The Adam Ezra Group: wandering home
By: Geoff Spillane, August 5, 2011
Jeff Gerew - The Adam Ezra Group breaks on through to the other side.
Fresh off a tour of the mid-Atlantic and New York City, the Adam Ezra Group will once again be playing this year's Naukabout Music Festival. Frontman Adam Ezra hails from the Boston area, but he’s lived in South Africa, traveled the US in a “kidnapper van with no windows,” worked on a dairy farm in Canada, spent time volunteering for the relief effort in Kosovo, and worked as a “recess guy” at an elementary school in Chicago.
After the wanderlust had waned, Ezra returned to Boston in 2002 and formed a band, releasing a CD that was paid for by doing carpentry work for the owner of the recording studio. The ensuing years, he says, have been “a pretty fun ride.”
InsideOUT caught up with the man himself, in preparation for his Naukabout splash.
InsideOUT: How would you define your music and band?
AE: We have a hard time defining our niche. I’m a singer/songwriter playing with a great band of musicians. They inspire me. We take elements of folk, bluegrass, world beat, funk, and rhythm and blues and swirl it all together. For lack of a better name, we refer to our sound as “roots rock.”
I/O: You’re from Wayland. How did you deal with the affluent suburban Boston/Metro West vibe? Ever been to the Chateau Dudley (a well-known watering hole in Wayland)?
AE: Wayland was very interesting. I was happy as a clam growing up as a happy little athlete, playing lacrosse in a perfect utopia. Then, I went to Colgate University in upstate New York.
It was a sheltered existence, that’s why I wanted to travel so much and broaden my perspective. Music helped me define myself.
Of course I’ve been to the Chateau Dudley! I was there recently. It’s a little fishing shack turned into a bar that somehow must be “grandfathered” in Wayland.
I/O: You’ve played with quite a few well known musicians over the years. Can you name a few?
AE: Playing with Rusted Root was a blast. We’ve also played with Ryan Montbleau and Barefoot Truth—two other “Naukabouters”—as well as Little Feat, Jason Mraz, Ziggy Marley, Los Lobos, Cracker, and Judy Collins. We’ll be playing with Dwight Yoakam and Edwin McCain later this summer.
I/O: Do you like the Cape? Have you been here a lot?
AE: Oh, yeah. Growing up, I used to spend summers at Nauset Beach in Orleans. I love this place.
I/O: You played Naukabout last year. Any thoughts about the festival and what fans can expect?
AE: It is perfect. The prospect of going to the Cape and playing outside at sunset is just a perfect day.
We’ll be pulling a “double” on Saturday, so we’ll be more than ready to hit the Naukabout stage. Earlier in the day, we’ll be at the PanMass Challenge during its stop at the Maritime Academy in Bourne. We try to dedicate 25% of our tour to gigs that benefit activist charities.
I/O: Any parting words for I/O readers?
AE: Don’t miss Naukabout! It will be the party of the summer on Cape Cod!