Ken Leighton 5 p.m., Jan. 24
Pete Stewart & the Plastic Saviors
Sound description: Stewart says his music sounds like "pre-peace rally John Lennon, pre-suntan Chris Cornell, post-lofi Elliot Smith, post-withdrawal Nick Drake, [and] post-heartbreak/pre-YouTube Beck."
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Influences: John Lennon, Chris Cornell, Elliot Smith, Nick Drake, Beck
Singer/guitarist Pete Stewart is originally from Seattle and has lived in San Diego since 1981. Some may know him from the Accident Experiment alongside once and future P.O.D. member Marcos Curiel.
Though the Accident Experiment was fronted by a refugee from a Christian rock group, Stewart's songwriting is often informed by his dislike of organized Christianity.
"Jerry Falwell was a man who epitomized everything that eventually drove me away from the dogmatic Christian upbringing that I was raised with," he blogs at www.myspace.com/petestewartmusic. "The system I was raised in taught me to believe that homosexuality is wrong, sex before marriage is wrong, everyone who doesn't agree with 'our' view of God and the world is wrong (and on their way to hell), and that we should be afraid of things like people who teach evolution in school, women who want to choose what they do with their own bodies, and Democrats.
"Eventually when I saw the astonishing level of commitment people like Falwell had to their cultist ideals, at the expense of things like love and tolerance for humankind, it led me down a path of soul-searching that rather dramatically showed me how much I was not one of them. I couldn't feel comfortable in the same camp or mentality of anyone who thinks that gays are responsible for 9/11."
Regarding his songwriting, he blogs "The record I put out earlier this year is a collection of tunes I penned over the last few years, while singing and writing for a band I was fully involved in. They weren't things I was stressing out about, because I already had my band gig and was just writing and recording these things when I felt like it. So, they came when I felt them pop up in my head, which happened to mostly be moments when I was dealing with the prelude and aftermath of a divorce or breakup. I don't know what it is about sadness that always puts lyrics and sounds in my head, but it's something naturally wired in me, I guess...it's like I get bottled up inside with emotions that haven't got words attached to them, and finally I erupt and they come out in guitar chords and melodies."
- I Gave You a Desert