Live for Live Music recently had the chance to ask Michael Glabicki of the band Rusted Root a few questions as part of a three-part-preview to Gathering of the Vibes music festival!  Many people know the band from their iconic feel-good song, “Send me on my Way”, from the 1994 breakthrough album When I Woke, and the 1996 film, Matilda.  However, this band has proven their longevity through their eccentricity and unique collective sound.

They will be releasing a brand new album this Spring, celebrating 25 years as a band.  Rusted Root produced and funded the album independently via IndieGogo.com.  All money raised was through fan support and donation, which is a beautiful way to give back to artists you love, as well as a heartwarming way to make sure artists are producing music their fans truly will want to hear. The band writes on their Indiegogo page,  “With NO RECORD LABEL to tell us how or what to do, this album is going to be some of the best music we have ever put out “ L4LM can’t wait!

Here is the video from their IndieGogo campaign:

Rusted Root performs this this Thursday, July 31st at Gathering of the Vibes on the Green Vibes stage at 5:15pm.  This performance will be a tad more intimate than those of the weekend, as only those who purchased camping passes will be in attendance for Thursday’s acts. For a complete daily music schedule, visit the GOTV official page.

L4LM: Both Rusted Root and Gathering of the Vibes have long histories in the music industry. Have your paths intersected in the past?

Michael Glabicki: I believe so.

L4LM: Many people know your song “Send Me On My Way,” but your band has been performing for over 20 years. What’s the secret behind your longevity in music? Another question on that song (sorry you probably get asked tons of questions about it, can you describe the process of coming up with/utilizing made-up words? Do you feel that sometimes they capture a feeling/sentiment/moment better than typical lyrics?

  MG: I think memory loss helps us. It keeps things fresh. Everyday kinda feels like our first. (I’m kidding). I think always finding new creative doorways in the songwriting and arrangements keeps us enthused. I also think just progressing and getting better as an intuitive band is where it’s at. Also being crazy enough to do it. We are coming up on our 25 year anniversary and my driving thought is ‘what can we do in the next 25 years and how should we set the foundation on our new record?’
     When I write songs I usually come up with a guitar line and skat a vocal melody at the same time. I look for the skat to have emotional meaning and then follow it till the lyrics float up to the top. On other songs I had been exploring coming up with “made up” or “channeled words” around that time period. I remember the day very clearly when I wrote “Send Me On My Way.” I walked into the room and immediately picked up the guitar cause the moment was perfect. The sun was shining into the warehouse space and the dust was floating in the light in a peculiar way. I felt that there where an abundance of joyful spirits in the room. I ended up writing the song in about 5 minutes. The “made up” words had profound meaning to me. It felt like maybe a forgotten language or maybe a completely new one. Either way it made sense.

L4LM: Your music integrates a diverse offering of styles. Was it that way from the beginning, or did the band’s influences expand over time? Describe your beginnings working with woodwind instruments, namely the penny whistle 🙂

 MG: It was intentional in the beginning to have eclectic world sounds. Each song I wrote seemed have a different influence or style coming through. In the beginning the styles where more defined I think. On some of the songs I was looking for a flute to fill certain textures in the music and met John Buynak. After a couple nights jamming at his place with all his scattered little instruments I asked him to join the band. He introduced the thought of penny whistle and played it in a unique way.

L4LM: You seem to have quite a bit of success internationally. How do the US crowds compare to those in other countries? Where do you primarily perform gigs?

MG: We are well known around the world but have trouble touring because we are such a big band. The expenses are tough. We are hopefully going to get overseas at the end of the year. 

L4LM: Your new album comes out soon. What should we expect from that? It was funded via IndieGogo, that’s pretty cool! Can you talk a little bit about that experience/process?

 MG: It comes out in the Spring of 2015. The campaign was fun and gives us a chance to be creative with our fans in a different way.

L4LM: What should the Vibe Tribe anticipate for your performance at Gathering of the Vibes 2014?

MG: Actually the more important question is what should we expect from the Vibe Tribe. We feed off the crowd. Our music is a ritual of the collective. Hopefully we will be surprised as to what happens as anybody.

L4LM: What’s the best way for fans to keep up-to-date with the band? 

MG: Sign up for our email list via www.RustedRoot.com

You can also keep up with the band by following their official Twitter  page and/or “Liking” their page on Facebook!

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions, Michael! We very much look forward to catching Rusted Root at Gathering of the Vibes on Thursday! Don’t miss their set, 5:15pm sharp on the Green Vibes stage!

-Alexandra Miller (@getbakedpetcats)

Check out Part 1 of our Gathering of the Vibes Preview Series: L4LM Exclusive Interview with festival founder, Ken Hays!

Check out Part 2 of our Gathering of the Vibes Preview Series: L4LM Exclusive Interview with Director of Sustainability, Harry Moran!