Charlie Souza, Eric Turner, Bill Lordan

Uncategorized March 26, 2024

Charlie Souza, Eric Turner, Bill Lordan

Charlie Souza, Eric Turner, and Bill Lordan formed a dynamic trio that released some high-quality recordings.

Souza embarked on tours, recorded albums, and graced stages alongside an illustrious array of artists including Tom Petty, Gregg Allman, Michel Colombier, the New Cactus Band, The New Rascals featuring Dino Danelli and Gene Cornish from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame alongside Bill Pascali of Vanilla Fudge, as well as Robin Trower’s drummer Bill Lordan. Additionally, he collaborated with Fred Willard, Bill Champlin, Chicago guitarist Donnie Dacus, and commenced his musical journey with The Tropics, nominees of the Florida Music Hall of Fame. Souza is also recognized as the author of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Autobiography “Live Your Dream” and Tampa Bay Music Roots: Images of America.

Together, Souza, Turner, and Lordan crafted a sound that was both technically impressive and emotionally resonant, pushing the boundaries of music. Their collaboration likely produced memorable performances and recordings that continue to inspire musicians and audiences alike.

Bill Lordan, Charlie Souza, Eric Turner

“Music is a constant inspiration”

How long did you work on the latest album?

Charlie Souza: Some of the tunes were written in the mid-’80s, and the rest of the tunes were collaborative efforts by myself and my music partner Eric Turner, as well as input from our drummer, Bill Lordan.

Eric Turner: As I recall, it took about 3 months, but more time was devoted to writing the album.

Where was it recorded?

Charlie Souza: The tracks were recorded at Dessert Moon, a studio in Anaheim, California, and some of the overdubs and keyboard work were recorded at the Poolside Studio in Hollywood, CA.

Tell us about the songs on it.

Charlie Souza: On the ‘9 Ball in the Corner Pocket’ album, I had signed a management agreement with Pete Bennett in New York, and so we put together a couple of tunes that were inspired by the fact that we had the same manager/promoter of the Beatles back in the day when they were with Apple Records.

‘New York City Dreams’ was one of the tunes we put together after having made several trips there in our combined career beginning with the Tropics, and later on I spent some time there with Gregg Allman, and joined Cactus in ’73. So New York City means a lot to us.

We added some female vocalists to dress up the backgrounds, and it came out almost like a rap tune, but the melody lines and the heavenly voices of our background singers add some soul to the project!

Eric Turner: ‘New York City Dreams’ was written by Charlie and myself. It was about Charlie’s visit to New York with Peter Bennett, who helped manage the Beatles and Stones. ‘Goin’ for Broke’ is a rockin’ song, ‘I’m Flyin’ is an avant-garde song in 6/8 time. ‘Lightnin’ Bolt’ is a rockin’ love song. ‘Chamber of Your Heart’ was written by the drummer Bill Lordan and myself. It’s a lovely ballad. ‘Bring It Back’ is a high-quality movie soundtrack. ‘Drive My Car’ by the Beatles is a worthy cover. ‘Angel on the Mountain’ is about a vision in Desert Hot Springs by Bill Lordan and myself. ’24 Hours a Day’ is a rocker by Charlie.

Original Charlie Souza Band in Los Angeles (1984) | Donnie Dacus, Charlie Souza, William “Smitty” Smith, Rick Jaeger, Todd Robinson

How would you compare it to your other albums? What makes the difference?

Charlie Souza: From the beginning of the creative process that started after the Tropics’ 30-year reunion, Eric Turner had said to me that he thought I had some good tunes and that we should record them.

So together with him and our drummer Bill Lordan, in 2000, we rehearsed and recorded eleven songs for my first album, ‘Live Your Dream,’ the title of the first song on the album.

After that, ‘9 Ball in the Corner Pocket’ was a natural progression into a fully collaborated effort by the band.

What gear was used?

Charlie Souza: I’m sure Eric Turner has a lot he can add to this!

I used my main axe at the time. It’s an original Tobias five-string bass with Bartolini pickups to resemble a Fender Jazz bass sound, only better!

Michael Tobias custom made the instrument as one of his first five-strings, and he made the neck to fit my hand, as well as the custom thumb rest.

His shop was on Vine St. just above Hollywood Blvd. as I kept going back there each time for custom adjustments.

Of course, in the studio, they ran my bass direct into the board and for live gigs, I used, and still use, my trusty Gallien Krueger 400 RB Bass Amp.

Eric Turner: I remember using the purple Marshall limited edition Blues Breaker reworked by Divided by 13 who does great work. Also had a few Custom Strats as well as a Jimi Hendrix Strat and a Custom Shop Strat and a guitar I built at Erickson guitars. My Boss GT3 was my fav multi-effects processor at the time. Also had a Les Paul custom shop as well as a Fender silverface Super Reverb with JBL’s converted to blackface specs. I had some Visual Sound effect pedals and an Eventide 3000.

You have been playing for a long time, do you get inspiration from still the same “muse” these days?

Charlie Souza: Music is a constant inspiration whether I’m listening to it or playing it. I’ve always said that when you hit that one special note, you’ll feel it in your soul and know that it’s the magic of the music, and that’s what keeps me inspired.

Bill Lordan, Adrian Tapia, Madelyn Jones, Charlie Souza, Alisha Pullen, Eric Turner

Eric Turner: I have just completed a new CD called ‘Midnight Train’. The Lord is my inspiration now. I play in church and have many upcoming concerts. Additionally, I work with the Full Throttle Band.

What are some future plans for you now?

Charlie Souza: I’m doing some work with The Florida Music Hall of Fame, and the new home for the museum and concert hall is going to be located on the Florida State Fair Grounds in Tampa. Things are taking shape, and I’m proud to serve on the board of Directors, honoring all that is Florida Music.

Are you planning to play some shows?

Charlie Souza: Since Guerssen has released the Bacchus album, we have our sights on a reunion concert. There are some possibilities shaping up now that they’re playing one of our songs on a local radio station.

What are some of the albums you are enjoying lately?

Charlie Souza: There are so many genres that I enjoy, from classical to Rock and Blues, and we can’t leave out some of the greatest Pop songs!

I’m still a big fan of Phil Collins, Genesis. I love those songs. Of course, I still listen to the Beatles, who were and are still the best songwriters in my opinion. And then, of course, some of the artists I have worked with take up a huge part of me being inspired by their music, Gregg Allman, Tom Petty, and many other artists I have recorded with to include the Rascals Music I played while in the band with Dino and Gene.

Eric Turner: I am enjoying Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Cream, and my new album.

Klemen Breznikar

Headline photo: Charlie Souza

Charlie Souza Official Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Bandcamp

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