An Indian Summer | Morning Chat w/ Venice musician, Peter Goetz

Venice native, Peter Goetz, is touring the West Coast this August with his introductory, pre-released album Indian Summer. Before he hits the road I had a chance to catch up with him for a quick coffee to get the skinny on his new album, his current inspirations and to find out what’s next in the life of one of Venice’s most intriguing musicians.

WELO: Peter, good morning my brother, So you just introduced your first album Indian Summer recently, can you tell me more about it?
PETER: “Good morning to you!… It’s been a long time coming actually.. This is the ultimate backpackers’ album.  It tells tales of travels around the globe, the music and crazy characters I’ve met along the way.  I feel like it’s captured my voice as an artist and a musician.”

WELO: Where did you draw your inspiration for the album both lyrically and instrumentally?
PETER: “I typically write most of my songs on the road.  There’s something about the freedom of the open road and the unknown that catalyze my songwriting.  Songs just come in random corners of the globe.”

WELO: You wrote the first two songs in Brazil-  what led you there?
PETER: “I spent two months living in the Amazon jungle when I was 21.  After the film project I was part of I ventured down south to the urban beach paradise of Rio de Janiero and the surfers haven on the island of Florianopolis.  In Brazil, I met some great people and learned how to speak Portuguese.  I fell in love with the culture.  So when I returned to Cali, I was always looking for Brazilian transplants floating around.  I met a talented composer, Heitor Pereira, and my next trip down Heitor lined me up with some of the best musicians in Brazil.  Two weeks later I find myself in the studio with members of Gilberto Gil’s band, laying down two tracks.  They liked my sound and put their Brazilian flavor on the tracks.  ”Slow Down” is an original song we came up with in a couple days down there with legendary bassist Arthur Maia and upcoming local talent Raphaello Mazzei.  ”Crystal Ball Brazil” is a kind of samba reggae with forro elements of my original track. ”

As a Venice native, did the city help inspire you when writing Indian Summer?
PETER: “Venice is a unique melting pot of cultures that definitely inspired this album.  I travel so much, but Venice is my lily pad.  When I come home I feel like a traveler in my own town; there’s always something new to discover and new people from around the globe to meet.   But my crew in Venice is the one constant in my life and a solid support system I really cherish.  So many undercover talents floating around this town.  We’re lucky to live in this pocket of LA.  I wouldn’t live anywhere else!”

WELO: How would you describe your music?
PETER: “This question is always tricky.  I have a beach beat style with a global twist.  I explore a bit of everything and spin it into something that feels right.  I like to think it’s feel good music with a little more grit.  It’s a great soundtrack for the summer.”

WELO: So you’ll be touring the West Coast this month, what cities will you be stopping in?
PETER: “We’re bouncing around the state a bit…We’ll be hitting Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo,  Doheny Beach, SF, Sebastopol, Caspar, SD, Hollywood and here in Venice!”

WELO: What can fans expect at a Peter Goetz show?
PETER: “I think people get the real thing:  raw soul and rhythms to shake their tail feathers.  It’s always a good time, mellow summery music with a couple of rocky numbers.  We try to take the audience on a ride and a journey across the globe.  We’re lucky to have a solid cross section of people that come through.  Plenty of good vibes, beauties and plenty of folks from around the globe.  Not a bad option if you’re looking to meet some like-minded folk from different walks of life. ”

WELO: When did you start playing and writing music?
PETER: “I started writing songs on my first trip to Spain when I was 20.  I lived in San Sebastian, a beautiful little surf town in the Basque country.  Travel journals became travel poems that eventually evolved into full fledged tunes.  Since then, I’ve continued to write on my journeys.  Adventures always seem to make for the best songs, whether I write on the road or reflect when I return.”

WELO: In addition to your music you are also a producer and have produced some popular shows- can you tell me more about that and how you got into the production world?
PETER: “I’ve been producing film and TV for about a decade now.  After I landed my first gig working on the show Survivor, I knew I wanted to travel for work.  It’s crazy how life unfolds…I met a Nat Geo producer on an airplane and dropped him my info, three months later I was living in a tent city of 300 people on Ko Taratao in Thailand working on Survivor V.  That was back in 2001, since then I’ve been to some of the most pristine, untouched corners of the world.  I never take this lifestyle for granted. I’ve been fortunate to explore and I feel a sense of responsibility to bring something back home to share in song or image with my friends and family.”

WELO: Can you tell us about your film Sofia, the documentary you wrote, directed, and produced?
PETER: “I was commissioned by Roxy/Quiksilver to write, direct and produce a bilingual doc about world champion surfer Sofia Mulanovich.  I signed on just as she was on the final stretch of her competitive tour on a quest to win the World Title.  If she was to win, she would become the first South American to claim the victory.  We didn’t know if she would take the title or not.

The film was shot in the surf mecca on the North Shore of Oahu and across Peru.  We used a talented photo journalist from the largest publication in Peru, El Commercio, as our narrator; his photos and voice were the connection between Hawaii and South America.  Renzo Giraldo’s (the journalist) coverage was the only source that connected the continent to their hero.   In the end, Sofia pulled it off and won the World Title for surfing.  It was a hell of a ride and we crafted an inspirational story of the power of one.  Sofia lifted the spirit of a rather downtrodden culture and we were there to witness the positive effects.  I’m honored to be a part of this project that captured a dynamic part of history.  It was a surreal experience connecting with a culture and telling their story.”

WELO: What’s next for Peter Goetz?
PETER: “I’ve been busy juggling directing/producing work with the music.  After my month long tour across Cali, I’ll be heading out to film an adventure series in Fiji, New Zealand and finishing up in Tasmania.  When I land in Australia I’ll pick up my Indian Summer Tour in the Southern Hemi promoting my new album to Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Hawaii, and Brazil.  I’ll release the new album in the states next Spring.  I’m excited to get this puppy out to the wanderers of the world.”

+++++ For more Information on Peter and  to get a sneak peak at his new album, Indian Summer visit his media collective site.++++++


About the author

Justin LaBaw-Rivers, chief ninja at WELO, loves to write about any random happenings in the music, art, & design scene. An artist himself & a lover of life, it's not uncommon to find this kid singing karoake or dancing with friends at local watering holes until the doors shut.

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