When live shows were a thing, it was nearly certain that one could find The Ghost Notes playing a show any given weekend. A cover band that often plays the music of the Grateful Dead, the group found its groove playing often at the Big Rock Pub. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/TheGhostNotess. Rob Peterson—one of the most in-demand percussionists in the area—is the backbone of the group, and is the latest to take The Lucky 13; here are his answers.
What was the first concert you attended?
Red Hot Chili Peppers and Mary’s Danish at the Long Beach Arena on the Mother’s Milk tour. Both bands killed it!
What was the first album you owned?
A Chipmunks Christmas album.
What bands are you listening to right now?
Most of the time, my music library cycles on random, which leads to Debussy back to back with Eminem, to Marty Robbins, to Bad Brains, followed by some Herbie or Miles (or the combo) and then some Meshuggah to Elis Regina with a Fishbone chaser, and on and on. That being said, Throw the Goat’s “Capitol Hell” has been getting some focused play time lately, as well as Brazilian artist Vanessa Moreno.
What artist, genre or musical trend does everyone love, but you don’t get?
Some of the stuff on pop radio makes me scratch my head and wonder what the appeal is, but for the most part, I can get behind or at least respect anything or any style that is done well, even if it’s not my cup of tea.
What musical act, current or defunct, would you most like to see perform live?
Nothing beats the energy or stage presence of the Fishbone shows I saw in the ’90s. They have been and probably still are my favorite live band. That being said, I have been fortunate enough to be in Brazil during Carnival a couple times, and the music and pageantry is awesome (literally), so pick almost any afro bloco or samba school, and the show is going to be off the hook! I followed Bloco Ilê Aiyê for a portion of their Carnival route in 2007 and had one of the most eye-opening and inspiring musical moments of my life.
What’s your favorite musical guilty pleasure?
The Fiddler on the Roof soundtrack, followed closely by E-40.
What’s your favorite music venue?
That’s a tough question. I have seen and played shows in a grip of venues that could compete as my favorite for various reasons, but Rhythm and Brews is the venue that will forever hold the top spot in my heart. The shows I saw there, and the experiences I had both on and off stage, and the love I have for that particular time in our music scene could fill a book.
What’s the one song lyric you can’t get out of your head?
Recently, it’s a line from an upcoming Parosella release I’m recording drums on called “Glue.” The line is: “You would never forsake our days.” In general, though, there are a lot of lyrics that will command a spot in my head at any given time, usually associated with something I experienced in a moment. My life kind of gets narrated in song lyrics daily.
What band or artist changed your life? How?
There have been many life-changing musical moments for me, and many bands and artists that have had profound effects on my life and perceptions. I’d have to say that Mötley Crüe, and specifically Tommy Lee, changed my life significantly. When I saw Tommy flipping upside down in his drum kit in the “Wild Side” video, I was sold. Drums and, by proxy, music became the focus.
You have one question to ask one musician. What’s the question, and who are you asking?
I’d ask Larnell Lewis if I could take private lessons with him.
What song would you like played at your funeral?
Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?
I’d be taking a figurative bullet to the head. I guess three albums that I can’t imagine not getting to ever hear again would be Pink Floyd’s Animals, Joni Mitchell’s Blue and Fishbone’s Give a Monkey a Brain and He’ll Swear He’s the Center of the Universe, but, yeah, I could easily have mentioned 20-plus other albums I feel the same way about.
What song should everyone listen to right now?
“Unyielding Conditioning” by Fishbone.