Nashville - GRAMMY U SoundChecks With Anthony Hamilton
Photo: The Recording Academy
By: Garrett Lee, GRAMMY U Nashville Representative
GRAMMY U students had a wonderful opportunity to watch Anthony Hamilton sound check, followed by a private Q&A session.
First, GRAMMY U students met at Municipal Auditorium in Downtown Nashville and were next ushered into Nashville’s famous Municipal Auditorium. While the team was fitting the stage for Hamilton’s sound check, members from his production staff engaged with several students on lighting techniques and gave insight on their load-in process for this tour. Anthony Hamilton and his band reviewed songs for that night's show, with the crowd favorite “Amen” and songs off his newest album, What I’m Feelin’.
Following the sound check, students moved to the hallway for the Q&A with Hamilton and his team. Anthony talked about how special of a show this was specifically because he recorded most of his album at the iconic Blackbird and House of Blues studios. When asked about his collaborations, Anthony talked about how he worked primarily with Mark Batson, whom he worked with on the Hamilton hit “Charlene” back in 2003. Batson has worked with a variety of artists from many genres, such as Dave Matthews Band, Alicia Keys, Maroon 5, Grace Potter, and Eminem. Working with a cohesive team was the key for this album’s success, and he didn’t want to work with an abundance of different producers. He said within a week of writing and locking down in the studios, What I’m Feelin’ was born. The team joked about the success of the HamilTones, who are Hamilton’s background vocalists, made famous by their viral videos on YouTube.
When asked what’s next for the HamilTones, Anthony said that it usually starts with J.B. and TuWi who creatively come up new ideas and play off of songs they hear and change up the lyrics or make it sound more R&B. The students asked his management how they all met and have helped Anthony be successful. His manager, Eli, chimed in that he met Anthony back in the 90s in North Carolina (where most of Hamilton’s band is from, and still lives), and he recognized his pure talent and stage presence. He was then asked how he manages the criticism for being an artist who is also religious. “Sometimes you want to say what you want to say, and people aren’t always going to agree with that. That’s part of being an artist. I love my gospel songs, but I sometimes want to swear a little bit. We are all just human! This is music!”
After the Q&A, Anthony and his band jumped in for a group picture and stuck around to chat with the students some more!