The hard rock band from Atlanta, Georgia, Sevendust, has a new album coming out March 26 called Blackout the Sun. Currently the band is preparing to go on tour with Lacuna Coil. Recently I caught up with Clint Lowery in Waterloo, Iowa on their final stop of the first leg of the tour. We talked about the new album, his side project, how he balances Sevendust and his family. I also asked about the possibility of getting the boys in Alter Bridge, Sevendust and all the side projects in between together for a tour.
Bob Zerull (BZ): So how do you like all this snow?
Clint Lowery (CL): I don’t like it (laughs); it’s cold.
BZ: You recorded the new album Black Out the Sun in New Jersey right? Did you guys get out of there before Hurricane Sandy hit?
CL: We missed it. We were there from September to October 9, so we missed it. We were close…too close.
BZ: You guys seem really rejuvenated on this new album. Does that have anything to do with the side projects and the fact that they came out so good?
CL: I think time away, just like any relationship you give yourself a little break from each other, you get refreshed in a lot of ways. Doing other projects gives you the opportunity to learn using different creative formulas. It definitely helped me on my personal approach to the Sevendust record. I was a little burnt out, so I got to do a little something on the side, and after doing that, I was ready to go back into the Sevendust world. It was a good thing for everybody. I think everybody enjoyed the time.
BZ: It separates your mind from one project to another and gives you new ideas and outlooks.
CL: It actually helped the Sevendust album. We recorded at the same place that I did the Call Me No One record, so I already knew the team there.
BZ: Did you feel rejuvenated then when you went in and recorded?
CL: Yeah, fully. We were completely ready. We were actually going to do it in June but we decided to wait a little longer.
BZ: Did you guys have ideas going into it or did you write most of the record on the spot?
CL: John (Connolly) and I had a couple things. The actual music for Decay was written for Cold Day Memory. We decided not to use it. John had that music and we revamped it and I wrote vocals over it that gave it a new life. That was the only preexisting idea we had everything else was on the spot. We just got in there and jammed it out. No time to second-guess.
BZ: Are your side projects (Call Me No One and John Connolly’s Projected) still going to exist as real bands?
CL: Yeah, I think the thing with Call Me No One was that it was a creative outlet for Morgan (Rose) and I. I think the next thing I’ll do is my own project, by myself as a Clint Lowery kind of thing, not for any other reason than there’s some stuff I want to do that I don’t have to run by anybody. I want to do it the way I want to do it and see it through. I think everyone needs to do that. Lajon (Witherspoon) is going to do another thing. The Call Me No One thing is really close to me. Morgan being involved is a plus, so if Morgan is available then I might do another Call Me No One album and actually call it that. It’s up in the air, but I want to try some different stuff too.
BZ: This is kind of a stupid question, but is there any chance we could see Call Me No One and Projected opening up for Sevendust or better yet throw in Alter Bridge and Tremonti as well?
CL: That’s not a stupid question. That’s what the goal is, to get Alter Bridge, Tremonti, Projected and all of us doing mini sets.
BZ: You need to do a full on hour and a half (laughs) blow yourselves out every night.
CL: (laughs) Yeah, each one of us. Make it an entire day long (expletive) thing. That would be cool. We’re too old to pull that off.
BZ: We’re good friends with the band Three Years Hollow whom you’ve been working with this last year, how did that collaboration come together?
CL: Those are my boys. My brother (Corey Lowery from Eye Empire) turned me on to them. They had done some shows together, so I did some cowrites with them and produced their last EP and just fell in love with the guys, Joes (Urquiza) especially. I just think he’s a cool dude and talented. I like the guys man, they’re good guys and they do good music. I like to see them doing something good.
BZ: Do you do that a lot, collaborating with lesser-known bands?
CL: I do, I have this last year and it’s how I made my living. I produced bands and did a lot of co-writes. I love doing it. It’s cool to be around different energy. You learn from each one of those experiences.
BZ: How do you separate your professional time with your family time? How do you prepare yourself for going on tour and separating yourself from the family?
CL: It’s hard man. The dynamic changes with the kids. When I’m home I get into daddy mode. When I leave it takes me a few days to get into this mode. It’s like a growing pain at first. When I get back home I have to get back into daddy mode. It’s really a balance. I don’t know how much longer I’m going to be able to tour this extensively. We’ll always do Sevendust, but we’re going to have to be pickier about where and how often, so we can maintain that balance. When we lose balance at home it makes us miserable here and we don’t want to be miserable when we’re out here. The fans deserve us to be into it 100 percent.
BZ: You think you could have stayed with Sevendust if you had kids early on in your career?
CL: I don’t know man; the guys have had kids for 8 to 9 years. I wasn’t personally fit to be a father until recently. It worked out and the timing was good for me. But I don’t know it’s hard to say.
Check out Sevendust at www.sevendust.com