LTP: The Road, The Soul & The Man
by: Jeff Hightower
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Back to the nest...
Going down the long winding road of music, you live a double life. Itâ€™s an angel and a devil. The guys out there that pull the long miles and play endless shows are few and far between in todayâ€™s scene. But every so often you find a true road warrior who keeps pushing forward because it is what he is meant to do. Through the good times and the bad these events have forged the unsung heroes who still have soul. And with that, I give you Lee Tyler Post. HM - Would you ever sign with a major label at this stage in your career? LTP - Maybe. They would have to give me complete control of the creative process (songs I pick for the album etc) and whom I choose to work with. And allow me to produce or pick who I want to co-produce with. Usually it does not work this way unless youâ€™re a proven breadwinner already. (Like Dave Matthews did) I guess if the right situation arose, I would. But getting signed does not mean what it use to. So yeah, I guess itâ€™s possible but highly unlikely. HM - Whatâ€™s it like to keep up the rigorous touring schedule that keeps you on the road most all the time? LTP - Just a feeling of self-pride. Exhausting at times but more rewarding than not. Something happens when you live on the road all the time. It becomes such a way of life, that when I stop and stay idle for a few months, I feel a sort of emptiness. To be honest, I miss a lot of the people I meet on tour. I canâ€™t wait to return and hang out, or have a good laugh (like the ones with you) and play the new tunes I got, and the old ones they like. It usually takes about 100 miles out of the gate each time to get that â€œahhhhhhhhâ€™ feeling back. I just love the road. Itâ€™s home to me. So itâ€™s very hard for me to stop and say, â€œTime for a break, to record, shut it down.â€� I should add though the positive side of being in one place is the hometown fans. That really helps. HM - What is the high point of your career and why does it mean so much to you? LTP - I canâ€™t pinpoint one specific moment but I would have to say this past run of 24 months or so has been special. A lot has happened. Every night has been an adventure. Many of the people who have written me over the years and said what a huge impact my musicâ€™s been to them, I have gotten to meet and play for. Itâ€™s an awesome feeling hearing fans sing along, then afterwards telling you how much they enjoyed it live. Thatâ€™s probably the greatest feeling I get on the road. Makes the miles seem like walking across the street for a paper. I canâ€™t even explain what it feels like. That high point probably canâ€™t be matched. Itâ€™s magic. Addicting. HM - Youâ€™ve lived the life most musicians can only dream of. If you could change one thing, what would it be? LTP - Lower gas prices â€¦ ha ha. Theyâ€™re killing me. Seriously, not much. Iâ€™m on course with exactly what I set out to do. Sponsorship is next, as well as a nice tour bus. But truly, if I wanted things to be easier, quicker, I could have made it happen. Iâ€™ve done just about everything I can to make sure Iâ€™m not famous (ha ha) taken every high road and hard way â€¦ I think itâ€™s working! LOL. To be able to fund a small band to back me up and add a little extra dimension liveâ€¦ that I would change I guess. But that will all happen eventually, along with the tour bus and sponsorship. Itâ€™s the journey, not the destination that matters. Iâ€™m all about the quest. HM - Giving back to the community seems to be a big thing with you. How is it that you feel the need to give back so much and expect nothing in return? LTP - Music in general seems to have such a huge impact on peopleâ€™s lives and itâ€™s always a great and humbling experience when charities ask you to perform for a worthy cause. (Cancer Benefits, homeless benefits, mental health facilities, child abuse etc.) I think eventually everyone is affected by one of these tragic events, either personally, or through a family member or friend. So when you have a talent or gift that can help lift the spirits of others in need, whether musically, a hospice worker, social worker, or comic - I feel you have an obligation to help. Not to mention the incredible feeling of satisfaction and elation you get from the smiles of those youâ€™re helping. And since I make a living playing my music, that basically other people fund by buying my albums, I feel like I owe much more than I give. My wife Jackie and I want to do so many things for the less fortunate. More hands on. We just need to get the funding and make it happen - and we will. I just think it comes natural to help others. Feels so good. We all need help. Youâ€™re helping me right now manâ€¦ and I thank you brother - big time!!! HM - Iâ€™m sure we havenâ€™t heard the highest point of LTP yet. What do we have to look forward to from you in the future? LTP - Oh, Iâ€™ll be out there wandering the highways until they cart me off. (Ha ha) Hopefully I can keep making music that people want to hear. And reach new heights as far as touching peopleâ€™s lives. I feel like Iâ€™m just beginning really. And I mean that in a very â€œnon-egotisticalâ€� way. We have plans to open a camp for terminally ill children, abused children, a safe haven where other artists can come and hide out, rediscover what it was they loved in the first place about their art. Because sometimes that line gets blurred. I also feel Iâ€™m just starting to understand what this all means. The journey. As long as people like what I do, and want to hear me â€¦ Iâ€™ll be there. Thatâ€™s really my only musical goal. Venues getting bigger, making more money, bigger record sales, being more known, that stuff just happens the longer youâ€™re in the whirlwind. I donâ€™t really pay too much attention to all that. Of course Iâ€™d like to be financially comfortable. But not at the price of selling out. If Iâ€™m basically still an unknown down the line, Iâ€™m cool with that. I donâ€™t think Iâ€™m great, or all that; so I donâ€™t waste time thinking I deserve things because â€œIâ€™ve paid my duesâ€� so-to-speak. Iâ€™m a blue-collar dude; Iâ€™ll go out and earn it â€¦ like I always do. Itâ€™s just a job in the end, and I believe if you give it your all, you canâ€™t go wrong. And I love my job. I get to do what I like the most for a living. With the one I love, my most favorite person on the planet right next to me - Jackie. She makes everyday feel like the first. Iâ€™m already rich brother. The rest is gravy. HM - Did you feel it compromised anything you stand for when you were signed to a record label, and what are your thoughts on your former label, Lost Cat Records? LTP - Well, Lost Cat is a digital label only. Meaning online downloads. Had it been a physical cd label, I would not have signed. Or if I did, it would have had to be seriously in my favor like I mentioned above. I signed with LCR because I believe in what Jerry Jodice does and says. Since I book, tour, write, record, make my own cds, do everything as far as my music career is concerned - hitting the online market with the same effort would be way overtaxing to me. As it is, I sleep only about 4 hrs a day anyway. And Jerry pushes my music pretty hard online with his podcasts â€œThe Great American Music Hourâ€� and I believe him that he will do his best to spread the word about me. And Iâ€™m basically getting on board at the ground level and I have big plans to help both Jerry and myself make the label a place for other artists to call home. Who knows, maybe one day I will work with the artists, recording them at Lost Cat Studios and helping them fulfill their dreams. That would be cool. I do have a lot of studio experience and love helping others. Anything can happen. So no, I didnâ€™t compromise anything. If anything, Iâ€™ve just become a part of a very caring family who have shown me nothing but love and friendship so far. HM - Whatâ€™s it like knowing that the 49ers canâ€™t beat the Bengalâ€™s anymore? LTP - Ya had to go there didnâ€™t you â€¦HA HA! Man, what a crying shame. I guess it would hurt worse if the Bengals were the old Bengals, but since theyâ€™re really good nowâ€¦ nah â€¦ I hate it. LOL. Not cool â€¦not cool. I know youâ€™re smiling. HM - Weâ€™ve sat and talked many times about the hearts of true musicians. In your own words, what is it that drives a musician such as yourself? LTP - Iâ€™m glad you asked this and I hope my response is not too long or too â€œout there.â€� 1st Part of my answer is this: Desperation I guess, a â€œhere today, gone tomorrowâ€� mentality. Carpe diem. Love of what I do, passion for life. To fill that void, or hole inside that seems to get bigger when I donâ€™t write songs or play. To always redeem myself after I feel like I played a sub-par show. Seems Iâ€™m always chasing a â€œghostâ€� of what I can be, but havenâ€™t got there yet. I also relate it to some kind of haunting waters youâ€™re afraid to go into, but you know the answers you seek are in there. Do you run and hide your whole life? Just write/live from the surface. Or dive in and face the music so to speak. I guess what drives me is the quest for the truth - Who am I? What can I become? My music is the looking glass to this. 2nd Part of my answer is: When I hear things like â€œyour music moves me, feels like youâ€™re talking about my lifeâ€�, itâ€™s very humbling and overwhelming. To this day, I still find it hard to believe people actually feel this way about my music. That I matter this way even to one person, floors me. It truly means the world to me, honest to God. It brings such purpose to my life knowing that it takes another persons help, to create this. The song, the listener. Like in any relationship, it canâ€™t be one sided and work. Itâ€™s got to be an equal partnership. Itâ€™s heavy stuff when listeners say they used one of my tunes as the theme song at their wedding, for â€œthe dance.â€� Or my music being the only thing that calms their child down when the baby is teething or what not, thatâ€™s pretty cool. Recovering addicts saying the music helps them with sobriety. Lifts their spirits. My doctor actually says he listens to my music while he performs surgeries. Helps keep him relax â€“ thatâ€™s unreal! Hearing these stories, I feel compelled to travel where they are and perform. I feel like itâ€™s the only way to really thank them. This drives me. And thankfully along the way others hear me, connect, then I have another stop or place to visit. It seems I gather one listener at a time. Springsteen once said, â€œIf you want an audience, get off your butt and go get one!â€� So I did. Over the years I have built a nice fan base Iâ€™m loyal too â€“ and visa versa. Itâ€™s hard to explain but itâ€™s a debt I canâ€™t repay. HM - When all is said and done and you look back, what do you hope theyâ€™ll say about Lee Tyler Post? LTP - Musically; that I had A Big heart and sang with my Soul â€¦ pure and simple. That I gave it everything I had every time I took the stage - no matter what. (Whether there was 1 person in the audience or 500. sick or tired etc). That I stayed true to the roots - foundation laid before me. And was old school and did not use todayâ€™s tricks and gimmicks to make it sound better in the studio. That I earned my way, and never took my listeners for granted. Personally; That I walked the talk. Always did what I said. Did not have things handed to me. And always-made time for someone in need of help. If they say this, then for my parents and everyone I ever learned from, that made an impression on me, Iâ€™m just a reflection of what I was taught. The cycle was complete. Iâ€™m sure that sounds hokey but I take pride in coming from a blue-collar background and neighborhood. Bottom line; I just hope people say, â€œthat dude gave it everything he had, and money, accolades - never drove him. Passion did!â€� â€¦ That would make me happy. All merchandise and music can be found through the following: www.leetylerpost.com From the nestâ€¦ HornetMan