We had the good fortune of connecting with Scott Tournet and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Scott, where are your from? We’d love to hear about how your background has played a role in who you are today?
I was born in the berkshires in northwestern Massachusetts. When I was young my family moved to very very rural Vermont. We were the only house on a remote dirt road and we had no electricity. Pre-internet. We had small black and white TV which we ran off of a car battery. We got two channels on a good day. At the time I hated it but looking back now I realize that it instilled a strong sense of creativity. I was alone a lot and often would go to a place of make believe to entertain myself. The woods became a jungle, tree forts became palaces, animals became friends. The skill of making something out of nothing has served me well in songwriting.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I started playing and teaching music professionally in 2002, in my early twenties. I had a few bands, students, and did some coffee house/folky type gigs too to make ends meet. in 2004 I started playing with Grace Potter and we formed Grace Potter & The Nocturnals. We played together for over a decade and during that time we had a gold record, signed with Hollywood Records, played all over the globe, started our own festival, met and played with our idols. The Allman Brothers Band, Robert Plant, members of Phish and the Grateful Dead, etc. We were the opening band for a summer tour of football stadiums across the states. We played a campaign rally for president Obama and another for our own Bernie Sanders. We played on Letterman, Leno, Conan, Ellen, Good Morning America, etc. We had songs placed in movies and TV. It was all very exciting. After a decade I came to an impasse where I was no longer creatively challenged. I made the decision to leave the group and start my own band. I called it Elektric Voodoo. It was not easy as I was essentially starting from scratch again. Playing for 50 people where I used to play to thousands. Touring in a van instead of a bus. Being the tour manager and my own guitar tech. It was humbling but artistically so rewarding. Since then we’ve signed with a booking agency and a manager and have made big strides. We’ve put out two albums and gone on a few national tours. What I have gleaned from all of this is that you need to focus on the music and the joy. Whether you’re playing to 50 or a 1000 people it shouldn’t matter. You just need to put your head down, work hard, stick with it, and find joy in the process.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
We would go to the beach in Coronado, a walk in Balboa Park, out to dinner at Piacero Mio in South Park, watch the sunset at sunset cliffs, a hike at Torrey Pines, sushi at RK Sushi in Mission Hills, hit the record stores in North Park, and catch a show at the Belly Up.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout would go to Goddard College in Vermont. I went to school there and it’s the place that really opened me up to the great big world out there. I was pretty sheltered and lived in a very rural area, pre-internet. It was a very eclectic student body. There were no grades, your curriculum was self-directed, and nudity was optional. It was a very progressive place and I thrived there after struggling for years with more traditional schooling.
Other: https://elektricvoodoo.bandcamp.com/ https://scotttournet.bandcamp.com/
i don’t have credits as we have paid for all of these images.