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Status: Found Peace
Joined: Apr 2003
New Guitar One Magazine with Mark Tremonti!
I went to the store today for my mom and wanted to pick up the Metal Edge magazine with the Alter Bridge calendar, but saw the new Guitar One magazine with Mark on the cover. The cover story says: "The Full Tremonti: The end of Creed and the birth of Alter Bridge!" and exclusive lesson "Mark's shred secrets revealed!" This issue also includes the tabs for Open Your Eyes.
I'm not going to post the whole article as it is quite long (and a very good read), but here are some of the things in it.
The article starts out with author Michael Mueller going to Mark's new (and still quite empty) Orlando home. He finds out that they are going to announce the Creed breakup later that day, and we find out later in the article that it is also Mark's father's birthday. Mark plays the new album for the Mueller and says that he (Mark) wanted the first single to be Down To My Last. Mark shows Mueller around his house and makes mention of a room that currently contains a few mattresses on the floor, a guitar, and a practice amp, which Mark says "will be the play room for his future children."
"Yeah, Creed's over," says Tremonti, answering the inevitable question. "Scott Phillips and I talked to each other towards the end of Creed and agreed that we wouldn't go on in the music business unless we were having fun. And towards the end of Creed, things just got so political and heavy, it just took all the joy out if it." Tremonti takes the high road and refuses to place the blame on any one person, but still, when we discuss how things went down, including percieved attempts by the media to knock the band down at every turn, you can sense a deep hurt."
The first signs of trouble in Creed came during the Human Clay tour in 2000, when bassist Brian Marshall was, as he put it, unceremoniously dismissed. "Oh yeah, I went kicking and screaming," says the soft-spoken bassist, who seems less concerned than Tremonti with political correctness. "The reason for that was, basically, [Scott] Stapp and I didn't see eye to eye on the music. And it was at the point where it was unheatlthy for both of us to even be on the same stage together, much less the same tour bus. It had gotten to the point where the pressure on the band from our issues was so great, it was better for the band if I left."
"Not to slang anybody out there now, but it seems to me that a lot of singsrs nowadays have a decent voice, but they don't train it," adds Tremonti. "There are no real dedicated people who wake up, do their scales, take lessons, and eat right; and Myles is one of those guys. It's so great to work with somebody who's like that, because I'm from the same school of thought - you have to be, if you're gonna say alive in this business.
Tremonti has high expectations for Alter Bridge, a project that, to keep the dream alive for Tremonti & Co., needs not only to survive on its own but also to exorcise the specter of Creed. "The last thing we wanted to do was replace Scott [Stapp] and play cover Creed songs," says Tremonti of the group he hopes to ride into the sunset of his career. "We'll never play a Creed song as long as we live, unless..." - he pauses, as if to be absolutely sure of what he's about to say - "no, we'll never do that; we'll only do Alter Bridge songs. I think when people hear it, they won't relate it as much to Creed - I think it'll stand completly on its own.
"I think I'm twice the musician I was in Creed, becuase to make the transition to another band, I knew I'd have to be at the top of my game," he says, warming up his fingers. "The guitar playing on this album is definitely head and shoulders above all the last three records. It's by far my personal best effort put forth on record so far."
"I try to practice at least five hours a day, and I log my hours. When you write down how muych you're playing each day, and have a schedule, and know exactly what you're gonna play, you tend to play more."
Tremonti then goes on to talk about how he conditions his hands and people he's been working with on furthering his ability.\
-What gear are you using in Alter Bridge?
I still use the PRS Tremonti model exclusively. Now I get them all with trems. I just had them make me a 24-fret trem version, but sometime I get lost when I'm playing high up on the neck. It seems like a lot more than a two-fret difference when you're up there! And now I've got my own pickups, which are wound tighter than the regular ones.
I still use Mesa/Boogie Triple Recs. I thing that's kind of my comfort blanket. I like to mix amp tones, like a producer would, so I use a Bogner Uberschall with the Boogie. Other than that, I've got a Diezel and a '68 Marshall Plexi, which I like to use on some of the more retro-rock songs. And I like to go completely straight except for my wah pedal. Altough I just bought a Klon Centaur overdrive pedal to go with my '68 Plexi.
My clean sound is from '65 Fender Twin Reissues and a Fender Tone King. I use a [TC Electronic] G-Force for delay and reverb on my clean sounds. I don't like chourus at all; it doesn't sound organic to me.
-What about acoustic guitars?
I use Taylor guitars on tour and in the studio. But when I'm at home, I like to leave my acoustic laying around, and I don't feel comfortable doing that with an expensive Taylor. So Washburn came to one of our shows and laid out, like, six guitars; I picked one out, and it's awesome. I love it. It's the guitar I play every day. Plus, I can leave it on the couch, and I don't mind if it gets a scratch.
The article then winds down with Mark and Victoria taking Mark's dad out for a birthday dinner and Brian showing Mueller the studio, and Mark practicing even more. There are also some additional tabs from Mark printed showing some of Mark's routines and things he used when he was beginning he guitar playing.
Today I'm gonna try a little harder
Gonna make every minute last longer
Gonna learn to forgive and forget
'Cause we don't have long
Gonna make the most of it
Today I'm gonna love my enemies
Reach out to somebody who needs me
Make a change, make the world a better place
'Cause tomorrow could be one day too late
--lyrics from "One Day Too Late" by Skillet
from their new album "Awake"