W.B. Jones, and his recently formed Americana/Bluegrass/Alternate Country band, “Free Willy” is creating a world wide buzz with their hit LP, “Remember The Alamo”. Already reaching number one globally, and climbing the charts rapidly, this “genre-confused” band continues to gain popularity with their clever sonic instrumental arrangements, combined with Jones’ unique storytelling style, and lyrical enchantment.
Jones has a uniquely warm personality and confidence reflected in his songs, which are also available accompanied by catchy, attention-retaining videos, all relevant to today. We shared some questions and answers regarding Free Willy’s next move and a glimmer of insight into Jones’ future intentions…..
You have become number one country music artist in the entire world on reverbnation, how cool is that?
Pretty amazing, actually…I have to give the credit for our rapid rise to number one to the good Doctor, Jimmy Star, as I wasn’t familiar with ReverbNation until he introduced us after the album release a few months ago. There are so many amazing artists that participate on the site; it’s very humbling…Even being number one locally is an honor; can’t comprehend how we took the top spot nationally/globally.
When will you be releasing that follow-up album that the world is waiting for?
The plan for now is to release our second album, entitled, “Too Cool For The Room” in late summer 2018, but we will drop at least a few singles along the way to create interest in the project. The new record will still be in the “Americana” genre , but with jazz and blues influences on many of the songs, not heard on the debut album. Using all the same instruments and band members, though, to preserve the original chemistry and signature sound.
The production of the last couple of videos are completely magnificent, what’s your secret?
There’s a new website out there called, “Rotor.com”, that does most of the work for you. If you’re old and tired and can barely construct/send an email, and have no desire to learn, this is the site for you! Check it out and see for yourself.
When is the tour coming Bill?
Ahhh, the tour question… The “practical” answer is that we don’t have enough original material in the hopper to “take this show on the road”. I have no desire to do “covers”, so I think we’ll need to write/release at least another two or three albums, and pay close attention to the feedback out there to ensure that we have a “product” that folks will want to buy tickets to see. If a major label were to sign us and pay for production of the next few albums in anticipation of a tour, then of course the timeline would be compressed, but for now, it’s all “out-of-pocket”, so we are on track for one album per year.
I know that many of your songs were written sometime ago, have you been inspired to write any new ones?
Absolutely! I have written half of the songs for album two, and continue to write and revise as we work on the project. It’s a lot of fun to put all of the puzzle pieces together in the studio; I look forward to every recording session and to exploring all of the possibilities when we get down to the “mixing” part of the process.
My favorite song that you do is “Get In the Car”, I know there is a cool story behind it…..?
Oh, not that cool, really… I was headed out the door for a long walk one morning in 2009 when we were living in Pella, Iowa. My wife made some comment to which I replied, “It is what it is…”, and she said, “You say that all the time – you should include that phrase in one of your songs some day…”. Well, I walked for about and hour, wrote the song in my head as a music video, and when I got back to the house, I sat down and wrote it all down, including a “Story Board” for the video. There is currently a “place-holder” video for the song posted on my YouTube page, which will hopefully be replaced one day by a professionally produced video that follows the original story board.
Aside from your own songs, what songs would be representative of the soundtrack of your life?
That’s an interesting question…My wife and I have been married for 34 years, and we inject bits and pieces of songs into almost every conversation. We often say, “Our life is a musical!”, as one or both of us is likely to burst into song without warning as a song pops into one or both of our heads to suit the discussion. After so many years, we often begin singing the same song at the same moment, which is a nice reminder of how closely connected we are at the “Soul Level”.
A few favorites that would apply to me at this point in my life?: “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”, “The Lucky One” (Allison Krauss), “Imagine”, “What The World Needs Now”
If you could pick one song that might change the world, which one of yours would you pick?
“As A Man Thinketh” which is based on a poem written by James Allen circa.1900. The song contains everything you need to know re: creating your own destiny versus becoming a “victim of circumstance”. Our band name is based on my belief that “Free Will” is our greatest gift, as it gives each of us the ability to become Co-Creators with the Universe.
Any holiday plans? What does 2018 and beyond hold for Free Willy?
We will spend a quiet Christmas with extended family up in the Dallas area. As far as the New Year goes, I’ll handle it as I have every year before: One Day At A Time, living each day in the present moment with the expectation that each year will be better than the last, because I have predetermined it to be so.
Shakespeare said, “There is no good or bad, but the mind of man makes it so”. Understanding and applying this TRUTH to my life, has allowed me to say, enthusiastically and sincerely in the face of any circumstance, “It’s All Good”…