What is your name and band/label/etc?
I'm Sam Russo, I just put out an album called Storm on Red Scare Industries.
What are your top five albums that were released in 2012? (In order 1-5)
- Patterson Hood - Heat Lightning Rumbles in the Distance
- Joe Pug - The Great Despiser
- Lucero - Women and Work
- The Gaslight Anthem - Handwritten
- Apologies, I Have None - London
What band did you discover in 2012 (can be a brand new band or an older band) that had an impact on your life? What made them significant?
I really got into the Rolling Stones this year. You basically can't be alive and not know who the Stones are, and I was already a fan, but I really got into the back catalogue and they've totally blown my mind. As a kid I used to see the big lips and tongue logo everywhere in our house and I didn't make the connection until years later, then when I finally got around to really exploring their music properly I fell totally in love. I used to always put Beast of Burden on the juke box and now I'll put the whole of Exile on and everyone in the bar just sits there hating me. I think "Plundered My Soul" might be the greatest rock and roll song ever written. In fact I'm sure of it.
How will you remember 2012? (In terms of music)
2012 for me will always be about country music radio. When I drove across the states in October me and my girlfriend just listened to HOURS of amazing country on digital stations shouting 'TRUCK YEA!' And 'She's like a Sunday morning, FULL OF GRACE AND FULL OF JESUS!' - obviously pretty memorable.
What can we look forward to from you in 2013?
In 2013 I'm going to tour ALOT, finish my novel, write a new record and hopefully quit working 70 hour weeks in a warehouse. Maybe cut down to 60 hours in fast food, y'know, just for a change.
What records are you looking forward to most in 2013?
I'm looking forward to a new Jason Isbell album, supporting a sold out ZEKE UK arena tour (not happening), a new Lawrence Arms record (optimist) and a whole lot more country music radio.
Fundraising sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo have made a strong impact on the ability of artists to release music. Do you think this approach is a trend, or will it continue to shape how artists produce their material?
I have mixed feelings about musical kickstarters because I see it as my responsibility to stand on my own two feet when it comes to financing my music, and part of me sees it as a little lazy. On the other hand I love that Jim White had a kickstarter for Where It Hits You where he was giving away sculptures and old car parts and all sorts - so there's obviously room for really creative ways of giving back, I just find it a bit uncomfortable to see bands all cap in hand because they can't or just won't fund their own recording. It's a tricky one, but I don't actually care either way, I think musicians should and will do whatever they feel is right for them.