SUNDAY, OCTOBER 31ST, 2010
THE MOD CLUB THEATRE – TORONTO
Jambands.ca has 3 pairs of tickets to giveaway to see Matt Costa in Toronto at the Mod Club on October 31.
When Matt Costa sat down to write what would become Unfamiliar Faces, the follow-up to his 2005 debut full-length Songs We Sing, the singer/songwriter took his most treasured belongings and put them on a shelf — then stared at them and just let the memories flow. “That way I could see everything that I loved,” he explains (the collection included his favorite books, a giant wooden pipe, and a box of old 45-speed records from the late 1950s). “I let my imagination wander. Regular life isn’t as exciting as an imaginary life.”
He may thrive on imagination, but Costa’s real life has never been dull. He grew up next door to a pet cemetery, played trumpet and piano, gave his first impromptu performance on a houseboat, and focused more on skateboarding than school in his hometown of Huntington Beach, California. He was drawn to the freedom and improvisation of skating, and also says, “I discovered a lot of music through skating — B-sides that nobody else had heard that made me want to find more music.”
On the strength of the folky, beautiful Songs, which displays his gentle artistry and skillful acoustic guitar playing, Costa earned a rep as an L.A. buzz act, crisscrossed the U.S. in a van, and performed at all the major North American music festivals including Coachella, Lollapalooza, Sasquatch, Bonnaroo, and Austin City Limits among others. Invigorated by onstage collaborations with tour openers like Los Angeles rockers The 88 and Elvis Perkins, he returned to California and wrote nearly all of Unfamiliar Faces in Sacramento, then recorded the album in the spring of 2007 in Santa Ana, again with Dumont, even inviting Adam Merrin from The 88 to play keys on a few tracks. It’s Costa’s second release on Brushfire Records, the label co-founded by Jack Johnson, who has been a longtime supporter – the two fellow musicians have toured together several times and collaborated on numerous soundtrack projects.
Even for the fully initiated, Matt Costa is an enigma – a 25 year old, former skateboarder whose words and music recall some of the great troubadours of our time. Costa credits his diverse musical palette to the freedom and improvisation he experienced skating. “Any instrument that allows you the freedom to be creative, whether it be a skateboard or a canvas, it’s all a tangible way of discovering yourself,” says Costa.