By Donna O'Neil
Better Than Ezra frontman Kevin Griffin has settled in as a Franklin resident during the past two years. Like any other musician, the married father of three has to find a balance between work – which involves an extensive tour schedule at times – and quality of life with the family. He’s definitely found that latter in Franklin.
Now a seasoned veteran in the biz, he’s also taken the next step in his career, while maintaining that on-the-road exposure. Griffin has added music producer to his credits as well. But like any home handyman with a career, his home projects – in this case a home studio – remains incomplete. In his case, the studio is 85 percent finished, or 15 percent incomplete, depending on how you look at it. But that hasn’t stopped this facet of his career. He forges ahead through the use of Toby Mac’s Franklin Road studio – producing up-and-comers like young Chase Yaklin, whom Griffin calls “the next Keith Urban.”
In addition to all that, Griffin still finds time to give back and answered the call when his wife Laurel was handed the responsibility to organize a charity event at the twins’ school.
Together he and his Better than Ezra band mates will perform an acoustic show at The Cannery Ballroom in Nashville, March 14, as a fundraiser for the Montessori School of Franklin. Griffin’s 4-year-old twins attend the school and have done so since the family moved to Franklin from the West Coast.
In a recent interview, he explained that his now 13-year-old son Max, who attends Battle Ground Academy, didn’t have the opportunity to attend a Montessori school when the family lived in New Orleans. And the Griffins see the benefit of it for their twins.
Of the Franklin school and the Montessori approach, he said, “It is an amazing learning experience. The twins were reading age-appropriate material at age 3.”
“The School fosters creative thinking in the way they approach learning. There are lots of projects. They do some really creative things at an early age,” he said. “They have an appreciation for parents and teachers. And with the multi-age classrooms, older students mentor younger ones and the younger ones emulate the older classmates. I see that as a definite benefit.”
The decision to perform a benefit for the school was an easy one, he said, especially with his wife at the helm of planning the event.
“It’s been a long time since Better Than Ezra has played Nashville,” he said.
The group has been working on a new album slated to be released by April. Griffin explained they have been working a lot of new songs for the album – “Woodshedding” – and rehearsing.
For the performance at the Cannery Ballroom, they will perform an acoustic show – one that is not as common when they tour.
“It’s a different discipline,” he said. “We will be showcasing new songs as well as performing old favorites. I love acoustic shows. The fans prefer acoustic shows. You can hear the lyrics and the melodies more. There’s more of an intimacy with an acoustic show.”
Better Than Ezra will perform, Thursday, March 14 at 7 p.m. at the Cannery Ballroom at the Mercy Lounge to benefit Montessori School of Franklin. The Cannery Ballroom is located at One Cannery Row in Nashville. Tickets are $125 for VIP in advance and includes an open bar and hors d’oeuvres. General admission tickets are $40 in advance and $50 at the door. For information, call 866-468-7630 or visit MercyLounge.com.
For information on Montessori School of Franklin, visit MontessoriFranklin.org.
Posted on: 3/9/2013