It won’t take long for you to be hooked on this band for life!!! Their energy will suck you in like the eye of a hurricane, and leave you craving for more!!! Check out what their lead singer has to say.
When did you start your band?
Sky Burnt White really got its start in 2011. I was in two other bands at the time (Sicklove and Stone Dog Diaries.) We had made some home studio demos for the hell of it. I ended up showing them to a good friend of mine and got the opportunity to make some extra money creating background music for a local production that houses various projects.
I took it upon myself to learn all I could about the recording process, and in turn created even more original songs using drum loops, but playing all the instruments and building the effects for the songs. After building a library of music to choose from I recruited some of my closest friends to help me piece the music together for the live show. Now we are finally ready to bring it to everyone.
Which instruments do you play?
In Sky Burnt White I sing and play guitar.
Describe your music interests and abilities.
One of my older brothers Jason had both a trumpet, and a drum set from my earliest memories. When I was little I remember being fascinated by the drums in particular, and always enjoyed when he would let me beat around on his from time to time.
I inherited both of those instruments from him, and learned to play both by being mostly forced too throughout high school and in church. I was a pastor’s kid, and pretty much filled in wherever was necessary. Looking back now I do appreciate it, and I have to say I did pay my parents back with plenty of what I’m sure were awful hours of long drumming sessions in the basement.
I would play entire albums through headphones until I could play the whole thing through. I always knew I could sing but didn’t really know anyone thought I was good at it until I put out, an add on the internet looking for musicians to put a band together.
I had written notebooks full of lyrics and put 110% of my attention to singing. Over the years after an early band I was in broke up, I was left to start over from scratch. I was faced with the fact that I would either have to learn how to play guitar and sing, or I would have to rely on everyone else for the rest of my music career.
Having people to rely on is great, but only when there are people there. So I literally did nothing for about a year but go to work, drink whiskey, and play guitar for about five hours a day in a garage. Everything I play I have learned to play on my own, and by ear.
What famous musicians inspire you?
I’ve been tremendously inspired by a few different musicians in particular. Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, Lajon Witherspoon, and Clint Lowry from Sevendust, MJK of Tool and A Perfect Circle, Myles Kennedy of Alter Bridge, Chino Moreno of Deftones, Daniel Johns of Silverchair, and the list goes on. One of the biggest of these is a guy named Jeff Buckley. Not enough people know who that Is, and that’s a damn shame. We are currently covering a song of his called “Forget Her” in our set. It’s actually a big deal for me that we are doing that. His music really has impacted my writing and helped me through a lot of things in life.
What is some of your best musical memories? Say at your house or in your neighborhood.
I’ve had a lot of good times playing music. I’ve also had to sleep on blacktop next to a trailer in Amarillo Texas in the summer because our van had broken down. It’s funny how those memories are actually fun to joke about when you get through them :). I’d have to say one of the best memories I have was a night with a band I was in, had booked a show at a biker bar without realizing it was a biker bar. One of the bands didn’t show up. I ended up having to fill time by opening the show acoustically.
After the first song, the place actually went nuts, and I ended up watching the sun come up with the owner of the place after we drank the entire bar under the table. It was crazy! Some of my favorite early memories were when I was fresh out of high school, and promoters our age would rent out halls in small towns, and we would pack the place with people. We really had a lot of fun at those shows. The people cared about the music and we were “ALL” intense about practice and playing our hearts out at every show.
What would you say to beginning musicians, who are nervous?
Do everything you can to be either a wanted commodity and/or self-sufficient. You won’t get there by doing nothing. If you are serious then get your ass into the garage and pound on those drums for 3 hours a night. Go buy a guitar and start writing your own music. You probably aren’t going to write a bad ass tune in your first go around, but that’s how you grow. You have to force yourself to do it even when you don’t really feel like doing it. Put your heart into a song you are writing and finish it. Then keep writing songs while you are consistently practicing and go back to your old ideas after three months of that regiment. It’s something I do and is a great way to see results in your own abilities, as well as point out areas where you can improve yourself. Most importantly be honest with yourself and don’t half ass it.
How do you balance your music with your family and friends?
Most of my friends are musicians or are involved with music in some kind of way. Outside of that I surround myself with people that understand music comes first with me. I am miserable without it and I can’t control that. Thankfully I have been blessed with friends that respect that and a family that doesn’t really get it. I have chosen music every time over so many things, because I feel like if someone actually knows who I am and loves me for that they wouldn’t ask me to give it up.
Should we be expecting anything new to be released?
We are releasing a 13 track studio album “Exit Strategies” this fall, but will be releasing two singles from the album in September. I am very excited about this album as it has literally been a yearlong process to finally choose the studio it would be completed at and start recording. We are 10 songs deep with 3 to go as of right now and we’ll be wrapping those up this month. I have poured my heart and soul into this music and it means more than I can explain that we’re finally about to get these songs out there. As of now you can find a few tunes on our Facebook and Reverb nation pages that we released last Winter.
You can find my band Sky Burnt White at:
Sky Burnt White Smoke
The live lineup consists of:
Gabe Stroup – Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist
Jayk Reed – Drums
Mario Spina – Guitar
James Dill – Bass
“These guys are helping me bring the live show as well as taking part in helping me record the full album. They are my best friends and brothers and I wouldn’t be who I am or where I am without them.” -Gabe Stroup.
About Johnny Naylor:
Johnny Naylor is the founder and owner of 1st Shot Music and a feature writer for Jammerzine. His work can also be found on 1st Shot Music and Naylor’s Notes. You can also get his latest updates on his facebook page.
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