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Blitzen Trapper’s evil plan

Blitzen Trapper’s got the funk, the Boss, Sabbath, and Neil Young; you just don’t know which one you’re going to get at any given show...
Blitzen Trapper’s got the funk, the Boss, Sabbath, and Neil Young; you just don’t know which one you’re going to get at any given show...

Blitzen Trapper released VII about a year ago on their new home, Vagrant Records. The songs on the album blend the band’s country-rock standards with a dose of funk. So, how did these Portland boys come to write a Grand Funk Railroad album?

“At the time that I was writing it I was listening to the Country Funk compilations, Ike and Tina Turner, and J.J. Cale — who’s always my favorite. I kinda just blended them all together,” Blitzen Trapper mastermind Eric Earley explained to the Reader via phone. “There’s about half that record that we really enjoy playing live. Most records are like that. You usually get a half record. Sometimes you get a whole record that really pops live, but it just depends...”

The band is now in the preliminary stages of devising VII’s follow-up. However, Earley says they probably won’t be playing any of the new original material at upcoming shows. He did state that the band continues to add new covers to their live sets. One of these may be their take on Bruce Springsteen’s “Working on the Highway,” which appears on the recent Born in the U.S.A. tribute, Dead Man’s Town. A cover which is endorsed by Springsteen himself. After the album was released, he took to Twitter to reveal that the Blitzen Trapper track was his early favorite on the album.

Ironically, Springsteen was not an early favorite for most of the band.

“None of us really grew up with him that much. It’s always been later on that we got into him — Mostly through Nebraska. I don’t think he’s been a huge influence on us, mainly because we’re from the West Coast. No one really listened to him out here when we were kids,” Earley explained.

Past Event

Blitzen Trapper and Cassorla

  • Thursday, October 2, 2014, 8 p.m.
  • Casbah, 2501 Kettner Boulevard, San Diego
  • 21+

One album that was a favorite for the young Trappers was Neil Young’s Harvest. They will be performing the album in its entirety at an upcoming concert in Portland. Earley said that selected cuts from the essential record will also make it into the live sets during their current tour. Then he explained a devious plan that was inspired by the idea of covering an entire album.

“We were talking about doing a tour where we learned two records and we would choose which one we wanted to do each night and the crowd wouldn’t know which one we’re gonna do. It would be kinda fun. You’d either get Harvest or you’d get Paranoid by Black Sabbath. You just don’t know.”

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Blitzen Trapper’s got the funk, the Boss, Sabbath, and Neil Young; you just don’t know which one you’re going to get at any given show...
Blitzen Trapper’s got the funk, the Boss, Sabbath, and Neil Young; you just don’t know which one you’re going to get at any given show...

Blitzen Trapper released VII about a year ago on their new home, Vagrant Records. The songs on the album blend the band’s country-rock standards with a dose of funk. So, how did these Portland boys come to write a Grand Funk Railroad album?

“At the time that I was writing it I was listening to the Country Funk compilations, Ike and Tina Turner, and J.J. Cale — who’s always my favorite. I kinda just blended them all together,” Blitzen Trapper mastermind Eric Earley explained to the Reader via phone. “There’s about half that record that we really enjoy playing live. Most records are like that. You usually get a half record. Sometimes you get a whole record that really pops live, but it just depends...”

The band is now in the preliminary stages of devising VII’s follow-up. However, Earley says they probably won’t be playing any of the new original material at upcoming shows. He did state that the band continues to add new covers to their live sets. One of these may be their take on Bruce Springsteen’s “Working on the Highway,” which appears on the recent Born in the U.S.A. tribute, Dead Man’s Town. A cover which is endorsed by Springsteen himself. After the album was released, he took to Twitter to reveal that the Blitzen Trapper track was his early favorite on the album.

Ironically, Springsteen was not an early favorite for most of the band.

“None of us really grew up with him that much. It’s always been later on that we got into him — Mostly through Nebraska. I don’t think he’s been a huge influence on us, mainly because we’re from the West Coast. No one really listened to him out here when we were kids,” Earley explained.

Past Event

Blitzen Trapper and Cassorla

  • Thursday, October 2, 2014, 8 p.m.
  • Casbah, 2501 Kettner Boulevard, San Diego
  • 21+

One album that was a favorite for the young Trappers was Neil Young’s Harvest. They will be performing the album in its entirety at an upcoming concert in Portland. Earley said that selected cuts from the essential record will also make it into the live sets during their current tour. Then he explained a devious plan that was inspired by the idea of covering an entire album.

“We were talking about doing a tour where we learned two records and we would choose which one we wanted to do each night and the crowd wouldn’t know which one we’re gonna do. It would be kinda fun. You’d either get Harvest or you’d get Paranoid by Black Sabbath. You just don’t know.”

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