Marc Ford, ex-guitarist of the Black Crowes, said something to me the other week that no musician has ever directed towards me before. He said, ‘At one point I felt that all of my creativity was wrapped up in drugs and that without drugs I was scared of not being creative.’ Is that something you struggle with as well, the fear of not being creative?

I think everybody feels that from time to time and what brings it back is some sort of obstacle that you have to overcome. Or some struggle that you have to base it on or continue. I think we are kind of getting diverted, because now we are talking about songwriting. As a songwriter I think most songwriters write their best songs when they are going through some really hard times. That doesn’t have to be financially, it could be emotionally, it could be physically, it could be spiritually, it could be whatever suffering you are going through at the moment. When songwriters are happy then that can turn to complacency. How much of your search or quest is for happiness and how much is to write the best song you can write.

It has been two years since Gov’t Mule released High And Mighty. It is getting about time for a follow-up. Are plans on the books?

We have recorded about half of a record and we are going to go back in the studio early next year and start working on the rest of it.

Do you have an idea of how it will sound?

I think it’s definitely going to be a rock ‘n’ roll record but different from High And Mighty in a way that some of the songs were written and recorded for the High And Mighty sessions but we felt like they sounded like a different record. So, they didn’t feel like they fit on that record, but is all stuff that we were really happy with the way it turned out. In a lot of way we feel as if we made the complete High And Mighty record and the beginnings of the next record. Now we have to just connect the dots and see what this next record is going to be.

There are some different melodic structures and different approaches but we like every record to be different from the one before it. It is to early for me to know exactly what it is going to be like but the stuff that we have recorded so far doesn’t really sound like anything we have done in the past. There is stuff where Danny and I both play guitar. There is stuff where there are no keyboards. There is some stuff where there are acoustic guitars and electric guitars. And then with our new bass player, who is a rocker, I think his personality is going to help influence of the new record as well.

Gov’t Mule will be performing at Hammerstein Ballroom in NYC on Dec. 30 and 31. For more information on Warren Haynes and Gov’t Mule you can visit their homepage at mule.net.

Photo Credit: Jay Blakesberg

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