Welcome back to JamBase's baker's dozen to the bright lights of the music world. Last
time we heard from Big Light.
While it's hard to tear one's attention away from the heavy breathing, gospel-tinged,
rising hemline leader of Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, any red blooded rock 'n' roll
fanatic will likely snap their head around to guitarist Scott Tournet. His playing
demands one's focus, the sort of beefy, fast streaming, foot-on-the-amp style that made
ears prick up when a young Marc Ford joined The Black Crowes in 1992. There's also more than a
touch of genuine guitar heroes like the young Eric Clapton and Rory Gallagher, not to
mention modern innovators like Radiohead's Ed O'Brien and Nels Cline, in Tournet, who
provides a lot of the muscle in the Nocturnals, where he's increasingly savvy about the
ways of pop-rock picking.
However, for a real dose of contemporized denim 'n' suede rock one needs to explore
Tournet's other labor of love Blues & Lasers, where he's joined by fellow Nocturnals guitarist
Benny Yurco and the pair shows off what fine, fine songwriters and singers they are
in addition to the smiling shredding throughout. With no disrespect intended towards his
work with Potter, it's in Blues & Lasers that one recognizes what a heavy hitter Tournet
is, a craftsmanship-minded musician with a slippery, gently adventurous edge who writes
the kind of songs Thin Lizzy and Robin Trower would have killed to pen back in the day.
Blues & Lasers' sophomore album, After All We're Only Human,
released in May, is a commanding set that establishes the group in a very tangible,
exciting way. It's a far cry from the latest self-titled Grace and the Nocturnals album,
showcasing Tournet and Yurco's grittier, free-flight sides in a wholly satisfying way.
Like Tournet himself, it smacks of great things to come while being perfectly freakin'
tasty in the here & now. (Dennis Cook)
Here's what Scott had to say to our inquiries.
Instrument of choice: voice, pen, guitar, harmonica, effects, noise, soul
Scott Tournet with Blues & Lasers|
1. Great music rarely happens without…
Honesty to yourself. The music or lyrics themselves don't need to be specifically
"honest" though. Look at Zappa or Townes Van Zandt. They both made shit up, but they
were completely honest to their vision and art.
2. The first album I bought was…
The Greatest American Hero theme song...lol...7" vinyl. I'd put
my cape on and sing along until one day my whole family caught me doing it. I was
mortified - my first encounter with "public opinion".
3. The last song or album to really flip my wig was…
It's been out for a while but Spiritualized Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating In
Space really got me. That's the kind of album I continue to aspire to make.
4. When I was a kid I wanted to grow up to be…
A cowboy or a professional baseball player. Got to have options.
5. My favorite sort of gig is…
Headlining in a theater that holds anywhere from 500-3,000 people. The sound is great,
the audience all have good enough seats. You get to play for as long as you want. Love
6. One thing I wish people knew about me is…
Hmmm…some people already know, but I hope that in the next few years more people will find
out that I'm more than just a guitarist. I feel honored that people listen to any music
that I'm a part of, but I really want more people hear my songs/lyrics. I used to only
want to be a guitarist, but in the past 8 years or so I've had a burning desire to be
heard as a songwriter/lyricist. Within my musicianship, I hope more people can hear that
there's more going on than just blues rock/classic rock. I get lumped in that vein a lot
and a lot of my looping, noise, sheets of sound stuff, harmonica, lap steel, etc. gets
7. I love the sound of…
8. One day I hope to make an album as fantastic as…
Jimi Hendrix's Electric Ladyland. Hendrix was my first love and I feel a very,
very strong kinship with him. The mainstream just thinks of Hendrix as this wild/drug
taking guy who played the guitar with his teeth and played the "Star Spangled Banner" at
Woodstock. He was so much more than that. Jimi was so overlooked as a
singer/songwriter/lyricist/producer. Electric Ladyland has everything - great
songs, dreamy moods, amazing/ahead of its time production, genius guitar playing,
tasteful/eccentric instrumentation, etc, etc.
9. The best meal I ever had on tour was at…
The catering at the Greek Theatre. The chef is Italian and she cooked up incredible pasta
with red meat sauce and garlic bread, salad and the works. And then came the cheesecake.
Out of this world. I was still burping during the show.
10. I always find the coolest audiences in…
The south. People down south are not afraid to get down. I love it.
11. The worst habit I've picked up being on the road all the time is…
Losing track of the days and the place that I'm in. Also stopping all communication with
my friends and family. I usually lose my cell phone halfway through tour.
12. The Beatles or the Stones? Por qué?
The Eagles. They can fly.
13. The craziest thing I ever saw was…
Two trannies and a midget...I'll leave the rest to imagination.
Blues & Lasers Tour
Dates :: Blues & Lasers News :: Blues & Lasers
Potter and the Nocturnals Tour Dates :: Grace
Potter and the Nocturnals News :: Grace Potter and the Nocturnals Concert Reviews
JamBase | Dynamite With A Laser Beam
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