Rick Holmstrom has stories. Thirty-three years of hurtling around the globe in metal tubes will do that. From his early days with blues and soul artists like William Clarke, Smokey Wilson, Johnny Dyer and Booker T. to his 15 year run with gospel/soul/civil rights legend Mavis Staples, the guitarist/bandleader has seen a lot. He’s also proven pandammit-prolific, releasing See That Light in early 2021 and on March 4th returning to one of his original passions, instrumental music, with Get It!
“The blues artists I backed when I was younger all had me play instrumentals to open the show. Some nights I’d play four or five of ‘em. It was all part of the build up to a spicy show. You’d try to play something that got folks pumped for the headliner. In blues and soul music, there’s a rich tradition of instrumental music…T-Bone Walker, Bill Doggett, Freddie King, Albert Collins, Gatemouth Brown, the MGs, the Meters and many more…so I’ve had a foot in this world all along. I like the challenge of trying to say something without words, to grab people’s ears with just melody, groove and dynamics.”
Get It! is an exciting set of burners bringing all the style and charm Holmstrom’s trio conjures nightly with Mavis Staples. “We made this record for good times…BBQs, parties, car rides…lots of 2 1/2 minute songs…it was a blast to make,” Holmstrom says.
Holmstrom and his bandmates, Steve Mugalian and Gregory Boaz, produced Get It! in various studios and garages throughout LA. “Most of it was recorded in Steve’s garage,” he says, “…and why not, garages and funky joints are where we play our best shit anyway.”
On January 14th, the first single “Erlee Time” will be released, featuring Mugalian’s Meters-y snapping snare drum, Boaz’s bubbly bassline and Holmstrom’s minimalistic, no frills guitar. Says Holmstrom: “I’ve had enough existential post apocalyptic doom. Right now I just want to have a funky good time!”