Amelia’s Magazine | A meeting with indie folk blues rockers Peggy Sue.

peggysue by kellie black
Illustration of Peggy Sue by Kellie Black.

I arrive by bike as usual to meet the three members of Peggy Sue at Spitalfields Market. Rosa got lost on hers and didn’t make their 6Music interview earlier in the day, more about which handily alerted me to the fact that it is Katy’s 24th birthday today, as well as the official launch of their new album Fossils and Other Phantoms. I wonder if their plan to go bowling in Brick Lane has come off, but it turns out the bowling alley was closed and they had to make do with chucking oranges at Lucozade bottles in the Old Truman Brewery instead. After their launch gig at Rough Trade East the band plan to head over to the Scala to enjoy the scuzzy sounds of Mount Eerie.

Even though Peggy Sue have been around for a few years they were only signed to Wichita at the end of 2009. Despite this, Katy, Rosa and Olly began recording their album over a three week period in New York last year. Producer Alex Newport – who has worked with the likes of Does it Offend You, Yeah? – first discovered the girls a couple of years ago at SXSW and he was joined by John Askew, better known as a producer of trance music, but who has also worked with The Dodos. They worked on the album in the studio at night and it was really intense. “But we wanted to do as much as possible,” says Rosa, “plus we like to work really hard.”

peggysue by kellie black
Illustration of Rosa by Kellie Black.

Many of the songs were written in New York, but they came back to the UK to overdub the tracks with friends. Peggy Sue seem quite amused that some of their session musicians belong to bands much more famous than theirs, with a horn section provided by members of Arcade Fire and TV on the Radio.

With the album finished a little over a year ago I wonder if they aren’t perhaps a bit frustrated with the long wait for it to come out officially?
Katy: For a little while we were, but then you just realise that you have to work around other people’s schedules. We’ve only been playing a few new songs on tour so we’re not sick of them yet. We haven’t run out of emotion!
Rosa: We purposefully held back some songs till the album came out.
Olly: And we’ve written some new songs since the album was made.
How pushy is your record company?
Katy: No one tells us what to do.
That I can well believe….

Quite a few reviewers seem to have identified a strong theme of heartbreak running through the album. How would you respond to this?
Katy: Some songs are about breaking other people’s hearts
Rosa: …or endings in general. They can be morose when taken as a whole body of work, but not when taken individually.
Katy: Some people are just ignoring the other themes. We take it in turns to do lead vocals so it’s not like they’re all about just one break up. I don’t know if I want to be known as horribly bruised by love…
Rosa: I don’t remember the last time I had my heart broken!

peggysue by kellie black
Illustration of Olly by Kellie Black.

They used to be Peggy Sue and the Pirates. What happened to the Pirates?
Katy: When Rosa and I started the band we were both studying at Sussex and it was just for fun. I was doing American Studies and Film. I’m still supposed to go to the US for a year as part of my course, but I keep deferring…
Olly: I was studying Popular Music at Goldsmiths, but I didn’t finish either. I prefer to actually make music.
Rosa: I was studying English Literature, but I’m the only one who finished my degree. We started getting serious two years ago when Olly joined. It made sense to drop the Pirates bit when we stopped being a duo and our music became less folky.

How did you girls hook up in the first place?
Katy: I was offered a gig as a solo artist and I asked Rosa to help out.
Rosa: I was so nervous I vomited into my mouth when I went on stage.
Katy: It was really nice to do it together. It was how you should start a band – it didn’t work when I tried to find people I didn’t know; a band needs to be built on good relationships.

How did you guys find Olly?
Olly: I went to Brighton and saw Peggy Sue playing as part of Brighton Festival – I fell in love with them immediately and became a bit of a groupie. I met them again at SXSW, and saw them play in my hometown of Margate.
Rosa: You were one of our favourite fans; we used to give you CDs for free!
Katy: We made him come and watch The Dodos so he could see what we wanted with the drum section and he liked it.
Olly: To start with I didn’t think it was a good idea for the girls to get a drummer because I preferred them without… but then I kept sending lots of pestering emails…
Eventually he organised his own audition in one of the practice rooms at his college, at which point Katy and Rosa realised he could be a great asset. Does he mind being the only man in a band with such strong women?
Olly: Not really, I’m half a girl
Rosa: …and I’m half a boy.

peggysue by kellie black
Illustration of Katy by Kellie Black.

Olly learnt drums at secondary school, Rosa learnt piano and Katy learnt a bit of piano and some clarinet. But as a band they play whatever they can lay their hands on, with great aplomb. How do they pick up all these different instruments so easily?
Katy: There’s something about teaching yourself that means you only play what you can but you play it really well. It’s nice to be self taught as it means there are no rules.
Rosa: I understand enough about how to put music together but I can’t read music very well. It means you discover new things.
Katy: I understand music in quite a mathematical way but I find it hard to translate that into playing a guitar. They are two separate things in my head
Which are your favourite instruments?
Katy: I like my electric guitar.
Rosa: For me it always goes back to the guitar. But when I try a new instrument I end up writing new melodies as I learn how to play it, which means that every song turns out differently.
Olly: I never imagined I would play the guitar but I ended up strumming a few notes on some of the songs, and now I’ve built a bucket base too…
Rosa: …it sounded in tune until we started recording…

I loved the video for single Watchman. How did you get that made?
Katy: We asked illustrator Betsy Dadd to make the video when she was going out with my best mate.
I like the humping angels. What guidance did you give?
Katy: I said she could tap into whatever themes she wanted. We don’t often make videos.
Rosa: In a perfect world we’d have one for every song
Some of the imagery would be great for putting onto merchandise.
Katy: I’d like to put some of the stills onto a t-shirt. We’ve got only one design going at the moment. It features a wolf dancing with a skeleton.

At the time of interviewing the band Katy had just been offered a place at Berkeley in California, but fear not she won’t be going unless she can put her heart and soul into it. Which means we’ve lucked out instead. For now you can catch that great big heart and soul at a whole pile of festivals this summer. Including Dot to Dot and the Park Stage at Glastonbury on Saturday morning.

You can read my review of Fossils and Other Phantoms here.

Categories ,6Music, ,Alex Newport, ,Arcade Fire, ,Berkeley, ,blues, ,Brighton Festival, ,california, ,Does it Offend You, ,Dot to Dot, ,folk, ,Fossils and Other Phantoms, ,glastonbury, ,goldsmiths, ,Indie, ,John Askew, ,Kellie Black, ,mount eerie, ,Old Truman Brewery, ,Park Stage, ,Peggy Sue, ,Pirates, ,Rough Trade East, ,Scala, ,Spitalfields Market, ,Sussex, ,sxsw, ,The Dodos, ,TV on the Radio, ,Wichita Recordings, ,Yeah?

Similar Posts:

Amelia’s Magazine | Album Review: Peggy Sue – Fossils and Other Phantoms

Illustration of Peggy Sue by Antonia Parker.

Peggy Sue have been around in various incarnations – previously accompanied by the Pirates – for sometime. So already engrained in the indie consciousness as they are, viagra sale it comes as a real surprise to discover that their first long player has only just come out. A true band of our internet led times.

Released at the end of April on Wichita Recordings, visit web Fossils and Other Phantoms therefore finds the work of an already mature band with a strongly identifiable sound of their own. A combination of indie and folk with a strong streak of the blues and even doo-wop, and husky vocalists Katy Klaw and Rosa Rex take turns to lead the tunes against a firm rhythmic backbone courtesy of drummer Olly Joyce, who comes crashing in halfway into opening track Long Division Blues after a slowly spiralling build up. His presence is never far away, even when the girls resort to the glorious simplicity of a simple guitar, kazoo or uke to back their playfully tumbling harmonies – I Read It In The Paper, Green Grow The Rushes and The Shape We Made soon grow into bigger songs with the addition of percussion.


Single Watchman is a tuneful favourite that is accompanied by a gorgeously surreal animated video by Betsy Dadd. Soulful lyrics sound heavily influenced by complicated love lives (though I discovered this is not quite the case when I interviewed the band) and render this album the perfect heartbreak sound track, but the point when you most definitely feel it’s time to pick yourself up and stand proudly independent again. Yo Mama sees them stand defiant “I’m gonna go downtown and find myself someone,” they assure us.

The album was launched with a free gig at Rough Trade East, which also happened to fall on Katy’s birthday. Accompanied by extra violin and cello “the one who bought me the cake is my favourite out of our string section” the trio powered through an energetic set in front of a clearly adoring though somewhat coy crowd. Despite problems with feedback and tuning “normally we tune up properly before a gig but we drank beer instead cos it’s my birthday” it was a great showcase for these talented and very individual multi-instrumentalists.

Illustration of the Peggy Sue string section by Antonia Parker.

Read my in-depth interview with Peggy Sue here.

Categories ,album review, ,Antonia Parker, ,Betsy Dadd, ,ep, ,Fossils and Other Phantoms, ,gig, ,Katy Klaw, ,Launch, ,Lover Gone, ,Olly Joyce, ,Peggy Sue, ,Rosa Rex, ,Rough Trade East, ,Wichita Recordings

Similar Posts:

Amelia’s Magazine | An interview with The Witch and The Robot on the release of new album Fear of Mountains

The Witch and The Robot fear of mountains
They live in the Lake District, drug they’re neighbours with British Sea Power and they make bewitching alternative music that has been labelled psych folk but which really doesn’t fit in any box. New album Fear of Mountains has just been released on digital download and features a series of unique songs inspired by their isolated location and a fabulous mash up of influences. Meet Sam Hunt and Andrew Tomlinson of Cumbrian band The Witch and The Robot (otherwise known as TWATr) for a fabulous insight into some truly creative musical minds. We’re talking everything from Wordsworth to Alex Reid

The Witch and The Robot Fear of Mountains head
How has living in the Lake District affected your approach to music making?
It pops up everywhere really; we are situationists through necessity rather than design. Growing up in places like the Lakes you have to create your own sense of scene, help a strange amalgam made up of half understood snippets from the radio or read in magazines. We found ourselves on a strange diet of Mo Wax/Warp/Ninjatune, New Romantica/Depeche Mode/Prince and David Bowie/90’s jingly jangly indie and Tupac; unable to appropriate a single scene we made one up ourselves. It’s hard not to reference where you live in songs, if you want to write about yourself, we are conscious of the romantics and the various other assorted lunatics, artists and rum buggers who by and large saw the Lakes as a place to escape the ‘real’ world. Wordsworth on the run from memories of the French Revolution, Josefina de Vasconcellos (who pops up a lot in our songs) on the run from London society, Kurt Swchitters on the run from the war…

The Witch and the Robot by Rachel Higham.
The Witch and the Robot by Rachel Higham.

The place is filled with them, hotel staff who are a bit cagey about life before the Lakes, rich artists who see themselves in the mould of the before mentioned Schwitters, loads of people who find it very easy to create their own reality in this rural bubble. Josefina had a view on it that the mountains are both muse and jailer, we quote her on Fear Of Mountainsthis place can make things seem more than they are’ it heightens emotions I suppose, to quote Lou ‘there is only one good thing about a small town that you know that you gotta get out‘ .. Fear Of Mountains Pt 1 is about getting out….
Witch and Robot by Carne Griffiths
Witch and Robot by Carne Griffiths.

Are you happy with your acronym? Was it a conscious decision to use TWATr and if so why? And why the little r at the end?
When we decided to call ourselves The Witch and The Robot we were just trying to think of two creatures who would not have met before, the acronym was just a happy accident.. We’ve written a number of stories about how the two met, some of them should be on our blog but as far as the little rTWAT is a funny word and word that is used a surprising amount in endless context, maybe it’s a Cumbrian thang…

YouTube Preview ImageHoudini

Love the video for Houdini, where was it shot and what inspired the treatment?
Why thank you – the video was shot at Wastwater – I think Sally Webster from Coronation Street got it voted ‘Britain’s favorite view’ on a ITV special – it’s England’s deepest lake, as deep as the North Sea and provides much of the water for the cooling process at Sellafield just down the way – I think there was a doctor who killed his wife and flew over Wastwater in light aircraft with her weighted body intending to drop her into the icy depths but missed and she ended up on the side of the mountain.. There’s also the Gnome garden, put at the depth where it starts to get dangerous for divers, Gnomes all happy surrounded by white picket fences, the police removed it, to prevent gnome tourism but it was put back up the next week. We filmed it on a very hot day with all our Star Wars figures and HeMan figures with the intention of tying them all to helium balloons, but you would be surprised at how many balloons you need to make an action figure fly.

The Witch and The Robot Fear of Mountains balloons
The Witch and The Robot Fear of Mountains balloons
How do you write your songs, can you describe the process of how you work together?
We have always written together, it’s a very easy process as we’ve known each other literally all our lives, the thing about TWATr is that we are not really sure anyone else is listening, its what we as a group of friends have always done and will continue to do.
Witch and Robot by Gareth A Hopkins
Witch and Robot by Gareth A Hopkins.

And for that matter, how did you meet and start making music?
We all grew up together, in and around Ambleside, I think music making came from the lack of anything else to do.

YouTube Preview ImageHetero
Fear of Mountains is apparently the first of three concept albums in a Rock Opus. What can we expect from the others?
Like David Bowie’s 1. Outside it is our ‘A Non-Linear Gothic Drama Hyper-Cycle‘, also like 1. Outside Andrew thought it would be funny if it was the only one of the trilogy we ever did. I on the other hand have an idea about an album/graphic novel/action film/musical starring Celeb Big Brother winner and former beau of Jordan Alex Reid as a battle hardened William Wordsworth, we’ll just have to wait to see who wins out.

The Witch and The Robot Fear of Mountains
The Witch and The Robot Fear of Mountains grave

Can you describe your attraction to some of the oddball characters that feature within the music, and what exactly comes across of their personality in particular songs?
Most of the oddball characters are probably us in some way or form, so it’s probably safer just to remain hidden behind abstract lyrics, but as mentioned some real life people do tend to pop up quite a lot – the key one being Josefina de Vasconcellos, a daughter of a Brazilian diplomat, became a bit of a legend in the Lakes. She was a monumental sculptor and Blake-like visionary who specialized in figurative religious art and died at the ripe old age of 101. Religious art has never really be cool – unless you were a sculptor in renaissance, but her work was totally insane, if ever in Edinburgh have a look at The Last Chimera at The Cannongate Kirk on the Royal Mile or Escape To Light overlooking Morecambe Bay at Millom Lifeboat Station. I spent 2 years making a film about her, which in the end wasn’t that good, but was certainly an experience, as someone who struggles to believe the news let alone the presence of a God, it was a fascinating insight into what is faith…

The Witch and The Robot by Barb Royal (2)
The Witch and The Robot by Barb Royal (2)
The Witch and The Robot by Barb Royal (2)
The Witch and The Robot by Barb Royal.
The album can be bought in the Hide & Horn shop in Ambleside – has it since been stocked elsewhere or would you encourage a digital download of the album instead?
We released our first album On Safari on a proper label with distribution and the like and to be honest we’ve seen not a bean, so we thought it was time to scale back and try and do something interesting with the release – when you are in a Z-list psych-folk band I think it would make more of a difference to do something like that than let an un-bought album grow dusty on Rough Trade East’s shelves – also Pete at Hide and Horn could really do with the trade. But I have succumbed to peer pressure (Andrew) and put it on sale digitally as well, if you do get it from Hide and Horn Andrew has made you a lovely picture to go with it.

The Witch and The Robot Fear of Mountains bw
Are there any particular Lake District traditions that you feel the rest of the world should know more about, and why?
At the beginning of Fear Of Mountains pt1 we have recoded a snippet of Ambleside’s Rushbaring – for years we were told that this obviously pagan fertility rite was how they used to change the rushes on the floor of the church – but stiff like that happens everywhere – I once went to 2 or 3 Cumbrian wrestling lessons when I was 12/13 wish Id stayed on as I’d probably be world champion by now. But apart from noticeably excessive daytime drinking I think the wider world is probably better off with the Lakes traditions staying in the hills.
You can hear the whole glorious record here: I recommend you take a listen. Fear of Mountains Pt 1 is out now on digital download and at the Hide & Horn shop.

Categories ,90’s, ,Alex Reid, ,Ambleside, ,Ambleside’s Rushbaring, ,Andrew Tomlinson, ,Barb Royal, ,Blake, ,British Sea Power, ,Carne Griffiths, ,Celeb Big Brother, ,Coronation Street, ,Cumbria, ,David Bowie, ,Depeche Mode, ,DJ Aesthetic Heartbreak, ,Escape To Light, ,Fear of Mountains, ,Fertility, ,French Revolution, ,Gareth A Hopkins, ,Gnome, ,HeMan, ,Hide and Horn, ,Houdini, ,ITV, ,Jordan, ,Josefina de Vasconcellos, ,Kurt Swchitters, ,Lake District, ,Millom Lifeboat Station, ,Mo Wax, ,Morecambe Bay, ,New Romantica, ,Ninjatune, ,On Safari, ,Pagan, ,prince, ,Psych Folk, ,Rachel Higham, ,Rock Opus, ,Rough Trade East, ,Sally Webster, ,Sam Hunt, ,Sellafield, ,Star Wars, ,Stuart Shingler, ,The Last Chimera, ,the witch and the robot, ,Tupac, ,TWATr, ,Warp, ,Wastwater, ,Wordsworth

Similar Posts:

Amelia’s Magazine | Cate Le Bon at Village Underground: Live Music Review

Cate Le Bon by Sam Parr
Cate Le Bon by Sam Parr

The seemingly ever present rain was holding off as I made my way up Commercial Street, past the facade of of shiny new shops and crumbling Victorian architecture where the schizophrenic fringe of the East End blurs and the City and Shoreditch collide. I’d just been to an in-store gig by Allo Darlin’ at Rough Trade East and was en route to one of the newer venues on the block (well, in this part of town), Village Underground.

Cate Le Bon By Joseph Joyce
Cate Le Bon by Joseph Joyce

Inhabiting a disused railway arch and adjacent warehouse, and adorned with recycled former Tube carriages, it’s a curious setting. I’d been here once before, for some of last year’s Stag and Dagger festival, but the acoustics in the main hall had proved to be a bit of a let-down. Tonight, though, the main event was occurring in a smaller side arch, a much more intimate setting for the dark riches we were about to enjoy.

Cate le Bon by Gilly Rochester
Cate Le Bon by Gilly Rochester

YouTube Preview Image

A former protégé of Super Furry Animals main man Gruff Rhys, I’d seen Cate Le Bon a couple of times in the past, most recently at last year’s Camden Crawl. I’d been smitten with her debut album, the psych-folk tinged Me Oh My, and she was back braving the elements to launch her follow-up, CYRK.

Cate Le Bon by Avril Kelly
Cate Le Bon by Avril Kelly

Bathed in red light, and with suitably weird images projected on to the wall behind her, Le Bon took to the stage with her band. Dressed in black and with guitar in hand, she kicked off the set with the off-kilter waltz of Julia, which then segued straight into Fold The Cloth. That bewitching, lilting voice juxtaposed with the way she attacked her guitar during solos kind of sums up the music on CYRK – the unexpected is always around the corner. The majority of the set was a run through of the new album, including the chugging Falcon Eyed (imagine if the StrokesLast Nite had been written in Cardiff), the introspective The Man I Wanted and the unsettling Greta (complete with eerie trumpet fade out).

Cate Le Bon by Sarah Jayne
Cate Le Bon by Sarah Jayne Morris

YouTube Preview Image

A couple of older songs popped up as well, with Le Bon moving to keyboards for the woozy riff of Eyes So Bright, before the set closed with CYRK’s own finale, the gentle first part of Ploughing Out building to a full on freak out that raised the hairs on the back of the neck. The cheers of the crowd brought on the encore, before which an apparently ill Le Bon wryly remarked that she’d managed to get through the set without being sick. She then took up the keyboards for Camelo, backed only by a disconcerting animation on the wall behind her, before the rest of the band came out for a romp through Ole Spain, a cover of über-obscure (even by my standards!) early 80s New Wave band Hamsters.

YouTube Preview Image

With CYRK hitting the shops, and a short European tour supporting Perfume Genius in a couple of weeks, now’s the ideal time to get to know this beguiling talent.

Categories ,Allo Darlin’, ,Avril Kelly, ,Camden Crawl, ,Cate Le Bon, ,CYRK, ,folk, ,Gilly Rochester, ,Gruff Rhys, ,Hamsters, ,Joseph Joyce, ,Me Oh My, ,Perfume Genius, ,Rough Trade East, ,Sam Parr, ,Sarah Jayne Morris, ,Stag and Dagger, ,Strokes, ,Super Furry Animals, ,Village Underground

Similar Posts:

Amelia’s Magazine | Joana Serrat: Dear Great Canyon, an interview and review

Joana Serrat by youdesignme iIlustration

Joana Serrat by youdesignme Illustration.

Singer songwriter Joana Serrat hails from Spain, where she has carefully crafted her stunning debut album, produced by Howard Bilerman and inspired by the songs of the American heartland via a sojourn in Ireland. Last Friday I managed to scamper out of the house to catch her half hour live set at Rough Trade East just before toddler bedtime, and was left suitably impressed by this diminutive Spanish lady.

Joana Serrat 2014-Rough Trade East live gig, photography by Amelia Gregory

Joana Serrat, Rough Trade East live gig, photography by Amelia Gregory.

Dear Great Canyon is a stunning album of carefully paced extremes: lilting lullabies interspersed with upbeat melodies. It opens with the elegiac Flowers on the Hillside, Joana’s faint Spanish accent the only indicator that this tune was crafted far from the Mid West. In The Blizzard Joana talks about the ‘shattering silence’ of heartbreak, her voice breaking in emotion against the richly orchestrated backdrop, with slide guitar becoming ever more prominent in Green Grass, an upbeat tune that sees Joana in more optimistic mood. After the brief 50s influenced wooziness of Stop Feelin’ Blue, So Clear is a rollicking paen to getting on with things. Summer on the Beach lulls the listener with Moogish noodlings, followed by another highlight – the Cold of the desert which is the setting for metaphors of the heart. The Wanderer narrates the tale of a magnetic dancer, and The Secret returns yet again to wild landscapes. The album draws to a close with the drifting strains of Yellow Rider, rootsy Place Called Home and piano driven Came Out of the Blue.

Joana Serrat by Natalie Burton

Joana Serrat by Natalie Burton.

Dear Great Canyon proves that location is of little importance in our globalised society, where we are as likely to be influenced by far off musicians as those on home soil. Here Joana Serrat describes how she came to fall in love with the folk music of distant lands, and how one email made her dreams come true.

Although you grew up in Barcelona your sound has been very much influenced by Americana, what were your favorite records when you first discovered music?
I used to listen to Neil Young a lot; I got into his music when I was 13 I think. I got into him because I found his Unplugged album at my Dad’s music shelves and really loved it. After that I went into Sleep with Angels and it became one of my favorite albums for years. I used to play My Heart on the piano, which I learned by listening to it. I would say Neil is my essence.

I must say when I was a child my mum used to play me on vinyl the records of a Catalan singer-songwriter named Xesco Boix who had traveled to States and came back to Catalunya under the influence of Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan and Joan Baez, which he had seen live in shows. He took traditional Catalan songs and some American songs too and went all over the schools to play those songs to children. I would say this is my first influence on music. I loved his voice, he calmed me down and made me feel I was not alone. So when I listened to Neil I recognized that feeling and it happened the same when I got into Bob’s records. I immediately felt attracted to his sound at the age of 22 and they made such a deep impact that I assumed I would write songs.
Joana Serrat by David Giménez

Joana Serrat by David Giménez.

What Spanish groups did you also listen to, and did any of these have any influence on your burgeoning sensibility?
I started to listen to Partido, McEnroe and Pajaro Sunrise two years ago, but I have never got that into Spanish bands.
What took you to Dublin, and what was your favorite bit about life in Ireland?
I went to Dublin because I needed a change in my life. I thought that perhaps everything in my life had come because of inertia and routine so I needed to check if I was able to have it for my own. I really felt the need to change my role in the family, and needed to put space between me and my life at that moment. I felt I first had to know myself better and get to understand me before introducing myself to others. I needed to find out who I was, what music meant for me. I came back more secure in myself, with knowledge and the certainty I had grown up and had matured.
I was lucky that I had a job in a wine bar and my life developed around the store and the people who worked in there. The crew was so cool, we really got on so well with each other, and we were like a family. I started to sing and lost my fears about my voice and my songs at some of the barbecues we used to have.
Joana Serrat by Amelia Gossman

Joana Serrat by Amelia Gossman.

When you start to write a song what kind of mood or situation suits you best?
I would say it’s easy for me to write when I feel sad or blue. Most of my songs were written in that mood but with Dear Great Canyon I learned to write from another kind of mood, wanting to make songs that tell a story. I still use my life and my experiences to write a song. I need my experiences, my feelings and emotions so I can compose. In that way I have a kind of dependence on my life. But I am happy I started to move away from sadness. I think it’s kinda dangerous to get dependent on sadness to create (whatever it is: music, painting, literature, etc…) It could ruin your personal life without you being conscious of it (in a Freudian way I mean).

Joana Serrat by Alicia Aguilera

Joana Serrat by Alicia Aguilera.

Where do you live at present, and what keeps you there?
I live in Vic were I was born. I came back here a year ago because my partner and I wanted a quiet life in the country. We were living in Barcelona before that but I love this land, its landscapes. Having said that I would really love to live abroad too.

How did you find and approach your producer?
I love his work with Wolf Parade, Basia Bulat and Vic Chesnutt and I was thrilled with the The Wooden Sky‘s Every Child a Daughter, Every Sun a Moon album that Howard Bilerman produced. So I decided to email him and attached 4 track demos. I asked him if he wanted to help me to make a dream come true, which was to record an album with him and he answered half an hour later saying ‘I love to make dreams come true’.  I wept when read it.

Joana Serrat by Jane Young

Joana Serrat by Jane Young.

What was the process of recording this album like? I hear much of it was recorded live…
Howard and I were talking a lot about the sound of the album. I gave him a lot of references of bands, songs and sounds I liked. I really insisted on the textures the songs must have. So he decided to record the album on tape live. It was great. Such an incredible experience. I had never recorded like that or had the chance to record properly. I mean, it was my first time that I had to think about nothing but the recording. It was amazing. At the same time it was very easy to work with him. He would be seated at the control desk, listening carefully. He is not interventionist at all. I see him as a song hunter. He catches the best perform of the song.

Where can fans see you this year in the UK?
We are playing in Liverpool soon and on August 16th at Jabberwocky Festival, London.

What next for Joana Serrat?
I wish to grow as a musician, as a performer, as a singer-songwriter and I really wish to play in a lot of places. I guess these things are what every artist wish, aren’t they? I would also really like to record an EP of new songs to be released at the end of this year or at the beginning of next year.

Joana Serrat Dear Great Canyon album cover

Dear Great Canyon by Joana Serrat is released on April 7th 2014 on the El Segell del Primavera label.

Categories ,Alicia Aguilera, ,Amelia Gossman, ,Amelia Grace Illustration, ,barcelona, ,Basia Bulat, ,Bob Dylan, ,Came Out of the Blue, ,Catalonia, ,Catalunya, ,Cold, ,David Giménez, ,Dear Great Canyon, ,El Segell del Primavera, ,Every Child a Daughter Every Sun a Moon, ,Flowers on the Hillside, ,Green Grass, ,Howard Bilerman, ,Jabberwocky Festival, ,Jane Young, ,Joan Baez, ,McEnroe, ,My Heart, ,Neil Young, ,Pajaro Sunrise, ,Partido, ,Pete Seeger, ,Place Called Home, ,review, ,Rough Trade East, ,Sleep with Angels, ,So Clear, ,spain, ,Stop Feelin’ Blue, ,Summer on the Beach, ,The Blizzard, ,The Secret, ,The Wanderer, ,The Wooden Sky, ,Unplugged, ,Vic, ,Vic Chesnutt, ,Wolf Parade, ,Xesco Boix, ,Yellow Rider, ,youdesignme

Similar Posts: