With a long anticipated major label debut, Jesusfreakhideout.com caught up with indie / piano-rock all-brother
act Remedy Drive during street week of their new album, Daylight Is Coming to chat with lead vocalist and keyboard player,
David Zach, to discuss the new record, what gives them hope, and of course, their worst on-stage injuries...
This interview took place on: 8/27/08.
Jesus freak Hideout (John DiBiase): As a bit of an intro for those who are new to the
band, how did you guys get started and what does the name "Remedy Drive" mean??
We started playing together in high school. I had written a few songs back in the day around the idea that we are all
in need of a remedy that will last. Remedy Drive points toward the only hope that will truly cure our longing to be part
of something else. And it's the road we want to be on ourselves as well.
JFH (John): Being that you're all brothers, what is the process like for
making music? How do you all come to an agreement when it comes to styles, band roles, etc.?
The creative process is something that comes with a lot of work, a lot of trial and error.
Left to ourselves, we would still be the indie jam band with ten minute instrumentals and electronica.
So, as brothers, creating songs that are more pop-rock, and only three minutes long, has been a journey. We all have the
same end goal - to be able to keep making music for a living. That's the glue that really holds us together. Roles
in the band have shifted and continue to shift now that we have a manager, record label, publicist, road manager, booking agent
and other new partners behind us. We've all acted in each of those roles in the past. But there are always jobs no
one wants to do. Figuring out who is responsible for one of those new jobs is always tough. Figuring out how to decide on a final
lyric, tune, or guitar part is sometimes tough as well. It's all part of the learning curve, and it has a lot to do with
making sure everyone in the band knows they are respected and that their opinion matters. You'd think as brothers we would
agree on a majority of musical choices, but there are a lot of polar opinions among us. The beauty of having a band with my
three brothers is figuring out how to affirm each other even though we have different ways of doing things - trial by fire as
JFH (John): What have been your greatest musical influences growing up and even today?
Are there any artists that consistently ignite a creative spark in you?
I always go back to Keith Green. He made the piano come alive for me. I didn't hear a U2 album until I was 15 years old,
and it changed my life. The echo pedal The Edge uses makes me feel alive in a strange way. We also listened to a ton of
Mannheim Steamroller growing up (when I was five or so). I could name twenty others, but those are a few of interest that
had a long term impact.
JFH (John): How did you connect with producer Ian Eskelin - a fellow piano-rock talent -
for this record? Did you guys ever listen to any of his projects (like ASU or his solo work) in the past?
I wrote a lot of songs with Ian. He was one of the first guys I met in Nashville, and we went out for coffee.
I thought everyone was kidding when they said that even if you are just sitting around with Ian you'll end up writing a song
together. We actually wrote some lyrics together in that coffee shop. I listened to some of his solo stuff and his band as well
and enjoyed it. I think he is exactly what we needed in our situation - someone that can reign in our jam band tendencies and
help us focus on making songs that connect with people. There was always concern that we'd be turned into a pop band once
we signed with a label. Ian was incredible in his commitment to protecting our identity and sound, while pushing us to make
every note and lyric count. We were really excited that the first full minute of our album is instrumental, and there are
also two sections of instrumental jam on our first radio single.
JFH (John): Your new record Daylight Is Coming has a bold and unmistakable
theme for hope threaded throughout. What kinds of things/events inspired this overall theme?
David: I am honestly desperate for a real hope. I can sing and talk about it, but at the end of the day,
it seems like my hope is more in rock and roll, health insurance, or the security of my family. I want my hope to be in
something permanent. I want to figure out what it means to keep watch for the dawn rather than being content to fumble around in
the twilight. All of us have gone through a ton in the past five years. We all have our own personal failures and situations
that have let us down. And every time I open a newspaper, I read of fires, cyclones, mudslides, hurricanes and floods destroying
dreams. Likewise, when I look inside my heart I see the same kind of disaster - floods like David the psalmist talks about:
"the waters have come up even to my soul." Everything is falling apart, and if my hope is in everything, then what do I have left
when it erodes? It's slipping like water through our hands - the world and all our dreams. So I think the defining two lines of
the album are "hope is...by my side digging through the rubble - not giving up" and "hold on - daylight is coming."
I want to be at a place where I know that if I lose everything I still have something to put my hope in.
JFH (John): What is it that keeps you going when you do hit those times where hope seems the furthest thing from you?
David: I know that there is a kingdom coming - even when rock music lets me down, even when the American
dream lets me down - even when I let myself down. There is something I'm longing for that no eye has seen, nor ear has heard.
I can't even imagine what my King has in store for me. I know there is hope for change in my heart too, even when I seem the
JFH (John): Can you tell us the story behind the song "Heartbeat?"
David: I like the idea of a rock concert acting like a defibrillator--the thing someone looks
back on and says "something started in my life that night that won't stop running." Sometimes it seems like my heart isn't
beating for anything that's real - when I want it to beat in the rhythm of a kingdom song.
JFH (John): Is there a song on the record that means more to you personally than others?
David: I like "Daylight." I wrote it right around the time my daughter was born. I actually came up
with some of the lyrics while the sun rose in the delivery room right before her birth. Bono says, "why so dark before the
morning, why the pain before a child is born?" So the metaphor is really strong for me.
JFH (John): What made you guys settle on the simplified, less-is-more album cover design to represent Daylight Is Coming?
David: There were a lot of ideas for an album cover on the table, but no one was blown away by any of them.
We all wanted something spectacular but didn't end up finding it. Then someone said "hey this white cover looks really clean
and epic." So we all went with it.
JFH (John): You guys have built up quite the reputation for having a high energy
live performance. Have you actually been inspired by any particular live shows you've seen? Or is it just a natural
display of your musical passion and energy?
David: I started getting really bored at shows about two years ago, playing the same songs and just
standing there. So, we slowly started adding more things. I saw Jon Foreman jump off a drum and heard Elton John used to
stand on his grand piano back in the day. We don't have the money for a huge light show with special effects, but we still
want our show to be spectacular. So we're always looking for new ways to make things interesting. The Blue Man group has
also played a role in coming up with ideas. We don't want it to be too planned out either, so none of the stuff is rehearsed.
Sometimes, I'll try something spur of the moment that we end up doing the next few months.
JFH (John): Have you suffered any on stage injuries through such unbridled displays during a live performance?
David: If you go to our YouTube, there is a video called
"Dave takes a good fall." I slipped on the drums and fell
five feet off the riser onto the deck. Then I jumped back up and slit my face open on a cymbal. That's about as bad as it's
gotten so far. We had a stage cave in on us once, but no one was hurt. It is the inanimate members of Remedy Drive that take the
worst beating. I'm missing the low F string on my piano, both low C strings, and now the high D string which is crucial for
playing "Daylight." I spend a lot of time doing surgery on gear - screws fall out, a guitar brakes in half. Phil always breaks
bass strings. I fell into the drums once and snapped a hoop on the kick. Paul threw his guitar once but was standing on the
cord so it came right back down. Dan probably breaks 3 or 5 sticks per show on drums. But all of our bones are intact so far.
My face is still healing and will leave a little scar. If it does happen that someone breaks a leg or falls down and it gets ugly,
I only hope someone immortalizes the moment on film.
JFH (John): How was it playing your first ever "real" Nashville show back in April at the Rutledge... for the first ever Jesusfreakhideout.com sponsored showcase?
David:Hideout at the Rutledge was our first show ever in Nashville. It was really fun because we knew everyone
there was a music lover and would be able to help get the word out about our music to other music lovers. For instance,
there were some people from Europe there that want to bring us over some time. That would be a dream - playing rock music
JFH (John): What do you feel God has been teaching you lately?
David: God has been teaching me that I can't do it on my own. I need His word, the same word that formed the
stars, to make light shine in my heart, to make that broken, empty, lifeless thing brand new again.
JFH (John): Any last comments?
David: After five years of playing music full time and two years of writing and recording songs, it's really exciting that our album is finally out for people to see and hear. It's been a long time coming.
Remedy Drive's Word Records debut Daylight Is Coming is available now!
For video footage from "Hideout At The Rutledge," featuring Remedy Drive, check out the video below!
*video footage taken by Amy DiBiase and Josh Taylor* You can also download this 36-minute video clip montage from the show for FREE on our iTunes