I heard Tommy Altair of the BlueSphere band recently over at the Coastal Coffee Roasters in late September and thought they had a unique funky groove.
It was hard to classify the music totally, but it definitely has rock, soul, funk and a blues grooves in it. They’ll be back at Coastal Coffee Roasters on Oct. 27 sharing the stage as they often do with the Scotty Oliver Band which also plays a lot around town. Find more at https://www.facebook.com/BlueSphere-985734551599963/ and https://www.reverbnation.com/bluesphere
Regan: Why “BlueSphere”—is it to do with the earth, the globe? Where and when did the band begin?
Tommy Altair: It is BlueSphere with a capital S and yes, it is to do with the earth and it is also a reminder of the origin of all things and of human nature. This ensemble has been together for almost a year.
The band members are as follows: Tommy Altair, lead singer; Scott Oliver, lead guitarist and vocals; Alan Brisendine, drums; Nick Carusos, bass; and Dave Groninger, rhythm guitar.
We have known Nick and Alan for quite some time. Alan is well known on the music scene and is an amazing sax and keys player as well. Nick thumps on bass. We’ve wanted to play with Nick since his days in “The Key Of Q.”
Dave moved down here from Pennsylvania a few years back and was playing with Scott in The Scotty Oliver Band and his personality just fit.
Regan: Your band is very tight and your vocals are strong—did you ever take voice lessons? Just incredible sound. How did you find your bandmates?
Altair: No, I never took vocal lessons. Scott and I have been playing together in bands most of our lives.
We grew up in Columbia. He’s basically my brother and we co-write a lot of music. Scott and I started BlueSphere off a song we wrote called Blue Sphere. It’s about survivors of a catastrophic event on Mars who escaped to restart life on Earth. I guess we’re all Martians, after all.
We have known Nick and Alan for quite some time. Dave moved down here a few years back and was playing with Scott in The Scotty Oliver Band and his personality just fit.
Regan: You call your music “rock”—but it definitely has a lot of soul and groove in it. Who are your main influences?
Altair: The reason it is a bit hard to define our sound is because of so many influences. We would rather the audience define our music for themselves. Influences are any music that moves you. The sphere of influence can be any genre.
Regan: What are your favorite songs you’ve written and why, and are there some core messages you’re trying to convey?
Altair: We like “New Song” a lot; it is about sex, drugs, and rock and roll. It’s about being in the moment. “America” is another and is a political song to do with the current state of affairs in the world. “Drive” is one we have not recorded yet but have played live and have had a great response and is about how you love the way you want to be loved. Love and awareness are missing in the world and we need that in music more than ever.
Regan: Do you have a CD out yet? Your band performs around here and Greater Charleston? Where else have you played?
Altair: No CD at the moment and no video but we are working on it. We have a few live recordings out which you can find on Reverbnation.com and YouTube just to get an idea if you have never seen or heard us. We have played at The Tin Roof, Coastal Coffee Roasters, the Wind Jammer, and the South Of Broadway Theater, to name a few.
We are working on some Chicago dates for the spring that we are really excited about.
Regan: Where would you like the band to go next in terms of growth and exposure (radio, etc.)?
Altair: We want the world. It is in our name, of course. We would love to be heard and seen on all platforms and tour the world and make music for a living. BlueSphere is ready.
Regan: Other thoughts about your music and the music scene?
Altair: Our music is forever changing and we try to focus on what we do. There is a lot of great music out there but not enough venues to showcase all of the talent.
Mary E. Regan, Columnist, is a Publicist with her ProPublicist consultancy. Story ideas? Email: Mary@ProPublicist.com.