Scotty Alan - On and Off the Grid
He lives outside the small town of Marquette in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan near the southern shore of Lake Superior. It feels like the middle of nowhere. Living in the Northwoods on 10 acres in a modest off-grid log cabin he’s been slowly augmenting for nearly 19 years - for example he went through two Number 2 spades to dig out the basement for three solitary months. He enjoys sauna. Takes care of many of his needs himself: hunts deer, fishes, gardens, gathers berries and heats his home with wood cut from his land.
He likes solitude but isn’t solitary. Living just two and a half miles from the house he grew up in, he’s part of an extended family, in the area for generations, that has a lot of Finnish blood flowing through it. Says he doesn’t listen to music much, but has been making it since he was 14. Started out in a three-man original punk band in 1987 playing for over a decade. Disbanded and downsized to a self proclaimed “two-man trio,” playing drums with their feet while playing guitars from 2000 to 2005.
Since then, Scotty Alan has been working on his own. Holed up in his homestead, buttressed in winter by ten foot walls of snow, honing his craft, singing in the sauna, getting out now and again to record, tour the Midwest, even do a string of performances in clubs and coffeehouses in Amsterdam. January 2011 he took a trip to L.A., a strange, snowless place, to record, with long time friend and producer Bernie Larsen the material that has become Wreck and the Mess. The new album offers meticulously crafted songs that take an unflinching but always humane look at the difficulty of a love lost.