The best thing to describe GLAMPIRE’s music is to listen to it because it is very personal. The man has a lot of interesting things to say, whether it is about his emotions or about this world -Positive music for a negative world-
Veglam zine could only offer him some space…
Are you satisfied with “Drop Dead Gorgeous”? What’s the main difference with the previous records?
The easy answer is yes. However being so close to it on every level of the presentation and recording, I am both privileged and disadvantaged. I know too much about it. I cannot make that judgement. The real question is will other people be happy with it. So far most people are satisfied.
The difference between this CD and the last release (The Soft White Ghetto) is DDG is a very “rock” record. It has elements of drum-n-bass as well as hip-hop soul grooves. SWG also had those elements in a mellower and quieter slant. DDG was done purposely with a harder edge and a rock n roll flavor.
What are the advantages/drawbacks of being a solo artist compared to playing in a band?
The advantages come in the form of freedom to move and grow as an artist as well as a businessman. The drawbacks are that sometimes it would be nice to have a “band” – to have people to help out and add a different spin to the songs. It is no secret that bands are hard to keep together. The most important thing is to make the best music I can, record that music and get it out to as many people as possible. It is an expensive venture with or without a band. I choose to get the CDs out, advertise and do promotion… and if a band comes together, fine. If not, I still have music and business that keep me busy. I am always on the lookout for the right people.
I’ve read that most of your fans have heard about you thanks to the Internet, is it true?
That is true. I have been utilizing the web since early 95í. I saw it’s potential and decided that would be one of my key components to getting the word out to people. The ability to listen to music via the web grew rapidly and I took advantage of all that was available. The Internet will redefine our culture like no other thing hasÖ Look at the way Napster effected the music industry. We are about to break into a new era of commerce and communication. I am glad that I have a headstart. There is still more to do and more to come. It is a very exciting time. Along with these new paradigms comes a responsibility however.
Your music can’t really be labelled, is it a conscious choice?
Well thanks. Actually it can be labeled “glambient”. With DDG, I have come across what I feel is “goth-hop”. It may sound weird but The Cure, Peter Murphy and Depeche Mode, and Tones On Tail are all quite funky when they want to lean that way. Being an urban dweller in the USA, I am directly affected by funk and hip-hop beats. That type of grooves with big songs and glam/goth overtones is where a lot of the songs on DDG ended up. It made it very fun to work in those parameters. I see it as a new direction.
What do you mean when you refer to “the new responsibility of the artist in the 21st Century”?
Having the ability to record and release music so easily these days has me concerned as a member of pop culture. We have a large body of work collectively as a species, as a planet. So the problem is two fold: A) What to do that has not been done. B) How to learn about the great and small that has gone on before us. At least we have examples to go off of, but too many perhaps. There are traditions that are being carried on and new paradigms being constructed. Artists should be aware and sensitive to what the culture has done and what is happening to that culture at present. So as not to add any crap to the over crowded heap that exists. With the Internet you can safely and effectively see if people who you do not know like what it is that you are doing. It is an exciting time indeed.
You’re a vegan. When did you stop eating meat? What was your motivation? Do some of your fans or people around you sometimes tell you that you influenced them to become vegetarians/vegans?
I have been living as a conscious eater for almost 12 years now. I started young and made the decision because I wanted to be a good strong singer. As my instrument is my body, it made all the sense in the world to me to be a vegetarian. I am interested in herbal medicine as well. It is a large part of life for me.
I have had some nice connections based around it. A few people have become more dedicated and aware as a result of emailing with me. It is good to know I can pass on information to people that may have questions. Being healthy and living for a better planet is a job people all over the world should aspire to.
What’s your opinion about groups such as the Animal Liberation Front?
I am not that familiar with the politics of the ALF. I know of the work they do and I applaud anyone who puts their life on the line for a better planet. The news makes them out to be “bad” but that is all relative, now is it not? I say if they can rescue animals and create awareness, go for it. There are people out in the world claiming to be and making themselves out to be great humanitarians and they are far worse.
The world’s situation is scary; do you still have faith in human beings?
I had little faith before 9/11 and less now. It is a difficult time. There are forces at work we are not even made aware of. The worldís situation has been scary for many years. I have said this all along in songs and in interviews. We as a planet need to get it together – not just the USA or the Middle East, but the whole ball of dirt and water. We As One. If there is to be a future with any sort we need to raise the consciousness in ourselves. Perfection is not the goal. The goal is to be aware. Things may happen that are not pleasing, but at least we will not be blind. Politicians run the show and they say we elect them. That is only 1/2 true. In the USA, people are lazy. People are comfortable. So they do not want to rock the boat, at least here on this soil anyway. In the last year an election was stolen and we were attacked. If humans are to really get it together it has to start with self-awareness. America is in such a weird state at the moment.
In the USA, religion is still very important, what’s your opinion about organized religion?
It seems to me that most forms of organized religion are about rules and exclusion. It has grown into a billion-dollar business with one purpose, to exclude people if they are not part of that particular faith they feel you should be. Most people who read the Bible or the Qur’an, which is really what I am referring to here, feel they are close with God or Allah. They do not want to admit that there are bad thingsÖ evil things that happen in the name of “religion”. Again it goes back to we are all humans and as a species are made similar. Someone’s blood or beliefs should not matter, yet it does greatly. Not to me, but many people hold dear these precepts and they are in positions of power and influence. So people now believe these things, even if they doubt, they do not challenge those thoughts due to fear. Religion is a large part of why the planet is messed up.
The Bible is rewritten all the time to suit the people it is being marketed to. The original writings have been changed so many times, who knows what the true words are? I am not a scholar by any means when it comes to the Qur’an, but there are various opinions on that as well. So we are left with people fighting over beliefs. What about ideas?
Here is an idea. If we as humans lived in accordance with nature, the world would be balanced. People can prey all they want, but if they live out of balance then no god or religion will save them or make them safe and sound here on earth. It will be a false illusion. The force of nature cannot be stopped. It can be tapped into and used as a benefit however. As a race of people we could use many more ingenious aspects of our intellect and serve mother earth with what she deserves seeing she has provided us with so much abundance and beauty.
What kind of music are you listening to these days?
As always I am listening to a wide range of music. The new Perry Ferrell is amazing… The new Roni Size is great… DJ Hi Tek is mad cool… Charles Mingus, the king… The London Suede is one of the best bands around… PJ Harvey – love her! What I listen to all depends on the day…
What are your projects?
I just finished two projects for Cleopatra Records. I did a cover of “Porcelain” for the Moby Tribute, which is out on January 15th, and a cover of “Serial Thrilla” for the Prodigy tribute. I do not when that one is going to be released.
There will be a second single released from DDG in the spring of 2002 entitled, “Life Means Nothing To Them”. It will go out to clubs, DJs, street team members and selected press people. There will be two b-sides on it as well.
Anything else to add? Thanks for your time.
Thanks for the support. Peace n Glitta 2 U n Yours!