The Whitney Houston of male singer-songwriters (there's more context in the Patreon version, but that'll do for now) brought us a fire album in 2014 appropriately titled "Heatwave," and the opening track "Get to You" is our focus this week for Modern Men of Pop month. We'll chat with Matt Wertz about insecurity, jorts, and much more.
Oh, and we have an impromptu rap battle.
Join us on PATREON for early access, extended interviews, weekly reaction mini-sodes, full bonus shows, and more ways to be part of the show! patreon.com/greatsongpod
Visit greatsongpodcast.com for archives, merch, and more!
Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @greatsongpod, and join the Facebook group at Facebook.com/groups/greatsongpod.
The Great Song Podcast is a Tiger Leap Production. Check out the other fine Tiger Leap podcasts like Curio with Dan Buck, Project SSA, and The Punnery.
Patreon Producers: Andrea Konarzewski, Ari Marucci, Michael Conley, Peter Mark Campbell, David Steinberg, Randy Hodge, Chaz Bacus, Juan Lopez, Jason Arrowood, Howard Passey, Matt Demecs, Kevin Foley, and Micah Murphy
--- Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/greatsongpod/message
(This episode was transcribed by baby robots, so it may not be perfect. But hey, who is?)
Turn up the radio and sing along time for another Great Song. This is the Great Song pod. Season's greetings and welcome once again to the Great Song Podcast. I'm Rob Alley, J.P. Moser, and we're here to sell them. That one got me. We're going to celebrate the greatest songs in modern music history. We're going to tell you what makes them great, why we think they're awesome and why you should too.
J.P. how you doing today, man? I am doing fantastic. So the song we're covering today is if boys were severed by Don Henley and should've known better by Richard Marx had a kid, it would be this song. Um, we're in modern men of pop music, but this has that classic eighties feel that everyone loves and can relate to.
I love this song. Rob, tell him about what song we're talking about. Tell them who we're covering and get to hang out with. This is get to you from the album heat wave by Matt Wertz
yes, man. Boy, there we go. Dare you to not roll your windows down. Exactly. You know what I mean, man. Come on, dude. We're inside and my hair is blowing.
That was get to you by Matt Wertz from the 2014 album heat wave, modern men of pop is our theme this month. And I'm going to call Matt kind of the elder statesman of the group, right? Yeah, he is. He is that line of like, he's sort of the, among the first of this generation, I feel like of, you know, pop writers and, and, and, um, and artists, um, in that, so this album was from 2014, but it was not his first, this was not his debut album.
He had, you know, had a career. Um, that was, you know, still going several years before this. Um, I know he had, he had a song featured in the 2006 movie, my super ex girlfriend. You remember that movie? Right? Everybody was talking about it all summer. I feel like, I feel like I definitely. I feel like I definitely did not see that movie, but Ooma, Thurman and Luke Wilson sounds like it should have been a winner.
I remember the ads for it. And there's, it's like a, you know, there's like a smashed car in the thing. And anyway, it's, you know, the title says it all my super ex girlfriend. Um, but yeah, he, he, he had a song on that soundtrack. So th this, this was not brand new artists territory. This is not his debut. He's, uh, he's a well-established writer.
He's written for tons of other people as well. Uh, he's written for Ellie Holcomb, Alan Stone, drew Holcomb, and the neighbors, Natalie Cole for crying out loud. Like, you know what I mean? So there's some big names kids. Yeah. So not only is he an established artist in his own, right. But he's also a, you know, a sought after, um, songwriter in Nashville.
For sure. I'm going to give you some Spotify information on him. We're kind of doing this in the, to highlight sort of the modern pop artists that we're covering as Spotify has a different kind of metric than we normally use. If you go to Matt's profile on Spotify, you'll see that he has 103,853 monthly, uh, listeners on Spotify and 68,692 followers.
That's on Spotify alone. Not to mention, you know, all the other things. Um, his top song actually on Spotify is called five 19 or five minutes and 19 seconds. Um, and it's got over 10 million listens on Spotify. That was from one of his, you look at that album cover. Um, and you can tell exactly when it came out, that is the album under summer sun.
And, uh, you look at that, you look at the font and you look at the hair and you know exactly what point in time, you know, that you're dealing with. Um, this is from the album 20 fourteens heat wave, um, which is. Kind of a departure from his, his previous stuff was like, kind of what you would expect if you said mid to late two thousands pop white guy, you know what I mean?
It's you kind of would know what you were getting into, um, at not that that's not that that's bad. No, no, no. It's obviously it's great. Um, but this, this album and even more, so his next album gunshot in 2016, kind of took a left turn. Um, and in his, on his website he says something changed. Um, After 20 fourteens heatwave, a record that shown a neon light on Wertz's, appreciation for eighties pop music, where it's realized he'd grown perhaps a bit too comfortable in Nashville, where he'd been making music for more than a decade, looking to write an album that tackled contemporary pop music from a different angle.
Literally he headed to Los Angeles where he spent several months writing songs for his ninth album gunshot fueled by infectious nineties, inspired beats, lush textures and soaring, airtight, pop melodies, gunshot fires, twin barrels of modern pop and synthesized R and B finding new life in old school influences.
So what you kind of have you have, I consider these kinds of companion albums. You've got heatwave. That has a lot of eighties feels going in. You mentioned, uh, Don Henley and, um, Richard Marx. Right? Um, hearing, hearing that in both of those, I would also throw in, uh, in my notes, I've got, let's see if, um, if this song had three parents, let's say I would go, uh, boys of summer, as you mentioned.
Um, and aha. I would go take on. Aha. That's good. And then just in general, Brian, if aha. Don Henley and Brian Adams were in the room together and Brian Adams was in charge. I feel like this is the song that would have come out. You know what I mean? It's definitely got that sort of homage to boys of summer undeniably.
I mean, that, that guitar tone that mindful or riff. Yeah. It's got that sort of, it's kind of a clean ish, mark Knopfler ish. You know what I mean? It's just, it hits all the right spots if, for people who were like, um, eh, and by the way, this was in 2014. Okay. This was before, just before it was cool to start doing this.
You know what I mean? In the past few years everybody's doing that throwback, John Mayer did the whole album cover. Yes. So I, you know, I feel like Wertz had the drop on other artists, um, who, who sort of went, Hey, let's bring back some eighties production it. We're not too cool to do that as a matter of fact, that production's awesome.
Let's, you know, let's let some of that back in, um, because the door had been so closed on a lot of that, you know what I mean? It, at the beginning of the digital era, um, you know what I mean, then a lot of that production stylings got abandoned. Um, but this album, if you, if you love that feel and you just want a sort of a modernized version of that, um, I highly recommend this album.
This is one of those albums for me. That, uh, it's like the, um, what was the, the, the potato chips back in the day that said it bet you can't eat just one. Was it wavy? Lays? That's it? The wavy lays with Bruce Smith and the commercial, right? This is one of those albums that if I listened to one song, I can, I can't listen to one song unless I have time to listen to the whole album.
If, if, if I turn on, get to you, which is the first track off heat wave, I'm listening to the whole album front to back. And so if I don't have time to do that, I can't listen to any of them because it's just going to happen. We should hit a few other, maybe highlights of this one. Um, let's go. Um, you got a favorite.
You want to pull out, you roll with them. Okay. Uh, last good girl. And this is the, this is the second track. If you want to riff homage to, you're going to get one right here.
Are you sure? You know what I mean?
you could see Macaulay Culkin in the background right now. I'm not going to be in a color. Can you do the rap? Yeah, I think I can do the racket. Let's see. How's it just give me the, let me think about how it starts though. Uh, protection. Oh yeah. Consequences of human relations. It's a start for on a global scale.
I'd rather hear both sides of the tale. See, it's not about races. Just places faces. It comes from it's where your space spaces I've seen the bright get Della, you know what you just said there? That is right. That I've said wrong. My entire. It's a turf war, global scale. It's definitely the lyric. Why in my head have I saying it's a surfboard
surfboards. I have no clue. It's amazing. Thank you for doing that right there with me surfboard. Yeah. You know what, when you said start it. I don't know why, but I almost went, yo it's the great machine. Got a rock the time without being seen. Have you seen the turtle get down? So anyway, dad, man, that just happened.
It was the same group for that who knew we were going to do that knew we were going to do that. And this, this is the beauty of, you know, we, we haven't said this in a long time, but, but we don't talk about our notes or anything like that before we zero. Like we, we have to intentionally not say up anything about what we're going to talk about.
Cause we find these nuggets and things and then we're like, no, we will. Prep each other on where we're going. That's what we're jumping in. We've held bits of information juicy for years. Rob got one on Denise Williams that I still don't know. And we prepped it in like 2018 or something like that. So there's one that he's held on for probably the Northern part of four years that I cannot wait to.
When we do this episode, deflated let die. By the time we finally get to it. I, uh, I go ahead. Keep talking. No, no, no. After you, I was going to say, I am dying to do the, meet the band section on this because we've talked about production. We've got different things. So let's play the jingle and I want to talk a great story.
I'll make the bank. Let's do it. It's dumping me. Hey mama. Let's beat the man.
Alright guys, we're going to make the band that played on, get to you. I've been so excited about this because this is the only time I've ever done this. Um, most of the time when I do my research, you know, I do it on my own. I try to find ways to verify and things, but I was not having a success in getting solid information on who played what and did what?
So I simply just email. Wertz. And I was like, Hey, I was like cliff notes version. Like, you know, I'm recording this episode this week. Uh, send it to him on Monday. I was like, can you just confirm who played? And he sent me the greatest email. So, um, I'm just going to talk about the, the band part, but great email, but from a great guy.
So he's like here's the master creds, uh, credits list for, for GT, which would be get to you on drums, Elliot, Hough on I'm just going to list them real quick. And then I'm gonna go back and hit some quick stories. So on drums, Elliot, Huff on bass, Jimmy Lee slows on since Charlie judge on background vocals.
Matt Wertz on percussion, uh, Brandon Hood on programming, Brandon Hood mandolin bazooka. I wrote that down wrong. A banjo acoustic guitars, electric guitars, Brandon Hood guitar solo Brandon Hood. Okay. A lot of Brandon hits stuff, digital editing. Recorded at the castle and the panic room tracked by mark Hagan, overdub engineer, mark Hagan, and Alan Parker mixed by Steve mark Antonio.
Okay. Fun fact. He put the, the bottom Elliott played, played on the demo and we had Chris McHugh play on it to replace, but didn't quite match the energy and the feel of Elliot's performance. I think we might've even covered that in the pod, but I'm not sure. Um, and I definitely wanted to have my name straight.
So anyway, he said some other neat. No. Super. Cool. Thank you for doing that. Um, for the clarity now there's so many people I wanted to touch on, but for the sake of time, I'm just gonna pick three. Okay. So Jimmy Lee slows goddess down under there. So legend, uh, was a member of the Imperials. Um, it's done stuff with Garth.
Carrie Underwood Keith urban PFR Switchfoot Jessica Simpson, seven of my favorites, but to talk about the Michael W. Smith change world video, cause he plays bass on that with, um, with Tony Palacios and there the long haired rhythm section that are killing it. I love that he also did stuff with John Mayer.
Um, so we've talked about him in the past, but God has paused a second and speak on, on Jimmy Lee slow. So I used his tuner one time. That's all in the studio. My band was, was a recording in Nashville. And was it just a fender boss? Tanner? It was a, uh, it was a cord tuner, little silver, a little silver stand-alone tutors with the red buttons.
Yeah, it was one of those. And um, yeah, so I was just grabbed a tuner as we were about to start a take and, uh, Nathan Dantzler was engineered for us and he said, Hey, he said, Hey, that's Jimmy Lee's closest tuner. So I was like, oh, well. And then I knew by the way, that's when I knew that. These tuners are good enough for me.
You know what I mean? You wonder like, if Jimmy Lee's Huskies, is it, that's like one of the, one of the first type of tuners that you get is the thing that you just plug into, you know, where it's got a little speaker on it. And, uh, so that's what I knew. All right. If this is good enough to play on all these albums, then I'm fine.
You guys, one of these not too cool. For most recent ex I saw him play with rust half, not too long ago. Okay. So he's, I mean, he's still doing his thing. Just, just plug and play guy. Um, Charlie Lee J or Charlie judge. I did definitely want to talk on him because he's as modern as it gets like he's, he's on the new, uh, he's on the new chase rice, the new Dan and Shay the new lady, a, the new Taylor swift.
Um, like he plays accordion on like 20, 22. Like he is as modern as it gets in terms of a musician. And he's all over the country, music world. I mean, Steph Keith urban. So another legend, uh, Brandon Hood as well. I did want to touch on Brandon because ironically enough, he played guitar on the flying album for Cody fraud and we just had on last week, so super, super tight group there.
And he's, he's modern as well too with Steph rascal Flatts, lo cash, everything. So, um, so a couple of legends there on that, meet the band. Great. Meet the band section. Um, thank you so much. Uh, works for sentiments that, that really. Matt is a really funny guy. I don't know if we've really portrayed that yet, but just in our, even before our actual interview with him, just our like emailing back and forth as we were kind of getting things set up, you know, he's just really funny, really affable and just very, uh, kind of, you know, approachable guy.
I think you guys are really gonna love him as we, um, get into the interview. A great guy, super kind to talk to us for a little while. Um, uh, I just want to highlight, I'm going to go with one more song off this album real quick. I know we got sidetracked with our rap battle, um, but I'm gonna, I'm gonna play, uh, one more.
Just because this song makes me feel so good. This is track six off of the heatwave album. This is called shine. And this chorus
like sort of Beatles eat Della Mitri hook. Yeah. Listen to this melody though. So incredible.
she's lucky domino, the comb Creek
day. It just feels so good. It's called shine and it feels like, you know,
love it. Love it. Love it. Great album. The thing about freedom, uh, all I ever want just the whole album is just fantastic. Go, go listen to it. Um, you're absolutely gonna love it. And one of my notes, you said this when we kind of passed over it, but the snare sounds on this album are absolutely fake. Tastic, um, the, the sounds in general on the album, that's grit sounding really pleasing.
Yes. Very, very crisp and everything. You could, everything you could want from this, you know, from this kind of singer songwriter with a nod to this eighties production, you know what I mean? Everything is not as like heavily eighties as get to you. Um, but little nods throughout, you know what I mean? The album is just really nice.
The gunshot album, which was the follow-up really leans into like nineties production. So if you miss that, that has yet to super come back into the mainstream. It's going to be a few more, I think years before people start, I'm ready for like, um, I'm ready for like, b-boy beats to come back. You know what I mean?
Like that kind of stuff. Um, but there's, you know, you feel some of that on gunshot. Yeah. Which is, which is after this, somebody other than a Bruno Mars album, you want it on like a rock album? Yes. Yes. Yeah, absolutely. Uh, okay. I think that's all I have. Do we have genius? Let's play the jingle. Let's do it. I think I was already kind of feeling stumped.
The genius. Genius, genius. Genius. It's like your partner. All right, guys, we're going to play stump. The genius mustache, a dish. That is right. So on this wonderful video, uh, worked is rocking this killer Mustang and apart parts and the front part of it. So mustache addition, uh, I'm going to play 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
All right. Let's put 30 seconds on the clock. Okay. So we're going to have 30 seconds on the clock. And, uh, Rob is going to have to guess which artist is rocking this a lip hamster. This is going to be lip hamster. That's right, man. I've never heard them on a long line. There you go. Uh, stump the genius lip hamster edition.
There we go. That's perfect. So that's what we're going to have for 30 seconds. So there's a couple of bands. So you can just say the band. Okay. You don't have to say the member of the band that has the mustache. Okay. Um, but these are all hits and I'm thinking you're going to fly through this. I'm betting.
You're going to do it sub 20. All right. But, uh, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 7. So here we go. You want to account down two, one, go hold on. Oats journey journey. He has a mustache. This is a Toto Toto queen. Of course. Okay. This one might take a second. Oh no. That's the clock goes. You can pass and come back. I shouldn't pass a Stevie Stevie wonder.
No. Oh man, that was, oh, you're going to kill yourself when you get more. That was prince purple rain. Oh my God. The other one that I thought we would get there. This one was all not long with Lionel Richie. Uh, if we had got there, wow. Takes too much to get into the groove. I got flubbed on purple rain. I thought you would get purple rain and then get back to seven and 30 seconds is pretty fast.
That's less than four seconds a piece you were cruising. I was, and we stopped. I got cocky. And then we stopped to ponder on the fact that he remembered Steve Perry had a mustache and thankfully, um, but yeah, lip hamster edition was cruising along. Um, yeah, let's uh, let's, let's kick it. Let's do a, you guys are gonna love Wertz.
This is awesome. Yeah. Um, so enjoy time with Wertz. And before that, before that stop, whatever you're doing right now, um, I know you're doing your laundry, uh, but you shouldn't just let it, you know, what, run that one more time cycle in the dryer and stop what you're doing right now and go on all the social media things and follow us at Facebook.
Instagram and Twitter all at Great Song pod sign up for the Facebook group, great songs and the great people who love them greatly. Uh, and you can play some games, have some fun, do some other cool stuff with us. Check out the all new, Great Song Podcast dot com. We've totally revamped the website. It's got a lot more to do on there.
Um, and some fun stuff. And you can find songs by category. Like if you like eighties tracks, you can go find all the eighties tracks we've covered, uh, all there in one spot, you can read our brand new blog. We've done stuff about our favorite guitar solos. Uh, talked about the secret sauce in the new Batman movie soundtrack, um, various and sundry other things we're trying to blog regularly to add that to our arsenal of things.
So check that out on the Great Song podcast.com. If you want to go the extra mile and actually support us in the show, what we're doing in this show in, in future plans that we have, and to help us grow and be able to do more things, you can go to Patrion dot. Slash Great Song pod that's pat R E O n.com.
If you want to help us support the show, and we can say thank you by giving you things like early release bonus bonus episodes stuff you won't find anywhere else. Uh, just as a way to say thank you for supporting the show. So you can go to patrion.com/ Great Song pod. If you want to be a Patrion producer for now, we're going to go talk to the one and only Matt Wertz.
And we'll be back at the end to tuck you in. This is the Great Song. Ladies and gentlemen, as promised we are here with the Whitney Houston of male singer songwriters, Matt Wertz,
that is, uh, that's the best. That is the best intro I've ever received. Thank you. Well, may, may it hold EverTrue? Uh, we were talking just a minute ago about, um, w originally, uh, we sorta talked about throw around a different song, and then, uh, we realized that that that particular song was not fully yours.
Like it was really Dave Barnes song and you had, uh, you know, made it yours. Um, but you were talking a little bit and why don't we go ahead and talk about this about, you said you used to be insecure about having songs that were hits, you know, and the people loved that. I never said that.
Yeah, man, come on. No, man. I'm sorry. Keep going, Rob. I think a little bit to that. Cause we have a lot of artists and writers who listened to the show, so maybe they can, they can glean something. Yeah, I, I, so this, the, the song would, shall not be named, uh, everything's right. Uh, is a song that, uh, I recorded on my album, 23 places, which came out in 2003 and it was a record that like probably introduced my songs to a lot of, uh, a lot, a big, a new crowd, you know, like it really got out there.
There are a lot of people burning that CD, you know, passing it around. It probably had Dave's name on it. Sometimes when people just didn't know, we don't really know who this, I, we think it's Dave Barnes. Um, but, uh, and so we were, we made that record together, Dave and ed, and I had cash. They barns myself.
And, um, it was one of those things where we'd get like, you know, we'd have. Maybe 10 songs done or nine songs done. And we would kind of look at what we had and we're like, what do we, what do we still need to round the album out? What kind of song this is back when we were making albums, you're trying to present like a, a full thought and one that would be list that you would listen to from start to finish, which I still kind of try to do that, even though it's like, not, that's not really, like, you don't have to, and most people don't do that.
Um, so, uh, Dave was like, we were kind of like, we need another up-tempo and Dave was like, what about everything's? Right. And I had heard Dave played that song live. He had, uh, you know, did he'd played it live with some shows that we'd done. I'm like, are you serious? Cause I, I like loved that song and I, and honestly I could not believe that he would.
That he would give it up. Cause it's like, Mike, that's a good dude. That's a good one. Like, don't like, you don't give up the good ones, you know? And he, he did. And I mean, I, I rewrote the second verse and I think we, I think the bridge got re reconfigured, but like it's my, my percentage on that is small compared to Dave's percentage on that.
And I used to be insecure what we're talking about. Like I used to be insecure about the fact that like, that was people's, that was some people's favorite song of mine. And I'm like, well, I've got all these other songs that I wrote. What about those? You know? And people's like, no, it's everything's right.
I'm like, dang. So I would, you know, it, it took me a while to just embrace it, you know? It's okay. That I didn't write the song. I made it what it is. And, um, and it's fun to get to share that with Dave. And honestly, I'm just so grateful, uh, the heat that he like gave me that song. Cause, uh, it's, it's really helps get the word out, you know, especially, uh, yeah, it was a big deal for me once the door to all these other fantastic songs of yours, for many people who that became the gut, that then reels in the fish of listenership.
Uh, and then they get two albums like heat wave, uh, which is what we're going to talk about today. Um, we're going to talk about the song, get to you, which is just. Just first of all, just a killer track killer songs, kick off that album. Like I, you know, I don't think anything else could have, could have kicked off that album that way, but, um, I've really enjoyed, really digging into that album.
I listened to it again, start to finish this morning. Um, and, uh, I just, I just love it from, from great album, man. So, um, thank you so much, Rob. Congratulations. And, uh, all right, we'll see you later. Oh, great. That was a really fun. That was great guys. Uh, yeah. Tell us a little bit about, um, people who may not, may not be as familiar with you may not know that it was kind of a, um, I don't want to call it a departure, but like a, a shift for you, this, the heatwave album, um, you know, sonically and, and it sounds like an eighties album, a lot of, a lot of it has a very eighties feel to it.
It's about versus some of your other stuff is not in like before that, like that's cool. You know what I mean? But I feel like you were ahead of the curve on that. You know what I mean? You were like feeling the wave that was coming. Uh, so tell us about that. Wasn't the heat wave it was coming. Yeah, definitely riding that, man.
I appreciate you saying that. Um, I, I think, you know, uh, it it's sometimes I, I can S I can tend to be a little ahead of the curve of what's like, um, popular and that is cool. And I'm like, can pat myself on the back for that. But commercially sometimes it's like, you kinda like, you know, you kinda, uh, don't hit as many people as you could, you know?
Um, I feel like there's some people who ride that line really well, um, who. Yeah, I know Taylor swift, like she, she is like really into indie music and I mean, okay. So let's talk about back then. I was listening to a lot of like, you know, uh, eighties singer songwriters. So, um, Brian Adams, uh, Brian, not Ryan.
Uh, although I love, I love Ryan Adams. I, I don't know if it's okay to say that anymore, but I, but I love Brian Adams. I love, you know, like Don Henley, this is crazy. Like I wrote a question, like what artists did you intentionally try to channel when recording get to you unknowingly it's Brian Adams, Don Henley and Richard bark.
So you're giving the answer, give Richard Marks. That was the tummy I wrote now. That's crazy. Yeah, that's right. I mean, it was like, and I think, I dunno, like back. So, so that was the, that was like the, the scope and the zone and, um, So that went honestly get to you. Was the, was the first song. It was the archetype that was written that then kind of set the set in motion, the record.
So like, um, and I think if I remember correctly, sometimes when I'm making records, there are there, like, there, there usually are like a couple of different, like guiding light pieces that are given like from the heavens are like, okay. And I think with that one, I knew that the record was going to be called heat wave.
I just was like, it's called heat wave. And it's an eighties thing. Like, and then the rest, it's like a logic puzzle. It's like, okay. So then what does that, what is that? And, um, with those two kind of guiding. Uh, you know, bump up the bumper in the, in the bowling alley, you know, I knew what, what to, what everything else needed to be.
So, um, I also, I knew that I loved that chorus, uh, that chorused electric guitar super clean. Um, it's, it's really, it's really, uh, like shines on another song in there called um, uh, whenever you love somebody. Um, and it's through a role in JC, I think it's called JC 100 amp. Um, and that's jazz for those of y'all that's right, dude.
Nice. Yeah. That's that's that's it. And, and, and that was something that was new to me at the moment. I did not know, but the, my friend that I was writing and chose to produce the record, I was named his name, Brandon Hood, and Brandon was working was kind of like, uh, Dan Hoff. Like protege, uh, who Dan and Dan Huff for those y'all that don't know Nashville.
Royalty. I don't know about him every week. Somehow. He's like, he's in my top five. He's my Mount Rushmore of like guys giant is one of my underrated favorite bands ever. Amazing. Well, there's a Dan Hoff solo on heat wave. Uh, I don't know how far you got into it, but there is a, uh, last good girl girl. Oh, wow.
The, um, yeah, go back and listen to it. The solo in that Dan Huff played killer. So anyway, we, because of there's a Keith urban song called, um, Georgia, I think it's called Georgia Pines or something like that. And it's got that sound, that sound guitar mic. I was like, Brandon, you got to find out like, what, like, what did Keith use?
What did, what did you know? And so lo and behold, JC Roland, JC and hunter, like, all right, we got to get one of those. So we were like rented one from, you know, sir, or something and like plugged the Stratton. And so anyway, long story short. Th there were, there were just some sounds that I was trying to like channel and you nailed it as far as influences.
Well, I, uh, the way I discovered the song for the first time actually was through the video. Um, the battle of the dance video with you, rocket and amazing mustache, and some of our favorites been rectors in there and Steve killed his scenes too. You're without a doubt, the coolest guy in the, in the actual music part, rocking that Jean jacket.
So, you know, Jean jacket back. So here we are, again ahead of the curve. I know, man, the, uh, I have the shorts on those shorts are ridiculous. So I still have those shorts. I saved those shorts. That's going to go into hard rock some someday. It'll be just, just the shorts. There's another funny thing about that.
This, the shorts that rector, I don't know if no rector wasn't wearing them, but there was another pair of shorts that like one of my crew had, there are these like baby they're like light blue. Uh, seat. They said, SeaWorld, embeds, SeaWorld, and bordered on him. And, and rector was like, can I have those shorts?
And I, and, and I was like, dude, sure. I mean, I felt like I hate asking people to do anything for me. Like, I've just, it's just like, so it, well, it's not, it doesn't get stuff done, you know, but I hate, so I was like, yes, have the shorts, whatever you want. And, uh, and, but I regret I'm like years later, I'm like, dude, do you ever wear those shorts?
He's like, no, I'm like, can I like, can I have the bag? He was like, I can't find them anyway. You gotta find them in the, in the video. There's one of the guys in my, in my dance crew has these beautiful light blue denim SeaWorld. And they're there. They're gone for those of our listeners that haven't seen the video.
It's like the anchorman scene on the dance battle. It's one. That's right. That's exactly dance battle. I mean, I grew up on break-in too. Did you ever see the break into the throne electric Boogaloo? I don't know if there ever was a break in one. I just think it was breaking too. It's like troll too. Yeah.
Uh, there was, I mean, yeah, so break in two. I was like, you know, these dance battles and it's like always, but, you know, uh, I thought it'd be fun to, to loop in this. Great. I know what I was thinking about. Going back to the gear for a second. J.P. in your steel trap memory count might remember. I want to say it was the JC 100 that tears for fears used on.
Everybody wants to rule the world, but the killer, the killer tones, everybody wants to relive it. I think that's also the JC one narrative on that really spot on with the gear. Yeah. If you want, like a clean, super clean, like bell, like tone out of your electric guitar, like that's the, that's the amp. I think a lot of times they use it on a piano, like, uh, electric, uh, like you would plug in your role and keyboard into it, teach it, you know, to just get like a really clean, no, like not affected sound.
Yeah. That's what you hear on the record is essentially the demo. Uh, we, I wrote this with, um, Brandon Hood and Melissa Pierce on my front porch. Um, and we, uh, we, I had this like super cheesy little, um, uh, battery powered. No, I think, I think you can plug it in, or maybe it's also like battery powered, like amp that was made by.
Uh, it's like a Vox with like, built-in like affects, but there was a chorus on there. And I was just like, I just wanted to be able to have like a little amp that I could just for inspiration. That's like, you know, but we piped in like a drum that, that we P we like sit that through. Or maybe that was, that could have been going through like a, another little speaker.
And then Brandon was playing electric with that chorus sound effect through that crappy little lamp and, um, it on our front porch. And, uh, and we, I was going back through looking at, cause I wanted to make sure I had some, you know, like memory of things, but we, we wrote the song on March. Uh, I believe it was 12th, uh, of 2012.
And. And we, and we demoed it later that night, or no, it was March 21st when we, when we wrote it and we demoed it later that day, we, we got like a work tape, but then, um, we sent it to, I was, I was writing for, um, BMG at the time I had a country pub deal. And so we sent it to Darryl Franklin at BMG, and he was always looking for songs for Keith urban.
So, so he immediately like, um, it was like, go, go demo. This. I want to put, you know, I want to play it for Keith. So Brandon Hood was as a producer, he went and demoed at any, any had Austin Huff played drums on it. Um, Brandon played electric. He's a fantastic electric player. Um, I honestly don't recall who played.
I was not there for the demo session. Um, you just came in. I just came into the vocal. And a lot of times I do that. I'm not like the best guitar player. And so I pretty early on was like, you know, I'm a creative guitar player, but I'm not like in time. And my feel is like, when it comes to recording, I realized like, oh man, I don't know if I've got the touch.
You know, that, that, uh, it takes to really like lay down a recording, a recorded guitar, you know, that needs to be a part of a band and like not, uh, yeah. Anyway, I would have to play the guitar because you look cool. I can hear you. Does it give you extra confidence playing guitar with, yeah, totally. This song is so fun to play live.
It's it's just like, and especially when you're playing a live with a band and, and you're, and when you go into the solo section and like, That part is just so it's just so much fun and that, and that drum groove is just like, instantly makes you want to dance. It feels like you, you, you automatically do the eighties dance, you know, it's like, you just have to do this.
Um, you become Carlton, you become Carlton. Exactly. So, yeah, it was man. Uh, and then the fun thing is we went and when we went to track the bulk of heat wave, when we were like, okay, we're going to, we've got all these other songs now we're putting together. We had like an all-star band. It was basically.
Puffs guys, Dan huffs guys. So like Chris McHugh and, um, I'm I'm to I'm blanking. You'll have to go in and fill the gaps in. But, um, all I know is that we kept Austin Huff's drum tech. That's the moral of the story is the demo kind of like the, the energy that he played with was like, we can't, we can't beat that.
Yeah. I've heard two different acoustic performances that you did in 2013, one on the ear candy podcast. And one is just a video acoustically. It sounds like a completely different song to me. Like when you play it on acoustic guitar, you don't even sound like same song. Well, it's fun to see how that affects it.
And I did a, I did a recording. Uh, I think it was last year. I put out like basically an acoustic greatest hits, uh, record called renderings, um, volume one. So it may be similar volumes hopefully. Yeah. I gotta make some more hits. I gotta run some with, uh, Uh, hits are in quotes because, you know, uh, never had a real hit, but, uh, I did a version of gets you.
That sounded very like raw, like very haunting kind of like I slowed it down and it actually kind of sounds creepy. It's like, I'm going to get to you. And, and then I might eat you is like, I want to get to, it feels like that in a bad way. Yeah. So you, you, you prob you, you start running. Uh, one thing I love about this track is, you know, we talked about the influences are pretty apparent.
You know what I mean? I feel like you kind of wore those proudly, but it still feels authentic. It's it's, you know, it doesn't feel like you're trying to rip somebody off or you're trying to, you know, it's like that thing of where, like a CCM band just sounds so much like Coldplay or U2 or whatever, it's like this isn't cool.
You know what I mean? Like you went through, how did you, how did you kind of ride that line of going, this is still going to sound like Matt Wertz. This is going to be a legit song. It's not going to come off as a joke, you know, you know, I'm glad that you say that. I think that was one of my insecurities, like after the fact that I, um, what I learned w what I took from that record, I actually, I actually came away from that record, thinking that maybe.
It was a law that maybe I was too close. Like maybe I was too on it. And it, instead of being an Omar judge, it, like, I wondered if it was too, too, like kitschy. Um, and what's funny is have you guys been following John Mayer's like release that's coming out Friday. So like he had, he's doing an eighties record and, um, and he is fully embracing, like leaning into it hard, really leaning into it.
Everything sounds sonically. Yeah. And honestly I'm like, huh? Like, okay. So maybe I was maybe I wasn't like maybe, maybe, I don't know. Like I, but when I made, when I went back and made the following the record after. When I made gun shy, I was intent to like, okay. I been listening to a lot of, you know, like a lot of nineties, you know, I want to make a pop record, all this stuff.
I'm like, it can't sound like dated. And, um, and so to answer your question, Rob, I like, I'm happy to hear that as it's aged, you know, heat waves does not sound like a, um, like a rip or like a, um, we, we weren't trying to rip it off. We were just taking different sounds. I mean, we honestly, it probably doesn't sound like a rip because we weren't good enough to get that.
You know what I mean? We weren't, we didn't, we weren't good enough to like really hit, hit the nail on the head. I mean, so, uh, but I've also found that, you know how like, So like comparing artists like Bonnie Ray and Sheryl Crow, like Sheryl Crow can do the kind of jazzy bluesy thing. But she also like does like a rock thing.
She can, she can do like a folk thing. Um, but Bonnie Raitt may be a little more like narrow, but it might be easier to describe what Bonnie Raitt, like you say, Bonnie Raitt, I want a Bonnie Raitt vibe and you kind of know, I've always felt more like a Sheryl Crow kind of person where like, I, I like him. I love all different kinds of music and you put it through this filter of me.
And hopefully when it comes out, it's like still. Has something unique to it, but it may not be as like easy to, uh, nail. And that felt like that was a detriment or early in my career. Cause I was coming out with guys like Marc Broussard, who was at, you know, very much like a blue-eyed soul guy. And even Dave, when Dave did chasing Mississippi was like such a, um, felt like such a thing.
And I was like, God, man, what's my thing. And I've always just kind of felt like I like all these different styles of music and it's fun for me to get to like put on those, that costume and wear the Michael Jackson costume for a song and where the Bryan Adams costume for a song. And so the fact that any of it sounds.
Like me is a miracle, honestly. Well, and that, that, that thought process probably serves you well as a writer. You know what I mean? That you can kind of aim for, you know, you've got somebody that says, uh, you know, I'm looking for something for this particular artist and you can kind of put yourself, you can put on that costume and write for them.
I imagine. Right. I mean, this is sort of, yeah. I mean, uh, I, I think so. I mean, uh, definitely I can articulate with, I'm not like a track guy. Um, I I'm like so enamored, I think I'm just, I'm just old enough to not be good at that. Uh, you know, I'm like kind of missed the window where like, you know, like a lot of these younger, younger guys are just like, and, and girls are just so good at like tracks.
Um, so. I think I'm a pretty good communicator too. So I'm able to like, communicate what I'm wanting to hear and pull references. Uh, so yeah, hopefully, uh, hopefully I can, you know, adapt and kind of write for different things. I love getting to write for different styles of music. It's it's so fun. Yeah, I could.
So real quick, you kind of went, you kind of led me into a question here. Um, so you were talking, you were sort of pitting Sheryl Crow, uh, Bonnie Raitt, you know, and, and pitting them, not pitting them against each other. You know what I'm saying? Making that sure. Drawing that comparison. Um, and so I, I've never done this with anybody, but I thought, you know what?
I think Matt might be fun to play some like word association with, um, and it's leading me to this word association and some either or, okay. So I'm just going to throw out, throw out some stuff that you give me the first thing that comes to your head. When I, uh, Chicago. Uh, Sam, uh, Saturday and the park.
Yeah. Um, Peter Gabriel. So, oh, I mean, uh, freaking a, I mean, uh, th th the, the drum groove, uh, for, in your eyes.
Yeah. Um, let's see, uh, rascal flats.
Yeah. For some reason. That's what I think about this, about my wish
has got the rods, man. And he's got the runs for days. Oh, man. I, I go to, uh, my least favorite version of life as a highway when I think of rascal flats. Sadly. That's what I think at first is their version of in cars. Well, yeah. Keep going. I could go on. Yeah, but the reason, the reason why my wish is, have you ever played the yard game?
Qube or Cub? K U B. I remember now there was a yard game called Cub or cube. I think it's Swedish. And one of the, like the brand that makes it is M a G I F T my McGee gift. And so whenever I see that, I just think my back, like, though I'm playing that game, I'm just like thinking, you know, Gary Luvox like my gift.
I don't know why. Uh, let's see. Um, uh, this is, this could go either way, you could go with the crap you talking about, or you could be like, I absolutely love this. How about in the house of stone and light by Martin? I don't know it. Wow. Okay. I need to write that down. It's one of my top five favorite albums of all time.
Barton, the house of stone. You know who Martin? No, he wrote, he co-wrote we built this city, uh, and these dreams Easterns for heart. Yeah. And a bunch of, uh, uh, go, uh, go S yeah, kind of wishful thinking, you know, all that stuff. Oh, are you serious? He had this track and it's in the mid nineties. It's called in the house of stone and light.
And it was at the time it set a new record for like longest run at number one or something. It was, it was huge. His name is Martin. Okay. So ma so maybe I do, I'm writing this down right now. I'm not just checking Instagram. Um, maybe I do know the song and I just don't, I don't know it by name. Yeah, but I love, I mean, king of wishful thinking is a song that I quite often will segue into after like, in one of my songs, I will, I end it with king of wishful thinking and built the city on rock and roll.
It feels like, kind of like maybe one of the, like my favorite, like guilty pleasures, you know? I don't know if that song, I don't know if it's like music tread people like that song. Do they? Most people hate a lot of people it's they kind of, they hate that song. Right. A lot of it's on a lot of like worst pop songs of all time lists.
It's great. But if I don't know why, it's awesome. I do. Yeah, I do too. I, it reminds me of like a certain moment in time. Yeah. As a kid. Yeah. Okay. Let's do some, let's do a few either. Or, um, these are just random Marvel or DC. Marvel, Marvel. Okay. All right. A bad album or thriller. Uh, I would say, God, that's really tough.
I'm probably going to say bad. Same. J.P. I'll buy you a thriller, even though I like the band better on bad because Nathan east plays bass on bed and, and Dan Huff obviously is all over bands. All right. Where you, Rob, are you, are you a bad guy? I'm the worst guy. Okay. I go thriller because of human nature, which anyway, so anyway.
Yeah, that's tough. That's a tough thing. It's a tough, that was a really tough quick, but yeah, I think bad is probably right. I got two more times. I was. Okay, great. No, go ahead. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to cut you off. No, it's just like, was, I was, I was at an age that was like, I was old enough that it, you know, when bad came out to like, remember when it came out and like I had friends that got.
The tape, you know, and I knew people that went to that tour. I didn't go, like I was, I grew up in a Christian House and we just didn't. I mean, having like secular, you know, tapes was, you know, but, but my parents did give me this. So reared, they gave me thriller on vinyl for Easter. He is real. Is the weirdest.
Yeah, it was the weirdest gift. But I remember getting thriller on vinyl for Easter as a, as a kid, as a young that's amazing. They young kid and I would dance around the living room to that. And it would S it was skipping all the time, you know, but anyway, and then after that you go into Carmen, like, okay, what was your first, uh, exactly.
What was your first concert? First CCM concert. Okay. I'm going to say it was either, it was. I think it might have been a DC talk on the new thing to her. So I remember this is what I remember about the DC talk thing. First of all, it was like new thing. So, you know, he's down on it.
And there is a video of me performing, uh, oh, shoot. What's which song was that? I performed a DC talk song for the church talent show at some point, uh, that's going to be our promo set up is epic. It is, uh, atrocious. But I remember from the DC talk show, it was a small theater is the, at the, um, cancer youth for Christ building.
Cause I grew up in Kansas city and I just remember that they were rocking like Jordans. Like they were, they were wearing like the coolest shoes and I was like, They're cool because they're wearing Jordans, you know, and, uh, and whatever else. And then that was, that was my memory from that show. If, uh, when you're, when you start a writing session, if you're, whether you're co-writing or writing, you know, with someone in mind, that kind of thing.
But if you start with a, sort of a blank slate, um, for a song, what do you look to first for inspiration? Uh, typically it's, it's something musical, it's something musical that, um, just inspires a melody. Uh, for me, I I'm, I'm, I'm more drawn. Uh, and, and then, so yeah, like if we're going back to just like the basic, like writing songs on guitar, which is, feels like a novelty now, which is what I'm doing for like now, um, for my next, whatever I'm doing project.
Um, I'm just riding by myself in my room here with my guitar. And, you know, I'll like if I write with other people, I'll just start playing my guitar and see if something like speaks to me. Uh, especially if I'm, if I'm writing for something that I'm going to want to sing, Mike, does this, does this do something to me?
And then, uh, is it doing, and, and if I'm with other people, is it doing something to them too? And then if it is, and the vibes going it, then you just start kinda like, I'll just start like singing melodies to see if anything feels like it fits in the, you know, the pocket. And then sometimes there's, um, I've I keep, you know, I keep song words or song ideas, like in my, in my memos, on my, on my phone and between that, and maybe like something else, somebody else might've heard me say, like, did you just say, you know, like casserole, like yeah, I did say casserole.
Let's write about a casserole, you know, word association with casserole go Rob gastro goat, a sour cream noodle bake is the definitive. That's my, my childhood favorite meal. My mom makes sour cream. You're like awesome casserole. I'll send you the recipe. Uh, but the, uh, anyway, that's kind of how it goes for me.
Okay. And, and, and then hopefully I have time to like really, and especially what I'm trying to do now is really spend some time with the lyric. Um, I think with co-writing sometimes. Uh, that's one of the things that I felt may have suffered is like the, like having the space to really play with a lyric, uh, you know, and make it feel like, uh, have that like unique, like way of saying something that I would do.
Yeah. There, are there some parts of these where we just kind of gush over things that we love about the artist? So sit back and get the big head on this. I'll just mention a few little hidden gems that I love. I really like bringing them back with Russell Russell Dickerson on the porch and the someone like you live at home.
Those are some hidden Wertz, gyms that are out there. I really liked that session, that stuff. Um, my favorite Wertz line is actually not even in a song, but it was on the, uh, John McLaughlin, uh, dueling pianos, uh, the heartbreaker. Perfect combination. The shoes on the couch is okay. If the couch is outside the house, I love loved that.
But man, you're in that video, the man bun, that was not the best play. I'm sorry, man. That was the way I thought this was just a, that was the break. That was the, that was criticism. And now we're going to talk about the things, the mistakes that I've made in my career. Um, also too, you done stuff, you wrote some with Ian Keji.
Um, I'm from Huntsville, right? I'm a big Phil Kagy fan. Um, he's on my Mount Rushmore, right beside Dan. Have you had any interactions with Phil, um, during your sessions with Ian, did you ever get to meet him or I'm not, but I'm also a Phil Kagy fan and I had to kind of like, you know, I dunno I had to, I had to check, check my myself when I was like hanging with Ian cause um, yeah, dude, Beyond nature.
Oh yeah. Okay. That's wonderful. Uh, I also love the Sunday's child stuff, uh, is very like Dick Taylor wrote a lot of stuff on Sunday's child with him. Did he really? Yeah. See, you got like, this is one thing that you guys are so great at that I don't read. I don't read the credits. Like my favorite part. I know.
I can tell. I love it, guys know. It's awesome. But yeah, I mean, so Phil, I've not interacted with Phil. Um, you know, what's funny, here's like a full circle moment. I was going to see when I first got to town to Nashville in 2001, I was like, I went to go see a film like Phil Keaggy play at, um, Cafe, uh, what's, what's the place behind exit in that's like open 24 hours.
You know what I'm talking about? I don't know. I've I know I live in Chattanooga exited. Okay. We can fact check that later or whatever, but I went to go see him play, um, there. And when I was there, I ran into, I noticed these guys, I'm like, they're in the band, the pool boys. And, um, the pool boys were Kansas city band.
And I was like, whoa. And I I'm new to town. I'm just like looking for any one familiar, like literally I might have gone with my roommate, any kind of connection. So I'm like, are you guys in the pool boys? And, and there, and they were like, yeah. And they they're at the place where like, they couldn't believe they were getting, they were getting like, you know, uh, recognized in Nashville, like.
They were working with ed cash at the time on a record. Wow. And so they were like, you guys have to, you, you should come down, we're working with ed. I'm like, no way you should come down to the studio. I'm like, oh my gosh. Amazing. Totally. Like separate from that. I had reached out to Barnes because I found him in, I stumbled on his website back in college, like a few months earlier.
And we connected over at SATCO for tacos. And he was interning for Dave at the same time. So immediately there's like, or for at the same time. So we had these two, they were like these two separate connection points to ed that ended up like just kind of making a meeting, like super supernatural. Uh, Hey.
Yeah, yeah. Both supernatural and the God. And like, it was very natural. Uh, so anyway, that was kind of a fun. So Phil, Katie? Yeah. He's really cool. And in Ian is such a, such a talent and such, such a like awesome guy. So we're actually going to be working on some, uh, Some kind of like licensing music together soon, so, yeah.
Yeah. And there's other things that I like to slow motion, lemonade, easy things, hard light it's more electric field embracing the loops and the Mitty Mitty key parts when you do it live so cool. So good stuff. Thank you. Thank you. We better do. I guess we better kick it to, to, to old number 18 is what we call it.
We got it. Yeah. This is something that we ask everybody. So you're on tour, either solo or in a rock band, whatever you're opening for the pool boys or whatever you're doing, but just kidding. Rude, 2003 back in the day, that's where Dave and I opened for the pool boys. Uh, that was, yeah, it's happened. So you go into a gas station.
What is your gas station? Snack food of choice. And while you're thinking of yours, I'll tell you my answer. I get a three Musketeers bar when I was growing up. My mom would say, you could have any candy bar you want, and that's the most ounces. They're all the same price. So that's the most answers for the money.
So I get that's how you did it. What is your gas station? Snack. Food of choice. So it would be, I mean, I'm a racist man. Uh, love me some races. I'd say in, in more current years I've been going for like, Almonds. And I've been, I'm trying to like, you know, I'm trying to fit into the clothes I bought, you know, I don't, I don't want to keep having to buy new clothes.
So I'm like, I need to, so it's, it's a, it's a Smartwater, it's a big old Smartwater. Cause what I like to do is I like to, I like to drink that. And then when I'm done drinking, I like to, I like to pee into it and the cold. So I get a good, I get, I get a one liter Smartwater water bottle. So there's no chance that you're going to fill that baby up.
That's amazing. And some almonds and, and a banana, but gas station fruit man is, is maybe, maybe as suspect as gas station like sausage. Hello guys. Thank you so much. So much. We'll be in touch. Hope to meet you guys soon. Same day, man. All right. Thanks. This is the Great Song. And that was Matt. Word's kind enough to join us for a few minutes of fun on the Great Song Podcast as modern men of pop month rolls on.
We got a couple more coming for you. And, uh, and I, I think we're going to talk some more about mustaches, quite frankly, just knowing who else we got coming up. I feel like there's going to be some more mustache chatter, so we'll be back next week with another Great Song until then. I'm Robin. I am, J.P. go listen to some music.