If you throw a boomerang the right way, it will come back. “And life is similar to this game with a boomerang – you sit there with a broken heart, and yet at the same time know it must go on, that you must move forward. You take a few steps forward and then a few back. That basically in some ways corresponds to the principle of a boomerang,” explains Eric Sardinas about the intention of the title of his Album, Boomerang. That’s what it’s about in the title song, but also in many of the other tracks that take on the topic in different facets and from different perspectives, and then come together and make a whole. Incidentally, the song was long under the working title “Comin’ and Goin”, which very much expresses the intention of the new title.
Boomerang brought a whole new experience to the 1970’s born musician, who live in Los Angeles, when he is not somewhere in the world on tour. “We recorded the songs in between tours, not all at once, as we had always done before. There was no other way, we had no choice, because our schedule was so jam-packed in the past few years with performances all around the world. We couldn’t even clear a block of time in between for a few weeks, in order to retreat to the studio. On the other hand, it gave us the advantage to take our stage energy into the studio with us. It was all only possible though, because I wrote my songs on the road – when I come home, I have a pile of papers, napkins and other little snippets, on which I have kept my ideas and then at home I bring them all together. But that’s how I get plenty of inspiration, which expresses the reality of my fans, in which they can find themselves in. I don’t have to come up with grandiose lyrics, but rather can scoop them up from real life. And I am sure, that many song ideas came from Germany, where I have toured for many years.”
Releasing Boomerang 3 years after the release of the last album Sticks & Stones, Eric Sardinas and Big Motor are presenting their debut to the Freiburger Jazzhaus-Label. “That is one reason, why I have waited with my original release-idea. I had wanted to do four mini-releases with 5 songs each over the course of the year. But after discussing it with Jazzhaus, I decided to deliver a compact collection of 10 songs on one CD,” tells Sardinas as he lets us behind the scenes.
Nine of the tracks on Boomerang are his own creation, and he added one cover song. “Trouble” is taken from the vault of his great idol. “My first concert that I attended at a young age was one of Elvis Presley. He more than mesmerized me with his energy on stage – and his songs were simply awesome! And ‘Trouble’ was always one of my favorites,” he explains his decision. “In this way, I want to carry on his legacy!” However this song, like “Boomerang”, exemplifies Sardinas’ musical ambition. “I want to bring straight Rock n’ Roll and Blues together and mix them up into my own thing.” Although the manner of the work in the studio added to the composition: “We were all in a room playing together and then afterwards just added little bits and pieces to it. Matt ‘Groove’ Gruber is responsible for this creative type of recording, he also worked with us on the last album ‘Sticks & Stones’, he is just the right producer for us. He is a musician himself, and understands my concerns and just gets the best out of me, he pushes me to new limits.”
Sardinas deliberately avoided renowned studio guests this time. Only Dave Shultz, who also played on Sticks & Stones, plays a piece on his Hammond organ. “I was lucky enough during my career both on the stage and in the studio, to have had the opportunity to play with some of Blues greatest musicians. Then those Titans of Blues are unfortunately gradually all dying and leaving us with their great legacy. But I wanted to really stay original and natural, somewhat similar to my first album, ‘Treat Me Right’. In a way, with ‘Boomerang’ I was going back to my roots. We once again recorded onto good old tape and not until later in the post production use the opportunity of today’s digital studio technology.”
Although it goes without saying, Sardinas has continued to play on his resonator and forgone the use of an electric guitar. “The Resonator, specifically my signature model that was built especially for me, offers so many possibilities of expression, that I pretty much have no need for special effects devices. I can just really have fun with this instrument and use it in so many ways and create such a power with it and get such sounds from it, that I can’t imagine playing on any other instrument.” Although he is also still flexible as he has shown on his recent European Tour. “At our departure from Los Angeles all of my guitars were gone – we couldn’t find them anywhere, they got lost somewhere between airlines and only two days after my return from Europe were they finally located. Luckily I have such loyal friends and fans, who brought me guitars to the shows for me to play on. That was quite the challenge, but also at the same time a great experience, that I wouldn’t want to have missed!”
A different experience, that he could have gone without was one that hindered the final work on Boomerang: “At one of the last European-Shows in Austria, I invited some people onto the stage for a jam session. It was pretty cramped onstage and as I was trying to make space my boot got hooked on the floor and I fell 2 meters off the stage and broke my leg. But it’s okay, I’ve just got to take it easy for a while so that I will be fit when it’s time to start touring again. And yes, I’m very lucky that my music is popular everywhere, that I have been able to break through with my music in Australia, Japan, Malaysia, Europe and North America – it isn’t always easy, to please all the fans with enough shows.”
Line-up: Eric Sardinas - guitar e voice
Demi Lee Solorio - drums
Paul Loranger - bass
TREAT ME RIGHT (1999)
Both his 1999 debut
(Treat Me Right) and 2001 follow-up (Devil’s
Train) were chock-full of electrified
Dobro thunder, but neither surrendered Eric’s
deeply rooted respect for traditional blues.
his aggressively soulful, self-penned compositions were
searing renditions of several obscure treasures pulled
from the back catalogues of classic blues artists. Further
historical influence came via a stunning array of legendary
guest performers including: Howlin Wolf sideman Hubert
Sumlin, blues/rock pioneer Johnny Winter, and Delta
blues kingpin Honeyboy Edwards.
with Honeyboy meant a lot to me,” recalled Sardinas. “He’s
one of the last surviving links to the first generation
of Delta blues.”
DEVIL'S TRAIN (2001)
All said and done, each of these
two albums garnered bushels full of stellar reviews
and rave reactions from fans, critics, and fellow artists
alike. Most notably, however, even staunch traditionalists
within the blues community now freely recognized and
accepted Eric as a legitimate student and purveyor of
the Delta legacy.
Looking back on his first two albums
Sardinas can now insightfully reflect, “These
records explored everything I’d learned, but at
the same time they used blues as a jumping off point
to go deeper.” And
so with his latest release, Black
Pearls, Eric continues
his ongoing artistic quest to soar above and beyond
the safe confines of twelve-bar familiarity and hopefully
encourage listeners to re-examine many of their preconceived
notions regarding blues music.
BLACK PEARLS (2003) Favored Nations Records
Celebrated studio legend Eddie Kramer was enlisted to spearhead this exciting
and revolutionary musical undertaking.
is single-handedly turning the polite world of acoustic
Dobro into a mean sounding machine of blues and rock,” says
Kramer. “His outstanding
ability and mastery of his instrument allow him to use
feedback and sustain one minute and play with beautiful
acoustic sensitivity the next.”
Employing his renowned talents and
fresh perspectives, Kramer helped create an optimum
environment within which Sardinas, was able to creatively
thrive and flourish.
in the studio is quite unique,” states Sardinas. “His
organically rich ways of capturing and recording sound
allowed my musical spirit to fly wherever it needed
to go for the songs. This same freedom of spirit is
showcased consistently throughout Eddie’s past
recordings. From Jimi Hendrix, to Led Zeppelin, to The
Beatles, and on and on... it is clearly there. The energy
that is captured on those records is like a living,breathing
moment in time. I feel this is what we have achieved
here; I think all those sensations come through on this
record.” Also worthy of note is the fact that
this album was recorded completely live and direct to
analog tape (ie: no Pro-Tools, no vocal tuners, etc…).
ERIC SARDINAS & BIG MOTOR (2008) Favored Nations Records
STICK & STONES (2011)
An 11-song powerhouse of his trademark slide guitar that is a vehicle to drive his inspiration from the roadhouse in to mainstream music. Sardinas’ unique mixture weaves his heavy blues and rock threads in to a flamethrower to the listener and takes them on a ride encompassing the past, present and future of what music is meant to be.