ZZ Ward Hits The Road To Promote New Music

Blues Pop artist from Oregon, ZZ Ward recently kicked off her solo club tour to promote the upcoming release of her sophomore album The Storm featuring the newest track “Cannonball” ft. Fantastic Negrito. Ward will also be joining the Arroyo Seco Festival at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA taking the stage on Sun, June 25.

With a soul-shaking voice and incendiary guitar and harmonica chops, Ward has consistently delivered powerful neo-blues steeped in hip-hop swagger since the release of her breakout mixtape, Eleven Roses. Her 2012’s full-length debut, Til The Casket Drops, boasted raucous bluesy anthems like the title track and “Put The Gun Down,” which racked up over 7.4 million Spotify streams and counting, claimed a spot in the Top 10 of AAA radio for 10 weeks, and landed high-profile syncs in the box office smash We’re The Millers, among others.

The album also featured standout collaborations with Kendrick Lamar and Freddie Gibbs as Ward earned acclaim from Rolling Stone, Guitar World, Elle, Interview Magazine, and more in between appearing on Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!, Conan, Good Morning America, The Tonight Show, The View, and many others. Along the way, she toured with the likes of Eric Clapton, Gary Clark, Jr., and Fitz & The Tantrums in addition to hitting the stage of Coachella, Bonnaroo, Firefly, Made In America, and more.

Fritz Joins ZZ Ward On The Roxy Stage.

Ward is also set to join Icelandic blues-rock band Kaleo on their The Kaleo Express tour. Supporting Kaleo, Ward will link up with the band first in Houston, TX on Oct. 10, with more dates to be announced.

My Cali Events had a chance to catch up with ZZ Ward before her LA show at the Roxy to talk about her new album and 2017 tour dates.

MyCaliEvents – Tell us about your upcoming album? What has been the biggest inspiration for the songs on your second album?

ZZ Ward – When writing my new album, I found inspiration from a lot of past relationships, past broken hearts and things that didn’t work out so well for me. There were a lot of experiences that I had hidden away and didn’t want to face. This album was sort of cleaning out my closet and facing a lot of my demons.

MyCaliEvents – There is a 3-year gap between your debut album and the new one coming out June 30. What have you been doing during the time between the two studio recordings?

ZZ Ward – I made a second album in 2015, but right before I put it out I had a realization that I hadn’t done what I wanted to do with it, so I decide to start over. I wrote an entirely new album. Everyone’s path is different and the most important thing is to create music that is important to you. I went deeper into my influences of blues and hip-hop on this album and just wrote about stuff that was real to me.

MyCaliEvents – You are mainly billed as a Blues and R&B pop artist. What has your experience been being a young, white, female artist breaking into this genre of music?

ZZ Ward – I don’t know what genre I fit into. I’m just a girl singing from my heart; I loved great songs growing up regardless of genre. If I feel it, then I connect with it, the rest is out of my hands.

MyCaliEvents – You started out playing with your father. Was he a major inspiration to your music? Does he still play music? Do you still play music with him?

ZZ Ward – My dad got me into music at a very young age, he was my biggest inspiration and I wouldn’t be a recording artist if it weren’t for his encouragement. He loves to play music still, and I’ll often bring him out to play on stage with me at shows.

MyCaliEvents – You have joined the tour bill with some amazing artists from your genre. Who has been your favorite to tour with so far?

ZZ Ward – Touring with Eric Clapton was a huge honor, he’s such a legend and still such a kind person. Early on Grace Potter brought me on tour with her, and I loved watching her on stage every night. She is honestly one of the best female artists out there and a huge inspiration to me!

MyCaliEvents – What are some of your most memorable moments on tour? And in the recording sessions?

ZZ Ward – Some of my most memorable moments on tour have been this most recent tour. It blows my mind to have fans and people who truly connect with your music. It’s an incredible thing. Seeing them at these shows has been very special.

MyCaliEvents – Who is your go to band or music to listen to? Do you have a favorite jam right now?

ZZ Ward – I’m really into the rise of blues in country music, with artists like Chris Stapleton and Maren Morris. I get really excited about their music and it makes me feel like a kid again getting a new album for the first time!

MyCaliEvents – If you could design your dream tour, whom would be on that tour? Who would be in your dream band of artists alive and/or from the past?

ZZ Ward – I would love to tour with The Alabama Shakes. They are so authentic and rich, I love their music!

MyCaliEvents – Which of your songs is your favorite to play live and why?

ZZ Ward – I really love the songs that my fans sing along with, sometimes they sing so loud I can’t even hear myself and I get such a kick out of it. That feels less like you’re performing and more like a party!

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