SILVER SWANS – Interview

So richtig viel weiß man ja noch nicht über das Projekt Silver Swans aus L.A.. OK, dahinter steckt die Zusammenarbeit von DJ und Produzent Jon Waters und der Songwriterin Ann Yu, das Ganze ist irgendwie einzuordnen unter Elektro-Dream-Pop bzw. der Name kommt von einer Gruppe von Super-Schurken aus den Wonder Woman Comics. Das war’s dann aber auch schon. Musikalisch hat das Duo seit etwa einem Monat trotzdem für Aufsehen gesorgt, denn seitdem haben sie diverse Songs via ihrer SoundCloud-Seite zum kostenlosen Download bereitgestellt (hier haben wir darüber schon berichtet) und mittlerweile heißt es sogar, dass dieses Jahr auch ein Debütalbum auf den Markt kommen soll. Wir sind gespannt und wollen mehr wissen – Silver Swans im Bedroomdisco Interview!

1.) Band facts

– Name: Silver Swans
– Band members: Ann Yu and Jon Waters
– Founding year: 2009
– Residence: California
– Current album: Secrets EP

2.) Questionnaire:

– How did you meet and how did you decide to make music together?
The honest answer is we met on myspace (which is so 2007 I know). We bumped heads by random chance online via myspace. It started with one of Jon’s songs he wanted a female singer on and it was really easy to be able to sing over his tune, so easy that we kept doing it and that eventually led to Silver Swans, our collaboration.

– You come from different musical backgrounds – a songwriter and a DJ – how was the beginning of you working together, how did you define your sound?
Jon is a producer first and for most, DJ actually stands for Dream Jockey, which means he can interpret and make come to life virtually anything he or I conjure up. For example, sometimes I’ll have just a vocal melody in place and a couple of rough images in my head (let’s make it sound like cotton or I want it to seem like you are floating) about what I want a song to sound like, and Jon will interpret that and make it a tangible sound. I also often think in terms of guitar progressions, so it’s really special to be able to take that away and only have a melody for Jon to work with outside of ever having heard something against a guitar part.

– In which situation did you came up with the name “Silver Swans”, why did you choose it and what meaning has it for you?
I have a necklace with two silver swans and Jon’s family crest includes 3 silver swans, it’s something in common we both share.

– How do you normally work on songs? What are the steps/processes, what are the usual problems of finishing a song?
Either Jon sends me an instrumental idea or I send Jon a vocal idea and we work on it separately so that we have a full instrumental with vocal melody, then we get together and finish the idea. We try to change it up when the song is created but we always end up finishing the idea together.

– It’s said that you give a special meaning to the idea of bedrooms recordings and record all songs in late night sessions – why is this so?
Pretty much everything we do is recorded at home in our rooms, I’m literally in my pajamas down to my favorite slippers, and its always late at night. I feel most comfortable then when I don’t think anyone is around listening.

– How was the production process of your EP, how long did it take, where did it happen, what were the difficulties?
We did the EP between our two apartments here in SF in about 4 months. The production and mixing were done at Jon’s place. None of it was taken to a studio, we simply spent any free moments working out bits until we were happy over lots of cups of black tea, thanks to Jon. Difficulties were just thinking too much about a song, sort of our biggest pandora’s box also running out of tea. Sometimes we can drive ourselves mad about the little things. Maybe also because we get to work on these songs at home, and at home, you can do whatever you please.

– “Secrets” is one of our favorite songs – can you tell us what it is about, how it was done and if there is a story behind it?
Secrets is the most private on the EP I think. Sort of a private memory from the winter of 09, feeling a little nostalgia about an old friend, and feeling a little like I shouldn’t share those lyrics and melody but I did with Jon and he built a beautiful song around it and then I just wanted to share it with more people and we sent it to Clyde over at 27 Records, and he loved it. All purely by chance that song came together, it was our first bedroom recording really.

– You did cover “Anyone’s Ghost” from The National – how did it come to that, what would you say is important for you when doing a cover, do you know if/how The National liked your cover?
The cover was my other bandmate (from Lovelikefire) Dave Farrell’s idea and I loved the song immediately. I love the semi 50s vibe the melody has, I love 50s music in general. But it was Jon who put together the heartbreaking and beautiful track for it and then I didn’t hear it so much as a 50s tune anymore but sort of this lilting falsetto, fragile and sad song and we had to make it sound that way. I don’t think the National have heard the cover, have they? I would love to know if they like it…

– You’re already working on a full-length record – what can you tell us about it/how far are you in the production? What will it be like, when can we expect it?
The songs we have so far for the full length are my favorite to date. I know that’s how it should be but truly, I have them floating in my head and sometimes I don’t even remember they are by us. We’re about two thirds of the way through it and it will be like the songs were woven rather than written. We expect to release it later this spring.

– What are you doing if your not making music?
Drinking lots of tea, shopping, and Jon would be getting more sleep.

– What are your next plans?
Tour Europe hopefully!

– Which song would fit to your actual situation?
Let Me Know Now

– Which song makes you dance independent of your situation?
Best Friend in Love

– How would your “Bedroomdisco” look like?
We love that term! Its totally how I feel sometimes, I like to dance when no one else is watching and I like to dance in comfortable clothes. Bedroom disco would be white fluffy cotton, sweatpants, and hot tea, danceable music but hushed vocals, sleepy eyes and cozy jumpers.

– Who did fill out this questionnaire?
Ann filled it out, Jon put in his two cents through Ann.

Silver Swans – Secrets (Letting Up Despite Great Faults Remix) by silverswans



Bedroomdisco-Gründer, Redaktions-Chef, Hans in allen Gassen, Golden Leaves Festival Booker, Sammler, Fanboy, Exil-Darmstädter Wahl-Hamburger & happy kid, stuck with the heart of a sad punk - spreading love for great music since '08!

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