Thursday, May 4, 2017

GUITAR GODS: Eric Krasno

Eric Krasno is a name I've just stumbled upon, but the guy has been around the block more than once. Taking a look at his accomplishments I'm scratching my head and asking "How did I not already know this guy by name?"....though we've ALL heard his work in one way or another.

He's been on stages and studios around the world and worked with the likes of Lettuce (a band he co-founded), Norah Jones, 50 Cent, Aaron Neville, and so many more, and winning Grammy Awards and other honors as a sideman, songwriter, and producer.

Now he has released his new solo album, "Blood from a Stone", where he not only writes and plays guitar, but for the first time is featured vocalist.

Born & raised in the New York area, Krasno attended Berklee College of Music, then later transferred to Hampshire College, and very quickly found himself on the road and recording for Soulive, and shortly thereafter making his debut as a producer with Talib Kweli's 2002 debut record "Quality".

Eric is a fantastic songwriter, a soulful player, a great singer, and his production skills are top-flight. Time to dig into this guy's sonic history if you haven;t already!

You can learn more about this amazing musician at his web-site.

I had a chance to chat with Eric recently. Check it out!

1) What are your current projects?

My main projects right now and EKB (Eric Krasno Band) & Soulive, but I still play certain shows with Lettuce. I'm really excited for our annual Red Rocks show with Lettuce coming up. I'm also producing a bunch of other artists, running my label/publishing co and making a new solo album. Staying pretty busy.

2) How does this (do these) differ from your past work?

EKB is a lot different because I'm singing lead and playing mostly new material. I have a killer band right now and the music is evolving into as the band gets tighter. I'm really excited about that.

3) Do you have one project that you are most proud of as a guitarist?

I feel fortunate to be involved in a lot of great projects... Right now I'm most excited about my next album which I'm working on as we speak.

4) Can you give our readers a run-down of your basic gear (live and/or studio), and do you have a favorite piece of gear?

I have way too much gear (haha!). Right now I'm using Supro amps on the road, they are killer! I have my signature Ibanez as my main guitar but I've bringin an SG that Derek Trucks gave me a few years back as well. In the studio I have a lot of vintage gear that I experiment with... I also use a lot of the new Universal Audio gear for recording.

5) Who would you cite as early influences, and who are you favorite new players?

I am/was a huge Hendrix fan growing up. Him along with Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimmy Page, BB King, Albert King & George Benson are at the top of my list. But there's so many.... I'm influenced my a lot of singers too. I really just want to play how Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway sing. My favorite young player is Marcus King, he's got it all man.

6) Can you give a few tips to aspiring players?

I would tell young players to study and listen to what came before you but strive to create your own voice.

7) You're not only a guitarist & band-leader, but you've also played sideman, producer, and more. Can you talk a little about the difference in how you prepare for a gig as a player and how you prepare as a producer?

As a producer and sideman one has to understand the vision of the artists and do everything in your power to support that.

8) The new record features you as not only guitarist, but vocalist. Is this the first time you've taken on the lead vocal duties, and are you enjoying the new role?

I'd been writing lyrics and songs for a long time and often times singing on the demos and occasionally live, but this is my first time being the lead singer in a band.

9) What are your future plans?

I have a ton of new music coming. Watch out for anything on my Feel Music Label. Also doing Bowlive in June which Soulive's annual residency at Brooklyn Bowl where we feature different special guests over 2 weeks. EKB tour is currently under way and will continue through the summer.....And, I'm playing a few shows with Phil Lesh this summer as well. 

See you out on the road!

No comments:

Post a Comment