Hailing from Wasilla, Alaska, Portugal. The Man features John Gourley on lead vocals and guitar, Jason Sechrist on drums, Ryan Neighbors on keyboard and Zachary Carothers on bass. The group got their start in 2002, when Gourley moved to Portland, Oregon and started up Anatomy of a Ghost. The band gained popularity fairly quickly but broke up within two years. Luckily, Gourley had been working on a side project, aka, Portugal. The Man.
Which is good, because the band has grown pretty quickly since it got its start in 2005, thanks in a large part to Gourley’s hypnotizing harmonies. He was named AP Magazine’s Best Vocalist of the Year in 2008 and has been featured in countless musical publications, many of which are sitting on my bookshelf right now.
On a personal, and somewhat universal, level it was Gourley’s voice that brought me to the band. He has a huge range and a soulful style that will chill you to the bone while warming your heart. Not to mention, and this is always a plus, the group’s lyrics are just as strong. I told Gourley as much when I got to meet him at Lollapalooza two years ago.
It’s actually a pretty sweet story. Portugal was hosting a meet and greet, but the only way you could get in was with a piece of merch and a receipt proving you bought it at Lolla. Addam and I had enough money to buy one CD, and he let me go at his expense. Luckily, after the signing the group hung around to talk to fans and take photos, so no one missed out.
Bonnaroo 2011 will mark my third Portugal show, and I’m more than pumped to hear some of their new stuff. I haven’t followed them as much since Lollapalooza 2009, so it should be a pretty exciting set for me. I’m sure I won’t get to meet them this go around, but I’ll be happy to just sit back and relax to some of their melodies.
- Under Waves of the Brown Coat EP (2005)
- The Pines & The Devil EP (2006)
- Waiter: “You Vultures!” (2006)
- Devil Say I, I Say AIR EP (2006)
- Church Mouth (2007)
- Censored Colors (2008)
- The Satanic Satanist (2009)
- The Majestic Majesty (2009)
- American Ghetto (2010)
- In the Mountain, In the Cloud (2011)
Songs to Listen For:
- Lay Me Back Down
- The Dead Dog
- People Say
- Telling Tellers Tell Me
- The Sun
Times at Roo: 1
Times I’ve Seen Them: 2
“Open up your arms and hold on to/Every thing you own that owns you too/And just let it all go/Cause we do as we please/And that’s all we can do.” – Portugal. The Man, Created (2008).