Road warrior sets sights on LB's
Peter Turland brings eclectic mix to intimate venue
Wednesday, Jul 23, 2014 06:00 am
Saturday, July 26 at 9 p.m.
23 Akins Dr.
At some point, all musicians slow down touring. But if you’re Pete Turland, you keep pumping out the swing, rockabilly and blues grooves simply because you love it.
After meeting his wife at the Sidetrack Café in 2004, Turland adopted a more leisurely pace.
“I used to be on the road nine months a year. Now I play festivals and I turn down more than I accept,” said the matter-of-fact British ex-patriot.
Turland built his fame after he was invited to join The Nervous Fellas in 1990. Later he criss-crossed North America touring as part of some hefty high-profile bands such as Harpdog Brown and the Bloodhounds, and Ray Condo and his Ricochets.
Even though the Edmonton-based singer-songwriter-musician declines many gigs, he has a soft spot for LB’s Pub, where the Peter Turland Trio is featured on Saturday, July 26.
“The couple times I went, I had so much fun and had such a good time, it’s awesome to be back,” he said.
Along with stand-up bass player Chris Brzezicki and special guest drummer Glen Hallam, Turland will deliver the St. Albert release of his 23-track album, The Best Of… Volume I.
The writing process is different for every musician. Some can crank out a song on command. Others masticate an idea over a longer period of time. Turland is the latter.
“I get ideas, but I don’t write it down until it’s stuck with me for a couple of weeks. I can’t sit down with a pen and paper and write a song. They don’t just come to me. Sometimes they come to me, but I’m not as prolific as some musicians.”
He tends to choose song topics close to his heart.
“When I went through a divorce, I got a lot of songs out of it,” he added with wry humour.
Turland naturally gravitates to the melancholy yet soothing songs of Hank Williams, Carl Perkins and Gene Vincent. Over the years, his material has adopted a poignant vibe reminiscent of the legends.
Turland admits to falling in love with western swing, rockabilly and blues at the age of eight when his older brother brought home an album of Elvis’ 40 Greatest Hits.
“When I heard My Baby Left Me I thought it was the greatest song I’d ever heard. It had four bars of drums and bass. It didn’t come any better.”
Later he had the fortune to play with D.J. Fontana, Elvis’ drummer for 14 years.
“I met him for the first time in England and through him I got to meet a bunch of obscure old guys such as Sunny Burgess and Frankie Ford,” said Turland in a tongue-in-cheek moment.
These iconic artists were looking to pass on the raucous, energy-filled torch of their music and they met a willing acolyte in Turland.
Over the years, Turland has performed at every major folk and blues festival in Canada, and at prestigious venues such as the Lincoln Centre in New York and the Palladium in London.
At the more intimate LB’s gig, Turland plans to play quite a few songs off the new CD.
“It’s quite varied. There’s blues, some straight-ahead rock, some rockabilly and some swing. I’ve never tried to pigeonhole myself. I like it all.”