Zac Brown Band's Jimmy De Martini is giving a few details about the group's upcoming new album. The record, the follow-up to their 2017 Welcome Home, is already in progress – but he isn't revealing too much about their next set of tunes.
"We have a bunch of songs in the bag -- we actually have some halfway recorded," De Martini tells Billboard. "I’m not sure exactly what we're gonna do or when we're gonna record it, but it's kind of a surprise. I don't think I can reveal too much, but just say it's a different sound. We're stretching the boundaries again, for sure. Sonically it may vary from some stuff we've done in the past, but I think people like that about us. Overall we try to just make good music."
Before the Zac Brown Band can finish their new project, they need to wrap up their Down the Rabbit Hole Live Tour, which is once again including several stadiums.
"I really enjoy it," De Martini admits. "There's a certain energy that comes along, kind of like a multiplier effect. People are coming to a stadium where they're used to having a good time seeing baseball, and now there's a concert on top of it. There's an extra excitement, an extra buzz going in that makes it a little more fun.
"The sound is great in stadiums as well," the fiddle player adds. "I was worried the first time we played 'em that there'd be echoes and unwanted reverb, but we bring in enough P.A., and in the open-air stadiums it sounds amazing and really gets everyone into it."
The title of the tour, which kicked off on June 8, was in honor of the group's desire to keep getting better and better.
"'Down The Rabbit Hole Live' is a reference to the never-ending pursuit of excellence," Brown says. "This summer, we'll bring the fans along that journey with us."
The Zac Brown Band earned a GRAMMY nod last year for Best Country Duo/Group Performance, for their Top 10 hit, "My Old Man," the debut single from Welcome Home. Brown wrote the song, which says, "My old man / Feel the callous on his hands / And dusty overalls / My old man,"about his father, which made the GRAMMY nod especially meaningful.
"He was inspired his whole life by a song called ‘Leader of the Band’ by Dan Fogelberg, and he’s always like, ‘I wish I could write a song as a tribute to my father,'" De Martini tells Billboard. "Zac had other people take him in when he was younger -- one of the guys that raised him passed recently, and then Zac had a son recently as well, so he was just inspired to write that song."
Find a list of all of Zac Brown Band's upcoming shows at ZacBrownBand.com.
Photo Credit: Getty images/Alison Buck