So, what do we have today in this little calendar of advent surprises? Well, we could have the children, after their experience the other day with the box of ‘goodies’ , trolling the ancient yule-tide carol. But alas, this is what we are doing re that.
With this lot too.
and what we are going for is something a little more upbeat…
okay, so that wasn’t taken yesterday….How’s this instead?
The legendary Mr Tali Icepack Jackson who hasn’t just played with more greats than you and I could ping a string at, he’s pretty damn great himself and it’s my absolute privilege, having met him on twitter land —lol! one day when the gale was blasting both sides of the pond — to have him here today, chewing the fat and spilling a few secrets. Out of the blue, Tali has been amazingly kind to me. It’s what I love most about this crazy biz that you can meet the most amazing people and better still, get to know them. I just hope you are not going to get awkward and want to hear from these carol singers instead…
Shey. Icepack, firstly my jaw is on the deck, please let me pick it up in order to continue. You’ve played, and, or recorded with, Bob Dylan, Ella Fitzgerald–who I adore–
Bette Midler, The Monkees,
Mike Bloomfield, John Scofield, Bonnie Raitt, to name a few, a very big question here, now that I have picked my jaw back up, but how did some of that feel?
Tali Icepack Jackson -It felt like I was on a cloud working with some of the biggest names in the music industry.
Shey. SO we are drawing up our chairs here….because I also see from this interview here, let’s just quote it re a certain all night jam-
BOB MARLEY, myself and a French soap opera TV star jammed all night and into the next day at a friend’s loft.
can you tell us if there’s been some favs there in terms of working with all these greats?
Tali Icepack Jackson – Working with Ella Fitzgerald, who was a walk-on at a gigantic convention in Las Vegas, was a total surprise and to just have her turn around and give me that famous smile is a moment I will never forget. Also, working with famous bass legends Harvey Brooks (Bob Dylan, Electric Flag), Will Lee (David Letterman), Doug Lubahn (Doors), Rick Danko (The Band), Roger Troy (Mike Bloomfield) to name a few was truly an honor. You can always tell when a drummer and a bass player fit together like hand and glove.
Shey. It’s ok, I won’t ask about the worst……
Tali Icepack Jackson. There is never a worst, I learn from everyone I work with good, or bad!
Shey. Yeah. A bit like life itself! Okay, another biggie, I’m pretty sure looking at the length of time you’ve been playing, these artists were honored to play with you! But are there any felt honored to play with?
Tali Icepack Jackson. I have learned from everyone I’ve worked with. I don’t know if they were honoured to work with me! But I was truly honored to work with them.
Shey. Obviously you’re a pretty damned fine musician yourself—a Cool Blues Cat, I’ve seen you described as–what started it for you?
Tali Icepack Jackson. My junior high school music teacher during our first music class, trying to determine who would play or sing what, asked us all to #1 sing & #2 blow into a horn. Neither worked for me or came naturally so he asked me to go into the closet stacked with musical instruments and I dragged out the drum set.
Shey. A defining moment. And so a legend was born. Drums, bass, guitar and percussion. Anything you don’t play?
Tali Icepack Jackson – It’s not like I can play guitar like Eric Clapton, or bass like one of the legends I mentioned above but drums is my primary instrument and I can play the other instruments good enough to lay down an adequate bass or rhythm guitar line.
or bang out something on a keyboard. which I did on my first CD ‘BK2SQ!’, nothing fancy but adequate. the legendary Al Kooper showed up at an early Bob Dylan session hired as a guitar player, saw Mike Bloomfield was also there and knew he would not be playing guitar so he sat down at the organ and was doodling and Bob Dylan heard him and said that’s perfect for the song ‘Like A Rolling Stone’.
Bob Dylan was never shy about using someone inexperienced on an instrument to play it. I was asked to play on his Rolling Thunder Tour, missed the phone call to record Hurricane Carter so he used the keyboard player on drums and if you listen, well listen to the drums. I would love the opportunity to work with Bob Dylan again.
Shey. Can you tell us about your own musical influences?
Talu Icepack Jackson. Gene Krupa and any 1930s or 1940s drummer, Sly and the Family Stone, The Chambers Brothers, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, James Brown,
Lovin’ Spoonful, The Beatles and all of the British invasion bands, any blues guitar & keyboard player from the 1920s thru the 1950s i.e. Guitar Slim, Charles Brown, Roosevelt Sykes, Slim Harpo, Lil Brother Montgomery, Buddy Guy, T-Bone Walker, Jimmy Reed, Sunnyland Slim, I could go on for days. I’ll listen to everything and make a mental note when I hear something that I like.
Speaking of influences, in the summertime my brother and I would leave our windows open so we could hear the music from this club called the ‘Cottage Inn’ which had some awesome music including pre Lovin’ Spoonful members and other people who would go on to be legends in the music biz.
Check the pic on this website with pre Lovin’ Spoonful members at the club about 50 yards down the road!
Shey. Nowadays you live in New York….Where it’s kind of freezing… A bit like sunny Scotland….
Tali Icepack Jackson. I was born in New York city and grew up on Long Island and still live at the end in Montauk.
When I was growing up I was not a cold weather person and still remember my mother waking us up in the winter for school and looking out the window and seeing snow. I would just sit there with a blanket over my head, watching the 3 Stooges and cartoons and listening to the radio station that influenced me the most as a teenager. They just celebrated their 50th anniversary. I can’t get enough of the West Coast weather!
Shey. And you make a lot of sweet music just the same!
Tali Icepack Jackson. Well thank you, I try my best and learned from doing a lot of commercials to hold myself accountable for what I play before the public hears it!! It also has to with the mix and the people you work with to hold themselves accountable instead of letting the person mixing the music to find your mistakes while he mixing. It’s better to stop the song while recording or fixing it in the studio before it goes to the person mixing the song.
Shey. You make appearances too…
Tali Icepack Jackson. Appearances will be more often after the 2nd CD is completed. I must take the time to thank all of the people who have supported me and have helped promote the first CD even though they did not participate in the making of it. That is truly an honor and I don’t plan to let them down with the 2nd CD.
Shey. Tali, I doubt that very much. But I know you are keen to get that CD out there. Where do you mainly find your material?
Tali Icepack Jackson. I am not a true songwriter. I dream up some songs or someone will say something that sparks an idea and i have friends who are awesome songwriters.
Shey. So what’s next for Tali Icepack Jackson?
Tali Icepack Jackson. The CD tentatively titled BK2BIZ, which is mapped out and recording is in progress. I will be recording on the East and West coasts. Most of the legends will be returning plus even more unbelievable legendary musicians who you hear on the radio everyday, like the legends on the first CD.
Shey. Well having that heard that because you were kind enough to send me a copy I am tapping my fingers here…just waiting. I am also dying to ask–especially as we’re being hammered by icy blasts here in Scotland–how did you come up with the name ‘Icepack.’
Tali Icepack Jackson. I was working at a local K-Mart style store and I was the Stock Room Manager and some of the managers were robbing the place blind.
Shey. Not you I hope Tali!
Tali Icepack Jackson. Uhh! To keep me occupied the managers had me work on this project while they carried everything out the back door. The project included heavy lifting which sprained both of my shoulders.
Shey. Right… As you do.
Tali Icepack Jackson. At the time I was playing with a blues band called the MOJOS and the lady cook would come out and put ICEPACKS on my shoulders as I was playing. One night the guitar player turned around and said your nickname is ICEPACK. that was around 1993. I think the name has stuck!
Shey. It only remains for me to thank you for taking the time to come here today. WELL, it doesn’t exactly. I have to say I have been listening to ‘BK2SQ!’ and I am going to be reviewing it but you might as well know, I love it. Especially the mixture of rock, jazz and blues. No wonder on the Reverbnation Charts it is listed
blues rank USA #3
blues rank GLOBAL #4
blues rank Across All Genres #294 out of over 3
Please catch up with Icepack here. http://www.rvrb.me/fan_reach/pt?eid=A667299___lnk1009&url=https://www.youtube.com/user/ICEPACKJACKSON/featured?view_as%3Dpublic