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Support slot will promote new album
Wisconsin-born, Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter and guitarist, Jared James Nichols, releases his second studio album, Black Magic, on October 27, 2018 – and to celebrate he's supporting L.A. Guns on their UK tour which plays Bilston's Robin 2 on September 4.
On stage: Jared James Nichols (pic: Reg Richardson)
The album is the follow-up to 2015's Old Glory & The Wild Revival, a record that was showcased on a tour with Glenn Hughes that also visited Robin 2. We asked Jared to tell us more about the new disc and his touring experience.
What was the idea behind calling the album Black Magic?
The title came from the blues. It's wild that they used to consider it evil and named it 'The Devils Music'. If that is the case, then I am definitely a student in the 'Black Magic' of the blues. I feel everything I play starts from there and grows organically into its own thing. Real blues is still the heaviest and most powerful music I have ever heard.
''Real blues is still the heaviest and most powerful music I have ever heard''
What can we expect from the new album?
It is raw and real. I have stripped down my approach, trying to get closer to the actual power and emotion in the music. What you'll hear on the record is what you'll get live. I'm very excited for people to hear it.
What's the best gig that you've been to or has inspired you the most?
I would have to say The Allman Brothers in 2004. I was completely knocked out! Between Warren Haynes and Derek Trucks on guitar, I was in absolute heaven. It was one of those moments where everything made sense. I am still inspired by that show.
''Raw and real'' (pic: Adam Kennedy)
What is your favourite part of touring and what is your least favourite part of it?
I honestly love touring. Every day is a brand new adventure. It's amazing to meet people all around the world and share my music with them. It's crazy to think of all of the countries and stages I've been able to play. My least favourite part is the jet-lag. It is the worst.
Do you have a pre-show ritual?
Not really. I like to sit with my guitar a few minutes before the show and play a couple licks. Then I'll do a few push-ups to get the blood flowing. That's all I need to get ready to rock.
''Ready to rock'' (pic: Gary Cooper)
What is the one item, apart from your guitar, that you need to take on tour with you?
My eye contact lenses. Otherwise I'll basically be blind!
How do like to relax on a day off during a tour?
Usually I'll wake up, workout, and have a good meal. Then I'll write a bit and play guitar. No days off.
''No days off'' (pic: Robert Sutton)
What's the best part about playing live?
The audience interaction. Being in the moment and putting on the best performances I can. I love the energy and power of live shows. It's my favourite thing in the whole world.
On the road: The Jared James Nichols Band
L.A.Guns/ Jared James Nichols 2018 UK tour dates:
Aug 31: O2 Islington Academy, London;
Sept 1: Muni Arts Centre, Pontypridd; Sept 2: Riverside, Newcastle; Sept 4: Robin 2, Bilston; Sept 5: Craufurd Arms, Milton Keynes; Sep 6: Rebellion, Manchester; Sept 8: Tivoli, Buckley.