Coming in from Northeast Pennsylvania, the bare bones Folk Artist Tedd Hazard releases a song for the groaning pessimist with his recent single, "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing."
With a sound influenced by Punk, Blues, and Jazz styles, Tedd Hazard takes genre-blending and unique songwriting to new planes. Known for writing honest lyricism with an enraged vocal delivery, listeners are bound to feel exhilarated after experiencing a sound so rough around the edges.
With his latest single "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing," Tedd Hazard places anger and realism into this scorching tune. With upbeat Folk-Rock acoustic guitar and faint yet gripping percussion patterns, Tedd Hazard brings this gritty edge that naturally captivates any listener to hear what he has to say.
"...And the Flowers Are Still Standing" opens with Tedd Hazard's upbeat and fiery acoustic guitar melodies lending a sharpshooting edge to the song within seconds. What takes us by surprise is when Tedd Hazard's crisp vocals enter the track, ultimately exuding this primal and fierce energy towards the world's climate and America's political environment.
While pushing through the track at full force with powerful acoustic guitar and supporting percussion patterns, what keeps us engaged is Tedd Hazard's relatable lyricism, depicting nothing but reality. We can't help but share a laugh with lyrics like, "You wrote one too many quarantine songs; you're at a loss for words..."
Taking the track by storm through his brilliantly logical and realistic lyricism, Tedd Hazard's "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing" allows listeners to feel and accept their inner anger while grooving away with the song's lively instrumentation.
We highly appreciate the raw and realistic tune you've released titled, "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing." Could you take us back to the grueling moment where you realized that you needed to create an honest and realistic track like this?
I want to say it sometime in May. I released the album "Marshall Law" in April, and thought that was going to be my lockdown record. I thought this has enough songs about being locked away at home. I don't think I'll need to touch that subject again anytime soon. And at this point, it's been two months. I'm thinking things will go back to normal. But things never really did. And I was starting to lose my mind, practically. People who listen to my music know I'm a very busy guy.
So having all this time on my hands gave me the chance to learn how to properly articulate the messages I was trying to send in my music. I thought I covered everything there was to cover about lockdown on that record, but after being home and doing pretty much nothing for a few months and dealing with changes in the world and everyone's different reactions, this song kind of just came together. It took a little over two weeks to write. And normally I'll pull from a few different topics when I'm writing material. I did the same thing with this but mostly pulled from everything that was going on in the world right now. It's a lot more cut and dry than most of my songs.
Regarding your spirited and lively instrumentals within "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing," did you begin your creative process with your heavy acoustic guitar melodies or your lyricism?
I always start with a lyric. It could be the chorus or the opening line. But it's always the lyrics. Usually some sort of play on words ("Every time I look up, I break my goddamn neck"). I never write anything down, but I think I may have written some of this down for a change. I never write the music first, for anything. I'll come up with a vocal melody, and then try to find something that works for it in the background. The actual chord progression of the song was going to be the verses and just that. But after going through the song A few times I had the opening guitar riff in my head constantly and just had to work it in there. I'm really happy with the finished product and this may be one of my favorite songs I've ever done.
We've noticed that you also released a music video for "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing." What inspired the video's concept, particularly the one-shot where you're strumming away in front of a lonely rose?
I've been wanting to do a video for flowers since we recorded it in June. I work as an animator myself, and I've done videos for tons of bands. So my original plan was to do it myself. But unfortunately, I've been busy with music a lot more than I usually am these days. Enter Eyal Phil Filkovsky. He saw I won the People's Choice Award for Best Folk Act in the Steamtown Music Awards this year and said something along the lines of "Now you need a bad a** music video!". At first, I told him I was planning on doing one myself, but a few weeks later he contacted me personally and said he really wanted to do a video for me. I let him pick the song, and the first song he gravitated towards was "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing". I always had the idea of doing it in an empty parking lot, and he came up with the idea for the rose. I was actually going to suggest the scene where I was strumming in the background of the rose, here, he already did. Great minds think alike, I guess. I had a real blast working with him and I think we really click well together, creatively. Your vocal delivery within "...And the Flowers Are Still Standing" is incredibly gripping and unique. What inspired this enraged and heated delivery, and is this a staple for you within the rest of your discography?
My singing style is probably what brings me to the dance. Sure, I'm a really good guitarist and everything. But my vocals are what make me stand out. I always try to put my all in anything I do lyrically, whether it's with my solo stuff, with Condition Oakland, or even if I'm doing a guest spot with another band or artist. In the last few years, I considered myself a behind-the-scenes guy, but I've realized this year I'm definitely more of a performer.
What has been keeping you inspired in 2020?
I've had a lot more time to get to know myself lately. I think that helped me get a little more confidence in my abilities as a singer/songwriter. I'm really hoping I can keep this momentum rolling. If not, it was fun while it lasted.