Hi Jen! Thank you for this. Here are some questions about production/recording & some about you:
[ed. note: in intro, mention vine/link to review]
- Since MP3s came into fashion as more than just something you could download from Limewire or Napster -- sometimes accidentally getting mislabeled tracks; Sum 41 instead of Michael Jackson, I’m looking at you -- music production has become something that you don’t have to have a professional setting to create. When did you start making your own music?
- Dave Grohl used to talk about the days when he’d use cassette tapes and just keep recording over the same track again and again, which made for a bunch of single take songs. Did you ever experiment with that? Or did you start with MP3s?
- You recorded your newest record, “Vine”, in your bedroom. What made you decide you were going to produce your own records? Was it the freedom, having control of your own vision?
- Have you had experience within the music business that led you to deciding to do it yourself?
- There’s an idea -- at least that I used to have -- that Garageband is the end all be all of home recording, when while it’s pretty much amazing and I want it bad, that’s not entirely true. What sort of software did you use? Did you mix and match?
- How about hardware? What kind of stuff do you have around you to use to record? Any mics or mixers you’d recommend?
- Do you have a bunch of instruments surrounding you? Give us an idea of what your bedroom studio looks like. [ed. note: mine is literally a mess of instruments and wires on a shag carpet, super 70s, also pictures would be cool if you have any on hand!]
- “Vine” is intensely atmospheric -- earning likenesses to the Cocteau Twins and War on Drugs -- what did you use to create that atmosphere? Did you know how you wanted it to sound before you sat down, or did you experiment until you found the sweet spot?
- People don’t seem to realise what an intense process it is, even now when you can mix tracks and easily delete mistakes. How long did “Vine” take to make? From the conception of the songs to finalizing the recordings?
- I talked to Mally Harpaz about her compositional and recording processes and gave the advice to trust yourself, and to trust what sounds good. What’s your advice when it comes to laying down your own tracks? Is there anything that you’ve learned from doing it yourself that you wish you’d been told by someone else before you started?
- Cat Power financed and worked on her album, “Sun”, in large part, on her own volition. She encountered a lot of obstacles on the way and a lot of self-doubt, which led to a lot of scraps and re-recordings, as well as experimenting with new things. And I’m glad she did, as “Sun” is one of my Albums of the Decade.
Have you experienced similar? Kind of like writer’s block but with music? If you have, what did you do to get out of it, or do you have any words of wisdom that might be able to help somebody to?
- Do you think you’re going to use the same approach for future albums?
- I also briefly wanna mention the song “Firefly/Wardance”, because it was one of my favorite tracks on “Vine”. It’s super percussion-based and I personally love that. It really does sound like a war dance. Atmospherically, it sounds like a dream! Where did it come from?
- Where do you find inspiration?
- Were there any albums or artists that influenced your sound for “Vine”? How about stuff you’re digging right now?
- What are you up to at the moment? Do you have any shows coming up or anything you’re excited about?
- Lastly, if you were to give advice to a girl wanting to make her own music but either maybe hasn’t dared to start yet or maybe she has and she’s a bit stuck, what would it be?