History of the Band
Writing & Recording
Playing Out & Boston's
BB: How does the band go about writing
Adam: Yeah, it’s mostly me
plunkin’ out little tunes and writing.
Jeff: This man writes and writes
BB: How do you bring a new song to the band?
What’s that process?
Adam: The process is a little
haphazard these days. I write a lot of music, and most of it we just
don’t do because of everything we’re doing right now. With the new
album coming out we’ve been playing with other side musicians, and it
takes a lot of time to rehearse people and get them up to speed. We just
don’t have enough time, so every once in a while I’ll break out a new tune
and Jimmy or John or Jeff will say, “I like that” and we’ll start messin’
around with it.
BB: What are some of your bigger songs?
John: Anything from “Touchdown”
to “Coverman” to “Come Around.” A new song we’ve been adding to our set
list is “Fit to Mine.” You know it’s really amazing because we could
really rock out a tune and people will dig it and then we can switch gears
and throw out a really laid back tune.
Jimmy: The song “California” is
a really good example of that. It’s really laid back with some hand
drums, a little guitar and vocals. It’s just a real nice song. And like
John said, we can go from a harder or more upbeat tune and then play
something like “California” and the crowds really appreciate that. It’s
nice to see them go from that rowdiness, and then see them coming right
down and swaying and cheering for that song.
BB: How do you structure your sets as far
as where you put your higher energy songs?
Jimmy: Well it’s interesting you
Jeff: We start out with a set
list that we never follow.
Jimmy: Adam will come up and
say, “well, tonight let’s do this” and he’ll bring us some list he made on
his computer. And we’ll look at it say, yeah it looks pretty good, or we
may go and switch one or two songs. Then we get on stage. We have this
saying that Adam gives some subliminal message that says “follow me, just
follow me.” We deviate so far from the set list.
Adam: And I spend like an hour
working on that set list, too.
What are your musical influences, and what are some of your favorite
artists or albums?
John: The first one that comes
to mind is
Sting. Not so much his recent stuff, but his older stuff. I
love jazz. I have really an eclectic appreciation many different genres
of music. I can listen to Sting one time and the next time I can listen
to country and appreciate that, too. I love
James Taylor. I think that’s
why when I first heard [Adams’s] music I really dug it. It brings a lot
of different genres together. So you could say Sting, you could say Vince
Gil, Patty Austin. Folks like that.
Adam: My mom is a folk musician
and so I grew up with
Simon and Garfunkel. In
high school I jumped over to the seventies classic rock like
Jimmy Hendrix and
The Grateful Dead. Some of my favorite artists to this
Robbie Robertson and The Band,
Jimmy: For me I started out as a
drummer when I was in fourth grade. I had an uncle who gave me a lot of
Stones albums and I was influenced by the drums, especially in
the Beatles. And then when I got into high school I started to play
Jimmy Page was a huge influence for me as far as guitar
playing, and then I ended up being a bass player in a band. I stuck with
the bass playing and from there it was Getty Lee from
Rush and bands like
King Crimson. And some eclectic stuff like
ELP and Greg Lake.
Great songwriter and great bass player as well, Greg Lake.
Adam: What about your heavy
Jimmy: Yeah, the heavy stuff
too. I enjoy a little of the new bands now. Before I met Adam I was
playing in bands that were writing stuff similar to
things like that. So this was kind of a change for me to go from that to
this acoustic rock gig. And I’m having a blast, it’s great.
Jeff: As far as influences, it
definitely all starts with the Beatles. The song structure and
songwriting always blew me away. Then I get into jazz, especially bee-bop
Thelonious Monk as a composer is one of my favorites. Dizzy Bird.
That whole era I really like. And then groove music, funk, old
school funk, New Orleans funk, especially
The Meters, early
stuff. A lot of reggae too like
Bob Marley and
BB: How would you guys describe the style
of the music you’re making now?
I call it acoustic rock. I call it folk
rock. I think no matter what you call it, it is really grounded in the
lyrics and the songwriting. Everything else just goes around that.
BB: What has been your experience recording
Adam: Recording sucks. I hate
it. I hate the process. I get excited about getting music out there. I
like writing the music and playing music. I have a hard time paying
attention to all the details. This album coming out in March is going to
be, as a band, our second album, and my third album. When I first
started, my first year playing, I came out with a solo album that I made in
Chicago. I just went into the studio for a couple of days and threw down
a bunch of live tracks of what I was writing. Barebones, me and a
guitar. And this last album that we did last year was with Johnny and
Kristin and I was also pretty barebones, just the three of us. We did a
live concert in the studio actually.
BB: And was that the album Sessions?
Adam: Yeah, and the name
Sessions came from the idea of having a number of different sessions that
we did down there. Either we did a live concert or we had times where
John, Kristin and I would put some stuff together. Our goal was whatever
we could get out of it, we’d get out of it. And the songs that we liked
we put on the album.
BB: Tell us about the album coming out in
Adam: We’ve been working real
hard on it the past six months. Still by industry standards it’s
incredibly bare bones. We consider ourselves a live band so we wanted to
capture that feel. We would come in and try and record live as much as we
could and go back and either add or subtract different tracks. We had a
lot of really cool guest musicians that have been playing with us lately
like Jackie Damsky, Eric Kilburn, Nicky Sanders, Rob Stone and Abbie
Barrett. So it was really fun, we’re doing a lot of different things.
BB: Do you prefer the studio or playing
John: Live. I don’t mind the
studio, but playing out is where it’s at.
Adam: No question for me.
Jimmy: It’s hard for me. I like
the recording aspect, the creative part of it, but definitely playing
out. There’s no other way to get the energy that we get from the people
that we play for anywhere else. You don’t get that playing in the studio.
Yeah, actually I love the studio.
Professionally I do other projects with other people too, but playing out
is the reason that I do this. That interaction with the crowd. There’s
nothing like it.
History of the Band
Writing & Recording
Playing Out & Boston's
*Pictures courtesy of