Interview with singer and rugged zen master Gideon Smith
Based in North Carolina, singer and rugged zen master Gideon Smith is recognized for his bluesy seventies retro rock that has gathered worldwide acclaim. His songs have been featured on television shows like The Sopranos and more. When he was young he once visited Jim Morrison's grave in Paris and has a life long love for the Doors music. These days he is writing new material and doing his best to spread a positive vibe through words and music. We have conducted an interview with him.
Which song of yours was featured on a television show on 'The Sopranos?
My song “Draggin’ The River” was featured in an episode of the show years ago, it is a bluesy song from the first album. I am really thankful to have been a part of it somehow. Everyone loved the show. I am honored my music was on there somewhere along the history. It was a great series, such a classic show.
How do The Doors' music and the lead singer Jim Morrison inspire you?
Jim always inspires me as a mystical rock and roll shaman. I always felt an understanding of how he approached singing in a rock band. He was very original, the first real shaman in rock music. I think Jim was a true poet, a great singer and a brilliant man. I will always be a big Doors fan. I regret never having a chance to meet Ray Manzarek. I hope to meet Robbie Krieger and John Densmore one day. Morrison was a true legend of rock and has inspired me in countless ways. He laid down the path for people like me who related to rock music in a primal mystical way but also in a fun, bluesy path to freedom. Their music was truly magical and always speaks to me. Their sound is easy to get lost in like all the classic bands who pull you into their world and give you the gift of real music and magic. Morrison was the father of the rock shaman line. Sometimes people like to portray Jim as just a party icon, all decadent revelry. Of course he was a Dionysus manifestation, but people don’t give him credit for how smart he truly was. People said you almost never saw him without a book in his hand. John Densmore always said things like that. Jim was such a fiercely intelligent man.
What kind of new material are you currently writing?
All kinds of songs, whatever comes out is what needs to come out. Many songs about love, passion, power and mystery. I have been through a lot in the last few years, so new songs reflect my experiences that were the most intense or interesting. I always sing from my heart. Writing songs is never an effort. They come to you from the universe: into your eyes, your hands, your body from experience. How you choose to receive it then back out of you again through your hands playing an instrument or singing from your words and voice. The musician is like a pipe carrying water. They are just the method of delivery. It’s interesting also how songs are captured. From the musician into the microphone, recorded in a studio, then back out again out of a stereo speaker all over the world. They move around. At live performances, they are received in someone’s memory like any experience. It’s fascinating how songs travel and settle in someone’s life, heart, memory. All life is vibration so music makes sense to be a higher form of soul communication or inspiration.
How do you intend to spread a positive vibe through your music and writing?
I think whatever style a song may be or what it may contain lyrically, it contributes to the good of the world because you are giving the gift of your art to the listener. What they find there often reflects what they have inside. I think music is sacred and comes from the Gods and we are responsible to give it when we can. Music belongs to us all without boundaries and is the language of the soul. I hope my songs somehow make the word a brighter place for people who enjoy them. I consider it a sacred exchange of words and music. My favorite songs in recent years are love songs. I may write darker or heavier songs, but I feel that love songs are sacred and should be cherished. Like Andrew Wood said music is the only universal language. Thanks for the interview, rock on friend.
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