Posts Tagged ‘Jellyfish’

I. AM. SO. EXCITED to share this with all of you. The brilliant and underrated Andy Eichhorn recently resurfaced with a new EP and some social media outlets. So, naturally I took a deep breath and sent him a message, and…here we are! I am always honored when the folks who made and make the music I love will give me the time to pick their brains a bit. Andy has been nothing but super sweet since then and even sent me some goodies from his old band ZUCKERBABY! :::drool::: So, holey moley, let’s go!

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MSG – Greetings Andy! Thank you for taking the time to do this Q&A/Interview for M-S-G. I am so psyched to have this opportunity with you. For anyone about to take this adventure with us…Andy Eichhorn is a bit of a “cult” music figure once fronting Canadian Pop/Rock darlings Zuckerbaby in the mid 90’s to the early 00’s. If you don’t mind, I’d like to start somewhere around there. Can you tell us a bit about what it was like trying to get something like Zuckerbaby off the ground in Calgary Alberta, Canada in the mid 90’s?

AE – Thanks, Soda!  I’m thankful for the opportunity, you’ve interviewed a lot of great artists and I’m happy to make the cut. Well, I won’t say it was easy because nothing worth doing ever is… but it did happen very naturally.  Reed & I were really coming into our own songwriting as a team, finding our own way of doing things, listening to and getting excited about the same music we loved from the past and present. We hit a stride together creatively and could just FEEL it. Whether or not anything else was going to happen, WE were happening. And to anyone who writes or creates – that’s a one of a kind feeling! Getting the music industry to take notice of what we were doing was another story. We hammered away at any lead we could find. Cold called record companies, managers, booking agents –you name it!  It seemed that something pretty magical was brewing, and people were coming to shows to see us more and more. Music industry types started calling us back and wanting to see the band. It was all very exciting!

MSG – And even before Zuckerbaby, you fronted Calliope, which, at its core, was you and Reed (Shimozawa). That project was a touch darker and a bit on the Alt/Grunge side. What made you guys kinda make the change and streamline your focus/sound?

AE – I always say there wouldn’t have been a Zuckerbaby without Calliope.  It was our “getting to know you” project, a stepping stone to what would become Zuckerbaby. That was around 1994 and the musical landscape was changing yet again. When Reed and I met we shared a love for so much music from all over the musical map and it all kind of spilled out on that record. As we kept going, we turned each other on to the bands and artists that each of us loved. When Calliope came to an end, we were thinking about what was next. Both of us brought a song to the other guy to see if there was anything worth pursuing. Those songs were “Bellybutton Queen” and “Heavy”.  A new band was born!   

MSG – Now, for me, Zuckerbaby was love at first sight (and sound of course). I immediately caught a heavy Jellyfish influence, which was major for me and after getting the first ZB album it only further solidified that wonderful comparison. I personally think you guys came the closest to that sound with not an ounce of it being contrived. It seemed and sounded so natural, you guys just nailed that style so effortlessly. The self-titled Zuckerbaby album is an absolute classic. AND, to top it off Jack Joseph Puig, who worked on both Jellyfish albums, worked on your 1997 debut. Can you dish some history here? 

AE – No question, we loved Jellyfish so much! Hearing Roger Joseph Manning Jr. speak recently about some of the other music he and Andy Sturmer were influenced by made sense to me. He mentioned Elvis Costello, Crowded House, Cheap Trick…all the bands I was soaking up at the time or had been into when we were writing and recording the first album. I got to spend some time in San Francisco (where Jellyfish began) and went to places like Russian Hill (a song on the Jellyfish record Split Milk) and got to try to feel the vibe.  We convinced the guys who managed them to also manage us. Working with Jack Joseph Puig was a feather in our cap for sure. He worked on the Jellyfish records as well as The Black Crowes, Tonic, The Grays (super underrated band featuring Jason Falkner, Jon Brion, Buddy Judge and Dan McCarroll.)  If you can find it – get it!  Yeah, it was very cool to walk into a studio like Ocean Way in Los Angeles and mix your songs with a legend like Jack. One night he sent us away and said he would call us when he had something for us to listen to. We decided to go to The Viper Room (a club owned by Johnny Depp at that time).  We were in the lineup outside, waiting to get in and over my shoulder I hear a familiar voice saying something like “here’s some leftovers, I think It’s still warm”. It was Johnny Depp bringing food to one of the doormen at the club. Then we got to see Tommy Stinson’s (The Replacements) band called, Perfect. Great night in LA! I went back to the hotel and called my friend Lorrie Matheson back home to tell him about the show because he is a huge Replacements fan. Lorrie ended up producing my new EP all these years later. 

MSG – Coming down off that self-titled you guys followed up with Platinum Again which was a gorgeous, more mature sounding record which left behind the bubblegum for more polished rock gems. The album also seemed a bit caliginous. I remember interviewing Reed a few years back and he said that was a real tough one to make. Care to elaborate? You guys also lost your original rhythm section around that time? What can you tell us?

AE – We were in trouble. Career, relationships – life. But we still kept going.  It WAS dark, it was different from the first record but I think it showed another side to the band that I will always be proud of. There’s a song on that record called “Sleepwalking Sister” that should have been a single. The lyrics were inspired by Susanna Hoffs of The Bangles who had a solo album in 1997. She had a song called “Enormous Wings” that she said was inspired by the author Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  I listened to her record then read the collection of short stories that inspired her song and wrote the lyrics to “Sleepwalking Sister”. There are a lot of beautiful songs on that record. We collaborated with some other writers for the first time and that yielded some varying results as well. We were trying to do something other than what we had done on the first record and I think it turned out really well.   The two albums are very different but both great in their own way. And, yes, we parted ways with Brian our bass player before we recorded Platinum Again and Wayne left after the recording so he got to play on the second album. It can be a brutal business as far as relationships go. You’re forced to make decisions quickly and sometimes it’s right and sometimes it’s not.

MSG – How long did you guys work on promoting ‘Platinum’? And what was the next move or had things pretty much come to an end? Were there talks of a third record?

AE – We released Platinum Again in the Fall of 2000. It was another new era.  Things were changing in the music industry that would be game changing.  We toured Canada with Collective Soul and after that it looked like our relationship with Universal Music was coming to an end. Things kind of slowed down for the band and there weren’t many touring opportunities at that point. We did think about doing something further but not if it didn’t feel right. Nothing really definitive or dramatic happened but I was getting tired of everything. We fought really hard to make Platinum Again. The time in between the first record and writing and recording the second one was very tough. It took a toll. 

MSG – Now, it seems like you went a bit underground after Zuckerbaby, from what I may or may not know. What was life after the band like? Were there more bands? More gigs?…Or did you decide that was it at that time?

AE – I took a step back but it wasn’t too long before we started working on new stuff. Reed and I did a lot of writing and recording between 2004 and 2006. I briefly played in a friend’s band here in Calgary. Zuckerbaby played a couple of shows locally around then as well. 

MSG – It has been really, about 2 decades since you graced us with your gifts. You just released a new solo (debut) EP entitled Satellites and Secrets, which is beautiful. I want to get into that but don’t want to leave out the fact that you did poke your head out in 2015 to do a one off reunion gig with Zuckerbaby opening for The Age Of Electric who had been celebrating “X” amount of time and did a few shows, re-released some music and what not and you guys opened up the show in Calgary. What was that like? You also issued a new single called, “Do The Crime” soon after that. Is there more ZBaby where that came from?

AE – Thanks! The EP was something I have always wanted to do. It probably would never have happened without reconnecting with Lorrie Matheson.  He has a studio called Arch Audio and invited me over one day to hang out. Next thing you know we were planning and plotting how to make a record!  All of the guys in Age of Electric are loved by me. It was so cool to open a couple of shows for them when they did a reunion. We toured Canada in 1997 with them which was absolutely classic! I’ve been inspired by their songs and talent since before Reed and I met. And he was friends with them before that! So, there’s a great history there. We recorded an album’s worth of Zuckerbaby material between around 2004 and 2007.  That’s where “Do The Crime” came from.  So there is a collection of songs from that era that we haven’t really done anything with.

MSG – I wanted so badly to get to that gig. I absolutely LOVE AOE, mega influence! Anyways, so, here we are, 2020 a year of utter chaos and you drop your solo debut after all that time, a sophisticated collection of songs indeed, almost adult contemporary. How long did it take to write, record, etc? How long did you have this planned for?

AE – Timing has never been my strong suit. I could have just shelved it when all this happened but I finally got the EP finished and didn’t want to wait any longer. Glad I didn’t because it feels really great to connect with people who seem to like what I do! I hadn’t written anything complete in a very long time but always had little ideas. I got more focused a couple of years ago as far as songwriting goes. The recording process was a few days here, a day there as time and money would allow.

MSG – So aside from this, have you and are you still involved in music in other ways? You don’t have to get too personal, but what might an average day be like for you now if you don’t mind me asking?

AE – This is it musically right now. It was a big deal for me to get back at it and my hope is to keep something going. An average day for me involves work and family mostly. I have to carve out time for myself to do my thing and stay creative. My family is very supportive! I find that if I go too long without singing and playing or working on some new idea I start to get bummed out.

MSG – What are the plans for the EP? I know, given the state of the world, there isn’t too much planning going on anywhere. Will there be another recording? Will there be any shows? You know… the door is open at my place if you ever get here and want to do a house show!

AE – You never know! If the pandemic gets under control, I might take you up on that. I had hoped to play a show in Calgary with the band who played on the recording. I also wanted to do some shows in different cities with other musicians I have known over the years, that was the plan. Maybe one day! I did a couple of acoustic shows, just me and a guitar, before the lockdown and I was starting to really like doing that, too. Everything’s gone online now so I’ll keep posting songs, covers and stuff like that. Hopefully I can get playing somewhere soon!

MSG – I feel like we covered a lot here and filled in a few historic holes. I’m sure people will really enjoy a peek inside after all this time. What did we leave out?

AE – There’s always something left out but I think this is a good wrap up of past and present. Thank you so much for doing this!

MSG – And where can people get the new EP?

AE – Satellites and Secrets is available on all the streaming platforms and CDs are available through bandcamp. And both Zuckerbaby albums are on itunes as well!

MSG – Well, I think that about covers it. Thanks a lot Andy, this was rad, an absolute pleasure. Another one of my nerdy music-related dreams come true. Stay safe and groovy Andy and let’s give this to the people!

https://andyeichhorn.bandcamp.com/releases

Just a quick update here. My interview with Eric Dover from back in May was never on YouTube due to tech issues. It had only been available on SoundCloud. Issues have finally been resolved and it is now up on YT! SO, I wanted to do just another quick bump for it so you can all enjoy it over there and please share. Direct link to YT below:

And if you want to see the original post the link is right here:

https://musicsurvivalguide.org/2020/05/06/music-survival-guide-episode-20/

TLQ Threesome Vol. 1

Don’t pinch yourself, this is not a dream and you are very much awake. The Lickerish Quartet have arrived to whisk you off to a magical place. The odds are good if you are taking the trip you are very familiar with the pedigree in which the gentlemen that make up TLQ carry along with them. And though this band is not about looking into the past, but rather, a very bright future I do believe they are firmly aware of how to tickle longtime enthusiast’s earholes. Thusly, the universe was gifted Threesome Vol. 1. Although only an EP (hang tight, more on the way) it is transcendent in every way imaginable. The three headstones in front of The Lickerish Quartet are Eric Dover, Roger Joseph Manning Jr., and Tim Smith. All powerhouses on their own and together an unstoppable cavalcade that ooze creativity and a knack to really bring the listener on a musical journey. A fine point to make about the 4 songs featured on this EP is that, although the arrangements are superb in every fashion the band manages to deliver it all with such a fun candor only leaving you wanting to take the ride over and over again. And you’d think that only 4 songs may seem served only as an appetizer the meal is quite satisfying. Having 3 voices all worthy of the lead singer role certainly does not hinder the band at all. However, I do not want to take away from the fact that Singer/Guitarist Eric Dover is, was, and apparently always will be a beast of a singer. From every high and every low the guy just delivers with such a gusto you’re almost left dumbfounded. You also have the sweetness put forth in every Roger Manning syllable that you can’t help but smile along with him. And quiet honestly, Tim Smith has never sounded better. All of this is rolled up into one giant ball of meticulous arrangements both vocally and musically. From the fun piano intro and danceable vibe of  “Fadoodle” (look it up) all the way down to the hypnotic last moments of first single “Lighthouse Spaceship”, which unto itself is an epic and manages to collect all the components of the EP into one fantastical cocktail. With all of this said, my personal favorite track (currently) is track 3, “Magic Number”. There is a smoothness there that really hits you where it counts and is quite honestly mildly reminiscent of Chris Isaak’s unforgettable “Wicked Game”.  With all of this said, the sophistication and attention to detail of this debut offering from these seasoned vets does not disappoint. And really, did we think it would? Threessome Vol. 1 is out this Friday, May 15th.

TLQ HQ

Eric Dover - M-S-G Episode 20

I’m very excited to present to you my interview with Eric Dover. This was a tremendous honor for me. We covered a great chunk of The Lickerish Quartet and talked a bit about the past and the future. Eric was great to talk to and gave a great interview. I hope all of you dig this. Thanks so much Eric, stay awesome, we need ya!

*UNFORTUNATELY I was unable to upload this to YouTube due to technical difficulties (very unhappy about this). Please enjoy the interview over at SoundCloud, there is also a free download. Thanks! (link below)

MUSIC-SURVIVAL-GUIDE Episode 20 (Soda w/Eric Dover)

TLQ

Welp, planets…stars…the heaven’s, have all aligned, and 75% of Spilt Milk era Jellyfish have reunited to bring us THE LICKERISH QUARTET! (:holy bananas:) And over the last week or so they have been going hard on getting the word out, and it is a beautiful thing. By the sounds of it Roger, Eric and Tim have A LOT in store for us. And it is great timing as many of us are social distancing and the world is dealing with COVID-19. Music is always medicine.

Anyways, did you hear the first single, “LIGHTHOUSE SPACESHIP”? They have released two videos, one being standard and the other being a new lyric video. Check it out below and prepare to drool over the delicious sounds and production that only was expected.

Lighthouse Spaceship

The band is currently impacting on all major socials and Youtube. May 15th will see the release of the first of 3 EPs, Threesome Vol. 1 – Check out the message from the guys below!

Follow along and keep up to date on the bands main website at:

LQ headquarters

And, please stay safe out there. Peace and Love.

RJMJHey folks. I just wanted to share the latest news direct from Roger about his new project with Eric Dover and Tim Smith (probably the closest to a Jellyfish reunion that will occur) – I spoke to RJMJ last week and he gave me a very quick update on the band, Lickerish Quartet…

“New LQ music in the form of a 4-song EP coming out front of April surrounded by a fan funding-Pledge style campaign.” *Although that may not seem like much it actually answers two popular questions. So, keep your eyes open.

In the meantime, did anyone see the “Inside the Album” episodes Roger did with Produce like a Pro? They got into BOTH Jellyfish albums and they are an absolute pleasure to watch:

P.S. and FYI:

lick·er·ish
/ˈlik(ə)riSH/
adjective
  1. lecherous.
    “a barrage of lickerish grins and dirty jokes”

Happy New Year! 2019…holey moley! This is our first episode for the new year. I had the idea to do a bit of a “year in review” type episode for 2018. I wanted to acknowledge the fact that we had now been doing the Podcast for a year and just give a knod to all the great artists I interviewed or covered in some fashion. I figured this would be a great way to tie up one year and start another. So, as we brainstorm what is next please give this a listen and hear a cool and fun little wrap up of what I thought was a really great year for M-S-G. More guests on the way. Peace and love! And, a big thanks to my Monkey man 😉

*ALL MUSIC USED WITHIN THIS PODCAST IS PROPERTY OF THE ORIGINAL WRITERS.*

DL FOR FREE ON SOUNDCLOUD

RJMJ - Glamping

“Glamping is a portmanteau of glamorous and camping and describes a style of camping with amenities and, in some cases, resort-style services not usually associated with ‘traditional’ camping.”

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And now that you know what Glamping properly means, we finally have a sound to associate with it as well, in the form of Roger Joseph Manning Jr.’s new solo EP of the same title. So, let me first ask, how do YOU know about Roger and his many sonic contributions to the universe? Maybe you recently discovered a tiny mad scientist keyboard madman on a tour with Beck? Or…maybe you have hung on since his college rock indie days back in the late 80’s when he joined Beatnik Beatch with Andy Sturmer? For me, it’s what happened after Beatnik which put Roger on my radar at a very young age, that project was Jellyfish. Ask me about that another time if you already don’t know of how that band changed my life. Roger has been turning out music for 30 plus years at this point. Whether he’s doing session work, or pushing the envelope with one of his own original bands or giving us polished and scrutinized solo work…whatever it is, he’s certainly giving stellar efforts.

So…let’s discuss Glamping, cause for this moment, that is why we are here. This is Roger’s first new solo recording in about 10 years. And his agenda, as far as I know, was to put more solo music out for the last few years but he had gotten caught up with some other cool work outside of his own – Last Winter RJMJ surprised us all with an absolutely unreal Pledge Music campaign which would coincide with the release of Glamping…to get it out, to get it in the hands of music lovers and beyond. This was no regular run of the mill campaign. With this, came a peek into Roger’s world a bit. Video updates while on tour with Beck kept a smile on our faces, a glance (literally) into his closest as he sold off Jellyfish clothing from the early nineties (WOW!) Pieces of gear he was parting with, chances to hang and record shop with him and a slew of other fun and juicy bits to be involved with. Hardly 48 hours had passed on that campaign and a number of components had sold out. Roger considered it a huge success and I know was very touched by the response. And, because of that very reason he has promised more solo music, sooner than later. This whole thing also allowed him to reissue his first two records which both had Japanese releases and under the radar domestic ones as well. There is a lot to get into here and I don’t want to veer off course too much more…

So, again…Glamping. This 4 song EP is quite an appetizer to what will hopefully be followed soon by a main course. A contribution that leaves you with a belly rumbling, it whets a pallet that had been starving for a taste for nearly a decade. The perfect and pristine songwriting in which Roger has painted himself into a decadent corner for so long does not disappoint. An avid fan of the 70’s, Mr. Manning certainly wears his heart and influences on his sleeve for this one, maybe more than ever(?) It’s a very focused and streamlined collection of songs. Perhaps the fact that there are only four songs this go round didn’t leave much room for the wackier more experimental stuff to creep in. What you have here is four delicate yet deliberate songs keen on love, playful on adventure and confident in delivery. The production is clean and smooth with Roger doing the bulk of the work with a little help from some amazing friends. Brother Chris (the Witchdoctor himself) is present with some assistance in the vocal department and helping in general to bring all of this out of RJMJ. Jason Falkner plays some guitar, Bleu McAuley sings a little, Lyle Workman plays a bit of guitar too…it’s a cavalcade of radical folks curating a really unbelievable set of tunes that ends just a bit soon. These songs are sang so sweetly, it always sounds like Roger has a smile on his face when he sings and that attitude really comes across here. First track, “Operator” is a cute and clever song sprinkled with a dash of loneliness, “Operator, I need a favor…could you take some time, I’m in need of a connection in the worst way, so don’t say goodbye.” A song possibly too smart for it’s own good! Next up is “Funhouse”, which is appropriately titled as it is probably the most playful of the set, sounding like it could easily transport you to the carnival with just a little imagination. It is also, the only song which Roger writes the lyrics to completely on his own, the others have Chris Price assisting or handling them in full. Third track, “Is it All A Dream?” is my personal favorite, it’s just such a beautiful song with a chorus that you’ll be singing for days, a perfect pop song with hook, line and sinker. The EP ends with the longest in the collection, “I’m Not Your Cowboy”, a modest song about a modern man who simply knows his place and graciously accepts his role as a non-superhero. Perhaps the most complex of the songs, “Cowboy” is triumphant and ends the release big. The musicianship throughout is top notch of course. I just wish in the end that Roger had handled all of the lyrics on his own. Either way, can’t wait for more original music from Mr. Manning!

Listen to first track on Glamping, “Operator” below!

ALSO, If you have extra time, check out this great conversation I had with Roger a few years ago in which he drops many hints about Beck, Glamping and a bunch of other cool stuff!

Hey everybody. Very excited to announce that we have “graduated” from our WordPress domain to our own official website  www.musicsurvivalguide.org

M-S-G

A lot of exciting stuff has been happening for M-S-G! It has grown quite a bit since the beginning of the year as we have expanded it too also be a Podcast.

M-S-G PODCAST ON YOUTUBE

Shout-out to my partner, NOX CULT drummer, Monkey. We’ve been having a blast. Thanks to all for following, listening, sharing…it means everything. So, stick around as we continue the adventures. And please reach out if you would like to get on the Show, get your album reviewed, do an interview…

AND IN OTHER NEWS…

I have also been focusing a lot on my SODA’S CRAFTY CHAOS project in which I make candles, light switch covers, prints…etc. I wanted to announce that I have released my first run of enamel pins! I really wanted it to be very special SO…it is an ode, a bit of a tribute, to my favorite band, JELLYFISH. I figured, what better way to start this endeavor than to bring something awesome like this to the still existing Jellyfish community. I will be bringing more pins to life down the line but for now, head over to my store and grab your set, limited to ONLY 30 SETS!

Get the pins here!

Roger and Soda somewhere in space
This is the interview that started it all! Almost two years ago I wanted to branch out on the blog. I did a phone interview with one of my musical heroes, Roger Joseph Manning Jr., from my favorite band, Jellyfish. This was in depth and absolutely incredible. We thought this was too good to not make it a part of the formal Podcast, thusly we are bringing it back and calling it Episode Zero. It’s not perfect sound quality as it was done on the phone straight forward but it is still so badass. Enjoy and share!

LISTEN ON SOUNDCLOUD HERE

*ALL MUSIC USED WITHIN THIS PODCAST IS PROPERTY OF THE ORIGINAL WRITERS.*

See the original Posts on the blog here:

Roger Joseph Manning Jr. original Blog posts