Marc Ribler is the kind of man who, if you do not intend to spend your entire life in the service of music, will reveal you as a fraud. He can’t help it. His love of music has nurtured him for decades and has allowed him to play with genre-defining artists.
Mr. Ribler is also a kind and humble man and he agreed to be interviewed for Alt77. What’s more, he answered patiently questions regarding his influences, his current projects, and was even kind enough to grab a six-string and provide an impromptu masterclass in the art of learning complex guitar licks.
He may be the musical director of Little Steven’s band, a most envious position, but Marc Ribler is also a man who wishes to make the best of his downtime, which he was afforded as a consequence of the sad lack of live shows. Note that the Disciples of Soul, put together by Ribler, and lead by Steven van Zandt is a rejuvenated unit that returned to great reviews and has already trekked across much of the U.S. and Europe.
Marc Ribler’s new solo record is a mixture of all the sounds that neither time nor change of trends can negate. Lead single Shattered chimes with the grace of Tom Petty and Heartbreakers, lead by the distinctive sound of a 12-string Rickenbacker guitar. It’s sung and performed coolly and confidently the way that only a man that has been spending most of his life making a living writing and performing music can do.
Hand me down, the single’s digital B-side features a delightful riff and the Eastern-sounding percussion that makes it sound as if it was beamed all the way from the Summer of Love. Here, again, Ribler proves to be a master of restraint and a great craftsman of melodies.
Alternative music comes in many forms. What the various styles do share together is their focus on authenticity, and the feeling, while watching and listening as observers, that these types of artists are an imperiled bunch. Under the threat of a music industry content to make quick profits at the expense of creativity, Marc Ribler’s commitment is inspiring.