Gringo Star is an Atlanta, GA. based band that consists of 2 brothers, Nick and Peter Furgiuele. Nick plays the bass with Peter on keyboards. Other band members include Peter Delorenzo and Matt McCalvine. They have released 3 albums (All Y’all, Count Yer Lucky Stars, Floating Out to See) and were interviewed by Rolling Stone in the past. They label themselves as an “Indie” band, which means they produce alternative and independent music. Their musical style can be described as having a psychedelic flavor. As part of their tour to promote their new single “Long Time Gone”, the band performed in Tampa at The New World Brewery on Nov. 5th.
Student reporter Robert Markoe interviewed bass player Nick Furgiuele prior to the Nov. 5th performance.
Q) Your band sounds like a mixture of guitar and vocal groups from the late 1950s and early 1960s. Could you please name some of your influences?
A) My mother had a large record collection and albums by Ritchie Valens, Buddy Holly, The Crickets, and Sam Cook were available to listen too.
Q) When you write, is there a formula under which you approach the creation of your songs? Is the melody first or the words?
A) Being that I am a versatile musician, I can play different instruments, and the melodies might originate from the guitar or keyboards.
Q) The song the” Shadow” has a Lennon and McCartney flavor to it. Is the Rickenbacker 360 guitar, that the Beatles used , along with the Byrds, being used to emulate them?
A) The guitar has a bell like ring to it and is featured often in our music. The neck of the guitar is a little difficult to get used to, but it has its rewards with its beautiful sound.
Q) You covered Bob Dylan’s song “It Takes a Lot to Laugh, and a Train to Cry” from his mid-1960’s album Highway 61 Revisited. Have you listened to a lot of his work, and is he an influence in your own music?
A) We admire Bob Dylan and some of his older albums were in my parent’s record collection.
Q) Have you played in Tampa before? Or is Wednesday’s Nov. 5th show at The Tampa Bay Brewery your first here?
A) We have played here before and will be returning for future shows.
If you get a chance to see them live, don’t miss it, because this band seems to be ushering in an exciting, interesting popular music vein that hasn’t been heard in a long time.