Derek Trucks on why good musicians learn more genres: “What does it mean? What are you trying to say? Those are the things you learn the wider you listen”

There’s nothing wrong with switching things up from time to time…

Derek Trucks

Image: Taylor Hill / Getty

Derek Trucks has recently spoken out on how learning different genres helped to shape him into the ideal guitarist when his time came to join The Allman Brothers Band.

In a recent interview with Rick Beato on YouTube, Trucks sat down to discuss the “push back” he faced for dabbling in different genres whilst learning as a young teen, particularly jazz: “I didn’t wanna play one way out forever as a 12-year-old and you know, once you take that turn there’s a bit of push back,” He said. “You’re playing these blues clubs [and it’s] like ‘What are you doing? Get back, do that other stuff!’ It was years of that which just pushes you further in the other direction.”

He revealed how he discovered The Allman Brothers had listened to artists such as Rahsaan Roland Kirk as a young band, and how the influence of his music had made its way into their playing: “You start digging down all this [jazz] music and when you come back to your roots you realise ‘oh thats what they [The Allman Brothers] were listening to!’ All these things I was taking to heart, that’s what made me the right guy for the job at 18.”

He concluded, “You really need to hear around the corners, there needs to be things behind what you’re playing, not just the melody. It’s where do you think it came from? What’s the emotion behind it? What does it mean? What are you trying to say? Those are things I think you learn the wider you listen and the more you listen.”

You can watch the full interview below:


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