Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Balconies Interview

Lets get this started by asking, how are you?
Great! We’ve been enjoying our time in Vancouver. We went bowling last night with some friends. Today, we worked on some new songs! Yay!

Who are some of your musical influences?
Growing up Steve and I listened to what our parents were listening to – Tom Waits, Alice Cooper, Dr. Hook, The Beatles, Supertramp, Beach Boys, ABBA, Jackson 5... Our grandparents also encouraged us to listen to a lot of classical music since we were studying classical instruments – they were always buying us new records they thought we’d appreciate (which we did). Both Liam and I ventured into punk music when we were teenagers: Sex Pistols, Dead Kennedys, Buzzcocks, The Clash, The Specials etc…

What are some current bands you are into?
Zeus, The Golden Dogs, Bahamas, Beach House, Dirty Projectors, Leif Vollebekk, Parlovr, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Fleet Foxes, Owen Pallet, Yukon Blonde, Dinosaur Bones, Sandman Viper Command…but we’re still listening to a lot of classic music…as listed above…

What about Canadian ones?
see above…most of them are!

Since you played at Canadian Music Week, what was that experience like?
Exciting! It was really cool sharing the stage with so many other amazing musicians especially at the Horseshoe tavern.
We felt really fortunate to be on such a great bill.

What got you into music?
When I was four years old I saw a girl playing violin on Sesame Street and I was in complete awe of the instrument. I bugged my parents for years to get me a violin. They couldn’t afford to get me one at the time so I would strut around the house with a coat hanger and a stick pretending I was playing violin. Finally, when I was six my parents found a second hand violin and enrolled me in lessons and I haven’t looked back! Growing up, my dad was always writing and listening to music - he’d play piano, guitar and sing a lot at home so he is definitely my primary musical inspiration. When I was 13 my family moved out to the country, about 30 minutes outside of Ottawa. Because there wasn’t much else to do, I picked up the guitar and started teaching myself. Once I learned a couple of chords, I started songwriting, which really helped me find my voice, and made being a teenager much easier to deal with.

What inspires you to make music?
Listening to a good record or watching a good movie inspires me to create more music. For me, writing music is like therapy and it’s a release for built up energy, thoughts and emotions. Working with Liam and Steve definitely encourages me to continue improving as a guitarist and songwriter. I also feed off people’s energy and since I love people watching – I often create scenarios up in my head about them and then write about it…

What is the best thing about touring? The worst?
I never really have to feel homesick because I have my brother
and boyfriend on the road with me. I miss my bed, friends and parents.

In the next 5-10 years, where do you see the Balconies?
Hopefully, no more day jobs! Busy touring the world with at least four albums under our belt.

What are some challenges you face as a band?
Trying to balance between having day jobs and still having time to be creative and tour. It’s a definite challenge to be funding all the bands expenses including our personal ones. Dealing with unexpected expenses such as van repairs can also make it hard to keep up. But somehow, we always find a way because we know it’s all worth it.

Outside of music, what are you into?
I love learning new languages I speak French, German and Italian. Crafts, reading, art galleries, photography, movies, eating good food. We all love biking and skiing/snowboarding. We are also into meeting new people.

How would you describe your bands sound?
High-energy, up-beat rock music that combines classic guitar tones with solid driving danceable beats and hooky bass lines. We put a strong emphasis on powerful delivery and three part vocal harmonies.

How do you think social media sites (Myspace, Twitter, Facebook, etc), and the rest of the internet help new artists with getting more known?
Everything is so much more accessible now and music/information is at our fingertips. It’s definitely much easier to promote yourself since you can reach so many people so quickly.

When you played your first ever show, were you nervous and what kind of fears came with playing your first show and how did you overcome them?
Our first show together was really exciting. We weren’t necessarily nervous, since we all had several years of performance experience with other bands. We all felt comfortable on stage and the first show really made us feel that this was the beginning of something special.

What do you hope people will take away with them when they hear your music or see your live show?
We want people to feel good – to have fun and feel involved in our music. We strive to make our live shows as action packed as possible.

If you were to give advice to bands that are just starting to play shows and open for other acts and that, what advice would you give?
Be prepared to work hard.

Any last words?
Thanks so much for taking the time to check out the band! J


can check out the Balconies here.