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article imageThe Zombies' Chris White talks Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Special

By Markos Papadatos     Oct 26, 2017 in Music
English musician Chris White, the original founding member and bassist of The Zombies, chatted with Digital Journal about their nomination for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (Class of 2018).
On their nod for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, White admitted that it feels "fantastic." "The fans have been brilliant. All we wanted to do was make music and entertain people. It is an honour to be considered up there with all the great musicians who inspired us in the 50's, 60's and 70's. To have been nominated three times is a great feeling."
His future plans are to continue writing and producing. "Music is my life. We are working on a musical about the making of Odyssey & Oracle and all that went right and wrong. It was our first chance of being in control at making the record we wanted to make. Now it is getting the recognition that took 50 years to happen," he said.
When asked what motivates him each day, he said, "To keep on writing and encouraging others to try and create as well. There is no other art form like music that can touch peoples lives. Books (and Kindle) are great, and artworks were my life as a student,but music is the king, all types of music. It moves people."
White shared that some of his proudest moments include meeting some of his musical heroes. "Sharing a dressing room with Bill Haley, talking to musical giant Jimmy Hendrix, and have him sing a few lines from 'Time of the Season' to me. Tom Petty, Graham Nash, Brian Wilson, Benmont Tench, Paul Weller, Al Kooper and being lucky enough to work and grow musically with the great Rod Argent and Colin Blunstone. We started in our teens and are still friends to this day," he elaborated.
On the key to longevity in the music industry, he noted that it has to do with the "songs." "They are the root of all popular music. Earworms have been with us throughout history. We all tend to associate different songs with different periods of our lives. The happy and the sad events," he said.
For aspiring musicians and bands, White's advice is as follows: "Write. Be different. Don't follow fashions and write what you know. Do it for the pleasure, and not the money or the fame. They are fickle."
Digital transformation of music business
On the impact of technology in the music industry, the iconic bassist said, "Everything changes, but we have to make sure it is for the best. Technology has changed so much. Sometimes I like the old way of working in the studio but nowadays you can create easily in your own home. Music is now so easily available to everyone, but we just need to encourage the great new young players that are around. Let's hope that there is a way to fund that creativity for them."
Regarding his daily use of technology, White said, "I have a couple of Macs at home. My wife, Vivienne Boucherat, who writes with me and has created several artworks for the Zombies book, uses them as an aid for her art. We record ideas on the Mac and try to combine both disciplines."
The veteran rocker defined the word success as "Creating something that works for you and your fellow musicians." "Financial success is so different from musical success. Odyssey & Oracle took 50 years to be called a financial success, but playing it on stage is a great feeling. It always was a musical success for us," he said.
For the hardcore Zombies fans, he reiterated his gratitude. "Thank you, thank you, thank you. The fans have been so supportive and encouraging. They have made everything worthwhile. I hope they continue to like what we do," he said.
To learn more about The Zombies, check out their official homepage and on Facebook.
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