Discover Artsits That Joined The 11th IMAs: Patrick Joseph
HOMEBASE: In this era, I’d be surprised if anyone really had a geographic homebase crowd. The internet is our homebase these days – fans spread all around the globe, and you’re lucky enough as an artist to have people you’ve never met care at all. But aside from that notion, right now my homebase is Los Angeles.
DESCRIBE YOUR GENRE: I see my music as a melting pot of folk of the singer/songwriter persuasion, eclectic indie rock, organic electronics and unpopular pop. I don’t know for sure what the proper category is, though. Singer/songwriter or indie rock. An indie-rock singer/songwriter, for those of you who need to label it as something in your iTunes.
CATEGORY ENTERED: The video for my song “Don’t Believe It” is up for the Best Video category. The video was shot entirely in stop-motion using more than 7,000 photographs over three days of nonstop work. The acoustic versions of “Don’t Believe It” and “Arsonist Blues,” from my new acoustic EP “Relics,” are up for the Best Acoustic Song category. And “Relics” itself is up for the Best EP category.
SONGS SUBMITTED: “Don’t Believe It (Acoustic),” “Arsonist Blues (Acoustic).”
ALBUM SUBMITTED: “Relics EP” LABEL Name OR Self-Released: Self-released.
PLEASE LIST THE ARTISTS FEATURED ON THIS RELEASE. “Relics” features my friend and collaborator Lucas Martinez on guitar. He and I arranged the songs from my debut LP “Antiques” as an acoustic duo when we started playing live together, and those arrangements became the basis for “Relics,” which is more or less a live, acoustic interpretation of “Antiques.” Bassist Jon LaTona is featured on upright bass on a few tracks, and multi-instrumentalist Caleb Mason is featured on clarinet on a few as well.
WHAT’S THE STORY BEHIND YOUR BAND NAME? WERE THERE ANY CONTENDERS It’s just my name. Before the release of my debut album “Antiques” I kicked around some ideas for a band name instead of just using my own name as a solo artist. The closest I got was Moon King, which I liked but hesitated on. So instead, the name of my upcoming full-length album will be entitled “Moon King.” Since then, some other folks out there on the east coast have taken the name “Moon King” and are running with it now. More power to them.
DESCRIBE YOUR LATEST RELEASE. “Relics EP” is an acoustic interpretation of select songs from my debut LP “Antiques” plus a new one that I performed on ukulele. This acoustic interpretation is really the way Lucas Martinez and I were performing it live, as an acoustic duo, and it sounded so good that I just wanted to capture that and put it out there as well for people to hear. It’s got an array of other acoustic instruments as well: accordion, clarinet, upright bass, brush drums to name a few.
DID YOU USE ANY UNUSUAL INSTRUMENTS OR EFFECTS? Why yes, we do! Lucas is a master of live looping and sampling, and although the EP is purely an acoustic record, he uses a looper to achieve beautiful atmospheric textures that accompany many of these songs. What you’re hearing often times sounds like synths or electronic noises, but they’re just his acoustic guitar being used like most people haven’t heard before. All this happens when we perform live, they’re not just studio tricks. The alto clarinet is featured on two tracks as well, which isn’t exactly the most common thing out there.
WERE THERE ANY ‘HAPPY ACCIDENTS’ IN THE STUDIO OR DID YOU RECORD IT AS PLANNED? Nothing ever goes as planned, especially not in the studio. Two songs were actually dropped from the EP, but if they were added it would’ve been more of an LP than an EP. They just didn’t get around to being tracked properly. The last song on the record “The Last Laugh” was a last-minute decision that I’m happy made the record. It’s probably the simplest song on there, just myself playing ukulele and singing, but I’m fond of the way it turned out.
DID FANS HELP FUND THIS PROJECT? No. In fact, not much money went into this at all. It was all self-recorded, self mixed, self produced. I hired Jeff Lipton at Peerless Mastering in Boston to master the EP, and I think he and his assistant Maria Rice did a fantastic job.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO SUBMIT TO THE 11TH IMAS? Well aside from sales, getting the record out to the public, getting it heard in films & TV and performing it live, it’s also satisfying to just hear what a panel of your songwriting peers might think of it as well. And in the case of the IMAs, its a panel of very prestigious talent, so that has to count for something. Winning is never the point in music though, it’s just about being heard, expressing yourself and hopefully sharing something with somebody out there that will make a lasting, positive impression on them. That’s the ultimate goal.
WHO IS SITTING IN YOUR AUDIENCE? WHAT MAKES YOUR FANS UNIQUE? I get e-mails, letters and people coming up to me after gigs all the time from all walks of life. Students, parents, grandparents, kids, athletes, blue collar folks, high class folks, educators, people from China all the way to Argentina. You name it. I suppose that’s what you could consider unique about everyone, the diversity of the people who I’m so lucky to call an audience. They keep me going.
HAVE YOU EVER HUNG OUT WITH ONE OF YOUR MUSICAL HEROES? WHAT’S THE STORY? I’ve held a couple of great conversations with Jon Brion, who I admire very much. He just creates such a unique atmosphere on recordings, way more complex or interesting than most musicians or producers I’ve ever heard. He’s a mad scientist both in the studio and on stage. Jon, if you’re reading, hit me up – Let’s work something out.
WHAT’S YOUR MOST MEMORABLE ACHIEVEMENT TO DATE? Oh, I’m too afraid to put something like that into writing in fear of it becoming the peak of my short career. It’s all been memorable, and I’m ready for more.
WHAT’S YOUR BEST/CRAZIEST TOUR STORY? I was up in Big Sur for the first time over the summer, played a show up in the mountains above the clouds. After the show, I drove to the edge of a cliff and looked off across into the infinite ocean beneath a sprawling floor of scattered clouds that were before me at the edge of a hillface as the sun was setting ahead. Everything was still, inside me and around me, except the crisp comforting air that was brushing against me through the silence of the wilderness. That’s not a crazy story, but no rowdy, drunken escapade on the road will ever top it.
ARE THERE ANY SONGS YOU WISH YOU WROTE? Bob Dylan’s “To Ramona.” Or maybe the birthday song, but only if I was collecting copyright and performance royalties on it.
WHAT ARTISTS ARE YOU LISTENING TO THAT WOULD SURPRISE YOUR FANS? I’m a really big fan of Regina Spektor, Feist, Lisa Hannigan. I really don’t know if that’s surprising or not, but I listen to a lot of female singer/songwriters, there are so many good ones out there.
NAME SOME ARTISTS YOU ARE CHAMPIONING. I worked closely with my friend & guitarist Lucas Martinez on the debut release for his band “The Hollow Threads,” which is currently being mixed. The record is entitled “Strands.” I recorded a good portion of it, sang and co-wrote on a track, too. Keep your ears out for it, it’s a great album.
WHAT IS YOUR DREAM SHOW LINEUP? Radiohead opening for Tom Waits. With Jon Brion sitting in on both sets.
FINISH THIS SENTENCE: THE MUSIC INDUSTRY IS…not to be understood.
WHAT DO YOU HAVE IN THE WORKS FOR THE UPCOMING YEAR? Right now most of my focus is on my second full-length album entitled “Moon King.” It’s a brand-new LP of songs that I’m incredibly excited about. Very soon I’ll have an update on my website and social media outlets about the progress of the record, so stay tuned! Also, Lucas & I have been working on an EP of covers entitled “Stranger’s Shoes,” which is due out one of these days soon…
HOW CAN FANS FOLLOW YOU? WHERE IS YOUR MUSIC AVAILABLE? My website of course, http://www.patrickjoseph.com
Like me on Facebook! http://www.facebook.com/patrickjosephmusic, this is the most direct way of keeping up with me day-to-day. Or follow my Twitter at http://www.twitter.com. Then of course, MySpace, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, etc. Anywhere really.