“Grace is what matters in anything—especially life, especially growth, tragedy, pain, love, death. That’s a quality that I admire very greatly. It keeps you from reaching out for the gun too quickly. It keeps you from destroying things too foolishly. It sort of keeps you alive.”
These are the exact words said by the late Jeff Buckle. They were taken from archival interview footage featured in the 2004 documentary, Amazing Grace: Jeff Buckley.
Perhaps, this quote sums up the essence Grace, the singer’s only full-length studio album released during his lifetime. Today, the record is considered as a classic. It frequently appears on many ‘best-of’ music critics’ polls—Rolling Stone selected Grace as one its “500 Greatest Albums of All Time.” It has sold more than 500,000 copies from the time it was premiered to date and its stature continues to grow every time. Earlier this year, Buckley’s version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” from the album was selected for the Library of Congress National Recording Registry.
The big question is who made this possible even after his demise? Andy Wallace made this possible. Making the Grace album public was the deed that catapulted into limelight among other producers. He has grown from being an unknown home recording artist to one of the most influencing premier mixer of his day. Another factor that led to his fast up rise was his collaboration with Rick Rubin and the mixing slayer’s Reign in Blood and also the famous Rage against the Machine. This was the self-entitled debut. In a recent interview he mentioned that he has done lots of club music. This was way back before he met Rick Rubin.
In the same interview, he describes his relationship with the late Jeff Buckley. He mentions that Jeff had a complex and a diverse character. something that Wallace found to be quite entertaining. Jeff being in a stream of consciousness was hilarious to Wallace. Many of his fans had the opportunity to watch his solo shows before the Grace album was released. Wallace says that he had been playing solo gigs in the village and he thought they were awesome. These were the types of music that everyone was hearing initially.
He describes the first time that he worked with Jeff. Jeff had signed a deal with Columbia records for a project. They were talking about a list of producers that would work on this project. However, Wallace’s name was brought up. He wasn’t sure how he came up in the picture. He was approached despite the fact that he had not met Jeff before. Strangely, Jeff felt confident and secured the fact that he was about to start a project with Wallace. However, Jeff needed a lot of direction as an artist. This is due to the fact that he was scattered all the time and it was so hard to make any progress. The album would not be done if there was no one to pull in the reigns. After the demise of Jeff Buckler, the album had not yet been made public but thanks to Wallace for making this possible.