One of our newest features here at Scene Point Blank is our semi-daily quickie Q&A: One Question Interviews. Follow us at facebook or twitter and we'll post one interview every Monday-Thursday. Well, sometimes we miss a day, but it will be four each week regardless.
After our social media followers get the first word, we'll later post a wrap-up here at the site and archive 'em here. This week check out Q&As with Subsonics, Modern Radio Record Label, Heavy Times and Joseph Ross Camuglia.
Clay Reed (Subsonics) (label = Slovenly). I’m going to start noting the labels just for my own PR purposes later on. You can ignore that when you post it. Up to you, really.
Clay Reed (Subsonics)
SPB: It seems that the hyphenated genre "garage-punk" keeps popping up more and more. What do you think of the term?
Clay: The term garage-punk...is as meaningless and subjective as all genre labels are. Kierkegaard said: "When you label,me you negate me"...but he was maybe kinda extremist. Maybe when you label me you negate the label. The genesis of genre labels is usually blamed on journalists, but record labels and bands are usually complicit...conscious of the 2-seconds scan anyone is gonna give anything.
And that gets down to the real problem, if you think it's a problem: no one has the time or attention to sort out the particulars or context,or nuances of anything anymore. That's nothing new, but it just gets more and more exaggerated and extreme all the time. Garage-punk is a label that gives little actual information about what it may be applied to because it's used so broadly. It provides about as much insight as a word like: “bread” But no one's added much to the garage-punk vocabulary in the way there are more nuanced sub-definitions for “bread” (like-rye, English muffin, crusty, stale, biscuit, etc). But now I'm really getting bogged down in a bog-down of dissecting a dissection...for a label I, myself, would never use anyway.
Tom Loftus (Modern Radio Record Label, co-owner)
SPB: What was the biggest mistake you made when starting up/learning how run a record label?
Tom: My biggest mistake was overestimating quantity when putting out releases. There are all sorts of price breaks when you manufacture vinyl, CDs or print that make the cost per unit much cheaper. I always had a notion that running a label was something I wanted to do for a long time and that there were all sorts of stories of bands I loved that never saw critical appreciation in their own time. This comes from working in and hanging out in record stores a bunch. Additionally, there was a desire to have something documented and available for future generations. I didn't fully consider how many copies the band and distros could actually sell in the immediate future and ended up creating excess physical copies that still don't have homes. While it would be nice to think of those records finding a new audience years later, the reality is that it is unlikely.
Bo Hansen (Heavy Times)
SPB: What club (that you've played) has the worst bathroom?
Bo: There used to be this DIY show spot/skateboard ramp in Chicago called the Beerics. During shows, to accommodate all of the attendees, one of the "bathrooms" in that place was just a 5 gallon bucket in a pantry. That was pretty fucking gross.
Joseph Ross Camuglia
SPB: What is the largest crowd you have played to? Did you approach the set differently?
Joseph: Well, I played a 3 song set at the 25 the Anniversary of Woodstock at the original site in Bethel, NY in 1994 to an estimated crowd of 70,000 people.
I don't know the exact number except I heard that 100,000 people had gathered there. And in the field, the day I sang it was full packed, so who knows? But it was fun and a great experience.
Since it was a hippie type scene I sang a peace song called “Let's Make Pizza” and also a song that I wrote about Woodstock, as well as a song called “Dance in The Rain” as it was getting ready to rain...and it did, just as I finished my set.
The crowd dispersed as I closed out my song and the next hour and a half we all took refuge as we waited out the rain storm before they started the music again.
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