The Olympic Presents
Friday, July 15th
at THE OLYMPIC
$15 adv / $15 dos
7:00 doors / 8:00 show
21+ (valid ID required)
all tickets are General Admission
** some seating available on first come, first serve basis **
Elektric Voodoo is an Afrobeat-inspired five to seven piece dance-rock ensemble that boasts elements from big horns to fiery Afro-Latin percussion, mashed up in a potent Dr. John-homaging sonic gumbo, anchoring songs about love, loss and American life. The national touring band is based out of San Diego, CA and led by Scott Tournet, co-founder of Grace Potter & The Nocturnals.
Scott’s successful career path before forming Elektric Voodoo includes writing, performing and recording with Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys), The Allman Brothers, Billy Gibbons, Robert Plant, Willie Nelson, Taj Mahal, Mark Batson (Dr. Dre, Alicia Keys, etc.), Mavis Staples, The Black Crowes, Bob Weir, and many more. Through these experiences Tournet became schooled in song craft, soul, pop, blues, and classic rock & roll at the highest level.
Tournet explains, “I think what makes us different is that we are trying to combine the physicality of rhythm with the emotions of meaningful lyrics and storytelling, so we connect to the body and the mind of our audience. We want our crowds to dance and sweat through Saturday night and then wake up remembering a lyric that helps carry them through the week.”
Before debuting on the San Diego club scene, Elektric Voodoo began as a one-man band, with Tournet bouncing song ideas off West African rhythmic loops. That formed the basis for the band’s self-titled 2016 debut. By that album’s follow up, 2018’s Animal, Tournet had a horn section on board, with a full-fledged live lineup and many gigs to follow.
A whole greater than the sum of its parts, the band is a veritable musical brain trust of strange bedfellows. Drummer Matt Bozzone and percussionist Tyrone Kiernan are like a rhythmic world atlas, with years of playing West African, South American and Caribbean styles under their belts. Baritone and tenor saxophonists Bradley Nash and Travis Klein (respectively) are both well-schooled jazz musicians, with backgrounds in classical music to boot. And bassist Luke Henning has been a fixture on San Diego’s world famous pop-punk and indie-rock scene.
“I just got used to playing with musicians that came from the same exact thing.” Tournet says of his old group, before explaining of Elektric Voodoo, “That was the foundation of the band in a way — breaking past some of the American borders, so to speak, musically.
“Musical togetherness is where it’s at,” Tournet goes on to explain. “Everyone in the band brings a unique set of skills and a lifetime of dedication to their respective instruments. We are a dance band. We are upbeat. With all our imperfections, we come together and create a feel that you can’t make on a laptop.”
And it’s that ensemble that rehearsed for three months in a cramped practice space before heading into the studio to cut Elektric Voodoo’s third LP Telescope (August 2021), knocking it out live in the studio, in a week of spirited sessions that wrapped just before the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown began. One of the tracks Tournet is most excited about is “Cross That Line,” a sweaty six-minute tour de force of stylistic curveballs and shifting rhythms. “It’s meant to rattle your cage a bit, aurally,” he says.
That careening, caution-to-the-wind spirit is what makes Tournet & Co.’s eclectic voodoo so electric — playing it safe is not their style.“I did everything the wrong way,” Tournet says with a laugh, “leaving a successful career, starting a semi-Afro beat band with seven people. I knew that from the beginning. It was kind of a ‘fuck it, jump-in-the-deep-end’ kind of thing to do.
“Intriguing, enticing, and engaging all at the same time —– evidence of Elektric Voodoo’s ability to cast a hypnotic spell.” – Relix Magazine
“Tastes of The Flaming Lips, Santana, Fela Kuti, Tame Impala and The Arcade Fire break through atop this soulful collection of songs that are birthed with unlimited potential”. – Glide Magazine