In Conversation with Jared James Nichols back on UK Tour
BD: Thank you for taking time to talk to Bluesdoodles again we are ready and waiting for Black Magic your new highly anticipated album to arrive on the desk from Listenable Records. In the meantime you have released the first single as a tempter “Last Chance”. The number feels heavier, what inspired you to write the number?
JJN: It is definitely heavier, the whole record is full of different shades, tones and styles. People will not be expecting it to be so heavy, decided to release Last Chance to come out with a bang from the new album to grab the ear. It is a sample of styles the album will be exciting lots of blues influences and some really great moments with even some funky stuff.
Listen to Last Chance Here
BD: You have talked a lot about the inspiration the Blues provides you. What do you believe spicing it up with Rock adds to the format; or what is your definition of The Blues in 21st Century?
JJN: Playing now, it is music that when I play the masses of 2017 can relate to understand and enjoy the music. It is a fine line with the blues, honouring the blues legacy with what music people want to listen to. I try to bridge the gap with influences from the classics with modern influences. I have absorbed the music of people I have supported from Walter Trout; Zakk Wylde; UFO; Saxon they do influence with the reaction from different crowds. Underlying is always the Blues. Sprinkling the blues through the music so my generation can re-discover the blues. With the music alive and exciting fresh and modern, that way the blues will survive and grow with new guys and girls playing and appreciating the music.
BD: You are back in the UK with a mix of shows, headlining supporting and Festivals. What excites you about playing in the UK; as your recognition grows?
JJN: Every time I return it gets better, the audiences in the UK really get the music I play. The audiences have a respect, love and knowledge of music; you can talk to a guy at the bar and they will have a depth of knowledge and understanding. I love playing here as I have been heavily influenced by the British Blues explosion.
Starting out with two headline shows tomorrow Wednesday 21st June at the Grimsby Yardbirds and couple days later in Milton Keynes Craufurd Arms Saturday 24th June. Then the following week starting on the 25th opening for Blue Oyster cult, which I am very excited about. Then it is back to USA to do work on finishing my forthcoming album Black Magic. Then it is back to UK for opening for UFO which will be a blast and then two great festivals Ramblin’ Man & Steelhouse. The live shows will be such a great opportunity to play to new audiences.
Full Details of the tour can be found on Bluesdoodles post HERE
BD: Do you make any changes to your set list depending on who you are opening for? Or is it a shorter version of your standard headline selection?
JJN: I change the set list to reflect who I am opening for to feed the crowd. With Walter I could include in the set cold slow blues whereas Zakk Wylde something heavier, like Mountain or Cream. Love to include music that adds an edge from Muddy Waters through to Grand Funk Railway cater for the artist and the audience. I just do it all when it is a headline show. We never really have a set list on the floor. We go with the flow, talk it through play two songs and build from there using the crowd’s reactions. The music flows and the live event gives it a feel that suits the occasion.
BD: You are coming to Wales to drive up the Mountain to Steelhouse, it will be a very different venue to when you opened for Walter Trout at The Tramshed last year. Does Wales dig your form of Blues Rock?
JJN: It is great playing in Wales, love the scene the audiences love the same stuff as I do. First time I played was at a rugby club near where Steelhouse is held; the people were awesome they love to rock out. Great to play in such a fabulous new venue in Cardiff and looking forward to returning to play at a festival. Sounds a real blast and want to be part of the fun.
BD: You are the ultimate power trio with the guitar flashing its licks & riffs. Have you played with the rhythm boys for a long time as there is an innate understanding of the direction you are taking each track.
JNN: Met the guys in Los Angeles when I first moved from Wisconsin. Erik was the first guy I met in LA he had just moved from Sweden; I saw the bass and asked if I get any gigs would you like to play with me. I then asked him if he would like to jam and we needed a drummer, he knew Dennis who had moved from Sweden a couple of weeks previously. We jammed and then got gigs that was five-and-a-half, nearly six years ago. We grew organically jamming to start with now we have played over five-hundred gigs we know what we are doing. There is a special kind of vibe we know how someone is going to react. With only three guys in the band can’t hide behind anything; it is fun to push the music as far as you can. Every time we play a song live it is different; sometimes solos are longer other times more bass we bring in changes.
BD: What other plans and excitements have you got planned for 2017 & beyond into 2018?
JJN: Touring with Saxon & UFO in the Fall across USA & Canada for 5-6 weeks. Obviously completing and releasing the album and hope to be over to the UK again end 2017/beginning 2018 to showcase the new record.
BD: We asked you your fantasy band when we talked last year so what are you listening to at the moment; whether on the tour bus or relaxing?
JNN: Mmm; I am making an effort to listen to new music loving the latest from Blackberry Smoke; and following on from touring with Walter Trout his stuff and off course all the usual suspects. I am loving listening to live bootlegs on You Tube. If you type into search any artist Bootleg lots of exciting music comes up including Jimi Hendrix; Cream; Eric Clapton and more. Digging back to find unknowns so much stuff is covered in dust.
BD: Once again thanks for your time and looking forward to see you at Steelhouse and having the opportunity to review the new album Black Magic
Check out Bluesdoodles Reviews –
Jared James Nichols Live – @ The Tramshed supporting Walter Trout HERE
Jared James Nichols Live – @ Robin 2 supporting Glen Hughes HERE
EP review – Highwayman HERE
Album Review Old Glory and Wild Revival HERE
*Photo credit Rob Blackman