For more than five years now, Berlin-based guitarist/vocalist Christian Peters has been working ceaselessly to bring his band Samsara Blues Experiment to the forefront of heavy psychedelic consciousness. From touring the West Coast of the US before they even had an album released to graphic design work to founding his own label, Electric Magic Records in order to bolster other acts — having an outlet for a collection of solo recordings released under the name Soulitude didn’t hurt either — to playing fests like Roadburn, the Desertfests, Freak Valley and many more, as well as touring, SBE has taken the harder road of getting their name out. At the same time, Peters has been at the fore of Samsara Blues Experiment‘s creative development since the start, their three albums — 2013′s Waiting for the Flood (review here), 2011′s Revelation and Mystery (review here) and 2009′s Long Distance Trip (review here) — showcasing a fluid psychedelia both creatively open and propelled by rich tonality. On both levels, the work of Peters and his bandmates has begun to pay off.
When I sent him the Questionnaire to fill out, Peters was on a well-earned vacation — no computer — but back to the grind, he wasted no time in sending back his answers, which I think you’ll enjoy reading:
The Obelisk Questionnaire: Christian Peters
How did you come to do what you do?
I started playing guitar at the age of 10. My father, more or less, forced me to learn an instrument at that time, so you can imagine how “happy” I was back then with playing Folk and Classical guitar. Every day at least one half-hour was my torment as a kid, really. I didn’t touch my guitar for one year when I was around 15 or 16, but then got finally addicted to music and so started to teach myself E-Guitar and all (or most of) the other instruments I play today.
Describe your first musical memory.
Singing tradional German Folk songs in the car with my Mom and Dad, all together. I may have been around 4 or 5 years old.
Describe your best musical memory to date.
First rehearsal with my first band, back in 1999. First professional recording, later then. Releasing a first LP record with Terraplane in 2007. Playing in San Francisco with SBE in 2009. Well, there seem to be plenty of good memories, but these are the best up to date.
When was a time when a firmly held belief was tested?
All the time, somehow.
Where do you feel artistic progression leads?
Happiness perhaps? For instance I am seldomly really happy with recordings. But then sometimes I am not even sure if there´s much progression left for me, haha. Then I sometimes feel like being trapped in that certain picture, even if the frame seems pretty wide.
How do you define success?
Being happy with what I do.
What is something you have seen that you wish you hadn’t?
All the things I´ve seen make me who I am, not all was pretty. I have seen sickness, poverty, lethargy, loneliness and death and more. It´s what most of us see in their fair share — some more, some less, some earlier and some later. Life isn´t always pretty, so let´s deal with it and write some songs about it to ease the pain. That´s how I try to get along.
Describe something you haven’t created yet that you’d like to create.
Much better albums. So let´s progress!
Something non-musical that you’re looking forward to?
NFL season 2014 and of course my next meal ;-).