Walter Trout is a guy who aims to please — and takes requests, too.
The latest case in point — “Sanjay,” a song from the New Jersey guitarist’s new album, “The Outsider.”
It tells the story of Indian movie star Sanjay Dutt, who was sentenced to jail for illegal possession of firearms and was subsequently released and then reimprisoned.
“He’s a good friend of mine,” says Trout, 57. “In L.A., if you’re famous and get in trouble, they just let you go. Over there, the judge decided to make an example of him.
“He called me on the phone and said would I do him a humble request and write his story into a song. I was almost done with the record at that point, and I went to my wife ... and she said ‘That’s not a request. It’s, ‘Hey, dude, you write me a song if you ever want to get back to India.’ So I sat down and mulled over in my head what I wanted to do and wrote the tune in one night.”
Trout says “The Outsider” in general was designed to be “more song-oriented” than his last album, 2006’s “Full Circle,” which focused more on jamming and instrumental work.
And he says there’s no contest as to which task is more difficult.
“It’s simple for me to play guitar solos; I can do that in my sleep,” Trout explains. “The guitar playing is just second nature. It’s like breathing. But the songwriting I have to kinda get focused and really work at it, so that’s what I wanted to do this time.”
Walter Trout & the Radicals perform at 8 p.m. Thursday (July 31) at Callahan’s, 2105 South Blvd., Auburn Hills. Tickets are $20. Call (248) 858-9508 or visit www.atcallahans.com.
Send your thoughts and comments to