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“I want to explore different avenues of music. I think this record is a great kick starter for a solo career, and I can do anything from there. I can walk in with a guitar and nothing else.”
You mentioned a possible transition to electric guitar. I wanna rock! The new song “This Heaven,” when I play electric, it’s got this jingly-jangly alt-country electric sound. I’m hearing stuff differently with electric guitar. It’s got a little jolt to it, a little grit—which, to me, feels more Savannah anyways. It feels good to show a different side of me. The Accomplices was cool because everybody had their thing—it was literally 25 percent, 25 percent, 25 percent, 25 percent. I’m interested in going 100 percent. I’ll write the song, bring it in, and I want to hear what people do—I don’t want to tell them what to do, but at the end of the day, it’s my song. That’s straight from Bruce Springsteen’s book, that’s how he talked with his band.
myself, and I want to heal other people that have gone through the same thing. I’m optimistic even in the saddest songs I’ve written. Sometimes I can get a little tongue-in-cheek and happy because something made me laugh, and I’ll get a line, like in “One Orange in the Tree.” I’m trying to break the mold a little bit with rhythm, but as far as lyrics, I think that’s always going to be how I see and feel. That’s what I want to do: something cool and good with my life. If I went back and worked doing what I used to do—my family has a tire business, and tires are awesome, they get you down the road, we need them!—but this is my tire. This is what makes me feel good, and this is my product. I think that’s an honorable life. Was it ever a question for you? Did you ever consider doing something different?
I knew I wanted to do it when I was really young…I went through a lot of struggle with it. My family was like, “This is a bad idea, you need to stick with college,” and I just failed out of college left and right. I wasn’t focused on it, I couldn’t get past it… it was almost like I went in knowing I was going to fail. I felt this pressure of society that [playing music for a living] is not smart—and it’s not smart! It’s a horrible idea! It’s the worst thing you could ever do! It’s the only thing I’m qualified to do, and I’m good at performing, making money in the corner of a bar on River Street, and I love doing that. I have no desire to live anywhere else. I’d thought about moving to Asheville, trying From before The Accomplices, dursome new stuff, but why would I do that? ing your time in the band, ‘til now, It’s like going to Portland and trying to have you seen your songwriting style open a coffee shop. It’s saturated. I’m defitransform? nitely here to stay, and I’m going to build whatever empire I can here. I’m going to Not really; I know what I’m good at. I love build a new hotel on River Street and start Townes Van Zandt and John Prine and Bob over again! I’ll play on the rooftop bar! Dylan, but I just can’t make a character up That’s my plan! CS and write about it. I wish I could! I write about healing myself, how I feel MATT ECKSTINE’S TYBEE ISLAND ALBUM RELEASE SHOW WITH about a situation personally, how I feel KURTIS SCHUMM about the world. Naturally, I tend to have Tybee Island Social Club a glass half-full perspective on life. I have that feeling on stuff 90 percent of the time; Thursday, June 22, 7:30 p.m. Free, all-ages I think when I’m doing it, I want to heal
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Me, personally, I was talking with my girlfriend and friends…I just said, ‘It’s not in my best interest to present new material to this project.’ I basically was like, ‘Okay, I can see the shore, it’s about to crash, but I guess I gotta get back out and do something.’ I’m solo now, it’s Matt Eckstine now, and the people I play with are great hands. It’s not even about how awesome [they] are—more importantly, I want it to be a lot of fun. The goals aren’t the same. World domination: that was The Accomplices’ thing. I believed in that. I just want to try to put that into me now. I want to keep it professional and fun, and the people I play with, they’ll become family.