Six string wizard Guthrie Govan who holds down the lead guitarist slot rather well with the super group The Aristocrats was kind enough to answer some questions before their show in Louisville at Zozoo's on 05/19/12.
What was the inspiration for the recording i.e. How did it all come together and what do you hope fans take away from the experience?
G.G. - "This whole band is the result of a fortunate accident, really. In January of last year, Bryan contacted me - seemingly out of the blue - to help him out with a one-off trio booking he had in Anaheim: Greg Howe was originally meant to be the guitarist in that lineup, but he had some last-minute diary issues so I think I was called in purely to save Bryan from having to cancel the gig!
When we played the show, however, we all realised that we had an unusual (and entirely natural) musical chemistry between the three of us, so… we figured that it would be a shame not to document the kind of spontaneous interaction which seemed to occur so instinctively at that first show. Three months later, we all found ourselves in a studio in Chicago, recording our first album!
What do we hope fans take away from the gig? Some happy memories, the realisation that "muso" gigs can actually be fun, perhaps a little surge of musical inspiration… and, of course, as much merchandise as they can possibly carry ;-)"
What do they think makes The Aristocrats unique in their field?
G.G. - "Well, I think it would be fair to say that everyone in the band has some kind of reputation in the field of playing relatively "complex" music: however, I like to think that we do it with a certain joy and a kind of cheeky humour, whereas a lot of other "muso" lineups are perhaps more focused on simply showcasing their musical abilities.
Also, we really want to convey a raw, honest sound, with the kind of energy and attitude which you would normally find in straight ahead rock, as opposed to fusion. That's the intention, anyhow ;-)"
Describe a love show and is there a follow up in the planning stages yet?***
G.G. - "I fear you may have been entertainingly misinformed about the nature of the Aristocrats' activities - we prefer not to use the term "love show" when promoting our gigs, for fear of attracting entirely the wrong kind of crowd ;-)
During a typical live show, however, we play most (if not all) of the material from our eponymous debut album, along with a few selections from each band member's solo catalogue. There's a lot of scope for improvisation within the set, so we like to think that every Aristocrats show will have something unique about it.
The one constant theme running through all our live performances is that we really enjoy what we do, so we do our best to share some of that feeling with the audience rather than simply trying to blind them with technique… Do we succeed? Well, fine citizens of Louisville, there's really only one way to find out!"
***Editors Note - Some typos are too funny to edit!