Ernie Ball: Striking A Chord

Ernie Ball: Striking A Chord

Welcome to Striking A Chord, a podcast presented by Ernie Ball — the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality electric guitar and bass strings since 1962. Tune in every other week as host Evan Ball interviews some of music’s most influential artists and trailblazers who continue to help shape the music industry today.... Show More

Episodes

September 18, 2020 38 min
Indie-folk artist Matt Costa grew up skateboarding in Southern California. In the wake of a debilitating accident, Matt discovered a new passion and natural aptitude for songwriting. He soon crossed paths with No Doubt guitarist Tom Dumont, whose early mentorship helped put Matt on track for a successful and enduring music career. In this episode, we speak with Costa about songwriting, skateboarding, touring, John Steinbeck, and hi...
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September 4, 2020 38 min
In this episode we speak with Stefan Babcock, lead singer and guitarist of the band PUP. Stefan discusses the Canadian music scene and the extent to which the US/Canada border acts as a musical divide. He also discusses lyrical inspiration, band chemistry, the dedication required to make music one’s livelihood, and an experiment PUP ran: what happens when you provide the public with the chords and lyrics to a song they’ve never hea...
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August 21, 2020 52 min
Seether formed in 1999. Just one year later their demo was charting in their home country of South Africa. The year after that, US label Wind-up Records flew the band out to NYC for a showcase performance, promptly signed them to a deal, and the rest is history. In this episode we speak with singer/guitarist Shaun Morgan and bassist Dale Stewart about Seether’s grassroots rise in South Africa, their big move to the US, and their br...
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August 7, 2020 37 min
In this episode we have a wide-ranging conversation with Dream Theater bassist John Myung. John discusses his experience attending Berklee College of Music with John Petrucci and Mike Portnoy, Dream Theater’s formation and early days, tips for practicing bass, and the story behind his new Ernie Ball Music Man Artist Series six-string bass. Intro music by Eat the Wolf Outro music by The Vacant Shapes
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July 24, 2020 37 min
The members of hardcore outfit Code Orange have earned a reputation for their unrelenting drive. Whether writing heavier riffs, intensifying their live shows, or finding creative ways to engage fans during the pandemic, Code Orange is always pushing the envelope. In this episode we speak with guitarists Reba Meyers and Dominic Landolina about the power of bringing audio and visual together, the tricky balance of executing guitar pa...
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July 10, 2020 30 min
With their self-released debut album 40oz. to Freedom, Sublime quickly established a grassroots following on the California coast. With the release of their self-titled third studio album—two months after the passing of singer Bradley Nowell and the dissolution of the band—Sublime amassed worldwide fame, which persists to this day. In this episode we speak with bassist Eric Wilson about Sublime’s early days, their signature musical...
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June 26, 2020 32 min
With the bonds of childhood friendship and the musical chemistry to match, The Story So Far caught fire in the pop punk world with their debut album Under Soil and Dirt. Never complacent, the Walnut Creek natives have continued to press the bounds of convention with each successive album. In this episode we speak with Kelen Capener, Kevin Geyer, and Will Levy about high school, songwriting, quarantine, Pure Noise Records, and more.
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June 12, 2020 55 min
In this episode we speak with Halestorm guitarist Joe Hottinger about the group’s amazing journey from local bar band to Grammy award-winning artist. Joe discusses his development as a guitar player, his first meeting with Lzzy and Arejay Hale, his life in Nashville, his influences, and much more.
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May 29, 2020 60 min
Forged in the Chicago punk scene of the late ‘90s, Rise Against seemed an unlikely candidate for mainstream success. After signing to a major label in 2003, Rise Against went on to release six albums that reached the Billboard 200 — five of which charted in the top ten. In this episode we speak with vocalist/guitarist Tim McIlrath and guitarist Zach Blair about sheltering in place, being political, following your passion, Zach’s te...
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Maddi Schieferstein first crossed paths with John Petrucci in 1998 when Deep Purple was touring with Dream Theater. At the time Maddi was the bass tech for Deep Purple, but as any true gearhead would, he took an interest in Petrucci’s extensive rig. Little did he know that in time he would come to know that rig better than anyone on the planet. In this episode Maddi Schieferstein, guitar tech to John Petrucci, answers questions sol...
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May 1, 2020 59 min
Not many unsigned bands are asked to play Coachella or tour with Jack White, yet this is the story of Chicano Batman. Today, with the release of their highly anticipated fourth album, Invisible People, Chicano Batman’s ascent continues unabated. In this episode guitarist Carlos Arévalo and bassist Eduardo Arenas discuss the making of their new album, living in Los Angeles, and growing up in a time when Latinos in mainstream rock we...
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April 17, 2020 47 min
Hailing from Albany, New York, Drug Church has carved out a unique niche in the post-hardcore world. As articulated on their Spotify page, “They’re an unabashedly aggressive band that writes hooks you can’t stop humming — too poppy for the heavy crowd, too heavy for the poppy crowd.” And yet Drug Church’s proprietary sound continues to open new doors and attract new fans. In this episode we speak with vocalist Patrick Kindlon and g...
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April 3, 2020 42 min
Goldfinger frontman John “Feldy” Feldmann has one of the most enviable résumés in the music business. With roots in the California punk scene, Feldmann has gone on to produce and co-write with a wide variety of music’s biggest names, including Good Charlotte, Panic! at the Disco, blink-182, and 5 Seconds of Summer. In this episode, we speak with Feldmann about the ups and downs of his early music career, what bands can do to get no...
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March 20, 2020 58 min
In this episode we speak with Mad Caddies guitarist Sascha Lazor about getting signed by NOFX’s Fat Mike, his latest project working with rap artist Doja Cat and Yeti Beats, the unique rewards and challenges of touring the world as a musician, and how his passion for reggae music led him to Jamaica where he quickly found use for his talents making beats and playing guitar in a Kingston studio. Brought up during California’s Third ...
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March 6, 2020 35 min
If you trace back the history of Nirvana and Soundgarden, you'll inevitably run into the Melvins. Bridging heavy metal and punk rock in the midst of the ‘90s grunge scene, the Melvins have crafted a sound that has remained influential and prolific for more than three decades. In this episode, we speak with vocalist and guitarist Buzz Osborne and bass player Steven McDonald about their history in the music industry, their though...
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February 21, 2020 45 min
Dashboard Confessional singer-songwriter and guitarist Chris Carrabba became the poster child for early 2000s emo with his simple acoustic melodies and introspective songwriting. Having grown up in the skate community and punk scene of Southern Florida, Carrabba spent most of his early years playing in post-hardcore outfits, including the Vacant Andys and Further Seems Forever. But yearning to pursue something simpler, Dashboard Co...
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February 7, 2020 26 min
In 2015, guitarist Ayla Tesler-Mabe posted her first cover to YouTube soulfully playing John Mayall & the Bluebreakers “Hideaway.” Fast forward four years, the now 18-year-old boasts a following of over 400k on Instagram, plays to sold-out crowds, and stands as one of the most promising young guitar players on the rise. In this episode, we speak to the Calgary native about how the video game Rock Band inspired her to learn to p...
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January 24, 2020 55 min
While best known for his work on the drums for bands including Nine Inch Nails, Angels & Airwaves, and Paramore, multi-instrumentalist Ilan Rubin can do just about anything musically. Despite being only 31 years old, Rubin has been involved in the music industry for over 20 years. He’s been touring and recording music since he was 9, and by age 11, he landed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the youngest musician to ever...
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January 10, 2020 26 min
With her literate, emotionally intricate songwriting and inventive guitar playing, Annie Clark — known by her stage moniker St. Vincent — has become an unapologetic force in rock and pop. She introduced her genre-blending abilities on 2007’s ‘Marry Me,’ and has gone on to achieve a rare balance of critical and commercial success throughout the years. She became the first female artist to win the Grammy Award for Best Alternative Al...
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December 27, 2019 40 min
Joe Bonamassa began playing guitar when he was just four years old and hasn’t looked back since. He was featured across local news as the next “guitar prodigy,” and by the age of 12, he was opening for B.B King. Today, Bonamassa has accumulated 22 number one albums on the Billboard Blues chart and has been featured on the cover of every guitar magazine imaginable. In this episode, we speak to Bonamassa about his childhood, his worl...
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