Artist Interview: Joey Stuckey
Updated: Dec 3, 2021
Hi Joey! It is great to speak with you today!
Excited to chat!
What have you been working on lately?
LOL, well, I am always working on something! I have several of my own projects in various stages of completion, but as of this moment, I am working on producing music for 2 clients, Tamara Wilson and Ironsmith!
They are very different projects and I love that because it requires different approaches to produce music for them!
I am finishing up several things myself including a live album from my 2019 tour and the 2020 performance at the world-famous Whisky A Go Go. Plus a new studio album and a new jazz fusion record as well that has a lot of great music, guest stars and a very special friend mixing the record, but more on that later LOL.
I am also still working hard on continuing my weight loss, have lost over 90 pounds and working towards losing 160!
Other than that, my brain is always coming up with new ideas, songs and projects, but I’ll have to leave you guessing on a few of these for the moment LOL.
How would you describe the music you typically create?
I don’t know, I am not sure there is anything typical about it LOL.
I work as a producer and recording engineer for lots of different clients and they range from classical to heavy metal, country, pop and beyond. For myself, I recognize that staying in one lane is better from a marketing perspective, but I am sadly, or joyously, eclectic, but most of my music can be called some kind of rock or blues, though I also do a lot of jazz/fusion and even some country/Americana.
I think the only thing that could be said to be typical is that I write what I observe. Some of the music has complex themes that are more akin to waxing philosophical, while other compositions are just silly and some of course deal with me being a blind brain tumor survivor and all the ramifications of that!
I always try to be engaging and honest, so that is a common/typical theme.
A strong guitar presence in a song can really make the song extra powerful! How do you go about writing your music from a guitarist perspective?
I play a few different instruments at varying levels of success LOL. However, guitar/bass and vocals are the 3 upon which I feel that I can truly compete.
So, I always play to my strengths for my own projects. I am known as a powerful singer and guitarist, so for the live shows, I give my fans a lot of guitar driven performances with some vocal gymnastics. However, when I am writing, I think of what the song needs first and do whatever it calls for in the studio. So if the song doesn’t need guitar, then it doesn’t get any. If the song needs a full horn section or a children’s choir, then that is what I provide--like this track, Ain’t It Good To Be In Love, where the guitar isn’t really a big-deal---https://open.spotify.com/track/5xVRG5Yvj5DF8inaSGdmmT?si=f0e083cc45cd4c32
Of course, guitar being my primary instrument means that I mostly write on that and a sign of a good or great song, in my experience, means that it will sound compelling with just a single guitar and vocal, so that is the bar I try to work within like this song Truth Is A Misty Mountain https://open.spotify.com/track/3QtXfZNtvyzKxTCv77oj00?si=90e5b103dba44386.
Again, it depends upon the needs of the song and the trappings of the genre, but that being said, I do give myself a chance to play some tasty guitar that is out front---like this song Troubles Come In Threes https://open.spotify.com/track/0WMg4G6g3QiLxvtLy553S2?si=536a37d7235745f5-- and I also enjoy subtle layers of guitar as well. Sometimes, the parts I create are more things you would miss if they weren’t there as opposed to parts that really draw your ear! For example, this track called You’re So Wrong https://open.spotify.com/track/2TSBPTjGx96etAlprgyZu9?si=1e20a29056d249ad.
What sort of advice would you give upcoming guitarists to make their work stand out?
Be a musician first, not a guitarist! Find a way to make the music compelling and use your instrument to serve the needs of the song, not your showmanship. There is a time and place for showing what you can do, but that isn’t always the studio--sometimes you save that for the live show.
Work hard to really know your instrument and what it can do well and what it can’t.
Don’t be afraid to say “look at me and my guitar playing” and also don’t be afraid to take a backseat! Both are very rewarding!
You are also the musical ambassador for your hometown, Macon, Georgia! That is so wonderful! What was that process like?
I have been a champion for my hometown and its music and culture from the very beginning of my adult life--I would call that when I was about 15 years old. I started a recording studio around that age and never looked back. I have been in radio, TV and print media in Macon since about the age of 19 years old and really promoted all we have to offer. As my career has grown and I have moved beyond just working in Macon to a more international profile, I have kept telling everyone I meet about this amazing place called Macon, Georgia. So in 2006, I was appointed by the mayor and city council as the official music ambassador.
I do share a very special relationship with my hometown and its government, nonprofits and community and I work hard to keep bringing things of value to the place I call home!
What is a music project you work on that listeners and readers may not know about?
Oh, I have done so many projects LOL. One I am very proud of is “Joey Stuckey Presents, Ladies Of The South”--- https://open.spotify.com/album/0YjBnwVE1cCvuZCp7w1xyw?si=LSQjVx5FSNKACmUAg9T7Qg&dl_branch=1
This is an amazing group of female artists that I had produced over the years. In 2016, I released a compilation CD to share the powerful female artists from our area!
What are your main ambitions as an artist?
Using the power of music I want to leave the world a little better than I found it, one person and one song at a time!
I want to do great work and have the ability to work with the people, places and tools I need to do that!
Please let everyone know where they can keep up with you and your music!
iTunes for JS3 Sun Sessions https://music.apple.com/us/album/in-the-shadow-of-the-sun/1450976425