Peter Wolf keeps busy with New England shows

BMS talks with the hometown hero before his Somerville Theatre gig

, Contributing Writer

Peter Wolf is the kind of guy you want to hang out and have a few drinks with. Just make sure that if you get the chance to have that experience you take him to a bar that pours a good Bourbon with a beer back, that the music isn’t too overpowering and there are no televisions.

“I like to be able to talk at a bar,” Wolf tells Boston Music Spotlight during an interview earlier this week. “[I don’t like] when I go into a bar and you have to talk into somebody’s ear. Basically you want to sit at the bar; you want to have a chat. And I don’t want a damn TV staring at me. If I want to watch TV, I’ll stay home.”

Wolf, the smart, unassuming and immensely talented frontman for The J. Geils Band, is currently in the middle of a thirteen city tour across much of New England. Tonight, he’ll hit familiar ground with a homecoming show at the Somervile Theatre. The tour is in support of his latest solo release, 2010’s Midnight Souvenirs. The album, which won over considerable critical acclaim, features duets with the likes of Shelby Lynne, Neko Case and country music legend Merle Haggard.

Fans attending the show can not only expect to hear material from Midnight Souvenirs and Wolf’s other solo releases, but also plenty of the classic J. Geils hits. Of course, Wolf is ever the showman and plans to share plenty of stories from his storied career in between songs, something that he says is a natural thing for him to do.

“[It] came out naturally from our just being on stage, and it just started to develop just from my own natural approach to the stage,” he says of his storytelling. “Being a frontman… I thought I would just start telling stories and it seemed to have a nice reaction and it started to develop naturally, sort of like the “Must Have Got Lost” rap, like a natural thing. It was nothing pre-planned. It was just like, ‘oh well’.”

While his musings on stage may not be pre-planned, his life seems to have a certain serendipitous feeling to it. Wolf is one of those people that always seem to be in the right place at the right time. From painting in Norman Rockwell’s studio as a kid to befriending other music legends like Bob Dylan and Haggard to becoming roommates with film director David Lynch, Wolf has led a storybook life, if you will.

Always an avid supporter of New England’s local music scene, Wolf’s backing band is comprised of many local standouts. “[I have] some new players with me – a very superlative band filled with renowned players from the New England area. It’s really, for me, a treat just to be on stage hearing these guys night after night.”

As for another tour with The J. Geils Band? Well, don’t get your hopes up.

“Really with the Geils Band every time we get together it could be our last time,” says Wolf. “It’s not really planned, it’s not like reunions. Usually they have to do with some benefit or charity. Usually someone calls and we all decide it might be worthwhile getting together and so that sparks something else. It’s pretty spontaneous. There are no set plans. We might never play together again. I just don’t know.”

In the meantime, fans can catch Wolf doing his solo thing, something he especially likes to do in Boston.

“It’s a hometown crowd and a lot of the people there are people that I’ve played for for many years. It has a family reunion feel to it.”

One Comment

  1. Pingback: Peter Wolf keeps busy with New England shows « Chester NiteOwl Blog

Leave a Reply