It’s not every day that a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame comes into town. For Dave Krusen, who was the original drummer on Pearl Jam’s album “Ten,” the Pete RG show — slated to hit Jazzbones Nov. 3 — is a homecoming. Krusen is currently working behind his kit for Pete RG’s band of merry men (and women) on their West Coast tour.
Krusen was born in Tacoma and was on the scene just as grunge music was beginning to come kicking and screaming out of the boozy taverns and music clubs of Seattle in the early 90s. Krusen has been a sought-after studio and concert percussionist now for decades.
In the 26 years between Pearl Jam and his present gig with Pete RG, Krusen has been involved with a number of other bands and projects: Hovercraft, Diamond Star Halo, Candlebox, Unified Theory and The Hung White Ponies are all groups that have benefited from Krusen’s rhythmic wizardry.
Pete RG is an American singer/songwriter/producer from Los Angeles. The name RG is taken from his childhood nickname, Argy, an abbreviation of his lengthy, Greek last name, Argyropoulos. He is currently on tour to support his third album, “Tender Souls.” The rest of the band consists of Brina Kabler (keyboards, vocals), Adam Kury (bass), Kevin Haaland (lead guitar) and, of course, Krusen on the drums.
Born in Los Angeles to Greek immigrants, Pete RG grew up in a musical household. As working musicians, his parents inspired him to learn a variety of instruments and start playing band gigs while in college. Beginning in 1998 and up into 2007, he was the principal songwriter and lead singer with the popular indie band, Last December.
“As a songwriter, I’m always trying to express myself as best I can, lyrically and musically,” RG says. On ‘Tender Souls’ I feel I was able to do that without cutting corners or falling back into ambiguity. It’s a really good picture of where I’m at, with a lot of experience under my belt but also a lot of optimism.”
Pete RG credits Kabler for helping him raise the bar on “Tender Souls” and on the road. “She’s my engineer, co-producer, mixer, keyboardist — and my fiancée,” he notes. “Whether onstage or in sessions, we’ve established a great give-and-take, where we learn from each other. We’re very much on the same level in terms of taste and inspiration. She helps me focus on what I do best. Brina is a huge part of everything I do.”
The show will be hosted by Tacoma’s dynamic Big Wheel Stunt Show, who live by the motto “Rock unto others as you would have others rock unto you.” The group has been purveyors of high-energy, arena blues-rock around the Pacific Northwest since 2009. Formerly a power trio, they have just announced the addition of Puget Sound veteran rocker Fred Speakman (guitar). The rest of the group still consists of Evan Nagle (guitar), Justin Gimse (drums) and Jake Melius (bass). The band is set to release their fourth full-length album on Dec. 15.