Since her 2012 debut Til the Casket Drops was released, things have continued to heat up for bluesy singer-songwriter ZZ Ward, with a touring schedule that consistently has her making the rounds at venues all over the world and an impressive lineup of festivals under her belt, too.
“Festivals, for me, are where you have the possibility of making new fans, which is exciting,” Ward says. “Someone could stumble upon you playing on a stage, or they could come over and decide to check you out for the first time. That’s the fun thing about festivals—you never know when you’re going to make new fans.”
Festival season may be winding down, but Ward is in the midst of a headlining tour across North America in support of her recently released EP Love and War, an experience that resonates with the performer for entirely different reasons.
“At a club, it’s like I have them: they’re there at a venue with me for an hour. I know that by the end of the night we’re going to all have had a wonderful experience together.”
The EP precedes a full-length album that Ward says is on its way next year, but she couldn’t wait that long to share new music with her fans.
“I actually picked some of my favorite songs off of the new album and decided to give those to my fans early,” Ward says. ”’Rescue’ is one of those songs. That’s a really special song for me. It’s a slower song, it’s a very emotional song. It’s one of the first songs that I produced by myself on my album.”
The tracks that Ward didn’t produce herself were guided by producer S1, who made a fan of Ward with his work on Kanye West’s hit “Power.”
“He was just really incredible to work with,” she says. “When I was thinking about where I wanted to go with my second album, I [thought], ‘There’s so much depth to S1’s production — that would be amazing to work with him.’ He was just incredible in the studio, so humble and nice and supportive of my vision and where I wanted to go with my sound. It couldn’t have worked out better.”
In anticipation of Ward’s remaining tour dates in support of the EP, check out behind-the-scenes photos from her performance at Shaky Knees Festival earlier this summer. For more from Ward, take a peek at her upcoming tour dates here.
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