Anyone who has listened to my music knows that there are some pretty prominent Americana influences nestled in there. It’s not always a conscious choice of mine to incorporate specific sounds or genre styles into my songs, but I definitely do have some favorite artists who have influenced my music greatly.
I grew up listening to a lot of country music: Buck Owens, Merle Haggard, and Johnny Cash – just to name a few. I also listened to rock ‘n rollers like The Beatles, Chuck Berry, and even some harder rock. But one band that has really stood out to me is The Eagles.
I have been a huge fan of The Eagles for quite some time. “Witchy Woman” was the first song of theirs that grabbed my attention – the way they weaved those lyrics together to tell a story with such powerful images just blew me away. On top of that, it’s just a great song in general. It’s haunting and mesmerizing, in a way.
The Eagles’ elaborate songwriting and their minor-heavy chord structures have always gotten to me. I vividly remember being a fledgling songwriter, hearing their music and having that moment where I said, “Now that is how you do it.”
Since then, songwriting has been an integral part of my musical process. I love a good story, and enjoy tying in personal experiences into my songs. One particular song of mine that is influenced by not only my love for The Eagles, but also my personal life, is “Please Remember Me.” I was inspired to write this song after my oldest son was about to leave for college. I remember him and one of his buddies were sitting in my basement talking about their girlfriends leaving in a few days. The girls were heading out to opposite coasts, and the boys were pretty down about it. That innocent, yet very real longing to be remembered fondly inspired me to write the following lyrics:
For one more day you’re mine
Why does summer have to hurry by?
In one more day you’ll fly
Come on and hold me one more time!
As my band I start our new “Under the Influence…of Great American Songwriters” tour, I thought it was appropriate to show a little love for some artists who have influenced my music. So many of the greats have paved the way for artists such as myself. They inspire me to always push boundaries and to not be afraid to tweak my sound and style.