Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Ten Ton Man

New York City-based Americana roots rock trio Ten Ton Man releases their dark, emotional focus track “Ditty” from their debut self-titled album, independently released in November 2012 (Ten Ton Man Records). Recommended for fans of Tom Waits, Nick Cave, Lou Reed and Johnny Cash, Ten Ton Man is comprised of frontman Paul Livornese on lead vocals and guitar, Paul Triff on drums and Paul Dugan on bass.  “Ditty” is the first of ten tracks on Ten Ton Man’s first album that offers a minimal, gritty, yet musically eclectic collection of songs with a lyrically dark slant.

Formed in 2011, the indie roots trio has been consistently performing in major NYC venues, including Pianos, Arlene’s Grocery, Tammany Hall and Spike Hill.  They released their debut self-titled album in Fall 2012 that has already garnered positive reviews. Commercial Free UK raves about the band, "Ten Ton Man has very uniquely found the perfect recipe for Americana." And Alexa Spieler from Review You says, “With Livornese on vocals, Ten Ton Man introduces listeners to vocal strength and talent not present in the music industry, until their arrival.”

The dark undertones of the single “Ditty” express the weariness of someone who has decided to leave a relationship that is no longer working in order to pursue a life he imagined.  As with all of the tracks, Livornese wrote “Ditty” from his own life experiences while also striving to keep it relevant for everyone. With his smooth baritone voice, Livornese sings, Gonna lighten my load cause I need to/gonna put you on hold don’t want to hear you.  “Ditty” also features Erik Della Penna on banjo, who has played with Natalie Merchant and Joan Osborne. 

R. Congratulation's on your new single "Ditty." Is Ditty a person? Tell us why you choose this track as your first release?
TTM. Thanks. Ditty is a short simple song. But it says everything it needs to. We choose this track because it quickly represents our sound right up front.It's also the one that clicks with everyone. I think it's the churning rhythm that gets you into the song. 

R. There's a dark mood, yet grittiness to the album. Is this a reflection on where you are now in your life?
TTM. A lot of it represents what was going in the past and looking back at that. But it ties to life now in the present and ends with a look towards the future, redemption and resolve. A lot of this was going down as my father was dying, you get very restrospective. Not to be a downer, I am generally an optimistic person.

R. Do you write all the songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs? Do you you think these topics will change over time?
TTM. I write the lyrics and the guitar parts, then everyone puts their meat on the bones. Paul Dugan and Paul Triff are extremely talented collaborators. With just the three us, I think together we put out some interesting arrangements with some help from our friends.

I write from what I know and feelings I experience, so our song topics are mostly about growing to be a man. I gravitate mostly to be the melancholy, also the flaws, mistakes, regret, excess, all while looking for the way. That really gives me a lot of material to draw from. I guess as life changes topics will change too.

R. What genre of music do you consider your work to be? Who are your major influences?
TTM. I think a blog from England kind of summed it up pretty well. "...best defined as gusty, gritty folk-blues with post punk prickliness steeped in the spirit of Americana." That's pretty descriptive.

Tom Waits and Nick Cave have been very inspiriational. People tell me I sound like Nick Cave and Iggy Pop, although I don't hear the Iggy. That early, bluesy Zeppelin has always influenced my songwriting on the guitar.

R. What can you tell me about your instruments? (i.e., Are you subject to brand loyalty or will you play with whatever's available? What made you choose the instruments you have now? Was it cost or was it a style/model/brand/color preference?
TTM. I do love gear, but I keep it simple. I have an 18 watt Swart amp that has this killer vintage sound all its own and I generally like sound of P-90s in a guitar. Especially in a hollowbody or semi-hollowbody. I am very fond of my Guild Starfire III. It's a thin hollowbody, very chimey. I try and record most of our songs on that.

R.  What's your ultimate direction for your band? Are you seeking fame and fortune?
TTM. The fame I can do without, but I would like songs to gain recognition, tour. Making a living from something I am passionate about, would be genius, but I am plugging away writing these songs mostly because I am creatively driven to. There is one reason I had to start a band, play shows and make music. I needed to. I can only hope that more comes of it.

Last but not Least...

R. Fill In the blanks!
Without music..., I would probably have better hearing.
Music is... A full contact experience.
Support music because... Because it's for you.

To hear and learn more about Ten Ton Man go to:
Web
tentonman
Facebook 
facebook.com/TenTonMan
Bandcamp
tentonman.bandcamp.com


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