My name is Mignon Gould and I am the founder and Agent-in-Chief of TheChicSpy.com, an online style and entertainment publication featuring the works of creatives in fashion, film, and pop culture.
How did you get your start?
Several years ago I worked for The Arizona Republic. I wrote for their weekly style publication called “Yes”, as well as a few of their other magazines. After leaving the newspaper, I went to graduate school in San Francisco, received an MFA in Fashion Journalism with an emphasis in Multimedia Studies. I used my publication as my thesis and decided to launch it into a business.
What inspires you?
I’m so inspired by my family in all that I do. Creatively my mother was inspirational. She is a clarinetist and performed for the Phoenix Symphony. She also enjoyed pottery. She created this amazing chess set when she was 16 and it’s mine now. It’s beautiful and the details on the pieces are amazing.
As a publisher, writer and entrepreneur, I’m also inspired by my 3rd great uncle John James Neimore, who in 1879 founded The California Eagle, one of the first African-American newspapers in California. He was in his teens. I can’t imagine how super focused he had to be to do something so groundbreaking at that age, and in that era.
What do you like about AZ?
I love the arts community and how unpretentious and enriching it is here. After all, we have one of the leading fashion collections in this country at Phoenix Art Museum, and we have one of the most attended art events in the nation with Artlink’s First Friday Art Walk. In the Valley, art is accessible for everyone.
I would like to have helped others achieve their professional goals. I’m currently preparing to launch Chic Spy Studio, a virtual internship program for college students and recent graduates in journalism, fashion, media, marketing, and design. I piloted the program in 2013 with students from around the country including Arizona State University in Tempe, Syracuse University in New York, and Academy of Art University in San Francisco. I originally launched my website to create a portfolio of my written work. I was able to get a job at a newspaper with that portfolio. Now, I want to create a platform that helps others land their dream job.
What is your mantra?
Carpe Diem. I wrote a poem in the 90s, and keep it with me always. It keeps me marching on, knowing no mission is impossible:
Have you ever wanted to create a new version of you Someone who’d always know what to do A feeling of strength and power divine No limits or boundaries to draw the line Carpe Diem is to seize the day Become who you want Make your own way It’s now or never, I’ve heard some say Now is the time, to seize the day
LUAU stopped by the Radio Phoenix studio a few days before their Gone EP album release. We talked the release show, Phoenix music subreddits, and Crescent Ballroom burritos among other hot topics. Plus, the band brought down a ton of great Valley (+ Las Cruces!) bands to play live on the airwaves. Check it out.
Make sure to tune in every 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month at 7 PM for each live episode of The YabYum Hour, only on radiophoenix.org.
The Fontaines might describe their sound as “New-Wop from L.A.” but I would definitely cite more New Wave influence than Do-Wop on their latest single, “Vacancy”. Ethereal vocals and a chill pop vibe make for a seriously catchy number. “Vacancy” comes to us from The Fontaines’ forthcoming LP which is currently in the works and the Los Angeles act just made their SXSW debut this year so this is one of those band’s you’re going to want to pay attention to. Big things in the works for The Fontaines.
So, when I first heard this track, I saw that it was demarcated as bedroom recordings of “goth synth music”. Perhaps, it goes without saying that I was wary going in, but thank goodness we have that strident “listen to all things” policy here or I might have passed right over the jewel that is Black Fly. The somber, but also uplifting, single from the Vermont artist known as Black Fly combines an elaborate synth soundscape with brooding vocals as the songwriter ruminates on toxic persona. “I Don’t Know” carries a sense of ponderous isolation and the emotional highs and lows that can be found in that secluded space. I’d tell you to follow Black Fly to keep watch for new singles along with me, but he’s not playing that social media game. Maybe the isolation fuels the music-making.
VVAves, not to be confused with WAVVES, is 21-year-old Canadian musician Emma Sophia Rosen. The self-taught songwriter and producer shows some tremendous potential on “Fall Apart”, her first original single. The mellow beat and nimble vocals will entrance the listener so they might glaze right over the production’s crisp, radio-ready sound – an accomplishment in and of itself. During those first fifteen seconds of “Fall Apart” you might think you’re in for a grrl’n’guitar, but this song offers much, much more. I expect this is just the first I’m hearing of VVaves’ Rosen.
The Canadian trio known as I M U R creates hallucinatory electropop perfect for drifting out of mind and body on those sweltering summer afternoons drawing ever near. On their new single, “Swirl”, it’s the dreamy vocals of Jenny Lea that drives the song and its musings on love. The underlying music is minimal but smartly layered to give shape and structure to “Swirl”. Chillax with “Swirl” from I M U R on those hot and hazy days of summer. If you dig this single, I suggest checking out the band’s LP, LittleDeath, which came out in March and features “Swirl”.
French artist PARC now calls Los Angeles home. For his latest single, “4U”, PARC explores the terrain of his locale and the population that peoples its streets. The music on “4U” comes across as bright and buoyant with an easygoing energy. Basically, it’s everything SoCal. I can already tell that PARC is going to fit right in. Float in the relaxing atmosphere of PARC’s “4U”.
The London songbird known as Foxgluvv dropped her sultry single, “crush”, earlier this month. Fusing sedate and smokey vocals with a hypnotic sound will put you into mellow mode after just one listen. The lyrics are more cool than confessional; giving on space to appear both interested and aloof at the same time. “crush” marks the first single from Foxgluvv but I’m hoping there are other tracks in the works. Until then, kickback with “crush”…
Bea Box is the stage name of Montréal artist Joannie Labelle. There is a lot of tension in the sound at the start her new single, “I am quiet”, that will wax and wane as the track progresses. This tension works well with the sense of calm that pervades the whole song. Bea Box seems to lean more toward avant-garde end of electropop rather than seeking to scratch out radio hits and I like that about her. You’ll find more than a calm and dreamy number on “I am quiet” (even though it’s that too). There are some interesting aural elements Bea Box cultivates within the sound of “I am quiet”. Experience it for yourself below…
Starting a band can be a highly profitable venture that definitely will not consume your every waking hour… said no one ever. In my first Lessons Learned I started with touring. If you haven’t checked that out, go read it next. I figured with this one we’d take a step back and take a look at all the fun things you’ll find out when forming a band…
Drummers Are The Mythological Unicorns Of The Music Industry
You may have read about one once or saw them in a movie but drummers exist just about no where. When you do come across one they’re probably already in 4 or 5 bands or they’re just a frustrated guitarist trolling you on Craigslist. They’re never showing up to practice man. I’ve got to imagine this is because drums are arguably one of the most expensive instruments and honestly, what parent wants to listen to their kids bang on stuff all day? At least guitars have a volume knob.
Bassists Are Just Guitarists Minus The Confidence
I know some of you are probably yelling at your screens; “What about Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers” or whatever other bassist you look up to. Sure, when playing more then the absolute minimum, bassists are great… but let’s be real. The guy you found started on guitar and just went with the flow when the band needed some low end.
Guitarists Doodle – It’s What They Do
Writing songs takes work, focus and communicating ideas. The space between playing songs is invaluable and can be the most productive time of practice… if it wasn’t for that annoying riff being played on loop. Why is it that every silence is filled with doodling to the point where you’re yelling ideas over the main riff for “Seven Nation Army”?
Don’t Call Me A Singer, I’m a “Vocalist”
The bar is set low for us “vocalists”. Nowadays we don’t even have to really sing. I mean in metal, they literally have to differentiate singing from “clean singing”. So just help carry some gear once in a blue moon and you’ll win the Vocalist of the Year award.
The most important thing that I’ve learned from forming a band is
talent will come and go but genuine friendships can last a lifetime. It doesn’t matter if you found someone that shreds if they’re unbearable to be around. If you’re in it for the long run, find someone that you don’t mind being in a van for hours on end with then learn and grow as musicians as you go.
Brandon Kellum is the vocalist for the band American Standards. American Standards release their new album “Anti-Melody” April 28th, 2017. You can celebrate the release with them at their show 4/28 at The Rebel Lounge. You can also preorder the album on iTunes, Amazon or Bandcamp!
One of the biggest deterrents I believe that keeps noise music from reaching a wider audience is fear. Fear of the unknown and grounded by chaos: “noise” as a genre follows no rules.
Tracing its primordial roots back to the Dada movement of the 1920’s, it rejects any basic assumption of musical composition and screams with an emphatic loop of wailing feedback “FUCK YOU! I’M DOING WHAT I WANT!”
But what gets lost in this rebellious declaration is the actual purpose of noise music. Noise, like an onion, is about textures. From the dry outer skin to the fleshy moist center, a listener must be willing to peel back all layers slowly and consume each one in small bites.
The greatest example of this fear is Lou Reed’s Metal Machine Music. When RCA demanded a follow up release to the Top 10 success of Sally Can’t Dance, Reed went back into the studio and recorded a path-clearing masterpiece. A double album of modulated feedback, many believe that this was an attempt of fulfilling his contractual obligation with the label. And boy was it roundly rejected by the masses, to the point where the album was sent packing from the shelves mere weeks after its release. While Billy Altman of Rolling Stone declared that it was “nothing more than ear-wrecking electronic sludge”, Lester Bangs decreed that it was “the greatest record ever made in the history of the human eardrum”. Some may argue that MMM is the cornerstone to both heavy metal and industrial music.
Since 2011, I’ve enjoyed the work produced by Atlanta electronic sound junkie Ryan Taylor (Tay0, Eldorado Omega). Over the years, he has carefully woven beautiful synthetic layers over sharply produced drum track breaks and gradually progressed to drone. This progression has been like peeling back the layers of his own onion. Although it may not be the fleshiest bit, the collaboration project Carrier Hotel with fellow musician Zachary Hollback is definitely rich in crunchy textures.
Using a perfect recipe of tape loops, feedback, drones, static and the occasional off-meter break beat, these southern gents make tastefully accessible onion soup with their debut, 2016.1. Plus given Taylor’s background in production, it came as no surprise that 2016.1 is as dynamic as it is inspiring.
Although the album was released in January 2016, it’s been one of those that I’ve had to nibble on slowly. Not too soft, not too harsh, 2016.1 might very well be one of the best noise albums to help the unconverted lose their fear of a misunderstood movement.
Chris Nunley began writing for YabYum in the Summer of 2015 and his latest series The Noise Floor seeks to explore the outer limits of sound. When he’s not popping in for a local show or taking road trips, he devotes his creative energy to his evolving electronic music project, Sliide.
I like my folk music tall, brooding, and murderous which, thankfully, is waaay different from how I like my men. Well, all except the tall part, I guess. Old Nobodaddy sounds like his roots run deep, down into the sludgy wetland woods of Louisiana, but it’s New Orleans he currently calls home. “Bury the Hatchet” offers listeners back-porch gospel subtly refined so as not to lose that salt-of-the-earth feel. This is gospel for the for the soulless and god-fearing alike. Give “Bury the Hatchet” from Old Nobodaddy a spin below…
All you music fans who prefer your Americana mellow and bluesy, make sure you check out Ola Sweet. This Boise quartet has a retro rock vibe that calls to mind 70s dad-‘staches and snap-down shirts. And, I mean that in the best way possible. Ola Sweet isn’t just another Band of Horses/Black Keys revivalist act. There’s something earthy and authentic that comes through in their sound on “Strange Lately” that has me hooked. Take the single for a spin below…
Jessica Frech comes to us from the indie-folk side of the spectrum with her new single “Already Won”. The song possesses an effervescence in its sound that will lift your spirits as the lyrics empower you to face the challenges of your everyday. Frech has a lissome voice that lends itself well to the uplifting charge of “Already Won”. This artist has already developed a bit of a following for her quirky folk-pop but you’ll hear a more serious, but never sullen, sound on this new single. Give “Already Won” a listen below…
The SoCal songwriter has a straight-from-the-heartland sound that could easily be at home in Nashville or Amarillo, but it’s Los Angeles where John Timothy resides. Timothy’s alt-country style has a rusted edge that adds to the authenticity of his sound. This song “was recorded in conjunction with ‘Words Uncaged’, a graduate class that worked with inmates on Life Without Parole at Lancaster State Penitentiary,” so maybe that authenticity is also derived from the narrative recounted in the lyrics. Whatever the case may be, “The Longest Line (Daniel)” by John Timothy is a powerful number that will continue to resonate long after you listen.
Songwriter and self-proclaimed time traveler, Johnny Stimson, will take you from anguish to acceptance on his new single, “I’ll Be Fine”. Stimson’s emotive voice drives this pop-infused indie-folk single with its heart-wrenching realness. The track is stripped down to just the vocalist and his guitar, but it suits the self-revealing lyricism quite nicely. Check out “I’ll Be Fine” by Johnny Stimson below, and if you like what you’re hearing, delve further into the online musical offerings of this Dallas artist here.
For those of you who feel you might have been born in the wrong era and would have been better suited to prancing through fields with the Flower Children of the 1960s, we have the band for you. The Solars from Boston (MA) craft a folk rock sound chalk full of nostalgic for the days of Jefferson Airplane and Jethro Tull (organs included). Their meandering single “Potter’s Field/Dockery” is a dynamic journey of sound and sight; of rich harmonies and oscillating energy. Hit play below to take the trip that is “Potter’s Field/Dockery” with The Solars.
For those of us in Arizona (where we’re based), the “Four Corners” refers to the northeast region of our state and its surrounding areas that all meet in an intersecting, four-corner border. In the case of The Four Corners of Quartet, however, the moniker refers instead to the Four Corners of the Globe from whence the participating musicians originated: Jordan, the United States, Palestine, and the United Kingdom. The quartet is not just a meeting point for people of different cultural backgrounds, but a merging place for various musical traditions, including middle-eastern, jazz, western classical, and American-folk. Sink into the orchestral folk of The Four Corners Quartet and their song, “I’ve Just Seen the Rock of Ages”.
Not only of his own bands (of which there are many), but of many great lofi/garage/punkrock bands across this fine nation as well.
We here at YabYum came across his music a couple years ago and were instantly hooked to Jaime’s brand music: garage pop with grit. Recently, however, I came to the realization that I knew absolutely nothing about Mr. Lamb beyond his musical offerings and decided to change that.
So I sought him out through the power of the internet and he filled me in on all the Jaime Paul Lamb happenings from his main act, Moonlight Magic, to putting out a punk rock compilation to playing while only wearing a dog collar…
When did you first arrive to Arizona and how did you get involved in the music scene here?
There are really three answers to that question because I’ve lived in Phoenix three different times and each time was distinctly different.
I got out of rehab in NY in the summer of 1990 and I didn’t want to go back to CT, where I had grown up. I was 19 years old, a high school dropout, and had been laid off from my job at a machine shop, and had a gnarly breakup with my girlfriend. She was no bargain – but I don’t want to get into that here. The counselor at the treatment center said that they had a deal with a halfway house in Phoenix and that they sent a lot of people from NY/CT/NJ out there. I said I’d like to go.
I moved to Phoenix – alone and with nothing – and lived at the halfway house around 7th st & Indian School and worked at Lindstrom’s Car Wash on Central. It was a cool, simple life.
Anyway, I picked up a gig drumming in a Hardcore Punk group called the Swooping Monkeybats. We were sort of a composite of things like Rudimentary Peni, the Misfits, and the Cramps. We played a lot with our friends the Glass Heroes. Once, we even had Sublime open for us at the Atomic Café, which is now called Pub Rock in South Scottsdale.
It was a cool time for a few years. I was off of drugs and made some really great friends. We would go to Tracks In Wax and buy a lot of Garage and Surf and Punk records from Don. I had a job at Tower Christown. There were a lot of romantic drama scenes at Tower. It was cool. Me and my other friends played music, drank coffee and smoked cigarettes. Luckily, I had a 4-track recorder, so I got to document some of that period.
In 1994, I moved out of Phoenix. I wound up in Houston TX for 9 months. A couple friends of mine lived there. We played and recorded some music and gigged a little in Houston and Austin, but I just really hated Texas, so I moved to Huntington Beach and Costa Mesa (CA) for a couple years. I ended up getting a drug habit but, whatever, it was cool. We had a Garage Punk band called the Dropouts and we used to play with the Stitches and Duane Peters’ Exploding Fuck Dolls, who were our buddies at the time and we did that until we ran out of money and resources and then I bailed back to Phoenix.
I moved back in 1997 and started a garage band called the Van Buren Wheels. I played Vox Continental organ and wrote all the tunes. We had a good run. Vince Bocchini, from Los Dirtclods & Rabid Rabbit, was the singer and Steve Shelton from the Glass Heroes played guitar. It was cool and people seemed to like us, but I got back into drugs and it kind of ruined the band. So, after a couple years of that, I moved to Vegas.
I was in Vegas and Los Angeles and Minneapolis and back home to CT doing my thing for the next 15 years or so before coming back to Phoenix in 2014.
What are some of the early, perhaps unknown, artists and bands that helped define the sound you go for?
My favorite rock band is the Velvet Underground, hands down. And I don’t care how cliché that is because everybody loves the Velvets and says how influential they are. The Velvets are actually my Top Five favorite bands – they inhabit 5 positions until another band is allowed to even chart. So, that’s how that is.
Other than that, I like a lot of stuff. I listen to a lot of Free Jazz, Hard Bop, Avant Garde, European Concert Music, 70s Power Pop, Indian Classical Music, 60s Khmer Pop, Thai Pop, Gamelan, Mid-80s Black Metal, 50s Exotica, Lounge Music, 60s Ska, Northern Soul, obscure 50s Doo Wop, 80s No Wave, Library Music like the KPM Library, 60s Bossa Nova, Dutchbeat, Early 80s Hardcore, 60s Punk, Krautrock, etc. – I can go on and on. I’ve worked in record stores and have been a very avid music fan my whole life. I’m into everything.
But, to answer your question more directly, in terms of some other less conspicuous bands that I have found influential, I would say the West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band, Albert Ayler, the Downliners Sect, Martin Denny, Chaino, the Flamin’ Groovies, the Electric Eels and some of Billy Childish’s work from the 80’s should be enough to make the point.
How did you get into self-recording? I believe you record at home, what is your current set-up like?
I only went digital a few years ago. I have always been a little behind the curve, technology-wise. I’m currently running Ableton Live 9 as my DAW and I have a Focusrite interface, or whatever it’s called. It’s the thing that the mics plug into, like a pre-amp. I don’t know – I’m not much of a techie. I had a good buddy, Bruce Connole (who was in the Jetzons, Billy Clone and the Same, the Cryptics, the Revenants, etc. – a real Phoenix legend, if you ask me) set me up with the whole thing, and he laid a bunch of plug-in suites on me. He really hooked me up.
Anyway, I have some decent mics and I’ve learned how to use the equipment enough to make some sounds I like. I get better every time I do it though. I’m constantly learning stuff just from getting in there and doing it. Of course, I couldn’t be bothered to actually read the manual or watch tutorials. I don’t have time to do things the right way. Haha. Duh. I’m way too punk for that.
What band(s) are you in currently? I know many of the tracks and bands on your Bandcamp, SoundCloud and YouTube pages are of older bands but honestly I can’t tell if you recorded these recently or 20 years ago!
Currently my main group is Moonlight Magic. We’re instrumental and we write all our own music – no covers at all. We gig a lot and we just cut a record for a future LP release on Slope Records. Cris Kirkwood from the Meat Puppets produced it. He’s extremely talented and insightful and has become a really great friend – we went and had Cambodian food the other night and laughed our asses off at nothing – it was great.
I started playing guitar for Eddy Detroit a couple years ago. I used to see him in the 90’s and always thought his thing was super cool – in an authentically “outsider” kind of way. Eddy is a true weirdo. He always had that tropical, Exotica element with the hand drums and his association with Sun City Girls, who are so awesome that they actually defy critique. I have no idea what to say about them. I love them. Anyway, check out Eddy’s stuff if you’re unfamiliar – it is very unique and sort of voyeuristic, like you’re listening to someone come unraveled on mushrooms.
I had the good fortune to go with Eddy and I Bob (from the Very Idea Of Fucking Hitler) and Hisham Mayet (Sublime Frequencies and Assophon, who put out Eddy’s last two records – including Black Crow Gazebo that we recorded at my house which had Dan Clark/AKA Clear Bob from the Feederz/Exterminators/Victory Acres and Alan Bishop from the Sun City Girls on it) on a European tour. We played all over the place and it was amazing and I love all those guys.
Andrew Jemsek (from Haunted Cologne, Button Struggler, Fathers Day and a million other things around town over the years) and I had been trying to get something going for about a year. He’s just a super-talented younger guy, like me, with an incredible sense of humor and he’s become a really good friend. His exceedingly virtuosic musicality is only surpassed by his deep, deep humility… he’d be the first one to tell you. So, Andrew and I started writing all of these lounge-y little melodies and nice songs and bossa novas and sambas, etc. because we wanted to make a pornographic movie starring Eddy as “The Coconut Man” who has this foot fetish (anybody who knows Eddy knows that this in reference to his storied obsession with girls’ tootsies) who ends up eating out this girl’s butt. Andrew and I were going to be hard-boiled detective types who were trying to put a collar on Eddy.
But the music ended up developing faster than the porno film so we figured we might as well round out the band. I had recently done a rehearsal on another project with Ruth Wilson (from Tempe’s legendary Flathead) who was a friend of mine from the 90’s – around the time everybody was playing at Nita’s Hideaway. I always loved her playing and I thought she was a super-cool chick, so I called her up and she loved the idea. I’m not sure if we ever told her about the porno movie, but whatever. She is rock solid and her and Eddy make one of the tightest rhythm sections I’ve ever played with.
So, we wrote a ton of tunes and have been playing regular engagements at cocktail lounges like the Bikini (every First Friday 6pm-8pm) and the Womack, Carly’s Bistro (every 4th Saturday 10pm-2am), art events and festivals, private parties, casuals and other things that come up (though we’re decidedly trying to stay out of the rock rooms – because we are a real “Lounge Combo” – we don’t need to be the center of attention, under lights and shit. We are fine with being wallpaper and accompanying whatever else is going on. We are very subliminal and ambient like that. We get in people’s ears differently than rock groups do. We kind of take the back door into your mind).
Anyway, Moonlight Magic is my main thing – and we just recorded that LP for Slope – but I still do other projects like Thee Faded Pyctures, which is a 60s Punk-style project that I sing and play organ in. It’s a lot of fun and high energy. We gig infrequently, but we did record an album last year and we’re still looking for a label to release it.
Oh, and I play bass in a jazz trio with a killer local drummer named Troy Maskell (from Thee Madcaps, among other things) and Steve Asetta (a tenor saxophonist that I used to play with a lot in NYC/CT when I played upright bass on jazz projects). We play straight ahead and “Out” jazz and have a regular thing at Carly’s Bistro, every 2nd Saturday from 10pm-2am.
And, of course, I do my home recording stuff where I play all the instruments, but I also have invitational recording projects with friends. We’ve got a couple of those going right now. One is called Puppy and the Hand Jobs – kind of a sleazy, punk/r&r thing like Crime or The Jabbers. We will have an LP out next year on Loose Grip Records out of Los Angeles. And another [project] called STNKY FRKS (part Pagans, part Black Randy, part Yardbirds).
It seems like you’re a multi-instrumentalist. Do you lay down all the parts of your recordings?
Yeah, if I’m doing a home recording or sketching out an idea, I’ll usually get all the parts and the arrangement together on the guitar or piano, then I’ll sometimes lay down a scratch guitar track to a click so I have something to lay down drums/percussion to. After that, I’ll either do a guitar or bass track – whichever one seems like the better way to go. Then, whatever…organ, vocals, hand percussion, kazoo, ambient noise.
After I have all the tracks, I EQ everything, mix levels and usually apply reverb (where needed), compression, and a limiter. I’m pretty basic and I don’t know a whole lot. I’m not interested in the techie/production aspects. I don’t know anything about the plug-in suites I have. I know enough to get by.
What’s your view of the garage/lofi/punk scene currently here in the Valley and State? I’m sure you’ve witnessed a few changes. Although, maybe it’s stayed pretty consistent?
I have to admit that I haven’t paid much attention. I tend to not like modern Garage bands. And I definitely can’t stand going out to see live rock bands. It’s loud and I don’t drink and I’m not out cruising for sex so the whole thing is pretty boring and too loud. I’m not interested in that kind of night life, despite the fact that I’ve lived and died in stupid rock clubs for the last 25 years or whatever. I’d rather go ride my bike or take a walk than go see some band go through the motions in a rock club. Not all bands, of course, but the vast majority of output from most rock bands is redundant & unnecessary. I know that the same critique can be leveled at me and I’m okay with that. Don’t get me wrong, I like music and most of my friends are in bands and doing creative things but it is so fucking rare to hear somebody doing something that is truly mind-blowing and innovative. And again, I’m not saying I am capable of that either. I’m getting a little depressed just thinking about it.
Could you tell us about the WE’RE LOUD: 90s Cassette Punk Unknowns release you helped put together?
I had a Yamaha 4-track cassette recorder throughout most of the 90’s. I wrote a lot of tunes, had a million bands and recording projects and documented just about everything with that 4-track. Not just Punk either – we did a lot of Psych and non-idiomatic free improvisation, noise-scapes and Musique Concrete – but the stuff people were interested in was the Garage Punk material.
Anyway, about 5 years ago, I was living in Los Angeles again and I had this cache of demo and home recorded cassettes from all of mine and my friends’ bands that had never seen the light of day. I literally had all these cassettes in a taped-together Chuck Taylor shoe-box. I figured I digitize everything and put it up on Bandcamp or something.
But then I got the idea to hit up my buddy Bazooka Joe Alameida. I knew him in Las Vegas years ago. I met him at the Double Down and we connected over a mutual obsession with Crypt Records’ Back From The Grave and Garage Punk Unknowns compilations. He eventually got into the business of putting out Garage Punk records and had a label called Black Gladiator. He also worked for Slovenly Records – Pete Slovenly/AKA Sticker Guy, who every band in the 90’s had their nice vinyl stickers made by.
Anyway, I figured if anybody would be able to do something with these recordings it would be Joe. So, I sent him some mp3s – just a taste, maybe 10 tunes – and he emailed me back saying, “we HAVE to put this out!” He was so enthusiastic about it that I started to get all excited too, and then he got Pete involved and Pete was really, really into it too.
The part of the process that blew my mind the most was that they got Tim Warren to master all my cassette recordings for vinyl. He was a hero of ours because he was the guy behind CRYPT Records and all of those great comps that meant so much to me and my contemporaries on the Garage Punk scene in the 90’s. So I was unbelievably stoked to have a guy like that involved.
Anyway, the record came out a year or two ago – a double LP with pics and liners and the works. They did an amazing job with it and kept me in the loop the whole time. You can buy it at record stores or online. It’s easy to find.
There are even festivals in Europe called “WE’RE LOUD” after a song I wrote that’s on that comp, but I never get invited to come over and play them! Jajaja!
What’s upcoming for Jaime Paul Lamb? More releases? Any shows booked?
There’s a lot on the horizon right now and I’ve been extremely busy.
Moonlight Magic has been gigging like crazy (catch us at the Bikini Lounge every First Friday from 6-8pm and at Carly’s Bistro every 4th Saturday from 10pm-2am and we’re usually at the The Womack once a month, so watch their calendar – You can find our Facebook page pretty easily too, if you want to see our updated calendar) and we’ve got that record coming out on Slope Records.
Thee Faded Pyctures have an album recorded and have been gigging sporadically. We just need to get somebody to put it out.
I’ve also been playing bass in Mighty Sphincter, Doug Clark’s legendary Phoenix Horror-Punk band that’s been around for a million years. We’ve been rehearsing and working on an LP and some shows.
The Gnomes actually have two LP’s worth of stuff recorded that I haven’t bothered to shop. I wish someone would put that shit out because it’s some of the best music I’ve ever written. It’s a shame that more people can’t hear that stuff.
Puppy & the Hand Jobs are putting out a vinyl LP on Loose Grip later this year. We might have a hard time getting gigs because I play naked in that band with a dog collar on because I’m “Puppy”.
And then I have a bunch of recording and basically conceptual art projects called: Wrong Hole, STNKY FRKS, The Lamebrains, TRD STRM, and a bunch of the stuff that’s on my Bandcamp and Soundcloud pages.
Do you have any parting words of wisdom for the young kids out there that want to live the grimey, rocknroll lifestyle, free-wheeling about the country playing and recording in a ton of bands, crashing wherever they can and surviving just long enough to make it to the next gig?
You know, I think the thing that matters most is trying to live authentically. I try to have real experiences that are unmediated by things like my cellphone and computer programs. Not that I’m a Luddite or any kind of curmudgeon – I simply insist on having a genuine and visceral experience in life.
I have no regrets about my past. I’ve had a good run. I’ve gotten into a lot of adventures and misadventures, but I love my life. In fact, overall, heroin has had a positive effect on my life, if I look at some of the meaningful experiences I’ve had over the years and all the causal cycles that were subsequently set in motion.
Obviously, I’m not qualified to give advice to anyone, but sometimes when I leave work on Friday afternoons, I tell some of the younger guys who work in the warehouse to go out, experiment with drugs, try to have sex with someone or some thing, and do something dangerous.