A&E » Arts

Spotlight on local music: Papa Josh


Name: Papa Josh

Hometown: Bloomington, Indiana, planet Earth


Pique: When did you first get to the Sea to Sky region, and what brought you here?

PJ: I came to Whistler late summer of 2003 to play the Zoophorous Festival with San Francisco funk/rock/fusion group Global Funk. I fell in love with a crazy Whistler girl and got tired of bumming around in a van with three other headstrong musicians. In fall of ’04, I moved to the most beautiful, inspiring place I've ever seen.


Pique: What’s your instrument of choice (a.k.a. what do you play)?

PJ: Guitar. I also play drums, bass, percussion and vocals.


Pique: How were you introduced to music?

PJ: When my parents first brought me home, they put me between their stereo speakers and bombarded my ears with the best music of the ’60s and early ’70s. A few years down the road I picked up tennis rackets and rocked along to all that terrible early ’80s casio pop. When I was about nine years old, my grandfather passed on his old electric guitar and Fender amp. I began worshipping the guitar gods, Chuck Berry, Jimi Hendrix, Clapton, Santana. My high school exposed me to jazz and I slowly warmed up to swing rhythms and sophisticated harmony. Then I started checking out James Brown and got my jones for the funk. I had a three-piece band in high school that played rock covers and some originals. We played some bar gigs and then I would sit in with some of the local blues bands. I always had a huge passion for playing lead guitar and a thirst for playing soulful, mind blowing shit. I still love it, but I also like to just groove. I did the music school thing and was extremely fortunate to study with Garaj Mahal guitarist Fareed Haque, who cut out the bullshit and taught me what I needed to know. I've played with fantastic musicians over the years and always absorb as much as I can.


Pique: How do you describe your sound?