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INTERVIEW: Clinton Collins

Hi Clinton, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

I’m doing great. Preparing for the release of my new album, Even on Your Darkest Days.

It’s has 10 original tracks and one cover tune and I’m real excited for fans and friends to hear.

Can you talk to us more about your song “Ghost Radio”?

As a songwriter I write and look for inspiration in many different ways. One way is to collect titles for possible songs in the future. This was a title that came to me and I kind of knew what I wanted to write about. It just took a while to get to it.

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

I was listening to Sirius Radio traveling one evening and I heard many of my musical heroes, such as Hank Williams, Cash and others and I thought how fortunate to have such a clear stream of music from those that have left us but their music remains behind.  It felt as if I was picking up these hitchhiker songs on my journey.

Any plans to release a video for the track?

I have collected some video footage on a trip to Arizona with my sister and put together a video. I may release it in the near future.

The single comes off your new album Even On Your Darkest Days – what’s the story behind the title?

When I Left Virginia came after a songwriters night with some friends when we were sharing new tunes and ideas. As I left that session this title came to me and some of the musical idea. I knew I wanted to complete it but I had to be sensitive to the subject matter.

I wanted to share the story of West Virginia secession from Virginia during the Civil War. So my thought was to approach it as a separation between a couple and all the reason and thought behind that experience.

How was the recording and writing process?

I worked with two wonderful songwriters to accomplish, Preston Maddox and Bill Maier. Bill lives in Nashville so on a visit there we finished it up and recorded the song in Bill’s private studio. It was a fun process but took about 6 months of ideas back and forth to complete.

What role does West Virginia play in your music?

As a West Virginian I’ve got a lot of imagery and history to work with. There’s poverty and riches. Labor and politics. For me strength of family played a big part.

What aspect of darkness did you get to explore on this record?

I think on a personal level I was in the trenches in some of the writing dealing with losing a dear friend, brother, and at the same time my daughter giving me a new grandson. I’ve come to understand from life experience that each day can bring the unknown into your life and it can be very dark at times.

Was it easy to balance both the dark undertones with the positive message?

For me I’ve always been someone who tries to find positive moments even when things look their worst. I’ve always been a positive person in my outlook and I believe with faith and hope all things are possible.

Where else did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

For my tune “Listening To Old Records” came the week we found out Aretha Franklin was on her deathbed. She and others have given us such joy and the song is an upbeat sad tune. I always look at life like an observer of stories. I hear them everyday in a restaurant or in a medical clinic. Personal experience is obviously the biggest resource. I’ve learned how to craft a song without overdoing it about me.

Any plans to hit the road?

I’m always adding dates to my schedule and adding. If people visit my website, www.clintoncollins.com, they’ll see the dates and how to book me.

What else is happening next in Clinton Collins’ world?

I own a studio with a friend and I’m always recording other artists as well as my own songs. Life is good if you look for those nuggets that could be right in front of you if you’re willing to take the risk.

Stream here

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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