Grace Potter on Women in Music: "We're in This Weird Separate Category, Doesn't Make Sense"
|Photo by Williams+Hirakawa|
As a musician with ladyparts, Potter doesn't feel any less rock 'n' roll. And she definitely shouldn't. Just one listen to the group's latest record, 2012's The Lion the Beast the Beat, is proof.
Produced and engineered by Grammy winner Jim Scott (Red Hot Chili Peppers' Californication) and featuring several tracks coproduced and co-written by the Black Keys' Dan Auerbach, The Lion the Beat the Beat is a wide-ranging 45-minute showcase of topnotch musicianship and remarkably powerful lead vocals.
However, it could've easily become an uncomfortably commercial pop record had Potter not removed herself from the recording process when she began to feel disconnected from the music.
"I knew that at the heart of what we were doing -- regardless of what kind of record sales we were looking for -- there was a dangerous line being walked, where we were bordering on major, pop, over-the-top success, with some of the songs that I had written and some of the songs that we were pumping out," she says. "I didn't want that."
To clear her mind, Potter embarked on a personal adventure, camping alone in California and Arizona before flying home to Vermont to hit the hiking trails.
"That was a big step for me, because I don't like stopping," she says. "Stopping is the opposite of what I do all the time."
Potter found further solace in the Caribbean and spent an isolated week writing new music there, eventually returning to California to finish the record.