Wednesday, August 15, 2012

My Interview With Phil Jones

Hello everyone - MissTaintedLove here with another artist interview. 

This time, I will be interviewing Phil Jones of the Phil Jones band. Phil Jones is described as "a new American rock sound from Hawaii".  He is a UCLA graduate, having attended graduate school at USC. 
As a Californian from British descent, Phil moved to Hawaii in the year 2000.  His song writing is meant to "inspire positive change, religious tolerance, racial equality, peace and personal evolvement in a fast paced and changing world". 

He lives with his family in Kauai, and in addition to his music career, he runs a spa/resort/private home throughout Hawaii. 

Hope you enjoy the interview! The music of Phil Jones - and more about the artist - can be found by going here


If you could describe you and your music in five words, what would they be?
Someone told me I sounded like "Leonard Cohen meets the Beach Boys". That has a nice ring to it, although the beach/surfing comment is mostly because we are from Kauai. I think the use of the slide gives our music a Hawaiian sound as well.

What do you feel sets you apart from the crowd?
I am particularly pleased with my songwriting these days. I think the fact that I am now older, have had children and have been through a few bumps and bruises along the way, my lyrics and songwriting has really improved. As far as musicianship, I feel very fortunate to work with Kirk Smart who is masterful at any instrument you put in his hands, Eli Sandoval who's vocal range covers about four octaves and Cary Valentine who is world class drummer. I am also always impressed with the mixing my good friend Paul Christie does and my masterer, Dave Allen, is a saint and a die hard work-aholic who never stops until we are 100% satisfied!

How were you first introduced to music in your life?
My parents used to listen to the Beatles and I pretty much scratched every record they had. I also was a big Jackson 5 fan and then pretty much everything I could get my hands on until now I played.

At what point in your life was the defining moment that made you realize what you wanted to do, as a musician?
I have always been very into good music so I think it was always a passion but I think when I stopped doing cover songs and sang in my own voice and my own songs, is when I really got the bug.

What do you feel is the best piece of music you've created? Why do you choose this one?
I really like "Gone" which I will be releasing shortly. Although it is a fairly simple melody and has a light lyrical message of love, I like the groove a lot. But each of my songs, I must say, are special to me, otherwise I don't release them.

What plans do you have in the near future for music release/recording? What sets this upcoming project apart from your previous ones?
I am releasing the video "Gone" in a week or two and am currently shooting the video for the song "Roots". After that is finished, I will be compiling the eight songs I have recorded in the last two years onto an album and releasing that. After that, I am going to record and release single/videos for the next few years every other month or so.

Any upcoming tour plans?  N/A
I have been discussing playing the World Peace One Tour with the promoters starting in a few months but we'll see.

Any words of advice for young/aspiring musicians?
I highly suggest learning the new technologies because they really hold the key to self empowerment in your musical career. They are also a heck of a lot of fun regardless of what your plans are.

You can check out more about Phil Jones from the links below!

Official Site
World Peace One

My Interview with the band Bro-Core

Hello, MissTaintedLove back with another artist interview - hope you enjoy!

This time, I'll be interviewing Joey from the band Bro-core. Bro-core is a pop-punk band from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

You can check them out here, and the interview below. 


Who are the band members, and what do they each play?
Well - Joey is the singer, Jason plays guitar; so does Steve. Casey is the bassist, and Kevin on drums.

How did the band come together?
Well, that's kind of complicated. Casey was in a band with Kevin in the past, Kevin was in a band with Jason, Jason use to be in a band with Joey and Joe worked with Steve awhile back.

 The name "Bro-Core" - how did that come about?
Actually, we didn't come up with it completely. It's a term that's been thrown around in the Hardcore scene for several years. It's hyped pretty negatively, just search it on urbandictionary and you'll see.
When it was first brought up we thought it was hilarious, since we were already over using the term "bro" and unfortunately do relate with parts of the description.
But really we just want to take in the name and make it our own thing, we're just a group of bros playing music together bro'ing it up.   

What is the inspiration for your music?
Our everyday lives are our main inspirations for this music. We really are just playing music, whatever comes out you know. We try not to pull to much influence from our inspirations... I guess it may happen naturally sometimes.

If you could describe the band and your music in five words, what would they be?
Super-Happy-Fun-Band-Time? That's a difficult question!

What do you feel sets you guys apart from the crowd?
We can all definitely agree that the way we handle our genre definitely sets us apart. There's totally stuff out there that sounds like us but whats different with us is we aren't aiming and directing ourselves toward any specific genre. We're just playing how we feel and releasing music we like and that's all that matters to us!

How were you first introduced to music in your life?
It's always been there for all of us. Steve was rocking back and forth in his car seat to bad to the bone on the way home from the hospital the day he was born. It had to be some sort of rhythmic thing in the womb. We all just came to it.

At what point in your life was the defining moment that made you realize what you wanted to do, as a musician?
For Joey it was definitely a no brainer, growing up in a house and family full of musicians. He learned how to play guitar by watching his dad strum away on a left handed guitar and learned just about everything else from anyone who would teach, from his retired professional musician grandma all the way up to his step father who is a career drummer.
For Kevin it was just pure boredom, it started in High School. He picked up the Drums and just progressed from there.
Jason came into this following a unhealthy obsession with Blink 182. He wanted to follow their lead and be just like them.
Steve only learned how to play guitar so he could play Kansas for his old man and impress him, and for Casey it's the same story except it was Crazy Train.
Really the only answer to this is every moment of our lives has built up to this, we couldn't imagine not being a musician of some sort.

What do you feel is the best piece of music you've created? Why do you choose this one?
 Everyone can agree with Legacies. We all love listening to it and playing it. Joey was writing it for a friend of his who committed suicide a few years ago and while in the process another close friend of his passed away. He really spilled his heart into it.
You can really rock out to Legacies, and we think it's extremely easy to relate with, since most people have lost someone close to them.

Have you guys ever worked with any other notable musicians, or on any other projects/collaborations?
I think it's safe to say, we're all playing with each other as the most notable musicians we've ever worked with. We're all extremely happy with each other and couldn't imagine working with anyone else.

Tell us about your current album? What sets this project apart from the others you've done before?
This album really is the first for the most of us. Kevin and Jason have done a few Hardcore and Metal albums but for the rest of us, this is the first we've recorded.

 What plans do you have in the near future for music release/recording? What sets this upcoming project apart from your previous ones?
Record some more songs sometime in the next few months and release a full length album. Then it's back to square one start writing again.

 Any upcoming tour plans?
 Play shows, as many as possible. You can check it out on our Facebook! Like us, so you know whats going on and when!

What are your thoughts of the current state of the music industry? How do you feel you and the band fit into it?
What music Industry? We feel there really isn't much of a industry anymore. It's almost like a community now, everyone knows each other and works together. It's a magical thing.

Where do you see the band five years from now?
Hopefully still doing what we're doing, just with more people listening.

Any words of advice for young/aspiring musicians? 
Never give up, work together, and stay strong.

Anything else?
Add us on Facebook! And tell your friends!

Once again - that was an interview with Joey of Bro-core. You can check them out here!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Artist Interview with John Sparkz

Hello, everyone - MissTaintedLove here with another artist interview. 

This time, I'll be interviewing John Sparkz, who is an artist from New Jersey. 
 Hope you enjoy the interview!


(Check out the below video, which is John answering some of the questions I had for him)

The name John Sparkz - how did that come about?
Well, realistically I do smoke a lot of uh, cigarettes. So, yeah, that’s really about it. My [first] name is John, too.
How were you first introduced to music in your life? 
My parents like music; they didn’t play instruments or anything, but they love listening to music. So growing up I was always listening to Bruce Springsteen and the Beetles. Then, I started playing guitar and it just all came sort of natural (my ear for music).
At what point in your life was the defining moment that made you realize what you wanted to do, as a musician?  
My life has always had music influenced in it, I played the saxophone and guitar so I always loved it as a hobby. Sports was more of what I wanted to go forth with, weather it was basketball or baseball, that’s what I wanted to do. But when I was a junior in high school, my cousin tragically passed away, and the only thing I could do was write down the feelings I had, and I just keep writing and writing. I was even making beats and I was just recording people so I can mix their records, it was like my safe haven. That’s when I knew I had to just stick with music.
What do you feel sets you apart from the crowd?
Well I guess it's that I’m my own person, really that’s all it boils down to. I make songs from what I feel so I would say im different because of that, I make each song for how I feel. When I sit down and write, I'll find a beat to match how im feeling, most rappers just cop beats because they want to make a “club banger” or a “street anthem”. My music accurately reflects myself.
How do you describe the style/genre of your own music?

How long have you been making music now?
I don’t like to say “since as long as I can remember”. But I’ve been listening to music as a critic/fan easily since I was 5 or 6, but making music on a serious professional level, I would say about 6 years.

What was your first project? How have you grown since then?
I don’t even remember the name of it, it was so whack though. It was a couple freestyles me and my couple friends did over industry beats.  It was such “gangster” ass music! Haha, it was horrible. Since then I have found my lane as far as flow and content go, I’m more concentrated and I am more down to earth and understanding of what my music should be.
What is the inspiration for your music?
Everyday life anything that can make me feel better if I put it in a song. Pain, joy, you know… all that, whatever happens in my life, or whatever I always think of a way I can put it into music.

What type of music/artists have influenced you and your music?
Believe it or not, I actually listen to the 70s/80s station on Pandora a lot. It gives me a good place to put my mind and it just opens up to write good music, but the hip hop from like ’92-2005 really is where my ears are. As far as artists go, I’m my own artist but rappers like 50 played a big influence and like Kanye for his creativity.
If you could describe you and your music in five words, what would they be? 
5 words? I cant even think of 3 words hahha, but nah, 5 words to describe my music…I would say  emotional, powerful, loud, heavy, and the 5th word I would just say art, because music is art.
What do you feel is the best piece of music you've created? Why do you choose this one? 
This is hard to answer; Ive been asked to answer it before. I’ve recorded literally hardrives of songs, I only put out 2 mixtapes but I have so many records on stash. And I don’t know what would make a record “the best” but I did make a song for the New Jersey Devils and it got a lot of love, I actually just spoke to Ken Daneyko (retired Devil) today about it. So it would either be that record (Devil Inside) or my single which is on itunes (My Life’s Like a Movie).

What other artists, musicians, and producers have you worked with?
Aside from rapping, I have a degree (Berklee College of Music) in Audio Engineering. I am producer Harry Fraud’s engineer he produced “Shot Caller” and a lot of other French Montana records, so as far as mixing goes, Ove mixed songs for French and the Cokeboys, Action Bronson, Lil Cease, and a bunch of cats like that.  But for my own music, I have a song coming out with Cease, and another feature - but that’s a surprise!
What type of mindset do you get into before you enter the studio to record? Do you do anything special to prepare yourself?
Coffee is the most important thing, the super large coffee. And the bottle of water. I just go in looking to have fun, that’s the mindset you have to have, I always try to leave any negative feeling or emotion I’m having that day outside!
What can you tell us about your current album? How does it differ from any of your previous projects?
Well my current project I’m working on (Newport Music 3) was originally planned to be dropped before summer, but I really kind of just trashed it and started over, and now I have some features that are gonna be on it that will really set me apart from the crowd. Overall I just worked so much harder on this project.

What are your thoughts of the current state of the music industry? How do you feel you fit into it?
If the music industry was how it was when I first started, my whole team would have been signed. The internet is the most powerful tool for anything and it has helped music so much, but it has also killed the industry. It’s kind of sad but it’s a catch 22 with the music on the web.
Where do you see yourself as an artist five years from now?
Well as an artist, I see myself always working on something with my music - weather it’s more of a hobby in 5 years like a side thing with my mixing, or the other way around I’ll still be making music regardless.

What plans do you have in the near future for music release/recording? What sets this upcoming project apart from your previous ones? 
When my new tape drops (Newport Music 3) that’s the final tape of the Newport Music trilogy. Then after that, I'm going to go straight to work on some fresh material and keep working with that. I have so many different styles, and this new tape I am putting so much effort to I think it is going to blow the other 2 out of the water.

Any upcoming tour plans? 
Uhhh, about that….I actually get very bad stage fright. I hate crowds of people, but you know being on tour, doing shows, its apart of this game and I am actually in the process of talking to this promoter about going on a 5 state 5 college stage tour with some other artists. I have my fingers crossed.

Any words of advice for young/aspiring musicians?
 Everyone says “follow your dreams” “don’t give up” - I think that’s so whack in a sense. YOU HAVE TO WORK HARD. That’s the best advice, just WORK WORK WORK. Between mixing, writing my songs, recording them, promoting - 95% of my day is music. You just really have to work as hard as you can and THEN more! That’s how you get yourself in this industry or whatever profession you are in.

Anything else?
Follow me on twitter @JohnSparkz follow me on Instragram @JohnSparkz and just wait patient for Newport Music 3 it’s going to be a great piece of music!

If you wanna check out music by John Sparkz, you can check him out at the following links. I wanna thank him for the interview, and wish him best of luck with his upcoming release & plans!