GODSMACK Frontman On His Solo Album: ‘This Is A More Intellectual Side Of Me’

Ken Brzezinski of Static Multimedia recently conducted an interview with GODSMACK frontman Sully Erna about Sully’s new solo album, “Avalon”. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Static Multimedia: It’s really hard, I think, for musicians to do a side project when they are an identifying member of another band. Take you — your voice is very distinctive and in a lot of ways IS GODSMACK. How do you change the perception of people who think, “Well this isn’t what I’m expecting to hear from Sully, so I don’t like it?”

Sully: It’s another side of me. I mean, look — a musician is a musician. And as people may or may not know, while my focus is on hard rock a lot of the time, there’s also a lot of other music I love playing as well. There’s times when I’m sitting in the dressing room with an acoustic guitar and I come up with some really clever pieces that I really enjoy but that aren’t quite right for GODSMACK. Some of them are, which is why I recorded things like “Hollow”, “Serenity”, and “Voodoo”. But there’s other pieces that are maybe a little bit deeper and out of the box where GODSMACK is limited to. Their still great songs to me and I don’t want to lose them. I could be sitting at home in front of the piano with my daughter and I could just come up with something right there. We’re artists, and we’re always creating art all the time. So I collected these pieces and I chose to put them on a separate record because they show a different side of me. As far as my voice goes, I have a rock voice and I think people are always going to identify it as that. But there’s also a softer way of singing things and still bring power through emotion. That’s what I chose to do on this record. I took a few chances and jumped in a different direction to translate a different side of me to the GODSMACK audience and hopefully “Avalon” will open up a new audience for me as well.

Static Multimedia: Has there been any negative feedback on “Avalon”, with the hardcore GODSMACK fan perhaps saying, “This isn’t what I expected to hear from Sully?”

Sully: Not one single piece of negative feedback, nothing. Because I’ve done my job over the past few years preparing people to understand something. Understand that when you hear this record, it’s not Sully Erna going solo with another rock band, this is simply a complete detachment from anything I’ve ever done before. This is not a rock record. It’s a record with piano compositions and cello pieces. It’s everything but a big, heavy, tough, rock record. If I wanted to do that kind of record, I’m not going to go solo and do it, I’ll just do it with my boys in GODSMACK. This is a completely different thing. It’s not GODSMACK. I think I’ve made people pretty aware of that so I think it’s not really a shock to them.

Static Multimedia: Was there any trepidation at all with the “other band?” Were the guys in GODSMACK supportive of this or were they afraid your solo project would get too big?

Sully: No, not at all, they are very supportive. They wished me the best of luck. I mean, there was a small part that scared them a little bit, you know — they hope it doesn’t get too big and hope it doesn’t become the death of GODSMACK. What they, or anyone else may not realize, is that this doesn’t have to be the death of GODSMACK. Even if this thing got ten times bigger than GODSMACK ever did, it doesn’t matter. What I do with GODSMACK is a different side of me and I’m always going to crave that and want to put that on a record. This is a more intellectual side of me that I did because I like playing this kind of music. GODSMACK, yeah, it’s about the music, but it’s also about the energy, the pyro, and the show. This is about the music. This is back to like when PINK FLOYD put out “Dark Side Of The Moon”. Not that I’m comparing myself to that, but I hope that it holds up like that. I hope people realize that this is all about the music, the visuals, and the journey it takes you in when you close your eyes and listen to these sounds. I was very vulnerable on this record. I slit my wrists open and dumped it onto “Avalon”. So it’s a bit generalized, but it’s all there and people can translate it into their own life story. And I think it hits home for a lot of people because people go through their own events, and their own situations, and their own emotions. And I’m glad that “Avalon” is going to resonate with people that way because it needs to, it needs to take them on their own journey, it needs to heal them, to make them cry, make them smile, make them feel strong, or have it do whatever it does to them so they can get the full impact of what a beautiful gift that music really is to us.

Read the entire interview from Static Multimedia.

Courtesy of Blabbermouth.net

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