JamBase Questionnaire: Big Light

Welcome back to JamBase's friendly inquisition of the bright lights of the music world. Last time we heard from Big Head Todd.

To look at Big Light's Fred Torphy on the street you might not see what a natural born rocker he is. But, stick him beneath hot stage lights with an electric guitar and he looks just too right. Surround him with three equally primed-for-launch guys overflowing with talent - Bradley Bifulco (drums), Jeremy Korpas (guitar) and Steve Adams (bass) – and you've got a classic four-piece that off-handedly reminds one what a joyful, enriching thing rock 'n' roll can be.

And while their off-the-books tangents work great – they are jam band scholars – it's the bare bones and killer smile inside their songwriting that snags you. It also doesn't hurt that they stoke memories of Wilco, Big Star and Robyn Hitchcock and the Egyptians. Perhaps more than anything else, one picks up on a hunger in this group often missing from today's too-cool-for-school bands. Big Light positively salivates at the chance to wreck and ride rock for all it's worth. And they ain't half bad at pretty stuff, too. 2010 has been a banner year for this young San Francisco-based band, with regular touring on both coasts, a flurry of new composing and the release of their bang-up debut album, Animals In Bloom (JamBase review). Yet, this all feels like the tip of the iceberg with Big Light, whose potential may well surpass even their wide, eager eyes ability to envision just yet. (Dennis Cook)

Here's what Fred had to say to our inquiries.

Fred Torphy – Big Light by Dave Vann
Nicknames: Torph, Tiz, Vortex

Instrument of choice: Gibson SG standard

1. Great music rarely happens without…
Lots of hard work

2. The first album I bought was…
Led Zeppelin's Houses of the Holy

3. The last song or album to really flip my wig was…
Dawes' North Hills (JamBase review)

4. When I was a kid I wanted to grow up to be…
A musician or archaeologist

5. My favorite sort of gig is…
Intimate, DIY, party/guerrilla festival set

6. One thing I wish people knew about me is…
I dislike capers (as in the food) intensely.

7. I love the sound of…

8. One day I hope to make an album as fantastic as…
The Slip's Eisenhower

9. The best meal I ever had on tour was at…
At our guitar player Jeremy's parents' house on tour in New Jersey, March 2010. Best home-cooked Italian food I've ever had. Thank you, Dianne & Tom Korpas.

10. I always find the coolest audiences in…

11. The worst habit I've picked up being on the road all the time is…
Not eating well

12. The Beatles or the Stones? Por qué?
The Beatles. They wrote better songs and made better albums.

13. The craziest thing I ever saw was…
A friend do a perfect double back flip off of a 60-plus-foot cliff into Lake Champlain in Burlington, VT.

Big Light plays the grand re-opening of SF's The Independent next Wednesday, August 4, with kissin' cousins Apollo Sunshine before winging it back east later in the month for a string of shows in Boston, NYC, Asbury Park, Rockville and Baltimore.

Big Light Tour Dates :: Big Light News :: Big Light Concert Reviews

JamBase | Blooming
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[Published on: 7/29/10]

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