An Interview With Alex Blizzy

Q: What inspired you to become a musician, and how did you get started in the industry?

A: As soon as I saw Elvis Presley on TV at age three, I listened to as much as I could from that early rock n’ roll era and I knew I wanted to experience the magic of that on a deeper level.  Later as I got older, it was the singer/songwriters from the late 60s/early 70s that really made me want to focus on songwriting as an intense craft.  I began playing guitar at age 12 and singing when I was in high school – I just tried to become better at both as best I could and that led to playing in numerous bands, usually as a lead guitar player and singing harmony vocals.  Through that, I was able to meet a fair amount of musicians while forging my own songwriting identity.  I began to get better as an audio engineer as well, and all of that culminated in allowing me to do what I really wanted – which was to have a direct path toward releasing the music that mattered most to me.

Q: How would you describe your sound, and what sets you apart from other artists in your genre?

A: I’d describe my sound as somewhere between “Heartland Rock” and “Indie Americana.”  My influences span most of the umbrella of rock n’ roll’s roots.  My bandmate, Tom Glynn, likes to refer to it as “Indie Southern.”  I think that is a decent description.

Q: What was the inspiration behind your new album, “A Step Behind,” and how did you approach the songwriting process?

A: A number of the songs touch on the idea of missing out on opportunities and being on the outside looking in, such as the title track.  I saw folks around me moving up the ladder of life when I was a few rungs further down.

Q: What is your favorite track on the album, and why?

A: That’s tough – I’d say my favorite song on the album is Never Felt Better.  There’s a lot to unpack emotionally in it and I think reflects a feeling many of us have had at one time that is a bit elusive and difficult to translate.  I think it’s one of the better songs I’ve ever written for those reasons.  My favorite track though is probably Drinking Town because I just love the energy of the drum groove and the lead guitar parts on it.

Q: How has your music evolved over the years, and what can fans expect from your future releases?

A: Well, this is my debut release, but in comparison to how I wrote when I was younger, I’d say that while I consider my harmonic sense one of my greatest strengths, in the past sometimes I leaned on that too much outside of other compositional elements.  I feel as though I have more tools now that strike a better balance, and some of those harmonic choices are able to land harder because of it.

Q: What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a musician, and how did you overcome it?

A: I think early on when I was developing and at a point where I could do it with some degree of professionalism, I still questioned what it was that I did well and where I should direct my focus.  I probably wasted valuable time early on because of my own self-doubt & lack of understanding of my own artistry.  One of my friends and frequent co-writers, Benjamin Burke, told me around that time that I just needed to keep writing “Alex songs.”  He was right and that gave me the direction I needed to be able to get back to what I did best and narrow my path toward what really made me tick as a musician & songwriter.

Q: What advice would you give to aspiring musicians who are just starting out in the industry?

A: Don’t let the metrics of the day define your idea of success.  If you’ve gotten this far, you know your art and what that is to you and to truly resonate with others, you have to believe that with a religious conviction.  There will be no greater salesperson for your music than you, so don’t postpone your passion for pet projects intended to drive numbers.  Keep the faith and if all you’re ever left with is music that you’re proud of, how could you not see that as a success?

Q: How has your background and upbringing influenced your music?

A: We used to take long drives from Northern Virginia to Buffalo, NY where my extended family all lived, and I would sit with a Walkman and cassette all nine or ten hours of the drive and absorb those songs; both in terms of how they felt to me as well as how they were structured.  I knew then that I wanted to write my own songs.  When I eventually did begin to play the guitar and begin to write, I felt like most of the initial preparation for that took place on those long drive listening sessions.

Q: What has been your favorite performance or tour experience so far, and why?

A: Well, my band and I are really just getting started playing this music locally here in Nashville, so I’d say it was probably a few years ago when I was playing in a project band named The Forest, and we got together and covered Dark Side of the Moon in its entirety.  It was a close group of friends and I really learned a lot as a guitar player while participating in that, and I felt like I became a better musician in the process.

Q: What are your plans for the future, and what can fans expect from you in the coming years?

A: I plan on following up on this debut with a sophomore release, hopefully, to be released by mid-2025.  I’d like to say earlier than that, but I’ve learned it’s better to taper expectations.  I have several of the songs written already & have begun the demo process.  It will likely further expand upon what I’ve done on my debut.  I like the band that I’ve been able to establish here, and my hope is, depending on schedule & budget, that we’ll be able to do a fair amount of live tracking together when it comes time to record the real thing.

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