SUSTO performs ‘Rogue Acoustic’ album at Service Brewing Co in Savannah
SUSTO’s Justin Osborne began his musical journey as a child by sneaking around on his late grandfather’s old Yamaha acoustic guitar, a family heirloom that he and his brothers were not allowed to touch by their parents. lest they break it. .
Now an adult, Osborne holds the guitar on the cover of his live album, “Rogue Acoustic”; Recorded live at the Royal American in Charleston, South Carolina.
Osborne’s brother actually broke the neck of the guitar, but it’s been fixed since. “The initial fear of my parents and the reason they hid it from us actually came true down the line,” Osborne recalls. “But, I think he always served his purpose. It was my grandfather’s guitar, he never learned to play it and left it to us. All my brothers learned to play this guitar and I became a songwriter on this guitar.
SUSTO makes a stop at Service Brewing Company on his “Rogue Acoustic” tour (although his grandfather’s guitar remains at home). Osborne will be joined on stage by drummer and supporting artist Rose Hotel, making SUSTO a trio, a break from their usual solo and group shows.
“It’s definitely a different vibe, but not necessarily in a bad way,” Osborne said. “It’s good because in some ways we have the vulnerability that you have in a solo show, but it’s also good to have the drums and the punch that goes with a full band.”
After three excellent Wilco-style folk / rock / alt-country albums, and years of touring, Osborne got the idea to record a stripped-down live album at his favorite bar in his hometown of Charleston.
“I had toured a lot with the whole band and I was kind of wrapping up the album cycle for my last album, ‘Ever Since I Lost My Mind,’” Osborne explained. “I had been hired to do a few festival shows where I was a campfire performer, where it was late at night and I would go out and command a crowd with no amplification, standing on a picnic table around. a fire. There was something raw about it that really turned me on. Music is always fun and exciting, but back then I was looking for a new way to have fun with it. That’s when I got the idea to capture a similar type of energy.
Osborne decided to record at the Royal American where he worked, built his band, and always sold out.
“I had the idea to make the live album an audible watermark on our music scene.”
There was a time when Osborne had given up on music. Prior to forming SUSTO, Osborne had spent several years working with another band, trying to break into the music scene. Osborne lost confidence and decided to pursue studies in anthropology. Interested in Latin American politics, Osborne studied abroad in Cuba where he rediscovered his desire to write music.
“It was naive,” Osborne said of the music shutdown. “I was barely in my mid-twenties, but felt like I had worked forever when I had only been working for a few years. I gave up, but going to Cuba, it was really the people I became friends with who helped me regain my confidence to do so. This is also what I learned about being more open as an artist and being a little more courageous about what I was ready to say and how much I wanted to be honest. .
“I started writing songs when I was fifteen, but I always did and I shared them with my parents, and I held back a bit because I knew my mom was going to hear my albums, so I didn’t want to say how I really felt or what I had done.
Osborne also discovered an interest in the trova, a Cuban genre of troubadour music that is often politically subversive, denominational, sacrilegious and risky. Trova didn’t change Osborne’s sound, but it did help him find his courage.
“It inspired me to be a little more daring and look around and try to describe what I saw as a songwriter in a way that wasn’t censored by worrying about it. than others might think, ”Osborne said. “It wasn’t like I was doing something revolutionary, it was just, in my own life I let go of the ‘child / parent’ mentality of not wanting to disappoint my parents. In Cuba I reached a Rubicon where I realized that this art form is my therapy and if I really want to let it work for me I have to be more honest and dive back into it.
Osborne jokes about how he re-engaged in music by getting a tattoo on his fingers “ACID BOYS” (now his record company name) to make sure he could never find a “real one again.” ” job.
Osborne named his group SUSTO after a Latin American term that refers to a state of constant spiritual panic. The letters SUSTO also appear in Osborne’s name.
Now married to a two-year-old daughter, the feeling of susto still applies to her life and her music. Osborne’s daughter was born six months before the pandemic struck and her father also died during the pandemic.
“It’s definitely still there,” Osborne said. “The theme of SUSTO is to face this existential fear or face this susto head-on and be open about it, but also to be optimistic and try to find ways to stay positive and face the many blows of life. That’s why I named the group SUSTO at the beginning. I decided to name the band after deciding to name the album I was working on. This thread continues in all of our albums.
“Becoming a dad is the scariest thing and the most rewarding at the same time,” Osborne added. “This new capacity to love opened up, but also a new capacity to worry. Everything seems to have higher stakes, but it was an amazing experience.
Being off the road during COVID-19 has given Osborne time to spend with his family and see his daughter’s milestones like learning to walk and speak. He also returned to the studio with his longtime friend and producer Wolfgang Zimmerman to record his next album, which is slated for release this fall.
SUSTO’s latest album was produced by Ian Fitchuck (Kacey Musgraves’ Golden Hour) and released on Rounder Records. Osborne has enjoyed his experience with a big label, but is much happier to take his time at home and practice his music at his own pace in a studio which is only ten minutes from his home.
“We were able to go deeper, explore more and bring in collaborators, and that’s the approach we developed with the first two albums, before we created the whole label, a big studio thing,” Osborne said.
“I really enjoyed it because we worked at our own pace, we got to explore, and I’m really excited to share what we did because I’m so proud of it. It makes me happy to hear it.
IF YOU ARE GOING TO
WHAT: SUSTO with Rose Hotel
WHEN: Friday at 6.30 p.m.
O: Service Brewing Company, 574 Indian St.
COT: $ 10-15