Scott Finch Interview
[MuzikMan] First let me say how I admire your technical expertise on the six-string, you are just phenomenal. Also your creative powers seem to reaching an apex right now. Do you agree?
Scott Finch If you asked a year ago I would have said I peaked out in '92 but recent events including the tour in Italy have brought me back to an "apex " as you said.
[MuzikMan] The new album "The Velvet Groove" is another step in the development of Scott Finch the artist and the group itself "Gypsy." What do you attribute this fascination with Jimi Hendrix? You really have taken parts of his music and style to another level. What are your thoughts on the differences between last years release "Haze Of Mother Nature" and the new release?
Scott Finch I hurt my hand in a machine when I was 15 years old and had to put my musician thing on hold for a few months. During that time I did a lot of thinking about what was good and bad about my playing technique. When I finally started playing again I made sure that I permanently dropped all my bad habits and played with a much more rhythmic style that automatically forced notes to be in time. This style made copying Jimmy Page and Riche Blackmore very difficult. But when I listened to Hendrix I realized that he had the same idea, and it was very easy to learn his stuff (at first). This really impressed my friends, so I became the local Hendrix whiz kid. After that, I got hooked on the infinite detail and variation in his playing (the hard part).
As for the differences in the first 2 releases, I really don't try to control the creative process much, so I guess to me the new release is just newer.
[MuzikMan] Can you give inquiring minds (like mine) some background on Scott Finch? How did it all start for you?
Scott Finch I started taking piano lessons at 3 1/2 years old. My uncle, Bill Kretlow (who played briefly for Woody Herman in New York) showed me some stuff on guitar, but I really didn't get going full tilt until I heard The Beatles. Since then I have been playing gigs and recording almost non-stop.
[MuzikMan] Besides Hendrix, whom would you consider to be major influences in your music? Who were some of the key people that helped you stay focused in your life to reach your goals?
Scott Finch My mother was my biggest musical influence. She played the piano every evening for hours. My earliest memories are of my mothers piano playing. Sometimes she will hear one of my new songs and point out that I might have stolen the idea from her. Jackson St. Blues sounds a lot like one of my mom’s originals. All of my family and friends have supported and encouraged me over the years.
[MuzikMan] You just returned from a successful tour of Europe, what was it like? How were you received in the different locations? What were the differences, if any?
Scott Finch It was very different from the US. In Italy, the first pressing of Haze of Mother Nature had sold out in just a few weeks, so we went in with the people familiar with the music. It was very exciting. Here in the US I'm just another struggling local artist.
[MuzikMan] As a creative individual what direction do you see yourself moving in over the next few years?
Scott Finch I going to try to improve my songwriting with the help of many talented people here in Milwaukee. I want the songs to stand up on their own as opposed to being just an excuse to play a guitar solo.
[MuzikMan] If you were stuck on a dessert island what five albums would you want to have with you?
Scott Finch Electric Ladyland, the first Led Zeppelin, and Animals by Pink Floyd, Miles Davis- Bitches Brew, and The Beatles-Abbey Road.
[MuzikMan] What kind of equipment have you used over the years? If you had your way, what would be your dream guitar?
Scott Finch I have blown up a lot of Marshalls and big Fender amps. I have better luck with small Fenders, Ampegs and my trusty Vox AC30 that has been on tour with me for 30 years. I use a Boss compressor, an old Morly wa in the studio and a Vox wa live. I bought my dream guitar in 1970, a '62 Strat. My dream would be that all clubs would have clean enough ac power that I could put the original pickups back in.
[MuzikMan] Do you feel that your opportunities as a creative individual have increased because of the strides in technology and the Internet? If so, what aspects have you taken advantage of to grow as an artist?
Scott Finch I use the Internet for communication. I'm afraid other than my website at www.bluehand.com I'm not all that much into it. I think that when most people have very fast access it will make a huge difference.
[MuzikMan] What venues are you going to be playing at in the United States this year? Are you playing with any other like artist at any of the dates?
Scott Finch We just opened for the Doobie Brothers at Milwaukee Summerfest. It was great. I love playing big gigs. I'm always surprised at how 'un-nervous' I am in front of huge crowds, but I might be kind of nervous and whatever at a small private party. There are some Harley-Festival gigs coming up, this is the home of Harley Davidson!
[MuzikMan] What are your plans for the next recording studio visit? Should we expect more of the same or will you have some surprises for us?
Scott Finch I'm starting a brand new project with the Blues-o-delics, Peter Alt on bass and vocals and Dave Braun on drums. I want to be able to perform it live so we will be keeping it simple. I want to feature the songwriting, Peter Alt's voice and the 3-piece power trio performance. Fewer overdubs. That's the plan, but it will probably take on a life of its own and be out of control in the end.
[MuzikMan] Is there anything in particular that you would like to say to your faithful supporters as we close this conversation?
Scott Finch Thanks for keeping me going year after year and don't be afraid to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org ....I'd love to hear from you.