MYLES KENNEDY On His Upcoming Solo Album: 'Lyrically, It Was A Lot Harder To Write Than I Thought It Was Gonna Be'
October 21, 2020
ALTER BRIDGE frontman Myles Kennedy spoke to Terrie Carr of the Morristown, New Jersey radio station 105.5 WDHA about his recently completed second solo album. The LP was tracked at Studio Barbarosa in Gotha, Florida with the same team that worked on 2018's "Year Of The Tiger", including producer Michael "Elvis" Baskette, engineer Jef Moll, as well as drummer Zia Uddin and bassist Tim Tournier.
"When ALTER BRIDGE wrapped up our tour here in the States end of February, I had a feeling I was gonna have plenty of time to do something," Myles said. "So I took a week off and I started working immediately — demoing tracks, writing — all day every day. And it helped me a lot to process where we were going as people.
"Lyrically, it was a lot harder to write than I thought it was gonna be," he admitted. "And musically, it was very fun, because now, being at home in my studio and just being able to create all day every day, with no, 'Oh, there's a tour coming up.' It was just, like, 'You've got five months to put a record together. Sit in your studio and work. And then when you get to the real studio with Elvis and the guys, the demos will be done, the pre-production, essentially, 80 percent of it will be done, and you can just press the 'record' button and make your record.' So it was a cool process, and I'm real happy with how it turned out."
Kennedy went on to say that it was a joy to reconnect with Uddin, Tournier and Baskette for the making of the new album.
"Oh, yeah, it was great," he said. "It was great, because we actually drove [to the studio in Florida]. So Zia, my drummer, who, we've played together for the last 30 years, off and on, since we were in high school. He's, in my opinion, one of the greatest rock and roll drummers alive; he's so good, it's mind-boggling. So we started driving. We left Spokane, with the gear in tow. And then we met Tim about halfway. I think we met somewhere in Tennessee, maybe. Then we after driving to Orlando, we all quarantined. Zia did his drums and then he went home, and then Tim finished up. He hung around for a little while. And then I was there for, I think, seven weeks with Elvis."
He continued: "It's a fun environment. We all love each other dearly. I'm serious when I say this: we're a bunch of middle-aged children. I mean, it's as if we've taken a time machine and we're in the seventh grade. And the humor is ridiculously silly. I don't even know how to articulate how ridiculous it gets when you put all of us in a studio together. [Laughs]"
In July, Kennedy told "Offstage With DWP" about the musical direction of the forthcoming LP: "'Year Of The Tiger', first of all, is a very dark record, and it's very stripped down, very acoustic based. This one has elements of that. I wanted to keep a common thread with it. There are acoustic elements. There's definitely still that element of a lot of slide guitar, a lot of lap steel, 'cause I just love how emotive both those are. But it definitely rocks a little more. There's no doubt about it — this is more of a rock record, with kind of a heavy R&B undercurrent at times as well. There's even one song — if it makes the record — which is a full-on Motown thing.
"I've got so many [songs] right now," Myles added. "[The overall direction] is really gonna depend on what makes the record. I think I learned that from David Bowie interview, where he [said he] would try and write… He'd have 40 songs to choose from [for an album], so that way you can make the best statement you can."
Myles's tour in support of "Year Of The Tiger" featured music from the album as well as selections from Myles's work with ALTER BRIDGE, THE MAYFIELD FOUR and SLASH FEATURING MYLES KENNEDY AND THE CONSPIRATORS.