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A Dirty Dozen with JARED JAMES NICHOLS – January 2023

| 21 January 2023 | Reply

According to a recent press release: “Today, singer, songwriter, guitarist, and Gibson brand ambassador Jared James Nichols, who was recently named the #1 “young gun making the Gibson Les Paul cool again” by Guitar World, has released his self-titled new studio album via Black Hill Records. Jared James Nichols, produced, engineered, and mixed by Eddie Spear (Zach Bryan, Slash, Rival Sons), marks the third full-length offering from the Nashville-based multi-talent and the truest representation of his authentic rock and blues-inspired sound, as evidenced by the recent singles “Hard Wired” and “Down The Drain.” We get Jared James to discuss new music, influences, and more.

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

I think that there’s a ton of little hidden gems in this new record. Funny stuff, like a wild scream or a cue being yelled that was done while we were tracking. There are even some crazy delayed guitar sounds that we panned into the backgrounds. Once you really start to listen, I feel like the record continues to unfold!

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

Originally, I just loved listening to music as a kid. Before I had any thoughts or ambition of even picking up a guitar, I was obsessed with everything from classic country, to rock, to even heavy metal. I remember the moment that I picked up the electric guitar at the age of 15 and learned my first riff, “Electric Funeral” by Black Sabbath. I was playing that riff through a loud amplifier, and something connected with me that I can’t describe. It was like I found what I was always looking for. From that moment on, I’ve never stopped chasing that feeling.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

The first really big inspiration for me after picking up the guitar was when I heard Stevie Ray Vaughan. I remember a friend of mine had a video tape of Stevie playing and showed it to me; it literally blew my mind. I felt like I was witnessing not only one of the greatest guitar players ever, but he was pouring his soul out into everything he played. That performance connected with me so much that it single-handedly guided me into getting into the blues and digging deep in trying to find soul in guitar playing.

4. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

If I could only pick one artist to collaborate with, I would really love to work with someone like Jack White. I love his attitude and approach to basically every single thing he’s ever done. I feel like his creativity could really set off some ideas and take my music to new creative heights.

5. What is your favorite activity when out of the studio and/or not on tour?  What do you like to do to unwind?

I’m pretty simple. I love to exercise and lift weights, that is my therapy, my true way of unwinding. I also love classic cars and wrenching on my 1968 Chevelle. Otherwise, I love to just hang out at home with my wife and dog or go out with our friends. Good food, good hangs, keep it simple!

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

If I could describe my music for someone that has never heard it I would say it is kick ass bluesy rock & roll. It’s wild, it’s raw, and FUN! There’s only been one comment that I’ve heard a few times that I’ve literally cringed when I heard it… that I sounded like Bon Jovi!

7. When your band is hanging out together, who cooks, who gets the drinks in, and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

That’s a great question! Honestly, we all love to have fun and keep it light, whether we’re on the road or in the studio. I’m definitely the first one to crack out the guitar, I would say Dennis, the drummer, would bring us all around to drinks, and Diego, the bass player, will cook us up some Italian food.

8. When was the last time you were starstruck and who was it?

I was only seriously starstruck one time and that is when I was in Los Angeles years ago and Steven Tyler from Aerosmith walked into my rehearsal room, asking who I am and to continue to play for him. That was an insane moment. I thought I was going to pass out! We instantly hit it off and he invited me to hang out with the rest of the band while they recorded their last record. I was definitely starstruck being around one of my all-time favorite bands, Aerosmith.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

I think the best part about being a musician is the fact that I can be creative and genuinely do what I love for a living. I feel so lucky to be able to play music all around the world and love it! If I wasn’t a musician, I would definitely be a classic car mechanic.

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

The question would probably be what does creating music mean to you? The answer would definitely be different every single day! Haha! The one question that I would love to stop answering is why I do not play with a guitar pick. I bet I have answer that question over 1000 times!!

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over,” even if it didn’t change your current situation?

That’s a tough question, because I don’t really have too many regrets or things that I feel like I would like to redo. I guess the only one I could think of is potentially performances in the studio, sometimes listening back to records there are a few things I would’ve liked to of changed, but in the moment it felt right. Overall, I am absolutely satisfied with how everything has shaped to be so far!

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

There is two of them. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall for the making of Jimi Hendrix: Are You Experienced and Mountain: Climbing! Those two records I hold in such a high regard, I would kill to have been there!






Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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