After making his name leading the Steve Miller Band during the late 1960s, Boz Scaggs has established himself as an enduring institution of rock. The veteran singer-songwriter is perhaps best known for his 1976 hit “Lowdown” from his five-times Platinum album, Silk Degrees. In 2015, Scaggs released his 22nd full-length record, A Fool to Care. We caught up with Scaggs in anticipation of his September 14 show at the Tarrytown Music Hall, to get a sense of where the legendary rocker currently stands.
How did A Fool to Care come about? Producer and drummer Steve Jordan and I came up with the concept for these records. A Fool to Care is the second part of a trilogy, and the idea, in a broad sense, is to revisit the music that influenced me while I was coming up. We recorded A Fool to Care in Nashville, and we expanded a little more into the music of Louisiana and Texas, where I grew up.
What was it like to work with Lucinda Williams and Bonnie Raitt on the album? I really don’t go out seeking duets. But when we were putting this record together, I had the chance to perform with Lucinda in San Francisco, and we hit it off pretty well and promised ourselves we would find another occasion to work together. Bonnie and I both live in Northern California, and I had a song in mind that we might do. It was a very easy and natural collaboration, and it was extraordinary working with them.
What do you have planned for your Tarrytown performance? It will be a smattering of things people expect to hear from me, as well as some bluesy songs. I am trying to play guitar more on this tour and trying out different styles. Tarrytown is a really good audience for me. They are people who, in many cases, go back with me a long way. And it’s also just a great music area, so I feel like I have a lot of flexibility to do whatever I feel like doing that night, and I can be a little more adventurous there than I might be in front of other audiences.
What lies ahead for you? I hope to record the last part of the trilogy in mid-August. It will be a continuation of what we started and wrap up of the whole idea. I have two albums in mind after I finish that one. One will go into standards. I am very excited about the second idea, and it will take me into the realm of some younger musicians I have worked with.