San Diego Reader – Familiar but Different

Beginning as a piano player at age 12, the 2002 graduate of the School for Creative and Performing Arts in Paradise Hills also picked up guitar, ukulele, and bass along the way to releasing projects such as Not British Productions Presents 23rd Century, the Sal Filipelli Band EP, and The Last Generation of Tape, with notable local collaborators Charles and Danny Weller and Harley Magsino.

Also on the collaboration front, Filipelli released a new single last June written and recorded with ’70s funk star Sly Stone, “One More Hit,” planned for an upcoming Filipelli album called This Day in Music History. Another Stone-centered single, “Role Model,” dropped in September. The following month, he wrapped up an IndieGoGo fundraising campaign for the release, which features guests that include Munyungo Jackson, Adrian Terrazas-Gonzalez, and Raw Syl. “All recording is done,” he says. “[I’m] raising money for post-production.”

Now part of Stone’s extended musical Family, Filipelli will be in Oakland on January 24, appearing as a guest speaker at the first-ever Family Stone convention, alongside other Stone associates such as Cynthia Robinson and Jerry Martini.

FIRST JOB?

“A car-repair shop, where I did all kinds of miscellaneous work on cars, from brakes to batteries and oil changes. I balanced tires, changed radiators and alternators, and so on. Knowing how to work on cars has been a useful skill, but don’t ask me to work on your car. I don’t currently have the right tools.”

BEST CONCERT?

“The first Crossroads Guitar Festival. Our tickets were for the pit area, and we got there early enough that we were able to stand right at stagefront for all the action. That wound up being the first time Jeff Beck played out in 15 years, or something like that. At one point, we looked up at the stage and there was a jam session going on featuring John Mayer, Buddy Guy, Jimmy Vaughan, B.B. King, and Eric Clapton.”

DO YOU BELIEVE IN MAGIC?

“I believe in illusions.”

WHAT WOULD YOU TELL THE YOUNGER YOU?

“Don’t look back, you’re not going that way.”

WHO DO PEOPLE SAY YOU LOOK LIKE?

“Zachary Quinto or Tony Danza.”

FEARS OR PHOBIAS?

“I’m a little bit scared of Don King. And killer bees.”

SOMETHING WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU?

“When I was a teenager, I competed as a boxer and was one of the last, if not the last, kid to be trained by boxing legend Archie Moore before his passing in 1998. I have stayed in touch with the Moore family to this day.”