Guided by artistic desire and curiosity, Robert Lundberg has become a highly regarded photographer and filmmaker lauded for his innovative and versatile documentaries covering music, comedy, art, and film. After spending his youth in Massachusetts, Lundberg moved to New York City as a young man where he could more actively pursue a full-time career in art and film. An individual who is always seeking out the next artistic challenge, Lundberg chose to pursue one of his most ambitious projects at the beginning of last year when he launched his new documentary series entitled Uncontaminated Sound – The Interviews.
Debuting last February, the series follows comedians, musicians, fine artists, and actors with his primary objective to gain a particular insight into their creative processes which can only be fully unravelled by truly going behind the scenes. With Uncontaminated Sound, Lundberg’s attempt is to offer an intimate look into all of the rarely seen or known “little things” that take place during interviews and other similar social and private interactions with artists and performers. These features are often unduly edited, offering viewers only individual, preferred moments that are often heavily vetted by producers and editors. But that’s not how Lundberg chooses to go about his work. His chief endeavour is to bring you all of the real, raw, authentic moments that you would never otherwise have the opportunity to experience and enjoy.
The calendar has flipped to February and, here we are, celebrating the one-year anniversary of the inaugural episode of Uncontaminated Sound – The Interviews! For episode 25, Lundberg engaged in an in-depth conversation with a music legend, John McEuen. With a career spanning nearly 60 years, McEuen has done it all, not just as a musician, but also as a writer, a film scorer, and a radio host. As a musician, McEuen is perhaps best known for his two stints as part of the legendary Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. He has also released several solo records, the most recent being 2016’s Made in Brooklyn. As an author, McEuen most recently released The Life I’ve Picked in 2018, and he has also hosted his own radio show, The Acoustic Traveller Show on SiriusXM.
With such a long career, McEuen has become well acquainted with a legendary list of musicians and goes all the way back to high school with actor and musician Steve Martin. Some of his collaborators include Dolly Parton, Willy Nelson, Johnny Cash, The Band, The Doors, Foreigner, Little Richard, Tom Petty, and The Doobie Brothers.
Commenting on his recent chat with McEuen, Lundberg said, “For the better half of the century, John McEuen has led a remarkably interesting and masterful life, achieving the highest levels one can dream of as a professional performer. His interest in the banjo, his career-long instrument of choice, started when he was a teen, alongside his high school friend Steve Martin.
Crediting John for teaching him how to play the banjo Martin has been a lifelong friend and collaborator, with both achieving hall of fame success in their respective careers. Their paths diverged with John kicking off his musical journey with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, and Steve of course going his comedic route, though they both collaborated frequently over the years.
It was an honour to sit down with a man so interwoven not only in musical, but also pop cultural history. Of course, within the first ten minutes, John grabbed a guitar, and we were off. Music was both played and spoken, stories told, while on my end lessons learned.
Please enjoy my conversation with the American banjo plus folk legend.”
Lundberg has many more interviews to come with acclaimed artists who have agreed to be participants in Uncontaminated Sound – The Interviews in the coming weeks and months. Lundberg has already been bringing you his ongoing series Uncontaminated Sound which takes a look behind the scenes to get a look at performers before they take the stage. The series has featured Macklemore’s Gemini Tour featuring Eric Nally (formerly of Foxy Shazam) and Xperience, Louie Anderson, Sinbad, Ron English, We Are Scientists, Rufus Wainwright and more. Lundberg’s photography has been highlighted in publications such as Huffington Post, Paste Magazine and more.