One Hour With Adam Duritz: Counting Crows


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"Well I dreamt I saw you walking up a hillside in the snow. Casting shadows on the winter sky as you stood there, counting crows. One for sorrow, two for joy. Three for girls and four for boys. Five for silver, six for gold. Seven for a secret never to be told." - “A Murder of One" from “August and Everything After"

In the early 1990's, the San Francisco Bay Area [California, USA] gave birth to numerous talented musicians. One of them was essential in forming the band Counting Crows that exploded onto the music scene [after years of playing the club circuit] with their album “"August and Everything After" in 1993.

The band sold more than 20 million albums worldwide with 10 albums to date, including their 2013 digital release available only at US Tours, “Echoes of the Outlaw Roadshow."

Speaking with Adam Duritz, [musician, songwriter, record/film producer, and lead vocalist for Counting Crows], the both of us discussed the creative process as a whole.

Counting Crows have managed to stay independent in a sense, meaning consistently growing as artists without burning or selling out. Adam, @CountingCrows started several indie labels on his own [E Pluribus Unum and Bálint Hrecska] and in order to further indie music distribution, Adam began collaborating with the entire online scene that includes bloggers, music lovers, fans, and people that are truly talking about music.

Duritz found that a generation of musicians had evolved that were influenced by Counting Crows and in getting to know those musicians, Adam befriended Ryan Spaulding, Ryan's Smashing Life and of The Outlaw Roadshow that opened Adam up to countless blogs, radio, interviews, live recordings, jam sessions, traveling indie festivals, and diverse outlets for all musicians, locally, nationally and globally.

Other outlets include: Katie Darby Recommends, Day Trotter, and Absolute Punk.

On indie outlets and social media, Adam states: “The Internet is the worlds biggest free billboard, it's a huge conduit, it connects people." and on the outlets, “They weren't writing articles about some girl they thought I was dating, they were writing about the music."

Counting Crows [along with The Wallflowers] are starting their 22 stop US Tour June 14, starting in New York. Their performance in Buffalo, NY on June 28th via Buffalo Place is a special one, kicking off the 15th Annual Buffalo Place Rocks Canalside Concert Series. At each performance, ticket holders will be able to digitally download an unreleased live album, “Echoes of the Outlaw Roadshow."

Their 2012 release, "UnderWater Sunshine" is a mix of all genres of music such as: rock, bluegrass, country, indie, modern, pop, and contemporary while paying homage to different songs and artists that were either famous [Girl From the North Country, Return of the Grievous Angel, Aimee] as well as bands they played with or were in [Jumping Jesus, Untitled : Love Song.]

Three of my favorite tunes from “Sunshine” are reviewed below, available here to listen to first, and also for download.

“Jumping Jesus" [heard at the end of the interview] has a positive, uplifting tempo, utilizing reverb, echoes and harmonics. The vocals, guitars and percussion are cohesive with lyrics like, “Jumping Jesus, my oh my, he's got a great big bottle of sunshine. Jumping Jesus, why oh why, take the time to get inside . . . get inside . . . ." - questioning spirit, self, existence, and purpose.

“Untitled, Love Song" [heard at the start of the interview] is beautiful hurt. Musically, and vocally, simply a work of art featuring bass lined piano coupled with jazz infused keys, and Adam, crying along with the guitars, thunderous and melodic, “Throw your arms a-round my neck, I won't be soon . . . to for-get."

“Meet on the Ledge" is a reflection of the past to the future, [nice bass and keys] of those who have come and gone and those who are here, the circle of life. ["Meet on the ledge, we gonna meet on the ledge, when the time is abound, gonna see all of my friends, meet on the ledge, we gonna meet on the ledge, if you really mean it, it all comes round again.”]

This entire album is simply, a comprehensive tribute to music.

On the website, Adam said: “It's hard to explain to fans why bands occasionally let so much time pass between visits. The truth is sometimes life just gets in the way and, before you know it, it's been a few years. Personally, I'm glad were going back. I have a lot of great memories of past tours. Remembering where we've been always gets me excited about where were going."

After learning of new creative circles, I promoted the audio by itself first. Immediately, I received the reason why I do exactly what Adam and I speak of due to a single message sent to me via @RenSlaven:

“Thank you so much for sharing. Through Adam's tips, I discover so many new music outlets. That enthusiasm is infectious!"

And that is truly, what it is all about.

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