A stunning synthesis of classic soul and rock and roll, Vintage Trouble from Los Angeles fire oldschool style into modernity with energy and attitude. Just like their name suggests, the sound is vintage and the personalities are rough – as if The Rolling Stones were fronted by Sam Cooke. Before their first ever Hungarian concert, we sat down for a chat with the live-wired, straight-shooting, dirty mouthed pelvis pushing four-man blues band.
How did the name come up?
The band name found us when our vocalist, Ty was explaining to a friend that my father was vintage trouble meaning old school trouble when one was trying to be bad ass but it just was in your blood. Marinated in trouble for twenty years or more. The real trouble deal. Then when he was writing the lyrics for Blues Hand Me Down, he wrote, “I come from Vintage Trouble. Look out if I’m the one you found.” And there it was.
How would you describe your sound?
Primitive soul is an easy description. Equal parts rock and roll, soul and rhythm and blues.
What makes the blues so special to you, and where did your passion for it come from?
The blues is so special to us, because it is a form of music that is joyous based on the release of sorrow. You feel the transformation of the emotion through every note.
What advice would you give to aspiring rhythm and blues musicians?
Well, I guess first one would have to define just what rhythm and blues really is. For us, we pay homage and have great respect for the artists in this genre that came before us, which is mostly 1950’s and 1960’s. Anyone wanting to have a handle on this music needs to go back and listen to the greats, which stand up to today’s standards, and even surpass it in so many ways. A lot of this has to do with the way the music was both conceived and recorded back then. It had a purity to it. It was recorded mostly live with musicians in a room together. That’s why it feels so good – why so much of it is timeless. It’s got an undeniable soul to it. So the best advice would be to feel deeply and be felt even deeper when you play with others. That has a lot to do with it. And simplicity goes a long way as well. Also, for the record, Rhythm and Blues is not R&B. The music industry seems to think it is and labels it as such. But R&B is closer to pop. Rhythm and blues is more primal, has far more soul to it. So, in a nutshell, play with your soul — not your head. That’s what turns on your listener more than anything.
You’ve supported some pretty huge bands – do you have a favourite show?
AC/DC in Austria comes to mind. Over 100,000 eager fans awaited them. This show apparently broke the previous attendance records of both U2 and Pink Floyd. The AC/DC boys greeted us side stage and pretty much let us know it was kind of a big deal. But having their support went a long way. We killed it! It truly felt like a VT concert when we went on. That’s how the response felt. And then, it wasn’t more than a half hour after our set that we were informed we’d just secured the second leg of the tour. Needless to say we were riding high that day.
What does the future hold for Vintage Trouble?
Hopefully more opportunities to play in front of more people where we continue trying to connect to as many souls as possible and the ability and trust it takes to truly grow as artists, allowing ourselves to be free from labels. Besides that, we’ll surely be doing a lot more of what we seem to do best, which is get before people and give them our all. That seems to be our drug of choice.