Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Washover Fans winning me over with YARN, DORITOS, RAVELRY and one of my favorite albums this year "That Habit Suits You"

interview with the washover fans by xo kaytea

Anyone that finds a stars and stripes truck has my attention. If only this was their touring truck! I might change my job to roadie! This up and coming Seattle folk americana, roots, alt. country 4 piece is killing it in my ears! When I get music I tend to push through the stacks, when this one came to me...let’s just say I burned a disc for my car and um I already know the lyrics to every song!

The next best thing after having a wonderful album is to have a group that cracks my shit up.  Read this interview and I bet you will fall in love with them as much as I did. "That Habit Suits You" is one of the most cohesively put together americana releases I have had on my desk in years!

* I leave you with my favorite line on the whole album (HONEYS) "images of women when I’m finished eating.... I’ll consume them to" anyone that can sing about mountain dew and lucky charms and end with a line like that GOOOOOODDDDD DAMMMMMMNNNNNN check out this interview! See where they hang out in Seattle and STALK them like I am going to!

It says you all come from different backgrounds? Do share your individual influences?
Seth-  I grew up listening to and playing roots/americana/folk music with my father and then went on to study jazz in high school and college and played mainly guitar and mandolin during this time.  I spent a lot of time going to Phish shows and catching jazz/funk/hip hop shows in NYC.  When I first moved to Seattle I played in a funk/soul band and was still focusing primarily on playing electric. I then got back into playing more acoustic music when I met Gillian a few years ago and then picked up the clawhammer banjo a little bit after that.  I owe my exposure to and love for roots music to my dad.  My biggest musical influences are The Band, Dickey Betts, Jerry Garcia, Soulive, Grant Green, Keith Jarrett, Stevie Wonder and my father.  I listen to almost everything.  While I have been typing this I went from the Pointer Sisters to John Hartford to Too Short to David Bazan.  That’s ridiculous and would make an awful mixtape, but I have loved every second of it.

Gillian- My parents played really great music around me growing up. A lot of Neil Young, Bob Marley, Joni Mitchell, Cat Stevens, Pink Floyd and the Grateful Dead.  I also got really into the Beatles in middle school.  In high school I was really into the contemporary folk scene - Dar Williams, Lucy Kaplanski, etc.  I drew on a lot of those influences when I started playing guitar and writing.  I was really lucky to have parents that appreciated good music (and played good music themselves), and over all would say their musical influence was the greatest. I share some of those influences with the guys, but it’s beneficial that we all draw on pretty individualized tastes.

David- I grew up around a lot of bad music honestly - my parents listen to nothing but that dentists-office station that plays Wilson Phillips, etc., and I participated in choirs and orchestras that generally didn’t pick very interesting things to play. My one big carryover from those days is old church music, hymns etc., and it’s still a huge influence in the way I write for The Washover Fans. These days my favorite bands are rock and folk minimalists I guess you could say - Low, The New Year/Bedhead, Gillian Welch & Dave Rawlings, Dave Bazan/Headphones/Pedro the Lion, Cat Power

Colin-My folks played a lot of their favorite classic records around the house when I was growing up including Bob Dylan, Neil Young & Crazy Horse, CSNY, James Taylor, The Band, Phoebe Snow, Cat Stevens, Eric Clapton, and the Beatles.  I grew up playing classical cello too, so I listened to and played all kinds of solo cello, symphonic and broadway (theater pit orchestra) styles.  I’ve always been a little slow to jump on the most current music, but the mid-to-late 90s hit me hard.  I listened to a lot of Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, Weezer, Snoop Dogg, Notorious B.I.G., Radiohead and Metallica, as well as Hendrix, the Who and more Clapton.  By the time was in my early 20s I got really hooked on Wilco, Ryan Adams and Kathleen Edwards, all of whom are huge songwriting influences on me.

Can you remember first album that you ever got (purchased or received as a gift)?  Do you still listen to the band or music like it?
Seth-  Received as a gift= Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” or the single “Uptown Girl” by Billy Joel, not sure.  First I purchased with my own money was Poison’s “Open Up and Say Aah.”  I remember the transaction like it was yesterday.  I still listen to Michael Jackson.

Gillian- I had a bunch of tapes, but I think my first CD was actually the Smashing Pumpkins’ Siamese Dream.  I took a sharpie to track 11 on the CD itself so I wouldn’t get in trouble with my dad.

David- Paula Abdul’s Forever Your Girl, which I of course still listen to, start to finish, as a morning meditation, and then again right before bed.

Colin- MC Hammer “Please Hammer Don’t Hurt Em” - best 9th birthday present ever.

My favorite tracks are “A Ways” and “Light Sweet Crude” (best opening line EVER!) would you please tell me about these songs and their meaning?

David- A Ways was written in the depths of a guilty hangover. I sort of have a complex about being an irresponsible person - I have to work so hard to remember that stuff I scheduled, mail whoever that check, etc., and most of the time it feels like it’ll never get any easier and the people I care about will have to pick up the slack for me forever.

Colin- In the past few years I’ve been working on songwriting as fiction.  I definitely can say that some of the emotions written into Light Sweet Crude are real, but the situation I’m trying to show is completely fabricated.  The song tells the story someone talking with a friend and very directly calling them out about some sort of hypocrisy.  Its the kind of thing I wish I had the stones to do.

Seattle is not specifically known for its Americana roots? What influences in Seattle do you draw from?
Seth-  Seattle is actually growing a quality roots scene and it is exciting to be a part of it, but I don’t feel like I personally draw from the Seattle scene.  I feel like you really need to spend time listening to, absorbing, and playing the the roots music from where it originated.  It’s like immersing yourself in a language (wow, that sounds like a cliche).  That being said, Cahalen Morrison and Eli West are a local group that I absolutely love and secretly envy their musicianship.  

Gillian- Seattle is a hip place in general and you can always count on good music being played wherever you go - whether at live shows or an eclectic mix played at the local businesses.

Colin- Oh yeah, roots is the new grunge, baby.  But local (Seattle/Portland) musicians like Dave Bazan/Pedro the Lion, Damien Jurado, and Laura Viers have definitely shaped my style over the past 10 years.  Also, I have to mention the work of The Fleet Foxes, The Maldives, Grand Hallway, The Globes, Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground, Rosie Thomas, J. Tillman, and the Head and the Heart, all of whom have shaped my(our) sounds, as well as that of many other musicians in town.

Where can I find you in Seattle on a typical day? Favorite spots (eats, drinks, music, shopping)
Seth-  Chocolati coffee shop in Wallingford, Dusty Strings acoustic shop in Fremont, Easy Street or Neptune Records, and when things get weird late night, Golden City.

Gillian- I like to get work done at Fremont Coffee shop or Chocolati (but only when I know Seth won’t be there).  My favorite hole in the wall bar is Al’s on 45th in Wallingford.  I like checking out the sale bins at the Weaving Works and Bad Woman Yarn, or taking a craft class.  On special occasions, we end up funking it up at Seamonster.  Apparently I don’t get out of my own neighborhood much....

David- I live in Greenwood and it is the best neighborhood on earth for just kind of wandering around with headphones. For bars I love Pony and Naked City.

Colin-I live in Greenwood too, and I love Naked City and the Gainsbourg.  But when I’m looking to catch a local show I’ll head to the Comet Tavern on Capitol Hill, or the Sunset or the Tractor in Ballard.  If I’m hanging out with Seth and getting weird, probably Ed’s Kort Haus.

How did you come up w/ band name & album title?
Gillian- The band name just came to me one day.  I was a geology minor in college and drew from that vocabulary.  Really, I just mentioned it to the guys one day and eventually it stuck.  

Colin-The album title comes from a line in Light Sweet Crude - “but that habit suits you well...”

What kind of touring are you doing now and in the future?
Seth-  We are in the process of booking a west coast tour this summer.  Seattle to San Diego and back. 

Gillian- I’m secretly working on a North Carolina tour, but don’t tell the guys.

Dream tour co-headliner? Dream tour vehicle? Dream tour rider?
Seth- Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings.  The A-team van.  The rider would include real New York pizza (Enough for everyone to have as much as they want.  Not just a slice or two. That’s not fair).

Gillian- Bon Iver (really I just have a crush on Justin Vernon); any tour vehicle is fine, as long as I never have to drive it; and the rider would certainly include an espresso machine.

David- Dave Bazan, bus with rooftop hot tub (duh), and the rider would have Elijah Craig on it somewhere.

Colin- Kathleen Edwards and Bon Iver.  I've been a fan of both for a long time, and their new collaborations are incredible.  I would love tour with them.  And I would FILL the rooftop hot tub with Elijah Craig.  Actually that’s kinda gross.

Biggest indulgence in your daily life?
Seth- vinyl, electric and acoustic instruments, and going to expensive Seattle restaurants I can’t afford with my girlfriend and sister.

Gillian- yarn and coffee

David- I know it’s trendy right now but I’m really into the craft cocktail thing. It’s taken a year but I’ve finally got a big enough liquor shelf that I can hang. I don’t do all the DIY liquors and stuff but I love mixing.

Greatest invention of the modern world?
Seth- Doritos.

Gillian- Ravelry.

David- This is not cool to say I don’t think but I can’t tell you how much better my life is with Pro Tools in it.

Colin-its so hard to choose, we basically live in the future.  And I love the future.

What was the last thing that made you smile?
Seth- Portlandia. David singing Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” and killing it at a Chinese restaurant karaoke session LATE on last Tuesday night.

Gillian- I’ve been snowed in with my boyfriend for three days.  He’s still making me smile, but I think we need to leave the house tomorrow.

David- Portlandia! Except sometimes it’s too much like me. Back off the craft cocktail thing, you two. There’s nothing weird about chard ice.

Colin- This video: who the hell are those girls? “cause I pay my own bills, have a lot left over for savory thrills” Love it.

What would you like people to know about you & your bandmates?
Seth- David leaves everything everywhere and has the best ear of anyone I know.  Colin is cool as a cucumber and the voice of reason.  Gillian is too sensitive and also probably the most funny-by-accident person I know.  One time when I asked her why she finished her bloody mary so quickly she said, “because it reminds me of steak and I am really hungry.”

Gillian- Seth is really supportive (except when he’s being really mean...) and he’s always there for me, David has the most awesome Georgia accent that reminds me of home, plus he is the best harmonizer in the world, and Colin never gets mad when I call or text him all hours of the night to come out and do karaoke with us even when I know he has to work in the least I think he doesn’t.  Also, I’m not really that sensitive, Seth is.

David- Seth is the only reason we get any shows, complete any recording, have any money or leave the house wearing clothes in the morning. Seriously if you like what we do thank him. Gillian begins a new knitting project on average every 30 minutes, and if you put an instrument in Colin’s hands for more than a second or two, he will play a song. There is no telling what that song will be, but it’ll be from the 90s, and you will for example be like, “Hey is that... the theme from Jurassic Park?!?”

Colin- Its Davids fault that I always whip out 90s jams on any instrument in the room.  I don’t know why, but it is.  Also, whatever cocktails he’s mixing they surely have soda water in them - he’s hooked on that stuff.  Seth is our main manager and he’s always keeping us on task, also if there are vinyl records at your house, don’t plan on having a conversation when Seth comes over.  Gillian has been on our case for years to have a band writing/whiskey retreat in the woods of Washington and we’re finally gonna do it!  It will be a great chance to get together new material for our next record.  

upcoming shows
- Friday, February 3rd at the Tractor in Seattle

Buy the album here:

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