"Catching a breather between tours..." - Daryl Stuermer talks to TWR about the Turn It On Again tour...
TWR: You have said that the ‘We Can’t Dance’ lineup of Genesis had unfinished business. How does it feel to be onstage with the guys again?
DS: I think this is the best tour ever. The band is playing better than ever and the show is spectacular….I can say that since I have nothing to do with the production. The tour feels like a band/family reunion. I would be happy if we went on tour for the next 5 years.
TWR: How does working with Genesis and Phil on his own differ and which is the more challenging?
DS: Since Genesis is just 5 musicians on stage I think it is probably more challenging. On Phil’s last tour there was 17 people on stage. I also alternate between guitar & bass with Genesis. That’s a bit of a challenge by itself,
TWR: Tell us a little about your latest solo album, Go…
DS: My previous albums explored my more eclectic and contemporary jazz side. Sometimes I would combine my lighter nylon string guitar songs with some mid tempo to heavier up tempo electric compositions. With this album I decided to focus in on my more overdriven electric guitar playing. These are my most energetic and progressive compositions. I think it's the best of the edgy rock side of my guitar playing and song writing. I also want to show the direction I'll be going in on my future albums to my old fans and the new listeners.
TWR: Have you considered adding vocals to your music? Would you sing? Who would you envisage singing?
DS: I’m not considering any vocals at this time. I feel the guitar
is my voice and this is what I do best. It’s what I am!
TWR: How long were you involved with Sweetbottom and how many albums did they produce?
DS: I started the group in 1973 with my bass player brother Duane. We never recorded any albums when I was involved with the band. They recorded 3 albums after I left them in 1975 although I did periodically play with them off & on in the 80’s.
TWR: Your first two solo albums were all original material, how long did it take you to write that material?
DS: It’s different with every album. It all depends on what’s going on at the time. If I’m composing while touring with a group it will take longer than if I’m at home. Sometimes I’ll go back to a song that was started years ago. On my newest album “Go” I have 3 songs that I wrote for my group Sweetbottom back in 1974, 1979, and 1980. I always felt that these songs should have been recorded. With some updating I was able to fit them into my new Progressive/Rock/Fusion format.
TWR: Have you managed to secure a distribution deal for your albums in Europe yet?
DS: My latest 2 albums “Rewired-The Electric Collection” and “Go” do have distribution in Europe. My back catalog does not. Although internationally they can of course be purchased from my website.
TWR: Do you have any plans to do solo gigs in Europe or the UK?
DS: My intention is to try to play in Europe and the UK. It all depends on the logistics. I hope it can work out.
TWR: Do you have any favourite gigs you have played either with the band or Phil?
DS: On this last European tour one of the shows that stood out for me was in Katowice, Poland. It was one of the most difficult yet rewarding shows on the tour. It was storming all day before the show. The audience had to endure the wind and rain from the moment they arrived before the show. We have a strong plastic type covering over the stage. Once we started the wind was blowing the rain into the stage. It was covering our pedalboards and keyboards. Tony Banks’ keyboards went out half way through the second song. He had to put up a spare for the rest of the show. I thought we would be taken off the stage after the 3rd song because it was starting to get dangerous. Lightning was lighting up the sky and here we are with electrical instruments in our hands. We were wearing rain jackets and caps…which we never have. It continued to rain for the whole show. It was amazing to see these people out there with smiles on their faces in spite of the weather. They were standing out there in pouring rain hours before we even started and all through the 2 1/2 hour show. I was happy not to have to delete any songs from the show.
TWR: What equipment did you use on this years Genesis tour?
Fender American Standard Strat
Lakland Custom Bass
Lakland Skyline Bass
(2) Mesa Boogie Mark 1 Amps
(2) Genz Benz Acoustic Pro Amps
(2) Eden WT800 Bass Amps
Furman SPB8C Pedalboard
Ernie Ball Jr. volume pedal ?
Radial Tonebone Hot British distortion
Radial Tonebone Classic
Fulltone Choralflange - (stereo)
Boss DD-5 Digital Delay
Fulltone Fat Boost
Boss TU-12H tuner
TWR: Did you re-learn all the songs with the key changes or did you just use the transpose facility on the equipment and play in the original keys?
DS: I re-learned all the songs in the new keys.
TWR: What was it like revisiting the old Genesis songs?
DS: It was great! They are such great compositions with well thought out arrangements. It was very a very nostalgic trip revisiting them.
TWR: What do you see yourself doing once the US tour has finished?
DS: After a short rest period I will start composing for my next album.
I’ll also go back to playing live gigs with my band.