Shoulder Voices CD Release Party
WHEN and WHERE: 9 p.m. Saturday, May 1, at Burt’s Tiki Lounge, 313 Gold SW, and 7 p.m. Thursday, May 6 at Revlis, 712 E. Central
HOW MUCH: The show at Burt’s is free, the all-ages show at Revlis is $3 at the door. Visit www.myspace.com/shouldervoices for more
By Dan Mayfield
Journal Staff Writer
First things first. Little Bobby has to get dressed.
Bobby Tucker can’t talk about his band Shoulder Voices until he’s dressed, which means, at a bare minimum, a bowler hat and a black vest with devil and angel dolls sewn into each shoulder.
“We can’t even discuss the band until he’s dressed,” said Clifford Grindstaff, who’s known as The Musk once Little Bobby is dressed.
You wouldn’t recognize Little Bobby at his day job at a grocery store if you only knew him on stage, with his asymmetrical eye makeup and outrageous costumes.
For almost 10 years, Shoulder Voices has performed in Albuquerque, led by Little Bobby and The Musk. Shoulder Voices will be having two CD release shows for the new disk “…In Space.”
The new record was simply a theme that the pair decided to work with when they were writing it.
“Kind of like ‘Pigs in Space,'” the skit from “The Muppet Show,” Little Bobby said. But the record is more David Bowie than Muppet. All of the songs have a space theme, but most are sad and introspective, comparing somebody to a lost universe.
“The third song is about, if you cry enough you can overpower a black hole,” Little Bobby said. “And then we break into a Smokey Robinson song.”
The songs on the new disk take you through a crazy world of multiple vocal processors and super psychedelic sounds. But when you have a stage show that includes throwing bloodied stuffed animals at fans, the record has to be a bit psychedelic.
Little Bobby and The Musk met almost 10 years ago at work at Wild Oats.
“We were cleaning up something and then something from ‘Pet Sounds’ came on,” the radio, The Musk said.
Both of them, almost simultaneously, said, “This is my favorite album!”
They bonded over the Beach Boy’s magnum opus “Pet Sounds,” and they started swapping records, includingÂ Little Bobby’s demo tape of songs he’d recorded in his bedroom.
“When I first put it on, I was like, ‘What is this?'” The Musk said. “I was like, ‘This guy’s got the same super weird aesthetic I do.’ Either it was there or it was a failed attempt at standard music.”
Regardless, the two found they were on the same wavelength and started Shoulder Voices.
For years, though, Shoulder Voices was a side project for both. While The Musk was playing in several bands, Bobby was playing keyboards for the long-lived band Unit 7 Drain.
“I was in Unit 7, Cliff was in bands, and we kept coming back to this,” Little Bobby said.
Shoulder Voices became the pair’s outlet to both experiment and produce their own songs, their way.
Nine years later, the two are still best friends and still making music together, but they’ve maintained close ties with other bands.
“… In Space” was produced by Harry Brown, who led Unit 7 Drain.
“His style fits the bigness and the feel,” The Musk said.