SHALLOW GROUND – A Talk With KEITH LETOURNEAU (Vocals/Guitars)

Posted on June 26th. 2017

Questionnaire by Jason Houston on behalf of METAL TO INFINITY WEBZINE BELGIUM



Jason: Hello Keith and welcome to Metal To Infinity. I appreciate you taking time out of your very, busy schedule to do this. Thanks so much for talking to us here at metal To Infinity. Now for anyone who’s never heard of your band: Shallow ground you guys are a Thrash Metal band from Connecticut.  I’d like to ask if you and the other members were at all influenced by The Big Four Thrash bands which are of course Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, and Slayer.  Of those 4 Classic Thrash bands which one would you say had the biggest influence on you personally and why do you feel that band had such a huge impact on you growing up?

Keith: Metallica was the only band that made my world right back then but I still liked Slayer, Exodus, SOD, Anthrax.

 

Jason: As I mentioned you and your band: Shallow Ground are from Connecticut I was curious if there’s much of a Metal scene there these days or was one at the time when you first formed the band?

Keith: There is a big metal scene here you name it! We have it!

 

Jason: Could you share with us what year the band was first formed and how you first met the other members of Shallow ground and came to form the band?

Keith: Way back in the early 90ies 92 I think it was I had just left my old band. And My brother Greg and Tim left there’s so we got together and started a diff version of what we have today. We were more power prog back then. But I have always and will always be a Thrash player!

 

Jason: How many albums has Shallow ground released to date?

Keith: Two full length out on Killer Metal Records 1 EP and 4 demos of 5 or more tunes ! And we are in the studio now recording our next Cd!

 

Jason: As I mentioned at the top of the interview Keith you’re the lead Singer and Guitarist in Shallow Ground. I’d like to ask how old were you when you first started playing the Guitar and ask if you took lessons or would you consider yourself more of a self taught Player?

Keith: I was 12-13 when I started playing pretty much self taught!

 

Jason: Do you remember what was the very, first song you learned to play on the Guitar?

Keith: Mamma Kin by Aerosmith, NIB by Black Sabbath and Highway to Hell by AC/DC. I remember them all.

 

Jason: Do you remember why you chose the Guitar as your instrument of choice?

Keith: I was a huge kiss fan and still am! I wanted to be Paul Stanly and loved the guitars he would play from the Flying V to the Iceman.

 

Jason: What do you remember the most about getting your very, first Guitar?

Keith: It was a copy of a SG and not a good copy at all plywood guitar but it was all I had do I played it.

 

Jason: Who were the Guitar Players who you feel had the greatest influence on you when you were growing up?

Keith: Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath. His riffs ruled back then and still do!

 

Jason: We’ve talked a little bit about you playing Guitar I was curious if you started out first playing the Guitar or have you always been a Lead Singer as well?

Keith: Oh no I started singing because in the 80s singers cared more about their hair and how many chicks they could get than the songs.

 

Jason: Many Musicians I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing over the years tell me that it takes a while to master the ability of being able to play Guitar and sing lead on stage takes some time to master.  Has that been your experience as well?

Keith: Oh yes there are still some riffs that I have to practice to get right all the time. It’s always how much more can I push myself.

 

Jason: Who were the Singers who had the greatest influence on you when you were growing up?

Keith: Paul Stanley from KISS, Ozzy and Dio.

 

Jason: Is there an album in your collection Keith that you say really inspired you, an album that you would say all these years later still holds up in your mind that you feel really had a major influence on you?  If so what’s that album?

Keith: SOD – “Speak English or Die” and Kiss – “alive 2”.

 

Jason: Earlier we talked a little bit about the Big 4 Thrash Bands. In regards to Megadeth who recently won a Grammy early this year as a Metal fan yourself does that mean anything at all to you? Also at the Awards ceremony when Megadeth was announced as the Winners of the Metal Award the Grammys made a huge goof and played a Metallica song instead of a Megadeth song. What do you think about a major, televised Music Award show making such a major goof?

Keith: It was embarrassing and I feel for Dave he has worked his butt off and got no respect ! As for Thrash being main stream I don’t know, we shall see.

 

Jason: Another band that I know you were influenced by is the legendary Iron Maiden. I recently read on-line where Iron maiden made the decision to drop their classic song “Hallowed Be Thy Name” off their classic 1982 Number Of The Beast album because someone else is claiming they wrote that song. What do you feel about someone bringing this kind of lawsuit against Iron Maiden when that song was released back in 1982. Why wait so long to bring this Lawsuit forward?

Keith: I think there is more to it but look Led Zep got screwed over Stairway to Heaven not too long ago and that is a lot older than Maidens tune!

 

Jason: In regards to Iron Maiden have you had a chance to hear their latest CD: Book of Souls and if so what are your thoughts on it?

Keith: Love it !!!

 

Jason: In regards to Shallow Ground, Keith I’d like to hear the story behind the band’s name and how you came to name the band Shallow Ground?

Keith: I work in a sewer plant and old sludge beds have a crust that is oh 1 foot thick. Under the 1 foot crust there can be 4-6 feet of real sludge, human waste you know crap! We would say Shallow Ground when we are near the beds or on them. So I guess if we screw up we are in the Sh$t lol.

 

Jason: I love the Shallow Ground logo, it really is quite unique, really stands out to me. Did someone in the band design the logo or was it someone else?

Keith: No, Bob the bag man hooked us up with it. We gave him input as to what we were looking for and he nailed it!

 

Jason: What have you enjoyed most about being in Shallow Ground, What I’m asking here Keith is there something you’d had the opportunity to experience had you not been in the band Shallow Ground?

Keith: Getting signed to Killer Metal Records, being endorsed with Strictly 7 Guitars, Randall Amps and intune guitar picks and having the opportunity to turn some great people onto the crap that bounces around in my brain lol.

 

Jason: What’s currently going on with band? I know you guys perform live quite a bit but any chance fans will be getting any new Shallow Ground music in the near future?

Keith: Our new cd is being recorded now with Nick Rage of Toxic Holocaust fame at his studio in Milford, CT.

 

Jason: Anything left that you’d like to say to all the loyal Shallow ground fans out there Keith?

Keith: I love you all… THANKS AGAIN!

https://www.facebook.com/ShallowGround/

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