ANDY TIMMONS PRESENTS “A.T. PLAYS SGT PEPPER” IN TWO-PART
LIVESTREAM EVENT VIA STAGEIT BROADCASTING ON
DECEMBER 5 AT NOON AND 6:00 P.M. PACIFIC
Split Programming Presents Side 1 Early, Followed By Side 2 That Evening
To Attend Click Here: https://www.stageit.com/AndyTimmonsOfficial
McKinney, TX — Andy Timmons has staged 65 Livestream performance via StageIt since the global pandemic began earlier this year. This coming Saturday on December 5, he looks back on his 2011 album release Andy Timmons Band Plays Sgt. Pepper., revisiting the repertoire and presenting the programming with Side 1 airing at Noon Pacific, followed by Side 2 at 6:00 P.M. Pacific. Timmons will intersperse stories abut the arranging and recording process of his release a decade ago with new performances. To attend click here: https://www.stageit.com/AndyTimmonsOfficial. The top supporter of each broadcast will receive a one hour Skype lesson with Timmons, while the next five top supporters will be provided with a signed CD of their choice from his catalog.
Amongst the StageIt livestream events, Timmons continually looks back and forward when isolating the repertoire for these two shows every Saturday. None carry a deeper connection to him personally than his love of The Beatles. A decade or so ago, he began recording instrumental renditions of these songs, inevitably recording an album, to which a global love for the performances followed. He shares, “Well, this goes pretty deep. I have a literally lifelong love of the Beatles from the cradle onward. I was born in ’63 and my oldest brother bought every single Beatles record along the way. Most of my earliest musical memories are Beatles related and to this day their body of work is like a security blanket in my life. Still comforting, still beautiful, still inspiring!”
Timmons has become an attraction over the course of the sixty-five StageIt shows performed. He offers, “The StageIt shows have been a blast for me as well as a tremendous challenge! I’ve essentially been producing two shows every Saturday, with many folks attending both shows. I feel a responsibility to make each show different with as little repetition as possible. In addition to revisiting my entire catalog as well as new, unreleased material, I’ve also done some “covers’ or tribute acoustic/vocal shows honoring the Beatles, Tom Petty and John Lennon. I suppose I consider my interpretation of the Beatle’s Sgt Pepper record as a high point in my career. It embodies everything I’ve learned about the guitar and how it can express great melody and structure in a linear performance. I’m very proud of how I was able to combine my love, reverence and understanding of the Beatles’ music with my passion for the guitar. It seems to transcend beyond the normal instrumental guitar-centric listener base to a broader music loving audience.”
On a tour in Italy in the late 2000’s, Timmons was playing an instrumental version of “Strawberry Fields Forever,” and it went over like gangbusters every night. The promoter took notice of this and suggested, “…next tour, you should do a whole night of Beatles!” After an initial negative instinctual reply thinking there’s no way anyone could pull that off, it did get the wheels turning in his head. He reflects, “I started experimenting with various tunes like ‘In My Life,’ ‘Help,’ and it became a hobby. My previous record Resolution was a landmark for me in that the record was recorded without overdubs. Just ONE guitar performance, bass and drums. I literally re-invented how I approached recording and playing the guitar (all this based on a comment from Vai…but that’s another story). So, now with this experience (and new-found inspiration) I was writing and arranging more in this style. Almost like a solo jazz guitarist like Joe Pass would play the melody supported by the harmony simultaneously. A bit more challenging in the rock guitar idiom as distortion is limiting with the amount of chord extensions you can include…but the sound is amazing when properly presented. The next track that fell under my fingers was ‘Lucy In The Sky’ where the keyboard intro laid beautifully on the guitar. Then the fleeting thought in my mind, ‘What if I could play the whole Sgt Pepper record top to bottom on solo guitar.?”
Over the next couple of years, Timmons would add slowly to the repertoire, painting from memory. His approach was to make the arrangements as personal and representative as possible of the original work, with arrangements emanating from memory. His mind would lead the direction, driven by a keen sense of the most noticeable and important element at any given point in the song whether guitar, a vocal, strings or simply a sound effect. It became a really fun game for the guitarist as he approached attempting to capture the essence of the song in one linear performance.
He goes on to share, “I should also point out that I wasn’t thinking of any commercial opportunities or even considering making a record…it was just the sheer joy of working on the arrangements. In 2009, the ATB went into the studio to record what would be the follow-up to 2006’s Resolution. Towards the end of the sessions, our engineer mentioned that due to a schedule change he had two extra days available, asking if we had any more songs to record. We had recorded everything, but drummer Mitch Marine suggested, ‘What about those Beatles arrangements you’ve been working on?’ And so, over the course of 2 1/2 days we knocked out the entire Pepper record! I kept about half of my live takes, and re-recorded the other half over the course of the next year. I nearly bailed on the project multiple times along way thinking it was not really working, and that it was an impossibility to capture what was in my mind. I mean, this is freaking Hallowed Ground! And as a Beatles fanatic, I don’t always like Beatle covers. I didn’t take any of it lightly. Fortunately, I hung in there. And again, I wasn’t really concerned about any potential commercial success, I just really wanted the people to hear it…my fellow Beatles fans, especially my peers and heroes, because I just knew they would hear and appreciate every little nuance and detail I was able to capture. This music is in our DNA! The response was overwhelmingly gratifying. (Particularly Steve Lukather a.k.a. Luke’s response…he IS my biggest influence!) An odd response where comments I would get like “I’m not really a Beatles fan, but I dig this record! It took a while to realize…” oh shit, not Everybody is a Beatles fan!!” The bottom line, I could never have approached making a record like this in my earlier career. It took a lifetime of growth and maturity on the instrument to be able to capture these songs in the way that I did. I’m really proud of it.”
For more information contact:
Steve Karas Keith Hagan
SKH Music SKH Music
ABOUT ANDY TIMMONS
A third of a century encompasses more than 12,000 days, and through the odyssey that has been the creative life of Andy Timmons, he’s maximized each of them to become the artist and human being he is today. His recorded discography exhibits a humanness that emits honesty, integrity, heart and soul that is present in every note. He is a complete musician who is authentically versatile, with a paramount focus on art first. Whether solo, or within an ensemble, his aim is consistent in presenting emotion through his recordings and performances. No matter the endeavor or vision he is driven to further the scope of the emotional potential of the guitar and broader genre. Timmons shares, “My mind keeps coming back to the human aspect of the music. A purity and truth that I’m reaching for. Instrumental guitar music has great potential, and I think we’re just scratching the surface of what’s possible. The written and spoken language is very finite. The well-placed musical note can go a lot deeper.”
Over close to three decades, he has navigated his professional life with personal vision driving the moves he has made. All the while building a diverse catalog of recordings, and more recently embracing the global benefits the Internet provides through the vast footprint his site www.guitarxperience.net now enjoys just three years after it began as a subscription-based guitar lesson domain. Alongside all of the records Timmons has released, he’s been a prolific session player and sideman. He has been a sought-after session guitarist for jingles for decades, while also enjoyed a 15-year tenure with Olivia Newton-John as her guitarist/music director. He was in partnership with Steve Vai via his releases on Favored Nations, while also a long-term collaborator with drummer Simon Phillips.
As Timmons odyssey continues towards 2021 and beyond, the first quarter of the new year will see two releases. First, a studio project that features Matt Bissonette handling bass and vocals alongside his brother Gregg Bissonette on drums, performing under the moniker The Reddcoats. He also has planned a solo record called Electric Truth which is co-produced with the great Blues guitarist Josh Smith, featuring performances from Travis Carlton (bass), Lemar Carter (drums) and Deron Johnson (keys).
The career of Andy Timmons is more three decades in, and he continues to deliver a connection to audience and other players that is growing exponentially on an annual basis. In a large part it is simply because of who he is as a guitarist and a human being. He encapsulates much of which is good in humanity, with decency and honesty. He is authentic and versatile. Famous and world renowned, yet forever the music fan and guitar geek. No one sums of this pure perspective more than Timmons himself in sharing, “Music is a deep, heartfelt experience from a performance standpoint as well as a compositional perspective. I truly believe that great art in its purest form is a direct reflection of the creator. At every turn in my life I’ve tried my best to be a decent, honest human being with great empathy for those around me. It’s been my goal (even when I wasn’t aware of it) to imbue this character into any music I am part of. Instrumental guitar music, many times deservedly, gets pigeon-holed as egocentric, gymnastic ‘look what I can do’ technical displays of a player’s abilities rather than an emotional musical experience. I’m certainly guilty particularly in my early career of that being a component of the intent. There is a certain competitiveness that can be a part of the guitar community…and maybe some of that is healthy. The Beatles wouldn’t have grown in the same way without Brian Wilson’s incredible work. No Pet Sounds, no Sgt. Pepper. Same as the rivalry between Lennon and McCartney. And I suppose these comments reveal my real foundation: Great Music, not just Guitar Music! I’m a fan of great songs and melody no matter the genre. Wilson, Beatles, Bacharach, Chopin…
My path began with all the ‘60s British Invasion: Beatles, Dave Clark Five, Kinks, Yardbirds, Animals then when I began learning guitar on my own it was Ace Frehley, Ted Nugent, Rush, Foghat etc. Then came Steve Lukather, Larry Carlton, Robben Ford and a deep dive into the jazz greats Barney Kessel, Joe Pass, Wes Montgomery. Then Mike Stern- who I consider the first real fusion guitarist. The list goes on as far as influences are concerned and the jazz absorption and influence is not always apparent to the casual listener but largely informs my feel and note-choice. Joe Satriani was a great inspiration as he wrote great tunes and played his ass off. Eric Johnson then raised the bar significantly with his majestic writing and playing. Steve Vai too of course for the sheer virtuosity and creativity. All of these figures have impacted who I am to be, while also being a reminder to find that personal stamp that defines my personal legacy as a player.”