SAFETY HARBOR — Eric Tessmer will take the stage Wednesday, Jan. 22, 7 p.m., at the Safety Harbor Art and Music Center, 706 Second St. N., Safety Harbor.
Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. Visit www.safetyharborartandmusiccenter.com.
“Life is never going to go exactly the way you think it will,” said Tessmer in a biographical sketch posted to his website. “But I’ve come to appreciate that fact. Good things take time.”
Born in 1981, the blues guitarist resides in Austin, Texas when not on the road. He is currently touring in support of his latest studio release, “EP II.”
Three years in the making, the 2019 collection was recorded in Los Angeles with acclaimed producer Sean Beavan. It finds the guitarist matching his technical flash with new heights of lyrical craftsmanship and studio sophistication. The performances are among Tessmer’s most raw, powerful work to date, tackling sobriety, commitment, and redemption with both deep insight and fearless vulnerability. It’s a remarkable step in an already remarkable career, one that showcases a virtuosic instrumentalist boldly stretching his limits and embracing his artful evolution as a singer and songwriter.
“I wanted to go deeper than I ever have before with this EP,” said Tessmer. “I still love ripping things up on the guitar, but this time around, I wanted to save that more for the live show and really focus on concision in the studio.”
A Wisconsin native, Tessmer developed his love affair with music through a kind of familial osmosis. Both his grandmother and father played guitar, and Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, and Cream were all staples around the house growing up. Inspired in part by watching reruns of “Austin City Limits” on his local PBS station, Tessmer moved to Texas straight out of high school, and he quickly garnered a formidable reputation there for his fierce fretwork and explosive live performances. He cut his teeth playing residencies in clubs and bars, shared stages with everyone from Gary Clark Jr. to Tab Benoit. He released a string of live and studio albums that earned widespread critical acclaim.
“EP II” reflects the loose, energetic freedom that’s become Tessmer’s trademark.