Sunday, February 13, 2011

M Jack Bee - Interview

Hey Syphilites,

I have told you before about M Jack Bee, here and I posted about his new EP 'In Loops' before here. The EP is for sale from both Vitamin Records and from Itunes. The EP gets played here at least once a week, most times more, and I am mesmerised by these songs. I decided that it was time to delve deeper into this masterpiece EP so I proposed an interview with the man himself and it went a little something like this:

Syphilis of the Brain: Hey Fucknuts,

Let's do an email interview for my blog about your EP and music and whatever else. What shall we start with?

M Jack Bee:  Questions I think, or that I have a very massive....... following in Borneo.

SOB: tell me more about your following in Borneo.

M Jack Bee: It came about when their youth became disillusioned with the indigenous music there, they felt it had become too predictable and stale. When in loops was released, it spoke to their hearts containing references to their heritage whilst offering a dangerous new way to live a musical life on the edge.

SOB: How does your EP 'In Loops' signify 'a dangerous new way to live a musical life on the edge'? Also, do you view the songs on 'In Loops' as separate from each other, or are they part of the same unit, in your eyes?

M Jack Bee: It was dangerous because I committed to the fact it was going to be recorded live, and being on the beautifully tight indie budget, if I didn't pull it off I would have lost my recording funds for the year for some shitty live takes. It's one story in my eyes. When your faced with life and you're slowly growing and you start seeing the patterns emerge, the cycles of the shit you know your not dealing with, that's when you're in loops. So each track to me is another one of those circumstances resurfacing.

SOB: Can you tell us what patterns/cycles inspired 'Moth' and 'Farewell'?

M Jack Bee: Moth was from waking up at night with this image of my skin sagging off my face, on the third night this happened there was this insane tapping on the window, and when I put the lamp on it got crazier. And I was a bit jealous that this bug had the balls to fly right into the flame and die for it's goal while I'm left stuck dreaming of the sad old man I could be. 

Farewell was the first realization of the cycle. If we had funerals for each part of us that passes, farewell would be the eulogy that my dying teenage spirit would sing for itself as a passing shot at the adult.

(Video by Anja Bell and Simon Laity)

SOB:Wow, so both are about growing older and its side-effects. Are you afraid of growing old? Also, do you feel that by writing songs about these, supposed, fears, you actually end up breaking these loops you find yourself in?

M Jack Bee: never. fears live with you always, all you can do is notice them and let them not stop you from doing whatever it is you need to be doing. i'm concerned with each passing day that's for sure, but not afraid to grow old, as long as I'm doing my thing it will be fine..... these songs only bring me back to the awareness of the fears, what i want to break, and are only effective when performed. writing them is not nearly enough.

SOB:So you recorded the EP live in a tiny dark studio over in Byron Bay. Will you stick with this type of recording for a while? What are the advantages and what are the difficulties? And tell us a bit more about the studio while you are at it.

M Jack Bee: It was an old queenslander house up in the hills behind Byron, the home of producer Christian Pyle (Studio Lot 64). This guy has been on the road for 20 years or more collecting gear, and it looks wild out there but everything has been very thoughtfully placed and he writes songs so he knows how a space should feel for someone to perform in. Id prefer to work in spaces full of quirk, character, and life with a twisted solitary edge, so I won't be rushing to a clinical studio anytime soon. You can't fake the drone of the crickets or the haunting scream of a catbird mid song, that stuff makes a record for me.

The advantage is a record full of brooding life, the disadavantAge is not having an FM sounding sweet pop record that would sell to the masses...... but you gotta think of the book you'll have in your mind as you lay on your deathbed and which path would make you prouder to reflect on.

SOB: Brilliant stuff. Let's finish off with this: What are your plans musically for 2011?

M Jack Bee: One more in loops tour in April whilst recording new LP. This time I'm setting up to record live with a band of ramshackle geniuses and pull some soul back into rock and roll. That and hopefully get to Borneo, the kids need me.

M Jack Bee has a few shows locked in over the next month or so. Note he will be supporting M. Ward on the 25th of Feb in Byron Bay. Keep an eye on his shows here

Feb 17: Beetle Bar, Brisbane, QLD, Aus, 7pm

Feb 18: Byron Bay Brewery, Byron Bay, NSW, Aus

Feb 24: Gold Coast Arts Centre Basement, Goldcoast, QLD, Aus, 7pm

Feb 25: Byron Theatre - Supporting M. Ward, Byron Bay, NSW, Aus, 7pm

Mar 17: The Gollan, Lismore, NSW, Aus, 7pm

Remember to get it here

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