DILLON CAMPBELL READY TO MAKE HIS MARK IN MUSIC WITH HIS NEW EP, "SAVE ME."
Lana K. Wilson-Combs
Although singer/songwriter Dillon Campbell (pictured) shunned the country sound and swagger of his legendary father, Glenn Campbell, the 32-year old alternative, indie singer seems to have embraced his dad's exceptional songwriting skills.
"I appreciate all of my father's music and what he's accomplished," Campbell told N2Entertainment.net during a recent phone interview. "But honestly, I wanted to go in a completely different direction than him," added Campbell. "Plus we were never really all that close growing up and didn't talk a lot. I was like four years old when my mom and dad divorced. So in that sense he didn't have much influence on me."
Looking back, Campbell, who grew up in Malibu and currently lives in Sherman Oaks, said it was his mother who encouraged him to pursue music. When he was 13-years old, she bought him an American made Sunburst Fender Stratocaster. "It was love at first sight," laughed Campbell. "That guitar was so beautiful that I just wanted to look at it instead of play it."
Campbell said listening to artists such as James Taylor, David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins, Bob Dylan, and Paul Simon really influenced his career and laid the foundation for much of his music today, including his current EP "Save Me" which is a follow-up to his 2008 CD, "Observations."
Campbell is also putting the finishing touches on his sophomore full-length, CD "Journals for the Brokenhearted" which is slated for release later this year. "I kind of incorporate a bit of everything in my music from folk, to pop, rock and alternative musical styles," explained Campbell who said he's also a big fan of the hip-hop/rap group the Wu-Tang Clan.
The EP "Save Me" features the four songs, "Save Yourself," "Maureen," "Absence of Lies" and "Ragtime." Campbell said songwriting comes rather easily for him. "I guess I have a strange writing style," he said. "If you can't write and let it come to you, I don't think you should be writing it. If I have to think about writing a song too much, I crumple the paper and start all over. It just has to come naturally for me."
He cites his song "Save Yourself" as an example. "I used to not believe people who said that inspiration can strike anytime," said Campbell. "Now I actually believe it's true. "Save Yourself" came to me really in a flash. I think I wrote it in like 10 or 15 minutes and I don't even remember where I was or how the idea came about. The lyrics just flowed with what I was playing with one day on the guitar and I went with it."
Campbell said "Save Yourself" refers to a person who rushes through life avoiding all the details. "This person shows more concern for those around them, than they do for themselves," he said. "They've been running around saving everyone else and in the process haven't been able to realize and utilize their full potential in life." But Campbell adds that it was a personal family tragedy that really led him to reach deep inside and write on of his most moving songs ever. "I was 23-years old when my grandmother died and I just started playing the guitar and these lyrics came out of me about my grandmother and before I knew it, I had composed a song for her titled "Dorothy." It was really at that point that I knew that songwriting was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life."
Campbell maintains he's not out to conquer the world with his music. He stays busy playing small to fairly large venues throughout Los Angeles, but has gigs lined up all over the country. "As long as people come out to hear me and tell me that they enjoy my music, that's the biggest payoff for me," he said. "My father made his way and has plenty of accolades and deserving awards to show for it. I hope to blaze my own trail too."
Editor's Note: This interview was conducted with Dillon Campbell prior to news that his father Glenn Campbell is battling Alzheimer's Disease.