Interview: Conversing With Oceans

Published on 19 May 2021 at 09:53

1: How did you decide on the name, “Conversing With Oceans"?

I had made a list of names I was choosing from for this project. To me, this music was more introspective than what I'd written in the past and felt like it was connecting different parts of me. As a child, I'd grown up on different continents too. One of the names on that list was a name my wife (and our photographer Rosemarie) came up with. It felt like it captured the essence of these new songs I was writing. I've always felt most at ease and inspired by a large body of water.

2: What inspires you to create?

It may sound like a cliché, but I'm genuinely inspired by just about everything. Inspiration can come at any moment and that's what I love most about it. I get it from everyday life, from my relationships with my friends and loved ones, obstacles I'm facing, my dreams at night, my daydreams, shows & movies I watch, music I listen to, sitting down with an instrument, books and articles I read--you name it. I love when it just comes out of nowhere like if I'm just walking and a new thought pops into my head making sense of something I hadn't made sense of before.
3: What advice would you give to someone who wants to be in a creative profession?

Begin. Tune out the naysayers and just keep going. Keep creating. You're not going to love what you start making but that's a good thing because that's a compass and roadmap for where you'll go. Little by little, you'll keep getting better. And if you're doing it right, you won't even notice your progress until much later on when you'll look back to where you started. Begin & keep going. That's my biggest thing.

4: Do you feel open minded about what you listen to? Do you like going out of your comfort zone?

Oh definitely. A good song is a good song regardless of what genre it is. Genres are becoming less & less meaningful these days anyway. I love when music surprises me or I hear a sound, a beat, an instrument played in a way I've never heard before. I try to see the good in everything. I like to ask things like "what makes someone like this song?" and dissect that, or "what about this song gave me this particular feeling?" I've always been more of a rock singer-songwriter at my core, but I listen to just about everything.

5: What outlets do you find out about music from? (Record stores, magazines, samplers, etc.)

I've honestly been stumbling on a lot of great stuff on Spotify lately. Their algorithm has been really strong, at least for my tastes. I love going to a new place though and turning on a local radio station to hear what they're playing or going to local coffee shops and looking at the posters of live music and hearing those artists. The last piece of music I'd picked up was this weekend at a locally owned, old-school record store called Gerosa Records in Connecticut. They were playing Gaslight Anthem when I walked in so I knew it was my kind of place.

6: What was the inspiration for your song "Versailles”?

It was largely inspired by the Netflix series of the same name about King Louis XIV. I was fascinated by his obsession with building this idyllic fortress to represent these noble values and protect him and his loved ones, while navigating all of the forces within those very same walls that were trying to end his reign. The thing he always held onto was his impossible love for his brother's wife Henrietta. The music by M83 in that series is also incredible. It was a really fun show. I liked the concept that someone can seemingly have so much, even endless material wealth, yet be so deeply unfulfilled and troubled internally. I like anything with honesty and a good life lesson.

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