Local Band Little King Celebrating 25 Years Of Rocking El Paso
Making music is a truly rewarding feeling. Many bands stay together for a few years and stop; maybe for work reasons, or family, or maybe that love disappears. But some do manage to stick around & make music for years, sometimes decades. One local band in particular, Little King, has been making music since 1996; releasing 7 albums in total. They will be celebrating their 25th anniversary of making music in 2022.
When I talked to the man behind Little King, Ryan Rosoff, I asked him if he ever thought he'd be making music for this long. To which he responded:
- "Absolutely, although when I started in 1997, I didn't know ANYTHING about creating music, longevity, the "team dynamics" of keeping it going, and so much more. Yeah...25-year old me was a moron. But an EAGER moron!
- I believe you and I share a hero archetype in Rush/Neil Peart. So, I don't have to overly explain how much they shaped my view on how it's supposed to be done in the music business. 40 years, 19 studio albums and a million more live records (a REAL band should be able to crush their catalog in concert), and just an ethos of humor, integrity, musicianship, and progressive ideals. This speaks to me as much today as it did when Little King released the first album, Transmountain, in 1997.
- Legacy is important to me, so much so that we made a record called Legacy of Fools back in 2008. Yes...I might be the "fool!" But it's been pretty gratifying over the last few months going through the entire back-catalog and figuring out which songs to play live on this 25th Anniversary Tour. The ones that made the cut are all tunes I am proud of, and I think they flow and tell a story, both musically and lyrically, that our audience will relate to Little King has changed a lot over time...but what has remained constant is the joy we put into writing and recording and the ambition that keeps the train rolling"
When you've been making music so long, you're bound to have many accomplishments in your career. So when I asked Ryan to list the one(s) he was most proud of, this was his response:
- "I am proud of the cumulative efforts that bring us to this retrospective. I suppose I could point to certain songs and say that those were achievements, to a certain extent. "Amuse De Q" (the title song from the last record), "Happy Home," "Bombs Away," "Collateral Damage," "Hate Counter,""How Could You?"...they all still fully resonant with me.Little King was also lucky enough to work with Rush's first producer, Terry Brown, back in 2004 on the Virus Divine album. He mixed the 8 songs, and I spent the better part of 2 weeks in Toronto working with "Broon" at his studio. Funny thing...Terry is one of the most accomplished producers of all time (not just Rush), but he's the most humble, funny, and lively dude. We became friends and that in and of itself is pretty cool.We haven't been a live, touring band for the better part of 15 years...This really came about because I was working hard on a career (I own a corporate team building company in San Jose) and raising a couple kiddos, mostly as a single dad. Touring, while fun and gratifying, just didn't make sense financially or logistically. Now that my life has smoothed out a bit, as has Eddy's, we are in a better place to make our live show a reality. THAT will be an accomplishment, too"
My final question for Ryan was "how do you stay creative& not tired making music for so many years?"
- "I LOVE to play the guitar, I LOVE writing words, I LOVE the studio and the musicians and the art and and and...the whole process is more exciting to me now that it was 25 years ago. Probably because I'm so comfortable and I understand it all better. I am a way better player and arranger now, too...It helps to have amazing players on the music as well...Eddy Garcia on drums, Manny Tejeda on bass, Jessica Flores singing, David Hamilton and Christina Hernandez on cello and violin, respectively. This is our live lineup, too. I subscribe to the theory that surrounding yourself with people who are better than me will push the final result into a place I would have never found otherwise. Those players push me, and I am very grateful for their collaborative spirit. El Paso...how I love thee. Too much time has passed since we've seen you from a stage. Let's fix that! 9/18/22 at the fabulous Rockhouse! Can't wait to entertain you all."
You can see more details for Little King's 25th Anniversary concert, September 18th, on The Rockhouse's Facebook page.