RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW AMERICAN BAND ATLANTIC JUNCTION
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide that music is a thing for you?
I can’t speak for the rest of the band, but when I was a child having a piano in the kitchen and being hopeless at sport kind of set the scene.
Introduce us to all of the members and your musical history.
The amazing Sara Davey from East Tennessee on vocals (who also does studio backups for Sam Smith, Ellie Goulding, Jacob Collier and dozens more), my song writing partner, fellow band leader and renown guitar journalist Neville Marten on guitar, Jon Durno of Roman Holiday fame on the bass, Neil Robinson (ex-James Taylor Quartet) on drums, country music’s finest Jim Martin on pedal steel, Richard Pardy on Saxophones (who we share with the illegal Eagles), sisters Sophie and Vicky Nash on backing vocals, Richard Barret also on guitar (who we share with Tony Hadley) and me on the keys. Our musical history is all over the place which is kind of why the new album is an eclectic mix for sure!
Name me your 3 favourite albums.
What an agonizing question, if we can’t choose our own material then three copies of Aja by Steely Dan
What was the first song you heard that steered you into a music path?
Tiny Dancer by Elton John
The music industry is the hardest industry in the world to progress in, how do you feel you are doing?
We are realistic and don’t expect to become a household name. I think many of us, having flirted with success in previous bands, are perfectly content to create quality music and leave it at that.
I’m seeing a lot of debate about women not feeling safe at music gigs, any thoughts on what we need to do to help?
This is super important and we should certainly take away the oxygen of publicity from people like Andrew Tate. Maybe we need to have people like air marshals in and amongst audiences.
As you develop as an artist and develop using socials what ways do you get new ears on your music? Any tips?
Sorry, I’m the last person to give advice on socials so my tip is to delegate it like we did to the wonderful Amy Hughes – Thanks Aims!
Tell us two truths and a lie about you.
I speak nearly fluent Italian, I can make my whole nose go in and out, I am ambidextrous with a knife and fork.
What are your thoughts on Spotify’s monopoly on the music industry?
If not Spotify, I think some organization will always have a monopoly in the music industry and try to balance the competing needs of the musicians, their listeners, and the organization itself. It’s not great but a) it works and b) a disruptor will inevitably come along and shake things up – remember itunes!
Do you sign up for any conspiracy theories?
No, they are the fuel of fake news and a corruptor of weak minds.
Did you buy anything you don’t need during the pandemic?
Three extra webcams
What was the worst experience on stage?
Our drummer once hit his cymbal quite hard which promptly fell off its stand vertically and sliced through the main electrical supply to the stage. This was dangerous and immediately stopped the show. Ironically the only person who could carry on playing because the power had gone down (and he did for a bit) was the drummer.
Tell us something about each member that you think people would be surprised about.
In addition to Atlantic Junction, Nev and I are both long-standing members of rock and roll legend Marty Wilde’s band, Jon Durno was once musical director for Samantha Fox, when not singing BV’s Vicky is a senior scientist at GSK, as well as playing pedal steel Jim also plays a mean fiddle, Sara has crafting business called the Twinkling Traveler, Richard Pardy once played with Westlife, Richard Barrett’s wife is a pro Cello player, Sophie has a Masters degree in climate change and Neil has beautiful teeth!
What makes you stand out as a band?
Wow, it’s a bit embarrassing to blow your own trumpet, but it’s true to say the quality of our writing, both the lyrics and the music, is very high and the level of musicianship in the band is outstanding.
I hear you have a new music, what can you tell us about it.
Yeah, it’s an album called ‘What Iceberg’ with ten new songs that are all very different including, big ballads, country, pop, rock… even a bit of gospel!
Talk me through the thought process of the new tunes.
Usually, something manifests itself like a sight, an experience or even hearing a phrase that will trigger a desire to get creative. This is usually followed by a set of lyrics that get worked and reworked and which will suggest a speed, a style and a rhythm for the song and then we chose a key. Your readers may not know this but all 24 keys available to write in (12 major and 12 minor) have psychological associations with mood; love, death, humour etc., so we chose an appropriate key for the lyric to see how it fits, then experiment with different chord sequences until it feels right. At this point we make a home demo because you never really know how something will sound until you’ve recorded it. We can make our final corrections before going to the studio to cut the track.
What was the recording process like?
Great fun, we use a producer called Tom Donovan who has great ideas, has ears like a bat and is very quick.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the new tunes?
Making the vocal line more of a priority in the early stages and not leaving it to the last thing
Would you change anything now it’s finished?
For sure because a song is always a work in progress, ever-evolving, never arriving.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
My secret recipe for chicken risotto, but then it wouldn’t be a secret would it?