Seth Avett Talks Signature Martin Guitar and New Avett Brothers Album, ‘True Sadness’
It’s going to another big year for the Grammy-nominated, alternative folk collective the Avett Brothers. Not only did they perform for the first time at New York’s legendary Madison Square Garden, but they’re also about to unveil their new album, True Sadness, which will coincide with another summer of touring.
True Sadness, which is set for a June 24 release, was produced by longtime collaborator Rick Rubin. The album represents the next chapter in North Carolina brothers Scott and Seth Avett’s ever-evolving career. In a letter to fans, Seth described True Sadness as “a patchwork quilt of styles” where “a myriad of contrasting fabrics makes perfect sense.”
I recently spoke to Seth about the new album and his signature Martin D-35 guitar.
How does True Sadness relate to some of the Avett Brothers’ previous albums?
I feel this record is probably the most dynamic one we’ve ever made. If you look at our previous records, you’ll find whispers an hints of our influences behind some of the music, but you only hear them in passing or small portions or perhaps. On this record, it’s more pronounced. When you apply that with our love for rhythm and gentle pieces of folk and rock, this record goes a lot of different places.
What was the writing process like?
We always try to be open-ended and without formula as much as possible. Generally, I lean toward musicality and am often led by a melody, where Scott is led more by a story or narrative. Eventually, we always find ourselves back wholly autobiographical viewpoint in a song. We draw just as much from our daily lives as we do from sitting around trying to write. When it comes to writing we stay open to all the sources, because there are an infinite number of them.
Let’s discuss a few tracks from True Sadness. What can you tell me about “Ain’t No Man”?
I jumped in after Scott had already planted the seed years before. I remember we were already in the studio working on demos when Scott came bursting through the door describing the idea. He came in bounding with so much inspiration that he could hardly contain himself. He started to reach for the guitar, but instead I told him not to and just sing the bass line to me and I’d transcribe it. We had never written a song like the before, so it was cool. So Scott sang me the bass line and it sprang out for there. It was a weird gestation of lightning in in a bottle.
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Interview with Seth Avett by Clicking Here!