Interview: Guitarist Wes Wallace of Texas Hippie Coalition Discusses 'Peacemaker' and Non-Stop Touring
Texas Hippie Coalition released their third studio album, Peacemaker, August 14 through Carved Records.
The band — Big Dad Ritch (vocals), John Exall (bass), Wes Wallace (guitar) and Timmy Braun (drums) — blends Pantera-style riffs and energy with vocals that sound a bit like ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons.
We recently sat down with Wallace to discuss the band's work ethic and new album.
GUITAR WORLD: When did start playing with Texas Hippie Coalition?
I stared right around the first of the year with the Rollin’ tour. I was involved then with the writing of the new album, Peacemaker.
I can’t think of a band these days that tours more than THC. Do you guys ever get to go home?
It’s been crazy. We get a week or two here or there or maybe a month to come home. On this run, we’ve been gone already for a month up here in the North. We just did the Ride for Dime.
Peacemaker came out about a month ago. Can you talk about that process of making that album?
It’s been a long time coming. We did that in January 2012. We all flew over to Los Angeles with Bob Marlette.
Do you write in the studio?
Actually, we wrote the whole album in Los Angeles. We did it all in about three or four weeks. Every day, we’d go over from 11 a.m. until about midnight and just write.
There seems to be a little more of a blues influence on this record.
It definitely has a different feel than the last album. We touch a lot of different areas with it. It’s not so much an "in your face" metal album. I grew up with a blues background. I’ve always been into blues and metal.
Obviously, the band started in Texas. Are you from Texas as well?
Born and raised! We all grew up around the same area near Denison. Our drummer is actually from Oklahoma City. Rich, John and I all grew up in the same area.
Did you have any particular influences?
When I started playing, I was into Nirvana. Stevie Ray Vaughan was one of the biggest that I came across first. Then I heard Dimebag and Pantera and I lost it on that. I loved metal from then on. I grew up on classic rock like Boston as well.
What are the band’s plans going forward?
We have four dates coming up in September with Lynyrd Skynyrd. We're really excited about that. When I heard we were going out with them, it was really cool because me first concert was ZZ Top and Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Can you understate the importance of touring often?
You have to constantly be out there and promote your music. There are a million other bands that will if you won’t. The more you get your face and your music out there, the better off you’ll be. We love it too. We love to see people all over the country and not just let them listen to the record. It's tough being out for that long, but it’s worth it in the end. We all get along good so it’s easy to ride down the road with these guys. We have a good team.