Patrick Goller: The Ramble’s Axeman
As the writer of this column, I keep my ear to the ground with respect to finding suitable subjects to interview. In the case of Patrick Goller, I have wanted to write about him since I took on this task, primarily because I’ve heard him work numerous times in various configurations of his combo, The Ramble.
The Ramble started as a pretty big band, with multiple guitars and a lead vocalist. That particular lineup was excellent, but the work of the individuals wasn’t as defined. Which, when you get right down to it, is the whole idea of a band. Trying to make the sum greater than it’s individual parts.
Currently a power trio, the band is presenting a starker, stripped-down musical vision, yet it allows the individual members to stand out and make their musical statement without the potential clutter inherent in a larger band format — and when you’re dealing with band members that are really good, the aforementioned summing is easily evident.
Here’s Patrick Goller:
Q: If you’re not a native, what brought you to the Outer Banks?
A: Working at a summer position starting in 2010. Turned out to be a long summer.
Q: How would you describe your music?
A: Jam band style. Genres ranging from blues, jazz, funk, rock and roll, psychedelic, and Americana.
Q: Who is your greatest musical influence?
A: Duane Allman
Q: What is it about music that touched you?
A: Music is the purest form of communication. It can bring people together from all ages and races.
Q: What was the first concert you attended?
A: Western Maryland Blues Fest, it was a great inspiration to witness the atmosphere music can create within a group of people.
Q: Are you self-taught?
A: Yes. Did take lessons for a few months from a blues guitarist from western Maryland named Lou Palladino of The Rhythm Kings.
Q: Besides guitar, what other instruments do you play?
A: Played trumpet during my formative school years. Bass guitar, and I’m greasing up the drum and vocal chops now.
Q: How many different musical projects (duos, trios, bands) are you involved in?
A: My main project is a power trio rock group The Ramble that I formed in 2015, with fellow musical collaborators Myles Wood, and Graham Outten. The Ramble is currently fronted by Bobby Soto, (vocal, bass) and Vaughan Heilman, (drums). Another duo project is with another long time collaborator Vin Corsale, (vocals, guitar). I’m also working on a rap/rock project with The Huntsman. Burley Daniels, an original Ramble member, also sits in with The Ramble from time to time.
Q: What's your favorite venue to play on the Outer Banks?
A: Turner's High Moon Bar in Avon. Bobby Zink is a fellow musician and really pulls out all the stops for the bands at his venue.
Q: Musicians usually play for those “moments” when everything clicks to the point where you sometimes play above and beyond what your normal capabilities are. Do you have a favorite moment?
A: That's The Ramble's motto, so every gig!
Q: What do you do in the off-season?
A: The off-season I continue playing with The Ramble, as well as teaching guitar and doing landscaping.
Q: Was there a person in your life that motivated you to pursue music?
A: I'm motivated everyday from the people in my life and other artists I listen to. My girlfriend, Kelsey Thompson, is also a performer; she is a Theatre of Dare member and longtime theater and dance performer. She keeps me inspired and playing my best.
Q: If you could perform with anyone, living or dead, who would it be, and why?
A: It would have to be Duane Allman. His legacy is unmatched by anyone. Truly, he’s a once in a lifetime musician who will inspire thousands more.
Q: What one song have you heard that you wish you'd written?
A: “Machine Gun” by Jimi Hendrix.
Q: If you could choose a time period in which to perform music, what would it be and why?
A: 1965-1975. It’s the build up and peak of the guitar era in western music, and with the digital age of today, an almost lost art in how a show is presented to the audience.
Q: Do you listen to new music?
A: Yes, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real's "Turn Off the News (Build a Garden)."
Q: The music business can be tough. Did you ever consider quitting and doing something else?
A: I'll be playing music for the rest of my life. Luckily, for me, it's not a job.
Q: McCartney or Lennon?
Q: Where were you the first time you performed onstage?
A: I was probably 16 or 17 at the Blues Fest. Eric Gales came off stage and handed me his guitar to do some licks on on the Jimi Hendrix song “Voodoo Chile (Slight Return).”
Q: When you write a song, is it positive or negative inspiration that drives you?
Q: Do you have any hobbies that aren’t music-related?
A: Fishing, boating, and biking.
Q: Your favorite album?
A: The Allman Brothers Band’s “Live At Fillmore East.” It's an instant classic and truly stands the test of time. It's not in the Library of Congress for nothing.
Q: Your favorite song?
A: Too many songs to call just one a favorite. Right now it is "Hey Joe" from Roy Buchanan's 1978 release Live In Japan.