Dan Patlansky is perhaps the finest guitar player out of South Africa today. The 30-year-old Blues Rock guitarist just released a new album, 20 Stones, and Dan was kind enough to give us the scoop on the album, share his thoughts on the state of Blues Rock, and more.
You spent a few years working on 20 Stones. Where did you draw inspiration from for the album?
For me the biggest inspiration is other players and musicians. That really does it for me. The direction we took on 20 Stones was a bit different in the sense that I wanted to marry my love of the Blues with my love of old school Rock N Roll. So a filthier, more dirty take on the Blues compared to my previous albums.
Who are your biggest influences?
Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, Albert and BB King, Joe Bonamassa, Philip Sayce, Derek Trucks, Audioslave. To name a few.
You spent some time in New Orleans before being forced to leave due to Hurricane Katrina. Is a return to the US in the works?
Without a doubt, I would love to hit the US again. It was an epic adventure the last time round. As a kid who loved the Blues growing up in South Africa, it was a dream come true getting the opportunity to perform in the great city of New Orleans. So I’m dead keen for that again.
You’re known as one of the best Blues guitarists in South Africa. Are there any other players in the area we should know about?
Thank you. South Africa has got a host of great players. Even though the market for this music is a lot smaller than most places. The first two to come to mind are, Guy Buttery (unbelievable finger style player) and Albert Frost (shit hot Blues player). Both great guys, and worthwhile checking out.
How do you feel about the overall state of Blues and Blues Rock music today?
I think Blues and Blues Rock music is in a very exciting space right now. Guys like Joe Bonamassa and Philip Sayce are doing wonders for all of us! The fact that an incredible artist like Joe can sell out the Royal Albert Hall, doing what he does, is awe inspiring for me! Every time I play a ‘non Blues Rock listener’ a guy like Philip Sayce or Joe, they instantly rethink what they are listening to. Here in South Africa I’ve noticed over the years a massive following in the student market, which means Blues Rock is going nowhere but up!
If you could share the stage with anyone who would you want to play with?
I would give a limb to share a stage with either Mr. Bonamassa or Mr. Sayce.
What’s next for you?
Well, we have started touring 20 Stones here in SA. And will continue to do so. My management are looking at some possibilities on touring outside of South Africa again, so hopefully that all comes together real soon. Otherwise just playing my ass off!
Interview by Pete Francis