Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Session Guitarist Eric Blaszczak
November 28th, 2012 (Part One)

GS: Eric,It's a pleasure,Thanks for taking the time to speak with us
EB: My pleasure, thanks for having me
GS: Many musicians in the industry have worked with you.Some of which are very big names..How is Eric Blaszczak not a household name?
EB: It's the nature of the business.We get called for a session,I show up and play..I don't personally promote those sessions after they are recorded so many times my appearance on these projects goes under the radar
GS: Disney,Home Depot,Countless Commercial spots have used your music or featured your guitar work.To what do you attribute this success to?
EB: Without a doubt versatility.When a session player gets called he has to be able to cover the gamut of the musical spectrum.Whether it's a Country or Heavy Metal gig, we have to go in and play those genre's with a high level of proficiency

GS: How can a new player aspire to do some of the things you've done in music?
EB: Practice your heart out,Believe in yourself and then practice some more
GS: Many guitarists that know you seem to comment about your sound.Specifically, your very smooth lead tones.What  was your inspiration behind your lead sound?
EB: I think my sound kinda evolved from several of my favorite players and many hours of noodling with equipment and different ways of playing the fretboard..I'm a big advocate of the fingers being the source of all the tones that come from a player
GS: It's incredibly smooth and nearly void of all pick noise.One of our writers commented that it sounds almost like another instrument,like a synth violin or some horns at times
EB: Thanks.It's just what drives me.Clanking picks and loud string plucking is the nemesis of what I'm trying to achieve with the guitar.I like it silky smooth with just a tad of grit on top..Kinda like the sound of a horse hair bow being dragged across the strings of a violin
GS: How is this achieved?
EB: Having no life and being way to anal about tone. (Laughs)
GS: Is there one piece of gear that is more influential on that sound than any others?
EB: Equipment wise it's hard to say..From an equipment standpoint,Tone is the sum of it's parts.Everything in your signal flow ultimately effects the final product to the ears.From strings to cables and everything in between.I'd have to say that fingers are the most overlooked piece of equipment in a guitar player's shed
GS: We love your sound.Are you picking up where Eric Johnson left off?
EB: EJ is a huge influence for me.I'm not sure he left out anything (laughs) I think the biggest difference between us is he is very dedicated to using vintage gear and the like.I'm probably a little more open to things like Floyd Rose tremolo's and such.I don't think I've ever seen EJ use a locking trem guitar other than a strat equipped with a super vee .
GS: Will we be seeing a Digitech Whammy on your pedalboard in the future?
EB: If it sounds musical and fits the piece at hand, I'd use it without reservation
GS: Speaking of pedals, You are an avid Tube Driver user.What is it about that overdrive that you like?Many comment on Gilmour's sound and obviously EJ's, how is your tone so different?
EB: I blend overdrive sounds.I use one pedal to boost the next and always use the clean channel on my lead amps.I don't have a pedalboard..I have three different overdrive pedals,echo and reverb.Thats all
GS: I read that you endorse Splawn's amplifiers.Is there anyone else you endorse?
EB: Yes, Tone Guitar Company guitars and Wound 4 Sound pickups
GS: What strings do you use?
EB: GHS Nickel Rockers 10-50
GS: What is in your CD player in your car?
EB: I think it's Enya,Memory of Trees
GS: Your YouTube channel is loaded with really good piano based songs.Are you shying away from guitar?
EB: Not at all.I get bored really quick with things.One day I will love the sound of the guitar and the next,piano,so it's a nice secondary instrument,especially for writing songs.When I write songs on piano I feel much more disciplined and focused.Sometimes when I have a guitar in my hands for song writing I have to catch myself from going off into the oblivion on solo runs and controlled scale practice (laughs)
GS: That's not necessarily a bad thing is it?
EB: Well, no, but if you are trying to get basic song ideas down it can hamper the direction of the song
GS: We have a copy of your Christmas Album, Christmas with Eric Blaszczak and it is an amazing set of songs and includes "Wonderland" which won a BMI award for song most used in commercials and productions.What is the most well known production "Wonderland" was used in?
EB: Thanks alot. I'd have to say American Idol as the biggest but it has been used in about a dozen productions in the mainstream
GS: Any plans for a new solo album?
EB: Yes, I've been writing songs for my upcoming record titled Internal Dimension.This album has been in the works for a very long time.I hope to get that going real soon
GS: Speaking of BMI awards, you also won an award for the Home Depot jingle.How do you feel about The Home Depot now using commercial music with the Ed Harris voice overs?
EB: Honestly, I'm a bit partial to the original theme that everyone knows.To me that jingle just exuded a sense of wanting to embark on a house project.Like painting a room or cleaning up the yard in the fall.I feel the new commercials do not have that same feel
GS: We agree, completely.
GS: Have any other companies come forward to have you write their company brand theme?
EB: Not so much a theme per say but for individual commercials.Like Lexus
GS: Lexus Europe uses your track called Seventh Seal in an LFA commercial,correct?
EB: Yes, I just saw it on YouTube for the first time a few weeks ago
GS: How does that feel to hear your music on these productions and commercials
EB: I'm thrilled about it.many times I have people approach me and say they heard this track or that track on this or that commercial.it's real nice.I'm blessed to have reached this level
GS: We cannot think of anyone more deserving
EB: Well, Thank You,I just do what I do.As long as music comes from the heart it's a winner,even if it never becomes well known or makes the performer rich with monetary rewards
GS: Eric, Thank You for spending the time to answer our questions.Can we do this again sometime in the future?
EB: Absolutely, Thanks Guys,have a safe and Happy Holiday Season

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