Music

Voices from the shoulder

Shoulder Voices
Shoulder Voices
Bobby Foster

Well, I was just setting around the home office listening to the Eddy Current Suppression Ring and trying to get my mind around a quiche Florentine in the fridge when the phone rang. And wouldn't you know, but it was Little Bobby Tucker of Shoulder Voices on the line, giving me a bell to tell all about his show at Burt's Tiki Lounge (313 Gold SW) on Friday Dec. 18. Here's how that went.

Alibi: What's up with your show, mang?

Little Bobby Tucker: It's our first gig in about two months; We're very practiced, we're gonna nail this one. Our new album comes out this spring. We're playing with Beard and Strange House, both fantastic bands.

What's up with the stuffed animals? Is that part of a freaky joie de vivre aesthetic you want to pass on to the audience?

They're stuffed and they're very cute but they're also covered in blood. That puts some people off. I like for there to be something for people to look at while the band is playing. So we all dress up, dress the stage up. We don't just play songs, we perform. In between numbers we do skits, tell jokes ... I try to never have a quiet moment at our shows.

That sorta reminds me of some of the stuff I've seen the Flaming Lips (who are currently touring with Miley Cyrus as part of her Dead Petz Tour) do.

Absolutely. I saw them many times in the late 90s and early 2000s. When I started this band, I thought we can't get people to dress up as animals like they (Flaming Lips) have on stage but, hey look at this stuffed animal ... we can take that up there with us. So, people in the audience started giving us stuffed animals. Now we have at least 60 of them. My van is filled with stuffed animals.

What kinda music goes along with those bloody, stuffed animals?

The music of Shoulder Voices. It's fantasy death-pop; Black Sabbath meets the Monkees. It can be very odd and aggressive and very light and lilting. It can go back and forth and through all points in-between those extremes, even in the same song. We incorporate lots of different genres that generate lots of different feelings. We're trying to get people to feel something; love, aggression, fear.

Wow. So who are Shoulder Voices?

I sing and play keyboards. Our drummer has been with us for five years, his name is Ryan Sciarotta; he also plays in Youngsville. Mary Stockton handles vocals. Our guitar player's Joe Buffaloe, he rocks. Kevin Elder plays the bass; we used to play in Unit 7 Drain together, years ago. My girlfriend Amanda Pritchard recently joined up too; she's on tambourine and keyboards.

When does all this action go down?

The music starts at 10. We'll go on at about 11. Strange House, the headliner, is Ryan's new project. I'm pretty sure Beard is some dudes from Music Go-Round. They're awesome! I saw them a couple of months ago and they blew me away, so I asked them to play this show.

What can folks expect at Burt's on Friday night?

They'll be entertained, perhaps humored, maybe poked at too. They might even be agitated. But they'll be moved too—with humor, love, lots of glitter; stuffed animals too.