Live from the Boom Room is a live music video series featuring live performances recorded in the Blip Blap Video HQ bunker in St. Louis, Mo. Learn more about Blip Blap Video at blipblapvideo.com, or follow them on Instagram and YouTube.
This week’s episode features Nick Gusman performing his original, “If Tomorrow Could Forget.”
About this week’s artist:
Nick Gusman sings about stray dogs, riverboats, and his family’s Southern Missouri homestead with the kind of passion most artists reserve for songs about love and heartbreak. That’s because Gusman’s songs are about love – and identity and freedom and other big ideas – wrapped in lyrics about things he encounters in his daily life. As his writing and performing skills have developed, he’s gained an equally passionate, growing audience, not just in his native St. Louis, but across the U.S.
He’s toured extensively in this country and his band, Nick Gusman and The Coyotes, are scheduled for their second European tour in October 2023. Nick released his debut solo album in 2018 and following that, The Coyotes’ self-titled album in 2021. Currently Nick is finishing up another full-length solo album and The Coyotes just finished a new full-length album as well. Releases are planned for 2024 with a follow-up US tour.
What brought you to this point in your life as a working St. Louis artist?
I turned to music at age 19. I quickly realized that I could spend hours a day, sometimes literally all waking hours of the day, playing and writing and performing and never once get bored of it. I can only get exhausted and challenged and inspired by creating art. Sometimes I need rest from it though. So I made friends who are like myself and eventually I must have assimilated into the network of creators here in St. Louis. My close friends are now members of my band. We blow our money we earn performing and selling our art to produce more of it and perform it in new places around the world.
What inspires your music?
I’ll just talk about one of way I’m inspired. I don’t sleep too well. I stay up late and get up early, often. I dream a ton though. I have a hunch that my ADHD keeps my brain active when I sleep. Since I’m often working on songs in my head when awake, when I fall asleep my brain keeps working on them subconsciously. So, sorta often, I hear songs in my dreams. Words, melodies, a radio, see bands playing. It’s never me playing the music. Recently I was watching a music video in my dream and I really was enjoying the song and the band. So I wake up from these dreams in the dead of night. 3:00am or so. I can remember the songs and still hear them. I realize it isn’t a real song yet. I slug myself outta bed and to my piano or guitar and find the key that I hear. Then play the melody. Put down any words and experiment a little and record a demo. Back to sleep. I return to the demos later and they have a vibe or feeling already. I let that determine where to take the song.
What does this song in particular mean to you?
“If tomorrow could forget all of yesterday’s regret.” It’s a yearning to move away from or get past mistakes or regrets. But there is fantasy at play. Eternal Sunshine style. Daydreaming on the pillow, what if the new day could just wipe the memory? The act even. But that’s foolish. The song recognizes that, but it doesn’t try to work out what you should really do about it. It’s simpler and shows the wanting and wishing. The early stages maybe, or late for that matter. It does mention souvenirs though. And forgiveness.
Who in St. Louis are you inspired by right now?
Multifaceted artists inspire me. Bobby Stevens. He has amazing way of showcasing the little things in a big way and vice versa. He packs a lot into his songs, but it doesn’t ever seem crowded. His writing is natural and free feeling. He also paints, tours, hosts songwriter events, writes, and hosts events for poets. He put out a book with his partner Kyle. And he has an attitude and charm that makes everyone feel good. Just a very well-rounded and talented artist. I aspire to be more like that. Nate Lowery too. A great performer and singer and songwriter. When he showcases a new original song, it fits right in with the Guy Clark and John Hartford tunes he plays. Coulda passed it off as a cover of one of his heroes. His songs are catchy and smart and heavy and funny. He also hand carves custom wooden figurines and paints them too! He has a whole Etsy shop full of stuff. I think it’s so cool. Nate is also a human songbook. No one really knows how many songs he knows, but it seems like it’s more than anyone else in town and it always impresses me.
What bands are you performing with lately?
The only band I perform with currently is my band. We are called Nick Gusman and the Coyotes. They are my best buds and we have had a lot of good times. I’m looking forward to working hard with them on the upcoming tour. The Coyotes are: Justin Haltmar, Garrett Rongey, Tony Hall, Jeremy Reidy, and Sean Kamery.
Where do you hope to be in 5 years?
I hope to be traveling at the speed of light towards a new galaxy. Searching for an inhabitable earth-like planet. I want to make first contact with the aliens. They are out there.
This season of Live from the Boom Room has been partially funded by a generous grant from the Regional Arts Commission. Help keep Live from the Boom Room an absolutely free service for musical artists by supporting the project with your donation here: https://paypal.me/blipblap