Friends on a message board recently posted some tour dates for Glen Phillips (former Toad the Wet Sprocket member). Saw him as SXSW in 2001 and he put on a fun show. Throughout his acoustic set he had a louder audience with people coming and going out to 6th Street just a few feet from the stage. I always feel for artists when they have to deal with extra logistics issues like that.
Of course he’s not playing close to K.C., but Billboard is reporting a side-project that caught my eye. Tentatively called “Scrolls,” Phillips has joined together with seven other like-minded folks for some musical merriment. They’ve recorded a large set of songs live in studio. There are four singers. Now that’s what I call mixing it up.
Two names particularly struck me: Benmont Tench (Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers) and Luke Bula (Blue Merle). A friend recently introduced me to Blue Merle. And I grew up listening to the Heartbreakers. Since I play piano/keys, I’ve been an admirer of Tench.
When Billboard quoted Glen as describing their sound as “classic American music” in combo with Tench and Phillips…well, I’m hooked. Should be a good combo. I don’t think you can get much more American than Tom Petty, can you?
Rounding out the octet: “drummer Pete Thomas and bassist Davey Faragher from Elvis Costello’s Imposters, Nickel Creek’s Sara and Sean Watkins and multi-instrumentalist Greg Leisz. ” Now it will be a matter of getting the project distributed. Hopefully the Billboard article and some good blogger buzz will put this on the fast track.