DAVID T. CHASTAIN 10/29/01
interviewer: Luiz Antonio de Camargo Junior
METAL FORCE MAGAZINE
1- The Rock Solid Guitar CD was made by a guitarist to another one or do you think any rock fan can hear it?
David T. Chastain: I hope that everyone will enjoy the Cd. However some fans can't relate to instrumental music as much as vocal stuff and I can understand that. I do realize the fact that DAVID T. CHASTAIN "Rock Solid Guitar" will not sell a million copies but I am sure people who buy it will not regret that they did. It is a bold statement to put out a Cd in this style. Fortunately I am part of a couple of record companies. Most bands usually have to sacrifice something in their music to make the record company happy.
2 - You are part of various bands and projects as CJSS, Chastain, Zanister, Davit T. Chastain....How do you conciliate all of this? Is this Zanister your priority?
David T. Chastain: At this point in time there is no one band and/or project that is king. I enjoy all of my bands and albums. I think I would become bored if I only did one style with one band unless of course one of them was as big as Metallica or something similar where you never had time to do anything else. I love working with different musicians and different musical ideas. It is like having 10 mistresses instead of one wife. A lot more excitement!
3- Do you think when you play as David T. Chastain you are more free to play the kind of music you want and don't need to take care about the heavy metal/power metal fan?
David T. Chastain: I enjoy all of my musical endeavors. I do understand that a fan may like some of the bands but not the others. However I think some common ground can be found. I believe it is important for fans to broaden their musical palates. If someone only listens to say, thrash metal, then they miss out on a lot of great music. I really like a very diverse selection of music. On my satellite radio system I have a metal station and classical station programmed in. I go from one to another all day long.
4- With the international release of David T. Chastain are you thinking about touring with this band?
David T. Chastain: At this point in time I am very busy recording, producing and running the operations of Leviathan Records and Diginet Music. (http://www.leviathanrecords.com & http://www.diginetmusic.com)
I will only tour in special situations. Such as short run to Japan or something similar. I would love to come to Brazil for a short tour if it ever can be arranged.
5- What the Zanister fans tell about your solo work as it sounds very different from the Zanister CDs?
David T. Chastain: Yes the Zanister guitar work is much different than the stuff that is played on DAVID T. CHASTAIN "Rock Solid Guitar." Zanister is more metal and technical. On Rock Solid I go to different places during an improvisational setting as opposed to just having 16 bars to solo over in a song. The former is from the soul whereas the later becomes more technical. In a band song you know that you have to say a musical statement in 16 seconds as opposed to 5 minutes. Both are enjoyable but totally different. One is like having good sex and the other is like getting a high grade on a school test. Both are great feelings just different.
6- We know you know some Brazilian bands as Angra & Sepultura. What's your personal opinion about Angra & Sepultura split, when them both had to look for new members? Do you know other bands from Brazil?
David T. Chastain: In the end I am sure both bands will regret their decisions to change members. A lot of time egos get in the way of musicians better judgment and 99% of the time they will end up regretting it. If the music works then the personalities have to be made to work no matter what it takes. Creating musical magic is sometimes a once in a lifetime situation that most musicians don't realize until it is too late.
7- Which were the equipment used in recording Rock Solid Guitar? Are they very different from the ones you used with Zanister?
David T. Chastain: Currently I am using 2 different set ups for recording. On DAVID T. CHASTAIN "Rock Solid Guitar" I used a POD exclusively. On the recent ZANISTER "Fear No Man" I believe I mainly used my Marshal Valvestate. The Valvestate has a tube preamp but everything else is solid state. I almost never use any effects before the amps. If any are used it is after recording and during the mix.
8- Nowadays many guitarists is backing to the old valve amplifiers. What do you prefer: electronic pedals, racks, pro tools and other modern resources or valve amplifiers & vintage?
David T. Chastain: I really am not up on what is current in the amp world. I almost never go into music stores as I have a tendency to buy everything I see. One thing I keep up somewhat is the recording gear and currently we are using the Roland VS machines in the studio which are fairly inexpensive but are very high quality. I only use protools when I am editing mixes. However generally speaking a tube/valve amp will give you a warmer sound whereas a solid state amp gives you more crunch.
9- Many compare you with another guitarists as Steve Ray, Eric Clapton, Allan Holdsworth, Michael Schenker, Malmsteen and others. Do you consider it as a praise or don't you like this kind of comparison as you have your own style?
David T. Chastain: I consider being mentioned with those guitarists as a great honor. All of them are great artists in their own style. However I think my biggest asset is that I can be mentioned with such diverse artists in such a favorable way. I think that some of my music does go into areas of all of the above guitarists which I don't think you can say of the others. Holdsworth would never be compared with Stevie Ray. Malmsteen never with Clapton, etc
10- In the heavy metal style around the world the guitarists are more virtuoso, putting lots of arpeggios and fast scales in their songs. Do you consider an evolution or the beginning of the style stagnation, as all of the new guitarist sounds like each other and don't have their own style?
David T. Chastain: Well many players see who can play the fastest and while I was guilty of that at one time to a certain extent I find that style of playing now not very exciting. In some metal situations I guess it works but it is not something that impresses me anymore. While I do understand the many hours of practice it takes to pull it off it becomes more of an exercise as opposed to a musical statement. Still some of the technical stuff people play is amazing from a technical standpoint. I would suggest that young players listen to all sorts of different artists to round out their style.
11- When did you start playing guitar and which are your influences?
David T. Chastain: I started by playing guitar seriously in my late high school years. Before that it was only occasionally. I really had no certain guitarist who I tried to copy. Of course there was Hendrix, Sabbath and Holdsworth all from the beginning. I guess that is why I play music that incorporates metal/hard rock/fusion. I loved all of those artists for years.
12- Thanks for the interview. What message would you like to leave for the new guitarists which ones are starting playing guitar and have you as their inspiration?
David T. Chastain: It is very, very difficult to survive just playing guitar. I would tell anyone to continue their education and work on their music on the side. It is better to be prepared for life with and without music. I would tell them to try to create their own voice in music and don't try to copy another guitarist. Be yourself and whatever you do enjoy it!
13- Please mention 5 CDs (band or solo artist) you enjoy listening and which ones have some influence in you playing.
David T. Chastain: That is a hard thing to answer as there have been so many but I will list 5 that come to mind immediately:
BLACK SABBATH-Black Sabbath. The first time I heard real metal. Iommi is the king of the metal riff.
THE MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA-The Inner Mounting Flame. The first time I heard extremely competent musicians playing complicated heavy music.
THE ALLMAN BROTHERS-Live At Fillmore East. Probably the best improvisational album ever recorded by a rock band. Especially considering there were 6 guys in the band.
OZZY-The Blizzard of Oz. This Cd helped kick in the door of very heavy music with some classical influences.
AC/DC-Let There Be Rock. The most raw, simple and powerful Cd I have ever heard. AC/DC shows that you can play a few chords in the right way to create heavy masterpieces. All with a touch of humor.