. It was just like, they call it playing for a reason and you know, but it's true. And you're like, yeah. Okay. I get it. And, but I, I think that's it, man. And, and just, you know, do what makes you happy and everything else will fall in place.

Anderson East Profile Photo

Anderson East

GRAMMY® Award-nominated Alabama-born and Nashville-based singer, songwriter, and performer Anderson East has always seamlessly trafficked between heritage soul, Americana, gospel, R&B, blues, roots, and rock. Following his independent debut Flowers of the Broken Hearted [2012], he continued to hone his voice and vision on Delilah [2015] and Encore [2018]. In addition to eclipsing 100 million streams, the latter yielded the single “All on My Mind,” which notably garnered a 2019 GRAMMY® Award nod in the category of “Best American Roots Performance.” In between sold out headline gigs in historic venues such as the Ryman, he delivered soaring and scorching performances on Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, TODAY, Late Night with Seth Meyers, PBS’ Austin City Limits, and more. Maybe We Never Die arrived to widespread tastemaker acclaim in 2021. Forbes raved, “Maybe We Never Die is fit for dancing through the end of the world,” NPR noted, “his hefty vocals seem only more urgent in this subdued setting,” and American Songwriter praised, “characterized by his gentle, mesmerizing melodies and warm, twang-tinged vocal contributions, East sets the standard of continuously expanding artistry across the 12-track collection.” Following the album’s release, he holed up in the world-renowned FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, AL with his bandmates and longtime collaborator and producer Dave Cobb to cut a new version of the record entitled M.W.N.D. / F.A.M.E. [Low Country Sound/Elektra] for 2022. Performing face-to-face in this hallowed locale, they stripped the songs to their core only to give them another dimension altogether with every bit of soul, spark, and spirit intact.