‘I only look loud’: Iron Butterfly keyboardist playing solo show in Tri-Cities
RICHLAND, Wash. — When Martin Gerschwitz formed his first band at 16 years old, they immediately learned to play Iron Butterfly’s “In-A-Gadda- Da-Vida,” a song he was personally inspired by. Over 30 years later, Gerschwitz was playing on stage with the band members of Iron Butterfly themselves.
“It’s a weird thing to think about later on in life because I was always dreaming of that,” said Gerschwitz. “I thought, I want to be in a band like this and then ultimately ending up in the band is just like whoa, dreams come true.”
Gerschwitz was more or less destined to go into music, being raised by two avid musicians. He learned to play piano at about six years old, one of three instruments he played as a child.
“We grew up strictly classical,” said Gerschwitz.
As a teenager, he started becoming more exposed to other styles of music. In 1978, he formed his own American-style rock band “Breakpoint” which ended up touring all the American military bases in Germany. He moved to the U.S. in the 80s and over the course of the next 30 years, Gerschwitz played alongside multiple big-name artists including Loverboy, Eddie Van Halen, Lita Ford and Meat Loaf, performing at thousands of events worldwide.
“I literally have stories to each and every song,” said Gerschwitz. “I let people know where my songs came from and why I wrote certain songs. I don’t necessarily have one style, I have a Martin style…everything from strictly classical to funk to rock and everything in between.”
In 2005, Gerschwitz fulfilled his childhood dream, becoming the lead singer and keyboard player for Iron Butterfly.
Ten years later he left the band, deciding it was time to focus on his solo career, which he’s been doing every since. Gerschwitz also recently published his first book, “I only look loud,” full of stories from on and off the stage.
“I only look loud,” he said. “Number one, it doesn’t mean I play loud and number two, I don’t only play one specific style, as in rock, so just go enjoy the ride.”
Gerschwitz recently started playing with Iron Butterfly again while also continuing to pursue his solo career.
He will play at At Michele’s located at 2323 Henderson Loop on Thursday starting at 8 p.m. The show is free and his book and CDs will be available for purchase.