Interviews

Veröffentlicht am 6.10.2016 | von Dominik

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THE HEAD AND THE HEART – Interview

Schon ihr Debütalbum sorgte für Aufsehen, das nachfolgende – ansonsten häufig als das schwierige Zweitwerk geltende – ‚Let’s Be Still‚ sorgte dann erst recht dafür, dass sich The Head And The Heart ihren Weg auf Playlisten und in Indie-Folk-Herzen bahnten! Dann wurde es ruhig und die diversen Bandmitglieder verstreuten sich erstmal nach ständigem Aufnehmen und Touren in alle Himmelsrichtungen, um sich mal wieder anderen Dingen zu widmen, Inspiration und Kraft zu tanken oder sich auch einfach mal wieder mit Familie und Freunden zu treffen. Doch damit ist jetzt Schluss – das dritte Album ‚Signs of Light‚ steht seit kurzem in den Läden und die Band ist schon wieder entweder am Reisen und Spielen…oder eben auch am Interviews geben! Uns stand Drummer Tyler Rede und Antwort!

HyperFocal: 0

Bandinfos:
– Name: The Head and The Heart
– Bandmembers: Jon Russell, Charity Thielen, Josiah Johnson, Chris Zasche, Tyler Williams, Kenny Hensley
– Founding year: 2009
– Location: Seattle, WA
– Album: Signs of Light

Questionnaire:

– It’s been a while since your last record „Let’s Be Still“ and we have read, that you took some time off after touring heavily with the record. What were you up to and how important was it for you to get away for yourself for some time?
We all got off the road and did our own separate things – I bought a house and planted some roots in Richmond, VA. I immersed myself in the local music scene and started a psych rock side project that was really drum heavy. That project definitely helped influence the drumming on our new album. Jon went to Haiti with Artists for Peace and Justice. Kenny had the coolest time off though – he went to China to study Kung Fu for a month with an old friend. He is a lethal weapon now.

– Jonathan was also taking part in a non-profit organization – Artist For Peace And Justice. How did he come in contact with them, what are they doing and what was his role there?
Jon met the organization through a few mutual friends and he ended up going to Haiti twice last year, where they were meeting with communities, helping set up schools and really encouraging kids to be involved in music. He wound up recording with Jackson Browne, who is one of our heroes.

– When reading your bio, we had the feeling that there is a difference for you with the band/tour life and your own/real life. Could you describe that?
We’re such a tight unit on the road. We are around each other all the time, whether it’s eating a meal, playing baseball before a show, having dance parties on the bus at night. I’m going to quote the band Chicago here: „Everybody needs a little time away, from each other.“ It’s healthy for us and when we’re all back together we’re refreshed from our time apart. It’s awesome.

– At which point were you then coming back together for recording the new record ‚Signs Of Light‘? Was it planned to come back after a certain time or did you at one point feel that you need to get together again?
There were these short writing sessions at first starting in May of last year. Jon, Charity and Josiah had all compiled songs and built up melodies and rhythms to work on and it just felt natural to get together when we did. The songs started to really get to a new level in Stinson Beach, CA though- there was a mysterious energy there that I can’t even explain. It moved us to a new place, musically and mentally.

– For the recording you were staying at a beach in California – how did this surrounding influence the process, what was it like and what was the best/worst moment of it?
We really just wrote in California, we recorded in Nashville, TN with producer Jay Joyce. The best moments were always the moments of surprise. We thought we knew where the song was going but Jay would take us somewhere completely new and it would blow our minds wide open. We never knew we could be this band until now. The worst moments were the opposite side of that coin- you’re letting your baby go out in the world and it’s terrifying to trust another person to help in that process.

– The title itself is very positive, as well as the music style seams to have shifted a bit – could you describe with which expectations and plan you were starting off when you met and how producer Jay Joyce influenced the record?
I think that energy and positivity comes from the time off and how rejuvenated we all felt when we got back. We aren’t these anxiety riddled early 20 year olds anymore… It feels like we’ve come into our own artistically and with confidence. That leads to the vibe on this record. Jay just took us to new heights. He wouldn’t let us bullshit him and he wanted very live, energetic takes.

– ‚City of Angels‘ is one of our favorite songs of the record – could you tell us a bit about it, how it was produced and what’s the story behind it?
That song took a bit of time to gestate and find its path, but once it did, we just followed it where it wanted to go. I envision Bruce Springsteen driving down the 101 in his comfortable when I listen back to City of Angels. Top down, cruising. We tried recording it 4 separate times but it just wasn’t happening so we made sure we were all feeling really good(no late night drinking), it was a sunny day and we came in early in the morning and just slammed it out live in a couple takes. I think we even kept most of the scratch vocal track on that one. It stems from Jon’s time living in LA and enjoying the city.

– Also ‚Library Magic‘ feels a bit like a strong song about your band history up to now – how do you all feel about that song and how did you feel when Charity Rose first came up to you with those lyrics?
That’s a deep song for us, for sure. It almost feels like our theme song now. We all love it and have embraced the history of who we are and just know there will always be better days, no matter what may come.

– It’s now your 7th year of band history, 3 albums down – how do you feel about the time as a band, what were your expectations when you started it and how would you describe the development in the last years?
We had no expectations when we started. We were just a bunch of new friends, hanging out at an open mic night in Seattle. It’s amazing to look back and actually relive the memories, good and bad, and take those experiences with us as we try to create new chapters and hope for the best. In the last few years, I think we’ve had a lot of obstacles and difficult situations to maneuver but I couldn’t imagine it any other way. It is who we are and has helped us reach a new place in our band.

– What did you learn in 2016?
I learned to stop worrying and love myself for who I am.

– Which song fits best to your actual situation?
‚All We Ever Knew‘ fits so many situations in the world right now. It’s a crazy time and everything feels like it could fall apart at any minute. That song is a song of love and a hope that the world can collectively wake up from the damaging patterns we’ve been stuck in for centuries.

– Which song makes you dance every time?
David Bowie „Young Americans“

– How would your Bedroomdisco look like?
It would look like my favorite dive bar complete with a pinball machine, the best classic jukebox in town and a disco ball the size of Manhattan.

– Who did fill out the questionnaire?
Tyler Williams, Drums

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