The Plaze 'Live' Presents
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals
Jonathan Tyler & The Northern Lights, Justin Jones
425 North Bumby Ave
Orlando, FL, 32803
Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals
Grace Potter and the Nocturnals are like a modern-day version of Tina Turner stroking the microphone in a spangled mini-dress while fronting the Rolling Stones circa Sticky Fingers. The proof is there for all to hear on the band’s third album for Hollywood Records, hitting this spring, and marks an artistic breakthrough for a vital young band caught in the act of fulfilling its immense promise. Little wonder that Grace and her cohorts have chosen to title it, directly and emphatically, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals.
Jonathan Tyler & The Northern Lights
Contrary to doomsayer rumor, rock music doesn’t need saving. But a wake-up call is long overdue, and this is it. Actually, not just a wake-up call, but a joyous reunion of rock with its oft-forgotten prodigal twin, the roll — with papa blues and mama soul along for the ride, too. All of which makes Pardon Me the perfect introduction to one of the most electrifying young bands in America — or at least the next best thing to experiencing Jonathan Tyler and the Northern Lights live. Literally.
Don’t be fooled by the good Southern manners implied by the title of Pardon Me, the major-label debut by Dallas’ Jonathan Tyler and the Northern Lights. The walloping roundhouse punch of Pardon Me’s lead-off title track and everything else packed into Tyler and Co.’s Texas-sized can of rock ’n’ roll whoopass. “Hey!” Tyler shouts after the opening salvo of guitars lands like a gauntlet slap across the face. “Can you hear me? Can you feel me, coming through your stereo?” Then comes the coup-de-grace, a shot of Hendrix-laced adrenaline plunged deep into the listener’s heart and soul by a diabolically persuasive Dr. Feelgood. “Maybe it’s been too long since rock ’n’ roll turned you on,” sneers Tyler, with equal measures of promise and threat. “So pardon me, just let it set you free.”
And that’s when things get loud.
I grew up in Rawley Springs, VA, ten miles west of Harrisonburg, in an old stone house on Dry River. Rawley Springs isn’t even a town, just a collection of cabins, trailers, and camps in the mountains just east of the West Virginia border. When I was 8 years old or so my family had a get together and a bluegrass band came by. They played a lonesome version, more so than the original Band recording, of “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” that had me in tears, the whole room singing along. My Mom gave me The Big Pink shortly after. I fell in love with The Band. From there, music became my obsession, and its one I carry with me still.
We made some recordings with a lot of help from too many people to mention. I was still exploring my sound, I guess you could say, and the records reflected that. Some country tunes, some soul ballads, some southern rock. DC is a notorious indie music city, and after being here for eight years that influence has undoubtedly had an effect on my songs as well.
After three independent releases and a little frustration I changed up the band. Stripped it down to what I thought were the essentials. We toured for a year and decided to record a batch of five songs that we were really excited about. We went to a buddy’s house, set up all the gear in his basement, and cut everything live. We wanted something that really sounded like us, and live was the only way to do it. When we were done we had The Little Fox EP. I sent it to my manager Seth Hurwitz. I guess he was inspired as he sent it to just about everyone he knew. Thirty Tigers expressed interest in distributing it, and Seth decided to start a label, 9:30 Records.
After years of pushing on the door its cracked open, and I’m sticking my foot in. If you’re reading this than I ask you to push with me.