Timothy B. Schmit Talks "Expando"
Fri, 02 Dec 2011 14:43:31
Coming from The Eagles and Poco, Timothy B. Schmit has quite a few tales to tell.
The best place that he's ever told them is his latest solo album, Expando. It's an honest and heartfelt collection of tunes from Schmit that see him at his most powerful and poetic as a songwriter. Right now, you can hear it all up close and personal as this legend is on the road.
Timothy B. Schmit opened up about Expando and his reading list to ARTISTdirect.com editor and Dolor author Rick Florino in this exclusive interview…
Did you approach Expando with a complete vision from start to finish? It feels like there's a thread between the songs.
I didn't go into it that way, but I do know what you mean! After I decided it was over, I sequenced the songs and listened to them over and over again. At that point, I thought, "This feels like a complete project." I was really pleased. My intentions were to keep recording songs. I would write a song, record it, and start over again. I wish I could say, "Yes, I had this complete vision of a big epic project" but that wasn't really the case.
Is it important for you to tell stories with the songs? They come across visually.
You really get it! My intent is to write quality good songs that people will want to hear again. That's all it is. I really feel like I started to actually get a little bit of a handle on songwriting with this album. Being as old as I am, it's really nice to feel like I'm starting to get it [Laughs]. It gives me a more exciting future. In the past, I think I held back lyrically. Now, I'm just saying it. Why not? I don't know what I was afraid of. I say what's on my mind, which is nice.
What encouraged you to do that?
When I first started recording these songs, I had it vaguely in my mind to make an album, but that wasn't really the primary thing in the back of my mind. The primary thing was, "I'm going to try and do what I do best." I had to ask myself, "What is that?" I'm a bit of a folk singer. My roots are more there than anywhere else. So, I write all of my songs on acoustic guitar and I try to make them full and complete. Then, I went from there. There were layers and layers after that.
What's the story behind "A Good Day?"
I didn't know if that song was going to make the album. Other people say they really like it so I'm glad I put it on. It's another autobiographical piece. Where I live, there really is a creek that's a short walk away down into the field. It's really nice. I was thinking, "There's so much misery in the world. We do not know the future." That's one thing we don't have a handle on even in day-to-day mundane life. It's nice at the end of the day when you go, "Wow, this is cool! This is a good one." It's self-explanatory. People want to feel good. They want to be at peace. They want to avoid pain and seek sanity and a peaceful existence. It's what we all want.
Which authors do you revisit?
I've been reading John Steinbeck a lot lately. I never really read all of his books. I started with the first one, Cup of Gold. It's about a buccaneer! It's totally different from all of the California and Dust Bowl stuff. I mostly read novels. I read this bestseller called Unbroken that was really incredible.
Have you heard Expando?