Creed Hits the Studio Before Launching Summer Tour

Creed is hoping to have a brand new song ready to accompany its upcoming U.S. 20-20 tour, though time is certainly tight as the quartet prepares for the 36-date trek, which starts July 26 with a flood relief benefit at the Hard Rock Nashville.

"I've recorded a demo of it in my studio, and now everybody has to get together and put their two cents in and agree on the song -- and we've got to do this in the next week and a half," guitarist Mark Tremonti tells Billboard.com. "While we're doing rehearsals in Nashville, maybe we'll record the song. It wouldn't be out at the beginning of the tour, but in a perfect world...it'd probably be within the first two weeks."

Frontman Scott Stapp, meanwhile, says he's confident the group can pull it off. "We've thrown some ideas at each other over the last couple months," he says, "and if everything comes together right, which I think it will, there'll definitely be a new Creed song this summer."

Tremonti says that unlike Creed's 2009 reunion album "Full Circle," which he calls "an artistic statement showing we've grown as musicians and writers," the new song, as yet untitled, will be more familiar to fans. "It brings it back to the old vibe we used to send out in our songs," he explains. "It's just that kind of a feel-good, big rock song, that anthemic, 'My Sacrifice' and 'Higher' kind of vibe." He also "left the lyrics real loose...so when Scott gets his hands on it he can put his own stamp on it and sing it with conviction."

Assuming its successful completion, the song will be part of a number of new elements Creed will include in this summer's shows. Stapp says the concerts will feature new production and a new look, while the group plans to play more songs from "Full Circle" -- which was not out while the group was on the road last year -- and also "dig deeper into some of our favorites that weren't singles on each record." Tremonti specifically mentions the song "Pity For a Dime" from Creed's debut album, "My Own Prison."

And after suffering sluggish ticket sales last summer, forcing the group to move last-minute seats for $5 or $10 at some stops, Creed is instituting a unique plan selling the first 2,010 reserved seats for $20 with no added service charges, and the remaining seats for $20 and $10, plus fees.

"Last year showed us that there's a lot of people who want to come that just can't afford it," Stapp says. "We thought we had a ticket price that was affordable, but there were a lot of factors there. So this is about that relationship and staying in touch with our roots and blue collar America, which is where we're all from. It's natural as a band to be connected to the economic situation of our country and wanting to continue that connection with the fans."

During the tour Creed will also be giving away a custom $80,000 motorcycle and guitar designed to honor fallen military troops.

Meanwhile, Creed is looking forward to more new material in the near future -- especially, Stapp says, an acoustic album that will feature "our favorite,s the ones that the fans love" and some songs "that might shock some people because they're so heavy or fast or intense, electric, but when we strip 'em down and play 'em acoustic, it's a whole other thing. It's really cool and we want to share it with our fans. They've been asking for this from the band for years, so that's something we're trying to slate time for next year, and also a new record."

Stapp is also slated to be one of the featured singers on a version of Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son" for the new Santana album, "Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics Of All Time," due out Sept. 21. Tremonti, bassist Brian Marshall and drummer Scott Phillips, meanwhile, have finished work on the third album by their other band, Alter Bridge, which is due out in late September on Roadrunner, with a European tour starting Oct. 16 and North American dates with Godsmack slated to start in March.

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