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ZZ Ward Talks Covering Drake, Opening for Clapton

Esteban Serrano sits down with the rising blues star for a frank discussion about rap and rock

Fuse's Esteban Serrano kicked it pool-side at Coachella yesterday with rising blues-rock phenom ZZ Ward, where the 28-year-old guitarist spilled her desires for her upcoming stint supporting Eric Clapton and why Drake is such a big influence these days. 

"It's crazy," she says of opening for the classic-rock guitar hero for a string of dates, starting on April 30. "I'm really influenced by the blues, so I'm obviously a huge Eric Clapton fan. I guess he heard my music and thought I'd be good to support him. I'm literally going to do anything to get on stage with him."

While she's still figuring out exactly how that'll happen, it's safe to say Ward will continue marrying her love of he blues and hip-hop - as she's recently been covering Drake's "Hold On, We're Going Home," off the rapper's 2013 album Nothing Was the Same. It was a risky choice, she says, but seems to be working out.

"It's actually a simple song," she says. "We took it in a blues direction; I play harmonica on it. For awhile, I didn't know if it was going to work out. It was so left-field. It seemed to really hit people." 

Exactly how hip-hop is ZZ Ward these days? Plenty. "I love hip-hop," she says bluntly "I grew up listening to Nas and Jay Z. I love the swagger of hip-hop artists. I feel like there's no boundaries. When making [2012's Til the Casket Drops], it was about finding that mix between blues and hip-hop."

Fuse is on the ground at Coachella all weekend. Stay up to date with our latest coverage here.

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