Geoff Tate bring his music, wine to town
When most musicians record solo albums, it’s because they need an outlet for material that doesn’t fit the scope of their band. That wasn’t the case with Geoff Tate. While there’s very little on his solo debut that couldn’t fit within the ever-evolving musical scope of Queensrÿche, the difference for the vocalist lies in the expression of those songs, and how they actually came to fruition.
“The problem when you’re in a creative environment is keeping things fresh and invigorating, and after working with the same people for twenty years, it gets very difficult – You walk into the room, and everybody knows what everybody is going to do,” explains the Tate. “There’s no spark of new blood, the chemistry is very tried and true, and you just keep coming up with the same ways of expressing yourself. What’s nice about doing a side project with new people, is that it’s a whole new breed, and a bunch of new ideas, musical backgrounds, emotional baggage and whatever else it takes to create. It’s a whole new set of parameters, so it’s all new, everyone has ideas you haven’t heard before, and everyone is throwing them against the wall. It takes on a whole new life.”
For Tate, that “whole new life” is a vibrant tapestry of human emotion and expression, the culmination being his eponymous 11-track offering on Sanctuary Records. “The songs are all about the strongest passion of life, which is love. It’s all about the feelings that you have for somebody, how relationships work and don’t work, the misunderstandings, and all that it takes to keep a relationship working. That said, it’s also about stepping out on you’re own and trying new stuff, and not being afraid to take that big step. That makes it kind of autobiographical, because I’m taking that step, moving out from where I’ve been and stepping into other areas, and that’s important for people to do.”
The music swirls in a textured wash of soothing guitar tones and gently cascading rhythms, and Tate’s vocals shower the proceedings like the most welcome of spring rains, his words glistening like a morning dew. Fans of Queensrÿche will revel in the familiar, soothing warmth of one of music’s most pure voices, while new fans will find themselves lost somewhere between the melancholy of “Forever” and the hopeful effervescence of “This Moment.” Co-songwriter Scott Moughton paves a tantalizing trail of Spanish-flavored guitars into “Helpless,” a piano lays the path through the peaceful calm of “In Other Words,” drums propel “Passenger,” and “Grain Of Faith” plays like the perfect culmination of Tate’s lyrical harmony and Carrell’s guitar-based foundations.
Tate performs at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Center for the Arts, 314 W. Main St., Grass Valley.
Wine tasting event
Tate has joined with Three Rivers Winery in Washington to bottle his own creation – Insania. You’ll taste both the white and red blends of Tate’s creative collaboration with Three Rivers winemaker, Holly Turner, as Tate talks about the wines and his music and wine adventures. Includes wine tasting, light hors d’oeuvres and reserved concert seating. Bottles of Insania will be available for sale at the bar and can be autographed at intermission. Tickets cost $35 members, $40 non-members and available at Center Box Office (530) 274-8384 ext. 14, BriarPatch Co-op (530) 272-5333, Cherry Records (530) 823-2147 or TheCenterForTheArts.org.
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