Monday, February 24, 2014

Must Know Musician Monday : Zach Schmidt

There is something that I truly love about most of my close friends being musicians. Not only do I constantly get to hear my friends play, I get tuned into their other friends, and the web of folks I love and get to hear, play with, and enjoy seemingly grows exponentially. I became friends with Ian Fitzgerald about a yea back, he recorded his last 2 records with and is friendly with Eric Lichter (who I have become friends with), who  has some studio assistance and is good buds with James Maple (who I am not buds with), and James recently introduced me to our must know musician for today: Zach Schmidt.

A singer-songwriter from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Zach now lives in East Nashville, Tennessee. He has a passion for song-writing and a focus on personal, heartfelt lyrics, his folk/country will have you focused on the story of the songs. Schmidt has hints of Tom Petty in the sonic groove of his tracks. A smoothed out  gruff vocal that powers through the rest of the set. The mix of power and that smooth quality really makes for a great listen.

Horse or Truck or Train

6 tracks, melts my heart. I just really love when artists choose to take on the EP format for a release. Couple that with the fact that they are 6 solid tunes and you have a big win. The album kicks in with the uptempo and thumping 'Call it in the Air'. The second track hits me (because I have a song of the same name), slightly more subdued that the first track, it has some tasty guitar lines floating. The track has a nice harmony vocal. Its very country feeling (the good kind of country), like I could have stumbled into an East Nashville bar, elbowed up to the bar, and these guys are off in the corner playing songs on an aging stage. 'Waitin' on Me' has a cool vocal effect, like Zach was off singing in an old barn and only adds to his impeccable ability to really capture  mood and atmosphere in these 6 songs.

This work is the perfect length. I could listen to it over and over again and not get tired of it. It has a great driven feel and vibe to it. It flows well and the songs are a splendid variety while still maintaining a togetherness that just works. There is some really great, to the point songwriting here that is believable and memorable. Its quite plainly, just a really fun EP to listen to.

Come check out Zach as he kicks off the Red Line Roots One Year Anniversary show 2/25 at the Lizard Lounge. I am happy to have him and you will be happy you can to check him out!

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