Steve Snyder released his new album, "Out heavens back door" last summer and we can't stop listening to it. with hits like "Anyone at the wheel?" and "the final reel", not only is the instrumentation beautiful but the lyrics contain depth and are enticingly introspective.
snag the album at one of the links below, We know you'll love it as much as we do!
How long have you been playing music?
I have been playing music for around 50 years, since first being exposed to the mid-1960's folk revival which begat Dylan. Dick Dale, The Beatles and Stones definitely drove me toward amplified instruments, playing in various bands through college. I wrote a few songs in 1980 during an extended work break, but a career in finance kept my mind occupied for a long time afterward. Around 2005, a friend took me to a songwriter group meeting north of Houston and I became hooked and have been writing continuously since. All of the songs on "Out Heaven's Back Door" were written since moving to Austin in 2009.
Releasing an album, why now?
Easy answer is "why not?". I'm not getting any younger for sure and I felt I had a body of work compatible enough for an album, although in this day and age people seem to often consume music as singles. I'm an album guy. When you think of the great songwriter albums from Dylan to Jackson Browne to Joni Mitchell, they are coherent bodies of work. Those works inspire me.
Our favorite song on the album is “The Final Reel” – can you elaborate on the meaning of this song?
The Final Reel is a reflection of the process of dying, with life depicted as a series of movie reels. I wrote this lyric around the time my father entered hospice care and I knew he would not be returning. I wondered what he was thinking about as he stood waiting at mortality's gate. I made changes to the lyric up until the day we recorded it. I was not intending to include it on the album, but once Matt heard it, he insisted we do it and I'm glad he did. David Webb's piano brought it into the realm of big Warren Zevon productions like "Desperados Under the Eaves".
What's next for Steve Snyder?
I am continuing to write and play locally, both solo and with an emerging acoustic group composed of mostly Six String Ranch veterans, as well as an electric group that can best be described as Texcentric Psycho-country blues. As surfers say, I continue to look for the perfect wave.
Who or what stands out as your greatest inspiration?
Neil Young is my biggest inspiration in that he writes for both acoustic instruments and raw, distorted rock and roll, plus I am a sucker for vocal harmony. Also, he never stands still.
What is your favorite song on the album and why?
My favorite song on the album is "Anyone at the Wheel?". What starts out in verse one as an exploration of the songwriting process and ends up in the bridge and final verse as a reflection of living in the here and now and the role that random events or fate plays in life. Plus, I just love the harmonies in the bridge. One of those studio magic moments with Matt*.
*(Matt Smith, producer, 6 string ranch)
How was your experience working with Matt Smith at 6 String Ranch?
Matt was truly the good shepherd on this project. He quickly "got" my songs and he and I were very compatible work partners. I used Logic software at home and so I was able to work on songs outside the studio, often laying in harmony vocals, additional guitar parts, or bass parts and bringing them back to Matt for fine tuning. Watching him work was incredible and although I often lost track of the cursor on the screens, I learned so much from him about not only using the software, but the key elements of building a good studio recording.