Who are the most underrated musicians/songwriters?
Kurt Boucher is an underrated songwriter in my opinion, Billy Nicholls as well. There’s just so many songwriters I know of, that I know a lot of people don’t know that I really like, but I don’t know if they’re underrated because of that. I’m not sure if the whole world would agree with me, but I think they’re underrated. Tom Rapp from Pearls before Swine, he’s totally underrated. Mort Garson, he’s an electronic musician. He did a album with a project called the Zodiac and they recorded with The Wrecking Crew, there was also a studio band that recorded with The Beach Boys and The Association and all these other bands, they’re really good, and that record is really great. He did some electronic synth stuff too that I really like. Also Duncan Browne.
If you could tour with any band, who would you tour with?
that’s a good question, but it’s kind of a tough one. I’m not sure if I really consider myself a touring musician. I tour a lot more than many musicians do, but i still feel like I’m a studio guy. as my ambition is not really touring, it’s easier for my to think what band I would like to record with.
Who would you like to record with?
I guess that would the Wrecking Crew because all my favorite records were played by them, even though they were all different bands. They were all played by that same group of people and they all did it great. So they’re in my head already as the things that inspire me, the things that I know, and that the music that I love came from them, so being able to work with that band would be the dream.
How did you and Frank [Maston] (keyboardist in Jacco’s touring band) become friends?
Well it all started when I got an email from Bill from Trouble In Mind, the label that I was going to release my album on. It wasn’t released yet, but I released my second single on it already, the first single was actually on a different label. But I got an email from Bill and he sent me the album of Frank’s. That’s the first time I heard his album and I was a big fan after that. I just really dug it and I was really excited to see his live show on SXSW where I was going to be playing. We were both going to play the trouble in mind showcase, the label showcase. We did and we met up with each other there and we exchanged records and enjoyed each other’s show a lot. He totally remembers my show, every detail of it, and he was really impressed by it. I was really impressed by his show with his band at the time and the musicians he was playing with and the whole set up that he had was really wonderful. So that’s how we met and then after that we saw each other at several other festivals like Liverpool Psych Fest, where we both played, and we both played the Burger Records Store one day where he opened. We saw each other here and there. He was in Amsterdam touring with Maston (Frank’s solo project) and I went to his show and there was an award ceremony the same night. He went along with that and I played with my band on that award ceremony. So we both played on the same night in Amsterdam. Things like that happened a lot. Then, I needed a keyboard player for a certain period in America and I already had a new keyboard player, but I only did like four shows with him and he wasn’t available for that month that we had to do in the United States. So then, we asked Frank if he was available and he said yes. After that we just clicked so well and worked so good that we couldn’t really play without him anymore. Also, because the other guy was so new we didn’t click as well. So we got rid of him or he got rid of us, depends the way you look at it I guess. But we went on with Frank and we still do and it’s really nice.
California or Amsterdam?
California definitely! Mostly because I’m not a city guy necessarily so Amsterdam is very crowded people go to Amsterdam a lot so it’s a very hectic, busy place. In California, people do go there a lot, but there’s also a lot of space and a lot of nature around and a lot of places you can just explore and not see any human beings at all. Amsterdam does not offer that and that’s something I really need sometimes. To just ride my bike around and not see anybody. To just be in my own world for awhile.
Was recording the new album a lot different from recording the first?
The first record I did all the instrumentation, but I didn’t play the drums. In the second record I also didn’t play the drums. So the first record I worked with Jos van Tol on drums and on the second one he played two songs on it and Nik, the drummer we’re working with now live, he played six songs on the album. On the other songs I do some percussion, but there’s not really any drums on there. So the rest of the instruments I played are basically the same thing as on the first album, arrangement wise. Instrument wise I use different instruments with the same sort of arguments, more electronic and then I just tried and different approach to writing it. With a different writing technique I had little ideas that I worked on while I was on tour. Which was very different from in the studio while I have my guitar on me or playing piano or something. It’s a very different thing so it’s more about the arrangements.
If it’s a Friday night and you’re not touring what are you doing?
It depends how much I’m touring, if I’m touring a lot it and it’s my first Friday night after touring then I will probably just stay at home and chill and do nothing at all and just watch movies. If it’s a Friday night show then it kind of depends on the place, but I always enjoy, especially if it’s in a city that I’ve never been to, going out in that city. It really depends on where it is in the tour because if we’ve had a lot of parties before and we have a 12 hour drive the next day and we have to get up at 7 a.m. we’re not going to party that hard the night before. But we might, but probably not. It kind of depends. My perfect Friday night would probably be just watching a movie or making some music with friends or listening to good records with friends.
What’s your favorite record at the moment?
I’ve been trying out a lot of new stuff lately. I was really enjoying Isao Tomita’s album that he did all on moog synthesizer. He made electronic versions of Debussy pieces and they’re all Debussy stuff, but he made new sounds for them and played everything on analog synthesizers. Oh! Actually my favorite album is The Expanding Universe by Laurie Spiegel. I like that one a lot! It’s also all electronic, kind of drone-y, but all analog 70’s really warm sounds and it’s all like very slow meditative stuff, but it’s really enjoyable to listen to. It’s good to fall asleep to as well.