This album kind of just poured out of me.

MAYBE is the third full-length studio album by John Lathrop as The Stan Laurels, containing songs featured in the motion picture MAYBE SHOWER.

With MAYBE, Lathrop has created something special and original: a film soundtrack that is also a pure stand-alone rock record. The lyrics are centered around characters and themes in the fictional MAYBE SHOWER universe, but one does not need to know the movie to appreciate or understand the music. Paying homage to his power-pop and rock heroes, this is Lathrop’s heaviest album yet, full of loud, crunchy guitars, big hooks, pounding drums, space-age synths, and melodic guitar solos, while still being as poppy as ever. The LP is also unique in that it’s The Stan Laurels’ first release on vinyl!

BUY & LISTEN

What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?

When one person is doing everything on a record, although it can be tedious, it is also incredibly rewarding. I think the most fun part was how fast these songs came. This album kind of just poured out of me, faster than any album I had done previously, and it was crazy/cool!

At what point, during writing, rehearsing, recording, did you knew you were on to something special?

Because these songs were written for a movie (Maybe Shower), I would send writer/director Lex Lybrand bits of rough demo songs as I was writing them. The very first song I wrote was “Maybe,” the title track, which came to me really fast. It was just an idea, really, a sample of the sound I was going for. I sent the demo to Lex, not having any idea what he would think. He immediately loved it and said this is THE theme song of the movie. I was stunned by his reaction. From that point on, I knew this was the direction to keep driving in.

Do you feel part of a community, the power pop community?

For the first time ever, I do. I have loved power pop since I was born. I was lucky to have parents who listened to great music when I was a kid, and power pop was (and is) probably my favorite style. My music has always been in this vein, but with Maybe, my newest album, I finally put the “power” into the “pop,” making it what I feel is a true power pop album, and I am proud of it. People seem to have noticed this one a lot more, and having been featured in a lot of my favorite blogs and played on my favorite power pop radio shows and podcasts along with other great bands I respect makes me feel “official,” like a proud member of the power pop community.

Which is the song you wish you had written every time you hear it? And why?

There are a few … “Scarborough Fair” by Simon & Garfunkel and “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys for sure. But in terms of power pop? I would have to say “No Matter What” by Badfinger. The beautiful melodies, the harmonies, the perfect amount of crunch on the guitars, the stops and starts and punchy accents … it’s absolute power pop perfection. Even if that was the only song Pete Ham had ever written, he’d still be a legend to me.

What would change if Disney would call and tell you they are going to use your song in their next movie?

I’m not sure much would change, other than my bank account. The music industry is so saturated now that it’s nearly impossible for small indie bands to get noticed. If an opportunity comes along with someone huge like Disney or even a cheesy commercial, it’s all part of getting your music exposed to more ears. Now, am I going to change the way I write and record music purposely to try to attract big corporations? Hell no. Never. By the way, can you give Disney my phone number? 😁

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Seriously, it’s just PERFECT!

slawter

 

‘Seriously, it’s just PERFECT!’, says Michael Slawter about Del Amitri’s Not Where It’s At. Well, he wrote some pitch-perfect ones himself. ‘Last Call For The Breakfast Hearts’ was released this month and it’s … well … you’ll get it by now!

 

 

 

 

 

What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?

This record took over 4 years (fits and starts) to make. There were lots of great moments, like when I noticed the songs “take a turn” as we called it. Basically, when the song came to life for the first time, but my biggest thrill was getting the final CDs in the mail. Finally knowing the record was done.

 

At what point, during writing, rehearsing, recording, did you knew you were on to something special?

 

The first two songs we recorded were SUMMER’S KIND and SAME OLD THING. Once we did the first run-through to get the drums recorded we knew we had something great!

 

Do you feel part of a community, the power pop community?

I discovered the POWER POP community in 1999 through YAHOO groups and it changed my life. I discovered all these awesome folks that grew up listening to the same music as me but in different parts of the country. I quickly became involved in CD/TAPE trading and my CD collection exploded. I happened to be from Winston-Salem and fans of the dB’s and Let’s Active and Mitch’s Drive-In Studio always wanted to hear other COMBOLAND bands that I happened to be privy to.

 

Can you still recall the moment music became important to you? What happened?

My 8th-grade girlfriend bought me REM – MURMUR as a birthday present. That record changed my life. I then went to RJ Reynolds High School in 1984 which happened to be where the dB’s and Let’s Active went to school 10 years earlier. I even saw REM play in our auditorium during my sophomore year. It was a magical time to discover music.

 

Which is the song you wish you had written every time you hear it? And why?

DEL AMITRI – NOT WHERE IT’ S AT. It’s the PERFECT pop song! Seriously, it’s just PERFECT!

 

What’s up for the rest of the year?

My hope is to record more songs with as many folks as I can and have another record ready for next year!!! I am planning to release a record a year over the next 10 years

I always thought this planet was the WEIRDEST place ever

Painting sounds in Sunshine-Bubblegum Garage and PowerPop.

And ‘yes’, she did it again!

 

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Lisa Mychols shares her view on this weird place we live in.

 

What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?

The biggest fun for me was the lyric writing. Creating stories from the crazy feelings and experiences I’d been having and fitting them with melodic melodies!

 

 

Listen on Spotify

 

At what point, during writing, rehearsing, recording, did you knew you were on to something special?

It was definitely during writing. When a melody or hook pops in my head, I can immediately know what words must follow. It’s absolute MAGIC to be in that kind of flow!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The music industry has changed a lot (or so they say). What did it bring you? And what not?

The music industry has brought me appreciation for when it fell apart from it’s original “control” model (lol).

Watching other bands come and go and seeing other bands/artists have their original look and sound completely changed or stripped…yep…appreciation.

From what I think I’ve witnessed….the old “machine” inspired and opened up a whole new DIY world for the FREE (uncontrolled) creative heart within the creative collective.

 

 

He tells you she will decide on a 5-song-mixtape if there is going to be a second date. Which 5 would you put on?

 

Ahhhh….(one sec…lemme pull up my personal playlist…)

1) 5) Piero Umiliani – “Crepuscolo sul mare” (originale)

2) The Clouds “Too Cool”

3) Rockfour “Government”

4) Temples “Shelter Song”

5) Richard Barnes “Take To The Mountains”

 

 

The meaning of ‘success’ has changed over the years. When will the new record be a success?

When I figure out how to properly reach eyes and ears of people that might actually LOVE this record. 😀

 

Do you feel part of a community, the power pop community?

No. (lol) What I mean by that is that most of the scene I’ve ever really known are on Facebook. I see a lot of music lovers more talking about old power pop music while the current music makers with similar music as mine, are trying to somehow be seen or heard within it. 

I feel too that musicians just don’t buy other musician’s music! Lol! From my own perception, it’s like…my musical community are filled with either folks that LOVE to talk about their favorite record collection or actual musical creators trying to figure out how to DIY the best they can.

NOTE: I’m also a stay at home musician, due to responsibilities I have at home so…It can certainly be a lonely place with not many to relate to…or that may not relate to me. But hey, that just means having to be even MORE creative and thinking outside the box, right?

Hmmm…maybe I can start up a stay at home music scene movement…HA!

 

Can you still recall the moment music became important to you? What happened?

As far as I can think back on my life…I always thought this planet was the WEIRDEST place ever!!!

 

Music was the only thing that felt natural…authentic….loving…. calming…creative…an easy place to get lost in…MUSIC!

 

 

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Which is the song you wish you had written every time you hear it? And why?

(Tears are seriously welling up in my eyes as I’m writing this.)

The song would have to be “Play Myself Some Music” by R. Stevie Moore. He reverses lines of the most thoughtful words and…the chords are just like….chilling…makes me cry and feel an almost sad kind of tender-ish LOVE like nothing else…it’s absolutely heartbreaking and yet so beautiful.

 

If you could tour the world with 2 other bands, who would you ask to join?

Foo Fighters, for sure! (I’m actually hoping he’ll see our new band and contact us, lol!) 

From The Jam would be super cool, as well! 

HECK YEAH!!!! We’re ready when they are!

 

Magic can happen when you are playing in front of a crowd. Can you recall such a moment?

Oh yes. Yes yes. I was in The Masticators and there was this moment that hit and we were just killing it in the song we were playing…that’s when I said to myself, “I’ve finally made it.”

 

If the budget was unlimited, how would you record the next record?

(Brrrring!!!) “….Hello…., is this Mr. David Grohl?”

Haha..of course there ARE others in my record recording wish list, but I’m keeping those secrets for now, as I am still working my magic on this end…

 

 

Every family birthday, same story. Again, you have to explain what kind of band you are in. What’s the story this time for aunt Jenny and uncle Clive?

Boy, I hope I get this one right, lol. Let’s see…our band is totally in a new wave punk-ish mode…

Okay: We are telling about how aunt Jenny bought two tickets to Europe and uncle Clive bought two tickets to the Caribbean…both for the same week and can’t exchange them. They decide they will give all four tickets away, start a band, get famous and later…tour the whole world!!!

 

What would change if Disney would call and tell you they are going to use your song in their next movie?

 

I would wear a Minnie Mouse dress to celebrate the event. My clothes would change.

 

So what about putting your ultimate band together? No restrictions. No limitations. If you want David Bowie on backing vocals and Prince on guitar, go ahead. What would the band look like? And what is the song you will start jamming on? To find out it if this really works?

 

Oooh FUN!!! Of course my dream band would actually be Tom Richards, Ricky Tubb, Matt Fass and Simon Hancock. 

We would jam on “Billy Hunt” by The Jam….and we WOULD know for sure!!!

 

What’s up for the rest of the year?

 

Solo wise….

I’m working on music for a book I wrote. I’ve always LOVED writing stories! Stories in songs…stories in comic books…now it’s time to put music to this one!!!

 

I’m working on a song for an upcoming Curry Cuts tribute project that I believe is coming out by end of the year (more details coming soon). This particular tribute is one I’m beyond excited about…I’m a crazy huge fan of this particular secret artist!!!
And then my next solo album…is already written! The working title right now is Chestnut Street. I might actually end up keeping it. And because readers (and you) have made it THIS far…here is one of the songs that will be ON that album: “Almost Didn’t Happen”

LISTEN HERE

 

I keep my Facebook page active with news and updates.

 

NEW BAND!!!


The Seven & Six is the new band Tom Richards (I mentioned above from my dream 
band) and I (under my nickname Elsie Mychols) have put together. We are a three piece, “Hi Matt!!!” (He’s our drummer).

Absolutely and completely from the heart

Lots of great new (Power Pop) releases this year but it looks like Sloan’s 12 and Rob Bonfiglio’s Trouble Again are a league on their own. Both have this ‘greatest hits’ feeling to it. I could spend a couple of months on a desert island with only these songs to sing along to.

troubleagain

 

 

What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?

 

…Watching these songs come to life. It’s that simple. I recorded this album entirely solo which is a rather unique way to go about the process. On one hand, it’s incredibly liberating and 100% satisfying from an artistic standpoint, but can sometimes get a bit lonely. Such is the result of being an introvert. I’m a bit of a conscientious control freak. I’m very particular about every nuance of my songs, and I have an ability to keep a pretty clear and concise perspective on the results. When working with other musicians on my own projects, I tend to worry too much about whether I’m being too controlling, sometimes to the detriment of my vision. When working alone, I’ve had the ability to lay ideas down as quickly as they come and I like that freedom.

 

 

At what point, during writing, rehearsing, recording, did you knew you were on to something special?

 

…For the songs that appear on TROUBLE AGAIN, I had at least as many others that didn’t make the final cut, all in various stages of recorded form. I allowed myself the luxury of writing and playing all these songs solo for a good year and a half before recording them for the album which gave me the opportunity to see which went over well and which felt true to me and which weren’t quite ready. I like to believe that the “special” quality is the result of each song being absolutely and completely from the heart and without pretense.

 

 

 

 

The music industry has changed a lot (or so they say). What did it bring you? And what not?

 

… I’ve been in the position of having made records for major and indie labels throughout the years with and without bands. I’ve achieved some degree of success, but not so much that I can’t appreciate the difference between wanting to make a commodity and wanting to share heartfelt music with people who really appreciate it. I’ve faced rejection in this business so many times it’s ridiculous. If anything, my decision to keep going is purely out of love and desire.

At this point in my career, I truly don’t feel the pressure of trying to appease “the man” in any way. I’m humbled and grateful for personal one on one connections with appreciative listeners.

 

 

The meaning of ‘success’ has changed over the years. When will the new record be a success?

 

…If I’m able to move the listener in any positive way, I’m successful.

 

Do you feel part of a community, the power pop community?

 

…Yes and I love and appreciate them all. I don’t consider everything I do to fall neatly into one specific category, but I’m grateful to be generally accepted by such a discriminating bunch, and I mean that in the best of ways.

 

 

Can you still recall the moment music became important to you? What happened?

 

…I honestly can’t remember a time when music wasn’t important to me. Somewhere in my teens, I grew into the realization that I can do this thing called music with a degree of competency. It was probably then that its importance became that much more significant.

 

 

rob-smiles

 

 

Which is the song you wish you had written every time you hear it? And why?

 

…A complex answer to a simple question.What often makes a song great to me is not simply the right combination of lyrics, harmony & melody, but the times and circumstances under which the song was written. If I heard “Only Living Boy in New York” or “Mercy On Broadway” or ”What’s Going On” for the first time today and without any backstory or pretense I’d say yeah, that’s a great song and I wish I’d have written it. But I wasn’t on the verge of parting ways with my musical partner or living through a brutal New York City summer in 1968 America or struggling through the agony of the Vietnam war and the racial division of that era. The “Tommy” suite, “The Song Is Over”, “Save The Country”, “I’d Have You Anytime”, “Living for the City”, “Whispering Pines”, “Suzanne”, “Hallelujah”, “Forever Young”, “If You See Her, Say Hello”, “Oh, You Pretty Things!”, “Marlene”, the list goes on and on. Oh, and let’s not forget “La La Means I Love You” and so many great Motown and Philly soul hits, not to mention the Tin Pan Alley and Brill Building classics. Why? These songs cut real deep for me. I’d like to be able to move others the way these songs have moved me.

 

If the budget was unlimited, how would you record the next record?

 

…Exactly the same but with better gear.

 

 

Every family birthday, same story. Again, you have to explain what kind of band you are in. What’s the story this time for aunt Jenny and uncle Clive?

 

…I’d have to say “guitar-based pop tunes with classic rock influences”.

 

 

What would change if Disney would call and tell you they are going to use your song in their next movie?

 

…I’m fortunate in that it’s happened before. I have a song called SHINE that was featured in Disney’s “Bridge To Terabithia” back in 2008. It’s always a thrill to hear a song you’ve written and recorded on the big screen, no matter what the movie budget. It’s cool to see what scene a song is chosen for. Having the Disney name behind the movie can really raise your profile. In my case, lots of positive fan feedback, the thrill of seeing the song in official sheet music form, appearing on the official movie soundtrack. It’s really exciting stuff.  It’s sort of like watching your child achieve a milestone. I can only hope and wish for more placements to come.

 

 

What’s up for the rest of the year?

 

…I’ll continue to write, record and produce for myself and others in addition to fulfilling my sideman duties with Wilson Phillips and a host of other Los Angeles based artists. I’m happy to say business as usual!

Nick Piunti talks about his new record

Release date for “Temporary High” is July 20th. On Jem Records. CD/LP/Digital. Also Sugarbush Records is releasing a limited number of LPs for UK/European fans.

Pre-order at Amazon, and it will be available on my band camp site as well. http://www.nickpiunti.com and click on the link of your choice to hear, buy it.

Listen

How did the new record came together?

The album came together as they always do, when I have enough new songs written that I deem “album worthy”. I then head to the studio with Geoff Michael producing, and lay down a scratch guitar and vocal, make sure the tempo, key is right, then go from there. Donny Brown has played drums on my last 4 albums and Andy Reed has played bass on the last 3, so they know exactly what to do.

What can we expect?

I’m a “seasoned songwriter” (a.k.a. OLD) so I definitely have my own style. I don’t try to re-invent what I do, Just try to make it good, and hopefully in some ways better than what I’ve done before.

You produced some high high quality records the last couple of years and received praise for them. Any pressure when you start a new record?

There’s really no pressure, just my own expectations and standards I guess. Though “Temporary High” will be my 4th album in 5 years, I’m not on any kind of schedule to make the next record. I only make records if I’m excited about the current batch of songs.

‘She is in six bands none of them good’, that line still makes me smile every time I hear it. What makes a good Nick Piunti lyric?

I think my best lyrics happen when the first line of the song is strong and engages the listener. Hopefully that first line will grab someone and make them want to hang around for the story to unfold. I think the new album has a lot of those kind of opening lines. the first 3 songs have those kind of hooky lyrics…”Never heard the word no as a kid, so you did what you did”…’You’re perfect and I’m not”…”You invented Hell, and Heaven in the same night, whatever you decide”…

And what about the melodies?

Melodies is really where it’s at, especially in Power Pop. The best songs seem to happen when the melody and lyric occur at the same time, or at least at the same sitting. So melody, hooks are so important, but if the lyrics are fluff, I lose interest.

Maybe my lyrics are a little too intense

Once Pitchfork wrote ‘Like drawing a perfect circle, making a good power-pop record is an elusive task. Portland’s Mo Troper come closer than many have in awhile, with snot-nosed charm.’, about a Mo Troper record.

Exposure & Response is another good power pop record. Actually, it’s a GREAT power pop record!

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Do you feel part of a community, the power pop community?

The “power pop community” in Portland, Oregon is pretty nonexistent, despite this being the birthplace of one of the best power pop bands ever, the Exploding Hearts. There are some people here who supposedly like that style of music, but I feel like they’re mostly drawn in by the aesthetic—light wash denim, vintage Sweet t-shirts, Chelsea boots, cocaine, etc. I haven’t really been embraced by the power pop “old guard,” either, and I’m still trying to figure out why. I think maybe my lyrics are a little too intense for that scene.

Which is the song you wish you had written every time you hear it? And why?

“Short People” by Randy Newman. It’s the only song with a structure that just really baffles me every time I hear it. It’s so rare for the bridge to happen that early in a pop song, and I think it’s one of the things that makes it so effective. It’s a perfect song.

What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?

I had a lot of fun working with the symphonic players who performed on the album. It was really humbling to watch classically-trained musicians just sort of do their thing all over my dinky pop songs. Specifically, working with Shannon Rose, who played viola and violin on the record and also plays in the band Typhoon, was huge for me. I think her performances really sell those parts.

The meaning of ‘success’ has changed over the years. When will the new record be a success?

For me, success in music is a mixture of two things: Whether or not I feel good about it in retrospect, and whether it actually resonated with people in a significant way. It doesn’t matter how many people. This record generated this unexpected, grassroots interest among music dorks. 1/3 of the records we’ve sold have been international orders. I still get messages from people all over the world who tell me how much they liked the record. I find that way more validating than paying a publicist thousands of dollars to get on a website like Pitchfork, only to disappear from the public consciousness a day later. That stuff can be exciting, but it’s ultimately fleeting.

What would change if Disney would call and tell you they are going to use your song in their next movie?

Maybe my bank account balance, but that’s about it.

What’s up for the rest of the year?

I’ve spent the last three months working on a new record, and it will hopefully be done by the end of the year. I’m trying to make the best power pop album of all time.

KEXP writes:
Last year Portland songwriter Mo Troper released the excellent Exposure & Response, a record packed with decadent power-pop hooks and decadent musical arrangements. But more than just being a collection of songs where nearly each one can get rotation in my subconscious for months), Troper weaves narratives and parables with a cast of delightfully obtuse characters that would give a Daniel Clowes’ graphic novel a run for its money.

So, there really is this yin/yang between super melodic and heavy guitars.

tomcurless

 

Tom Curless is the progenitor and leader of indie pop/rock outfit Your Gracious Host. Songs of Movement is his first proper solo effort going out under his own name. It will be released on Futureman records on June 29th, 2018.

 

Smart lyrics, catchy melodies, a flock of high-quality songs. Make sure you catch this one!

 

 

 

The biggest fun making the new record came when I recorded the song “Oceans of Love” in Chicago. I had no plan to record the track, really all I had was the verse and a general idea of the melody. I was playing it between takes of another song we were doing and Brian Leach who was recording, (and is also a musician, and former bandmate), liked it and he said: “what is that?” I said, “Oh its nothing” and he said, “No, that is really cool, we should work on that”. We went with it and the next thing you know we had the whole basic track recorded that day, it just took on a complete life of its own. We must have spent a few hours on it but it was so fun because the creative juices were flowing- it felt like 5 minutes.

A song I wish I wrote is a song called Easter Theatre by XTC on their Apple Venus Vol 1 record. Something about that song gives me goosebumps every time I hear it, the words, the melody, the orchestration, particularly the coda.

 

There is something so majestic about it, and that is hard to achieve. Just super melodic and it checks all my boxes. A very close second is Run Like Hell by Pink Floyd. I love the huge guitar riff, the stomping beat and the menace of the lyrics. That song is a perfect example of the great writing combination of Waters and Gilmour.

 

Music has always been pretty important to me as long as I can remember. I have very early memories listening to my siblings’ record collection and being mesmerized by Led Zeppelin 4. Back before the internet, it felt like this whole other powerful thing coming into my quiet suburban home in New Jersey. I would turn on the stereo and crank it up and get lost in the music.

 

I remember the first record I bought with my own money was Queen “A Night at the Opera” at Scotti’s in Summit NJ and I completely wore it out. I was so excited to get it home. I still own it, and it has my name written on it in my 10-year-old handwriting.

 

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If the budget was unlimited for the next record, I would hire Steve Lillywhite and Hugh Padgham and fly to England to camp out and record at Abbey Road Studio 2. I remember back in the early to mid 80’s, all my favorite bands/artists were recorded by either Steve Lillywhite, Hugh Padgham, or both.

 

I have also always fantasized about recording an album at either Abbey Road or the Manor (Richard Branson’s studio). Who hasn’t? The problem would be we would not get any work done because I would keep asking them about all the bands and albums they recorded!!!

 

The family birthday question is a classic. I think any artist gets tired of answering the “Oh, you are a musician? What kind of music do you play??” Like they want a quick one sentence capsule of every aspect of your art. I always struggle because some people don’t understand the “power pop” tag, they just hear “pop” and think it is really light music when really some of my songs are quite heavy in a way. I adore Paul McCartney, Todd Rundgren, and The Police but I also love bands like Queens of the Stone Age, Soundgarden, and Van Halen.

 

So, there really is this yin/yang between super melodic and heavy guitars in many of my songs. Sometimes they may be in the same song.  It can be hard to explain because it isn’t just one thing. The early Your Gracious Host records are a bit more acoustic/mellow because I didn’t have the right electric guitars and amps at the time. Once I got the right gear look out I was ready to crank it up!

 

 

True rock & roll has always had an urgency to it, and it’s what I love about it.

Power Pop legend Arthur Alexander (The Poppees, Sorrows) is back, with his solo debut album, One Bar Left.

After all those years the hunger is still there. You might think he has nothing left to prove. You are wrong, so wrong! Listen! And Watch

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BUY it on RED VINYL

So the time was right to release your first solo record?

It was more than the right time.  After Sorrows album was re-released in 2010, I really got the fire under my ass to get back to playing and recording again.  I knew the time has come to do my own thing and actually started working on this record.  But as the John Lennon quote goes: “life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans”.  Almost as on queue, every time I started working on this record, some other production jobs would come along and divert my time and attention, like the last T-Model’s record (he died 6 months later), King Mud (featuring guys from Diamond Heavies and Left Lane Cruiser), The Bloodhounds, Dirty Eyes, and many others.

You are using a lot of different styles. Do you start writing a song with a certain style in mind or is the song showing you which direction to go?

If you listen to Sorrows records, you’ll hear that my songs are all over the place stylistically. I like so many things, classical music, blues, jazz, you name it… rock n’ roll is my passion, but the influences, styles, and sounds come from all over the place.  That’s because, to me, there are only two kinds of music – good and bad.  I don’t give a shit where it comes from.  As long as it feels and sounds good, it IS good! (Joe Meek gets credit for that line! J)… People tell me you can hear a lot of “film music” vibe in some of my arrangements.  Well, I love Nino Rota and Ennio Morricone!… During my “punk days” I hated disco, even had a “disco sucks” belt buckle! … but the stuff The Bee Gees did on “Saturday Night Fever”?… Absolutely fucking brilliant! Classic!…  I still remember when Sorrows were trying to get a record deal, the geniuses at CBS Records told me the music was too eclectic, too all over the place, too much like this, not enough like that. Well, six months later we were signed to CBS and the same geniuses thought I was the next fucking Gershwin and could walk on water! lol

I never start writing with any “style” in mind.  The music just comes and I let it take me wherever it feels like the song wants to go.  Sure, I may have a general idea about the sound and the vibe that’s in my head, how I’d like the song to be as I begin to work on it, but I don’t get stuck on it. In fact, I think that most of the time, the final outcome ends up being quite different than what I started out with and I’m cool with that.

There is an urgency to all the songs. Hope you take that as a compliment. Still, plenty to prove? Or just angry? Or still on a mission? Or…?

I think it’s my DNA!  The overabundance of energy… I was always a hyperactive kid!  True rock & roll has always had an urgency to it, and it’s what I love about it.  When it doesn’t, it turns into schlock.

“Ready! Set! Go man go!

I got a gal that I love so

I’m ready ready ready Teddy

Ready ready ready to

Rock ‘n’ roll!!!…”

Urgent enough, eh?… this guy just can’t wait to… 😉

Mind you, to me, urgency doesn’t have to have anything to do with just the ‘tempo’ of the song, it’s the feeling I’m trying to convey.  I love rockin’ fast songs, but even when I write a slow, sweet love ballad, I think that by injecting a feeling of restlessness it gives the song a certain edginess to it you may not even realize is there, but it affects you on a subconcious level.  Love is always… urgent.

And yes, sometimes I am angry.  By definition, anger has an urgency to it, or you might as well relax and not be so pissed off about something.  So if I write a song that’s angry, if I don’t play it like that, to make you feel my anger, then what’s the point?…  Sometimes it’s also therapeutic and cost-effective.  Writing “Shot In The Heart” must have saved me thousands of dollars on shrink bills! 😉

And yes, absolutely, I’m still on a mission!!!.. Music, and music making is my life. I love writing, recording and playing live. And most of all, I feel like I still have something to say that will resonate with people.  As an artist, nothing is more rewarding to me than seeing people be affected by my music.  Show me an artist who tells you he or she doesn’t give a shit if people like their stuff or not, and I’ll show you a lier.

The music industry has changed a lot (or so they say). What did it bring you? And what not?

It’s definitely true, the changes in the music industry have been monumental.  And as with anything else, there are upsides and downsides to it.

As opposed to the “good old days” when the record companies were the gate-keepers to your fame and fortune, today, the possibilities for getting your music out there are practically limitless. You’re the best example of that!  J

On the other hand, these days any tone-deaf person with songwriting skills of a rhino (no disrespect to a rhino) and a credit card can become a recording artist, engineer, producer and a record label in the time it takes to get to and from your local music store and be rich and famous by the weekend.

What did it bring me?  The ability to get my music out without asking the music industry’s permission to do so.  Of course, now I’m sharing that gift not with, say, 5,000, but with 50,000,000 other people! Lol…

What did it not being me? Nothing I am worried about.  I’m at the point in my career where I don’t worry if the music industry will accept me and make me the next Justin Bieber (no danger of that either!). I write and play the music I love to play.  I don’t write or play the stuff trying to fit in with the flavor of the week.  I don’t care if I’m ‘current’, or if they call me ‘dated’ or ‘retro’.  There are only a few things that matter to me: is the music good?; did I do the best I could with it?; am I being true to myself?  If the answer is ‘yes’, then I’ve done my job.  If people like what I do, I’m happy and grateful.  And if they don’t? Well, they have the other 49,999,999 choices to listen to! 😉

She tells you she will decide on a 5-song-mixtape if there is going to be a second date. Which 5 would you put on?

If the girl tells me that our second date hinges on a fucking mix-tape, I would think I need to hit the bars again or sign up with a different dating website!…

But if I were desperate enough…

1. Long Tall Sally

2. No Particular Place To Go

3. I Saw Her Standing There

4. Under My Thumb

5. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker/Smells Like Teen Spirit

… and if she turned me down based on that selection, that’s just as well, ‘cause there ain’t no future in this act! 😉

 

1960s Garage bands, Snotty Punk from the 1970s, Sun-kissed sweaty Rhythm n’ Blues, and a lot of inspirational people.

jackcades

The Jack Cades was born in late 2017 when Mike (Lead Guitar, Vocals) and Elsa (Rhythm Guitar, Vocals) decided to record some of their songs at Mole’s (Drums) notorious State Records Studios in Folkestone, Kent. They invited John Gibbs (The Masonics, The Wildebeests) to record bass on some of their songs at the time, which resulted in a mini debut LP “Music for Children”, which will be released May 18th on Dirty Water Records.

 

 

The Jack Cades is a mix of a shared passion for inspirational sounds such as 1960s Garage bands, Snotty Punk from the 1970s, Sun-kissed sweaty Rhythm n’ Blues, and a lot of inspirational people.

 

Sweet Sweet Music talked to Elsa Grooveh.

What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?

 

Music is fun, I always have fun recording. It’s great to see the bits and pieces get together and to listen to the results.

At what point, during writing, rehearsing, recording, did you knew you were on to something special?

To be honest you never really know what the outcome will be until people give you feedback!
When we were mixing the songs though with Mole, Mike and I did kind of stop and think “wow that actually sounds pretty good!”

But it would be quite pretentious to think anything else I think.

The music industry has changed a lot (or so they say). What did it bring you?

It certainly did not bring anything to me, it has definitely changed a lot and is very poor nowadays.

She tells you she will decide on a 5-song-mixtape if there is going to be a second date. Which 5 would you put on?

 

None since I am not into girls 😀
I guess you are asking for my 5 favorites “love” songs?
“You’ve really got a hold on me” – Smokey Robinson and The miracles
“Be my baby” – The Ronettes
“I can’t help myself” – The Four Tops
“At Last” – Etta James

“To love somebody” – Nina Simone

The meaning of ‘success’ has changed over the years. When will the new record be a success?

 

It already is a big success to me in itself, I am very proud of this first LP.

Do you feel part of a community, the power pop community?

 

No, I don’t feel part of any community and do not intend to be part of any community. I have very different friends from very different backgrounds and different countries.

Can you still recall the moment music became important to you?

 

Probably when I was still in my mum’s womb. I’m not trying to be cool by saying that, it’s the truth. I have played the piano since the age of 5 and have played the clarinet, guitar, bass, I have always sung. I’ve been in bands since I was 15. I cannot live without music and I do mean that literally.

 Which is the song you wish you had written every time you hear it?

 

There are so many songs I wish I could have written!!! But my all-time favorite garage punk song is “My Confusion” by The Elite, which has the best solo of all times, the best voice, and just the best sound ever. And they were all teenagers. Such talent.

If you could tour the world with 2 other bands, who would you ask to join?

 

There are not many bands that are playing today which I really like THAT much that I would want to tour the world with them.
But if I could travel back in time I’d quite happily tour with The Beatles in 1963, and then I’d tour with the Damned in 1977 although that would probably be painful.
Magic can happen when you are playing in front of a crowd. What was the first time it happened?

It happened at our first and only gig in April this year! hahaha!

cades2
If the budget was unlimited, how would you record the next record?

The best analog studio in the world… Wherever that might be. I don’t want to get any ideas so I’m not going to do any research.

Or we would just actually buy a manor house and buy the best equipment and the best instruments in the world and get Mole to do some work.

Every family birthday, same story. Again, you have to explain what kind of band you are in. What’s the story this time for aunt Jenny and uncle Clive?

 

Aha! That’s a good one, what a pain in the backside! I always say to people who don’t know the kind of music we play and like that we aim to sound a bit like the rolling stones. (laughs)

What would change if Disney would call and tell you they are going to use your song in their next movie?

 

Well, that would pay the bills for a while.

What’s up for the rest of the year?

 

We have just returned to the studio at North Down Sound in Folkestone, Kent to record 5 tracks. We are looking to put out a single soon and another album in the nearish future.

It’s purposely eclectic because that’s who I am.

‘It’s purposely eclectic because that’s who I am.’, says Lane Steinberg about his new record Lane Steinberg & His Magical Pony.

This turned into a 15 song journey, a very exciting one.

lane

 

 

 

 What was the biggest fun during the making of the last album?
The album is a compilation of sorts, highlighting my collaborations. It’s purposely eclectic because that’s who I am. I wanted to compile an album of new songs that would be a good introduction for anyone curious about my music. When I listened back to the finished album I was satisfied that I’d fulfilled my objective.

The music industry has changed a lot (or so they say). What did it bring you? And what not?
I am not part of the industry or what’s left of it. I’ve always been on the outside looking in. I know people who’ve been signed to major labels and publishing companies who later emerged jaded and damaged. For better or worse, I never had that opportunity. But I’ve mostly had the luxury to create what and when I want to. Certainly, I am able to reach more people now than when I first started out 35 years ago with The Wind.

The meaning of ‘success’ has changed over the years. When will the new record be a success?
I am realistic on this front. I have lived long enough to see guitar pop turn into a legacy form, like Blues or Jazz. My youth is behind me, but writing, collaborating, and creating music still brings me happiness. That is success.

What would change if Disney would call and tell you they are going to use your song in their next movie?
Not much. I’d pay some bills, maybe open a good bottle of wine to celebrate, but I do that anyway. As I said, my fantasies and expectations have been tempered by the years. I am grateful to be working with people whose talents I admire, artists who challenge and stretch my musical sensibilities. But when Disney calls, I will certainly answer the phone!

 

What’s up for the rest of the year?
After every album, I say, “Well, maybe that’s it. Perhaps I’m done.” And then a bunch of projects presents themselves and I get inspired. Right now I am finishing my fourth 8X8 album with Alex Khodchenko, which has beautiful stuff on it. I am very proud of all the music we’ve created.

 

Next, there is an album of very strong songs I’ve written with Dave Foster that is being produced by Mike Fornatale, who’s worked with the Left Banke and Mark Lindsay. We all play together in a musical collective called ‘Murderers’ Row’. Actually, we are performing tomorrow night, doing a night of songs from 1964. We have phenomenal talent in this outfit and we’ll many different singers singing our songs on this album. Very exciting. Last but not least, I am working on an album of original songs with Steve Burdick of The Wind that is sounding tremendous.

 

Perhaps after these are all done I’ll finally retire, haha.