Classic rock is meant to be sexy and daring and Grace Potter is both. The frontwoman has the talent as she’s been mentioned in the same breath with legendary vocalists and since the Vermont group’s upcoming self-titled release is full of enticing hooks and hypnotic riffs, the comparisons will grow. But as the charismatic songbird told us, she’s just trying to be herself.
A senior editor with Rolling Stone said your group is poised for bigger things. Are you living in the moment or living for the future?
Both. I’ve always thought of myself as a person that lives in the moment. I love the sunshine and playing shows but I’m also fond of quiet moments like looking at the rain. You think about life in those instances and become grateful for things that have happened. As a band, we worked hard for several years and we eventually gained the respect we deserved.
When that particular editor said that, I related because I enjoy the spotlight and performing in front of crowds and changing lives. Everyone loves that feeling as they have plans for world domination.
Do you think you have to find yourself before you can enjoy what life has to offer?
Maybe. The journey life brings you plays a big part though. At first you enjoy everything life presents you because you’re naive and green. Then when you hit bumps and turns, you have to realize the type of person you are.
Would you say your upcoming album lives in the moment?
Oh absolutely. Compared to our other ones, it’s so loud. It was a lot of fun to be that loud and the whole process of putting it together was kind of in the moment. We just recorded it quickly and appreciated each other. There weren’t any fights in the studio or major freak outs. It’s rare not to have any shit like that happen.
Do you think the five of you have become closer as a band and friends?
Oh yeah. Some of us are a bit new but we know each other inside and out because we literally live on top of each other when we travel. To do so you have to be able to tell if it’s going to work and with us, we’re all just really great friends.
How much of an influence was producer Mark Batson?
His lack of influence was huge because he just told us to be ourselves. That manipulated us and took away our fear and self doubt in making the record. Like he said “just do what you do” and we did because his magic just worked that way. He didn’t need to give us any instructions or shit like that at all.
What kind of emotions did you want to try to emit with the new record?
The new album’s really about self-confrontation. I’m a heart-on-my-sleeve-type of girl and some of my past work has been about what someone has done to me or being hurt in general. But the new album accepts those feelings. Like the songs say “yeah, I f*cked up, but I can cope”.
There’s evidently more swagger and a sense of sexiness in the songs that’s vastly different from what you find in the music of pop stars. Why is that?
I think that’s because of the fearless sexuality in rock n’ roll (laughs). Rock performers are demanding and they make finger-wagging albums.
Is it bad to be bold?
Sometimes (laughs). Women can sometimes get way too drunk and then end up not being able to handle the situations they put themselves in. Like you never want to come into a show “too hot”. It’s never a good thing. You just want to kind of ease your way in there. Which is funny because “Paris (Ooh La La)”, the first song on the new album, is very hot and out there (laughs).
If the new album was a stunning female who walked the earth in the 1960s’ and 1970s’, what type of person would she be and what famous rock musicians would chase after her?
Oh, Eric Clapton would be all over her (laughs). So would George Harrison! Roger Daltrey would pretend to be way too cool for her, but Pete Townsend would be on that in a second. Later in life, Tom Petty would fall in love with her and then decide she had to be a part of his band!
You’ve been compared to famous frontwoman like Janis Joplin, Stevie Nicks and Joni Mitchell. Do you think its about time people start appreciating that you’re simply Grace Potter?
Yes! God, I would love that! What a great question. Wow. I don’t know where the Janis thing comes from to be honest, but Joni Mitchell I can see. Fleetwood Mac is awesome and not just because I can relate to Stevie Nicks and how she is sexually (laughs). They are truly a great band.
I like all of those artists as they’re fantastic, but I don’t really give a shit. I’m different than them and people seem to pretend like they can’t see that.
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