Innes Sibun started playing the guitar aged 12, teamed with producer Mike Vernon on his 1991 debut album, That’s What The Blues Can Do and toured as part of Robert Plant’s band in 1993. His latest album, Blues Transfusion, features bassist Charlie Jones and drummer Clive Deamer.
How did the Blues Transfusion sessions unfold?
We were having fun seeing what came out. I like to record songs in the first or second take. If we don’t capture them by then I bin them. But I am disciplined when I’m recording. I don’t take breaks for food. I like to immerse myself in the music, although I do drink a lot of tea.
BB King was an early inspiration…
I heard BB King on the radio when I was 12 and it was an epiphany. I was floored by the beauty of his guitar playing, it was like nothing else I had heard. I can’t explain why it had such an impact on me, but I had to hear more. I pinched a copy of Live At The Regal from a second-hand record shop and played it to death. I saved up my money from doing a paper round and bought a cheap acoustic guitar and started trying to play like BB King.
**Was it an education working with producer Mike Vernon on That’s What The Blues Can Do? **
It was a learning experience. He probably got fed up with me asking about Peter Green, but he had some great stories to tell. He really taught me to have a musical open mind and that if something sounds right, then it is right./o:p
Tell us about playing with Robert Plant on the Fate Of Nations tour.
Playing in Robert’s band is any guitar player’s dream come true. Robert is an intelligent and down to earth person. I learned a lot from him about various types of music from Stax to Moroccan and Sufi to 50s bubble gum to 60s West Coast music. He is a walking encyclopedia and as enthusiastic as a teenager.
Jimmy Page turned up at a show in Boston. After the show, we went to the Hard Rock Cafe and when Robert and Jimmy walked in together, the whole place went silent. After a show in Austin, Texas, we ended up at Antone’s Blues Club on [owner] Clifford Antone’s birthday, so the Austin blues community was out in force and I ended up jamming with Chris Duarte, Chris Layton and Tommy Shannon. In Vancouver, I was in a jam session with Bryan Adams’ band and Mötley Crüe./o:p