Hey there Cary, how as the day been?
Well, I just finished editing some music for a little video a filmmaker buddy is putting together, wrote part of a new tune, went to the studio to sing on a track for a electronic dance DJ for his next record, and saw my friend Greg Laswell play a fantastic show. Great day.
First of all I must thanks you for the new release "Covers Volume One". Great stuff like always!
Thanks for the kind words and the support. I had so much fun making this EP. It was definitely a labor of love, and all the songs were produced by good friends of mine. And then I was lucky enough to get great voices like Rachael Yamagata, Butterfly Boucher, and Priscilla Ahn to sing with me.
I'm a bit surprised about the songs, the only one I knew before was Duran Duran's "Ordinary World". How did you choose those actually, are they old favorites?
I think some artists pick covers that are popular so that they can take advantage of the original song's success. I only do covers when I have found a special way to perform the song that hopefully takes it in a new direction. The Duran Duran and INXS songs were hits that I grew up loving, the Bowie song was an underappreciated 80's classic in my mind, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs/ Matt & Kim songs were more recent indie tunes on heavy rotation in my car that I thought I could re-create with a new sound. Also, I learn so much by digging into these songs that will probably help me on my next record.
The title indicates that there will be more releases like this from you. Have you planned to do a longer series of cover EPs?
I definitely called it "Vol. 1" to leave the possibility of more collections down the road. Now anytime I want to take a break at home, I can just say "it's time for another Covers EP." Good excuse to hang out with my music friends who are frequently so busy or on the road.
If you could choose a handful of artist that would cover your songs, which ones would it be?
Well, I was so jealous when Peter Gabriel did his "Scratch My Back" project a couple of years ago. He covered artists and had them cover one of his songs. To my ears, his version of Bon Iver's "Flume" pretty much beats the original. I guess that in a dream world, I'd like to hear Jonsi from Sigur Ros do a spacey cover of one of my songs.
Have heard a rumor that you're working on a new album, is that true?
Yes, I've just started the writing the new record. As of yet, I have no idea what this thing will become. There are acoustic tunes, ballads, rock songs, piano songs, and giant electronica tracks. I'm at the early stage where it's just a big creative explosion with absolutely no direction. The fun part.
Really love "Who You Are" and "Under Control" that both had a cool and emotional vibe over them. Is this something we can expect once again or do you want to try something different this time?
I'm always trying to get the biggest emotional impact out of a melody or lyric, so emotion will probably always be at the center of what I do. However, after years of writing a ton of love songs, I think I'm trying to find emotion in different places, not necessarily just romantic stories.
When can we expect it to be out later this year or will be a 2013 release?
I hope to have the new record out around the beginning of 2013.
So will there be any touring for the new EP, any new dates on Hotel Café?
After being on the road a lot in the last couple of years in support of the last record, I'm really enjoying just making music at home for a little while. However, it's only a matter of time before I get the itch to be back on the road again. In the meantime, I'll probably play local LA shows to test out some new songs. As for a Hotel Cafe Tour, I hope we can get everyone together for another run, but it's harder and harder with everyone's schedules. It's such a good time for everyone involved that it'll happen again someday.
The Hotel Café is a great place for new and upcoming artists. Are there any new and cool artists that we should now about in LA?
Well, my favorite Hotel Cafe regulars of the last many months are the band Harper Blynn and a young singer/songwriter named Madi Diaz. Check out Madi's tune "Heavy Heart." Her voice is exceptional, and the songs are pretty stunning. The Harper Blynn guys are currently my favorite live band. There's also a newer band called Among Savages that is doing some very interesting things. I think you'll be hearing more of them in the next year.
That was it man, thanks for your time. Any last words for the readers?
Thanks for listening, guys! Oh, and did everyone love "Game of Thrones" this season as much as I did?