April 21, 2009 The adage "If it aint broke, dont fix it" applies to everything from plumbing to management to the music industry, but its not exactly in the Zac Brown Bands vocabulary.
The group hit its commercial stride last year with its first No. 1 single, "Chicken Fried," which would suggest they had their act together. But instead of playing it safe, the band went into expansion mode early this year by bringing on a new member, Clay Cook, whos provided backing vocals, keyboard and steel guitar for the likes of John Mayer, Shawn Mullins and the Marshall Tucker Band.
No one left the ZBB. They just decided to make a place for Clay, and it turns out theyd been courting him for some time.
"Hed been playin with Marshall Tucker for the last four or five years, singin for them, helpin to take the weight of singin and playin guitar for them," Zac says. "Id been tryin to get him in the band for three years, and you know, its been a journey, but I always knew [he could make us better]. Im a harmony fanatic. I love big harmonies and things, and we didnt have a high tenor, and Jimmy [De Martini], my fiddle player, sings a lot of the high stuff now, but havin somebody that can actually sing on top of that, weve added a four-part harmony now thats searing, and the guys a monster player, too."
Clay will have a hand in the next album, which is already being recorded. In the meantime, The Foundation, which features "Chicken Fried," was just certified gold.