Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman, Matt Lashoff. Image courtesy lashoff.com.
You may know Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Matt Lashoff as a professional hockey player, but he’s much more.
As a kid, Matt grew up watching his dad perform with various bands. Easy to see where the son got his love of music and playing the guitar.
Now, Matt is the frontman, lyricist, and lead rhythm guitarist of his own band. Their debut album — Living on Heart — dropped in May of 2011 and is available on iTunes and Amazon for those interested in checking out. The album has a soft rock vibe, and Matt’s signing and guitar playing has been compared to John Mayer.
Having listened to the album, you have to respect Matt’s singing and his guitar playing abilities — neither are easy to do, and he does both very well. Don’t believe us? See and hear for yourself. Here is Matt, his guitar, and a song called Might Not Be Your Man.
iTalkHockey recently got the opportunity to sit down with Matt for a two-part interview discussing his hockey career, love of music and his future as a musician. Here’s what he had to say in part one, about everything non-hockey.
You’ve been around the music scene since you were a kid, and you’re obviously a huge music fan, as well.
iTalkHockey: What are some of the more memorable concerts you’ve attended?
Matt Lashoff: My first concert I saw the Allman Brothers Band, my dad took me and it is something I will never forget. I see as many shows as I can, favorites I would say; Bruce Springsteen, Kenny Wane Shepherd (with Double Trouble), Pearl Jam.
iTH: What’s the one band that you still need/want to see live?
Matt: Joe Bonamassa
You released your debut album, “Living on Heart”, in May of 2011.
iTH: What has been the most satisfying part of putting out the album?
Matt: The most satisfying part has been people’s reactions. The joy that it seems to bring people and the amount of people who are truly enjoying the music is great. Obviously this is my first record and I learnt a lot so hopefully they only get better from here.
iTH: Was there anything about the recording process that surprised you? Or that was different than you though it would be?
Matt: I was shocked at how much like hockey it was. The preparation, the focus, and the intensity were very comparable to what we go through as athletes. I was amazed at how each song was attacked and played to get the sound that we were striving for. I had unbelievable musicians, so it made the process both fun and rewarding.
iTH: There are some big names in the music industry that are part of your band. What did you think of recording with your band?
Matt: I think I had an All-Star band that I played with! Kenny Aronoff (drums), Lee Sklar (bass), David Sancious (keys), Brent Mason (acoustic guitar) these guys have played on the most influential songs/records ever. I was proud and humbled to be able to work with them.
Loren Harriet, Leland Sklar, Mike Ferretti, Matt, David Sancious, Kenny Aronoff, Danny Bernini, Brent Mason. Image courtesy lashoff.com.
iTH: Has there been any talk of a tour in support of your album? Would you be interested in going on the road?
Matt: I would love to tour, but obviously my first love and job is hockey. Nothing will get in the way of training or my focus with hockey, so it is hard to map certain things out. I am sure I will do a few gigs at some point though. I love playing live, but at this point it’s hard to say when I could or would.
iTH: Where would you start the tour? Which city and venue?
Matt: Toronto, I would love to play Massey Hall. And obviously… The ACC.
iTH: Are you planning on putting together a follow up album? How is it going to be different? What can we expect?
Matt: Absolutely. I am always writing and exploring new music. I think the next record you will see a more straight forward rocking album. Loud drums, good grooves, just loud fun rock and roll. Like I said earlier this was my first album and I have learned so much, so I feel a certain sense of freedom now to try new things.
Well, we’re definitely looking forward to the new material!
Stay tuned for part two of this interview where Matt talks about the injury he’s suffered this season with the Toronto Marlies, and his future with the Maple Leafs.
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