Johnny Hits the Spot

“[Producer] John Van Meter plugged the album to me,” says Debbie Zavitson, A&R Director at Giant Records Nashville, of mandolin virtuoso Johnny Staats’ new Wires and Wood release. “I told him I was looking for some kind of special project to put on the label. He said, ’Well, I might just happen to have that for you.’ I took the package with me over the weekend and listened to it, and fell in love with Johnny Staats. I love the album, of course, but I felt like the guy who is playing this, and wrote these songs, must just be so real. His emotion and playing just killed me. I call John back and said, ’Lets do the project.'”