Lauren Dix talked with Lullwater vocalist John Strickland as they discuss the bands cover of Pearl Jam's "Release" as well as what they do during the holidays and more! - Read it HERE
Interview with Lead Vocalist/Rhythm Guitarist John Strickland
By: Laura Dix
Out of the heart of Georgia comes a band that belongs on stage performing nonstop 365 days around the globe because they are that good! Their latest single/music video really solidifies the depth of emotion in playing and they did it by doing a cover of Pearl Jam's song "Release."
It was great being able to have a few moments of their time to talk more in-depth about this release and we all are eagerly awaiting their coming album in October.
Laura Dix: How was the tour with Starset and Islander?
John Strickland: It was a short run but really enjoyed the shows. Good crowds and got to meet great people! Everyone in the bands and crew was amazing to work with. We know Starset’s sound engineer, Ryan for over 3 years now so it was good to have a reunion. Islander and Starset are new friends for sure and hope to see them again soon!
LD: Will you be heading out on the road again this year or will it be next year now?
JS: Our agent is currently setting up shows and getting us on the road this fall and winter.
LD: After sleeping, and a few days home do all of you get that touring itch quite soon to get out there again and perform?
JS: I know I do. Once you get in the touring groove it’s hard to stop. I enjoy getting back home to see loved ones and resting but I definitely miss performing and being on tour.
LD: Did you find covering a Pearl Jam song a huge undertaking?
JS: It felt very natural. I’ve been a Pearl Jam fan for as long as I can remember so it was inevitable for Lullwater to do a cover. The biggest stress I had was making sure we do it justice. We wanted to keep the original vibe of the song but put our stamp on it.
LD: How influential has Pearl Jam been on the development of Lullwater and the direction you all have headed musically?
JS: Pearl Jam is a big influence on our band and "Release" is one of my favorite songs by them. We definitely pull musical influences from 90s grunge but each member in the band brings their own style.
Ray is big into metal, Joe grew up in the jam band scene, and Binnie is a big classic rock/ Aerosmith fan so it blends well. I pull a lot from the Seattle rock scene as far as writing and vocal melodies go.
I think a lot starts with Pearl Jam/grunge bands and then we evolve into our own sound.
LD: There seem to be several connections for you with "Release" and the creating of the cover and music video. Can you give us details behind it all?
JS: We recorded the cover of "Release" at London Bridge Studios in Seattle. LBS is where Pearl Jam 'Ten' was originally recorded so it made it that much more magical for us to do it in that studio. Once we recorded the cover, we kind of sat on it for a couple years but kept playing it live.
We started touring with Candlebox a few years back and Kevin Martin and Dave Krusen heard us playing it and we’re like, yeah dudes! If you ask Krusen, he’ll prob play it with you! So we played “Release” with Kevin Martin
(Candlebox) and Dave Krusen (Pearl Jam, Candlebox) 7-8 times that tour! My 12-year-old self would have shit his pants.
That was one of the highlights of my career. Love those guys and beyond thankful for everything they did for us.
LD: What is the release date for your next album? Can you give your fans some insight into the music on this next project?
JS: we don’t have a release date set because we’re working with our team to get it done right. Hopefully soon, though!
It’s a big sounding record! We put a lot into making this record sound great. This record has strings, horns, and piano tracks so it just adds a new level of sound. Jakob Hermann was instrumental in making a produced album with big drums and big guitars and big vocals. Justin Davis, who’s worked with us since 2011, also killed it on this record.
LD: Where was it recorded and who did you work with on mixing, producing, mastering?
JS: Marigny Studios in New Orleans. Jakob Hermann (Top Floor Studios/ Gothenburg, Sweden) produced and engineered. Justin Davis (Ultra Hifi/ Seattle, WA)
LD: Looking at the coming fall and winter months, what are some of each band members favorite things to do during the 'holiday' seasons?
JS: Usually, were on tour during the holidays so hopefully playing shows haha. If we’re not on tour we try and have cookouts and party’s with friends and love ones.
LD: If the band was to choose a favorite song by any other band that came out in 2018 what collectively would you all pick, and why?
JS: That’s a tough one. We all have such different tastes in music but I would say Alice In Chains “So Far Under.”
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