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Zach Parkman / Press

“SZ: Your music spans across several genres, Blues, rock, funk, when people who haven’t heard your music ask you to describe it to them or ask you what genre it’s in, what do you tell them (beside just listen to it)? ZP: That problem has actually gotten worse over time (the problem of assigning a label). I used to play acoustic guitar exclusively, so I could easy reference another acoustic guitar performer like Jack Johnson or Dave Matthews or early John Mayer, but now that my repertoire has grown to include so much more it has become more and more difficult to describe. My first musical love is and always will be the blues, but I also love classic southern soul and western swing and early R & B and country. I have started just referring to it as “roots music”. All of those genres and styles found their way into modern popular music from Rock to Rap.”

“What advice would you give to others starting out? = Take every gig available to you!!! Play for free if you need to, but get a following and put yourself in positions to have your music heard. Badger venue owners until they have to book you just to get you to shut up. If you really love music, stick with it, take your lumps, take criticism with an open mind and keep positive role models. You don't have to be an alter boy, but if your manager is blowing all the gig money on coke you may have a problem.”

“The Damaged Goods are listed as country, blues and rock, and hold firm to a classic rock feel while performing. Although Parkman agreed they can be classic rock-y at times, he feels their real roots fall in the country aspect of their music. “Its pretty eclectic. We haven’t worked a lot of the acoustic songs into our set yet, so [our shows] have been blues oriented and I guess you could say classic rock. We have some songs that sound like The Allman Brothers. Personally, as a song writer I lean heavily towards roots style music like country and blues,” said Parkman. This country filled set will serve as the “juicy middle part” of the show according to Parkman, as the other two bands produce a jam band sort of feel. In fact, Pretty Marge and the Big Smiles describe themselves as a band “playing awesome music so awesome people can dance awesomely.” ”

“For me, watching the facial expres- sions and body language of the artists is just as enjoyable as the music itself. For them, this was an opportunity and great practice to create a style all their own, while learning to just “let go” and establish a connection with the audience. I was impressed this past Tuesday with “Zach Parkman and the Dam- aged Goods,” and wanted to put the spotlight on them in our June news- letter.”

“Zach Parkman and the Damaged Goods play a wide range of styles, from alternative country rock jams to soft acoustic folk tunes. The lyrics, written by Parkman and guitarist Brandon Ashcraft, are very real; not shallow in the least. They speak of love and journeys, of equality and empowerment. In “A Protest Song,” Zach calls listeners to do away with apathy and to care a little more: “In my ignorance, it's where I live / it's where I like to go when the world is too big / but would you do the same to me / if I was pleading?” Playing music all the way from Texas to Virginia and then finally to Athens, he eventually debuted his first album, The Carpenter and the Chemist, at Donkey Coffee in early 2009. Two years later, he returns with a preview of the upcoming album, The Part-Time Paladin which was made with the newly formed component of “the Damaged Goods.” ”

“Although now residing in Ohio, the Texas roots of singer and songwriter Zach Parkman are as strong as ever on his newest album. His new album The Carpenter & The Chemist is a smooth mix of melodic ballads and country rock. Parkman writes the music and lyrics to all of his songs, and his ear for interesting chord progressions and vocal techniques sets this album above many other acoustic-driven artists. His lyrics are soft-spoken and mature, and it seems Parkman's life experiences have given him a good deal to reflect on. For fans of country and acoustic rock, The Carpenter & The Chemist is an enjoyable album that covers a lot of musical ground. ”

“Parkman's music, like much of the local music of Southeast Ohio, has roots in the country and folk genres and borrows from artists like Willie Nelson and Ryan Adams.”