It’s not secret that I love music. Honest – it’s not a secret – ask anyone. And, it’s part of my nature to constantly seek out new music. I don’t just do it because of this blog – this just gives me a more legitimate excuse for doing so (as if I need an excuse – legitimate or not). I make presenting and featuring new music an important part of what we do here. You also may know that I have pretty eclectic taste in music. Jazz, Punk, Experimental Hip-Hop, Americana, Alt-Rock, Alt-Country, Alt-Pop-Folk, Acoustic Baroque Dubsteppy Metal – I don’t care what you call it – if it’s got a good beat and I can dance to it, I’ll give it an ‘8’!
What was I talking about… oh yeah, Music – good music. I’ve tried from the start to keep the energy positive. If I like it, I’ll write about it; if I don’t, I probably won’t.
Now, that being said – out of all the music I’ve “discovered” in course of writing this silly blog – the number of times I’ve been blown out of the water by a band or song or record has been very low. By blown out of the water – I’m talking about being bowled over – on the spot. Love at first thing: The Music Edition. I am not going to attempt to name those few bands for one because I’ll leave somebody off and two because… just because…
Bottom line here people is that The Grimm Generation was one of those handful of bands that rocked my world and didn’t even buy me dinner first. But, now I’m hooked and they can’t shake me off – like that person you met at a dark bar and…well you see where I’m going with this.
In an earlier post, I said something to the effect that The GG make music that sounds like it has always existed. They make unabashedly great music. Every time, I hear The Grimm Generation, I find myself thinking – why doesn’t everybody in the world know about this. And then I blame myself, and say I could’ve done more! So I find an excuse to write more. If asked why I love this band so much, I would not have been able to say for sure, but recently, I had a chance to “talk” via good old fashioned e-mai to Jason and Carmen of The Grimm Generation and as you will see, everything became crystal clear…
E2TG: How long has The Grimm Generation existed and what has changed since the early days of the band?
THE GRIMM GENERATION: The Grimm Generation formed in 2010 based on the post-divorce transcripts, hang ups and habits that we each brought to the online dating table where we first met in 2007. It started off the two of us trading stories and then singing them. And we’ve grown a sound now that serves the songs, with a band who bring colors in we never considered . We still write too much and release online too easily, but we seem to be getting heard.
E: Why The Grimm Generation?
GG: We felt we grew up at a strange age in time: post Free Love and firmly ensconced when Reagan was in the white house. Our older kin was squarely in the 70s drug culture and we got ‘just say no’. We felt gypped and decided to sing about it. Which is why so much of our material is based on the consequences of ‘kicks’. We are boho hedonists, but can’t help but feel guilty about it. We self-titled the age group The Grimm Generation, reflecting on how ‘we believe in fairy tales and we believe in nothing at all’.
E: What do you like best about being in a band?
GG:Starting something in the kitchen that ends up on the stage. Watching the songs flourish with the additional instruments and the way they make the song shine.
E: What do you dislike the most?
GG: The pay.
E: How does the songwriting process work for the band?
Carmen Champagne: All songs are written by both Jason and I. We pick through the best of them and send to Lys (guitars, banjo, bells, lapsteel, mandola), Eric (bass) and Julie (cello). And then, magic. We met everyone online or at gigs, so we didn’t have a long history with the band, but what they bring is the sound we needed, turning our acoustic threats into fully arranged promises.
E: Your latest release is called Coming Home, how did that come about?
C C: Jason played with Adam Hagymasi in The Citizen Spy and kept in touch. Adam was a crazy-good guitar player. Adam offered to have us out to his place in Collinsville to record a couple songs. We jumped at the chance.
The songs were two new songs (Blink, Im Gone and Your Body Betrays You) we wrote and three old ones we loved and never had a chance to record. We went to Adam’s a couple of nights and recorded basic guitar and vocals to drum clicks and let Adam have at it. He created five beautiful pieces of work. Sound, stylistically, hitting upon different moods. Very Grimm mood music.
E: Any big plans for 2013?
GG: Recording the new CD is what we’re all about for 2013. We tend to turn gigs into themed events and we have a couple of those coming up as well. We try to make everything we do fun for us and hopefully that joy translates. So far, so good.
E: What is the first music you can remember hearing?
C C: AM pop/rock mixed in with the Morning Voice of WTIC and French Canadian pop tunes playing on my parents stereo.
Jason Klug: For me it’s my older sister play Black Sabbath ‘Volume 4’ and Deep Purple ‘Machine Head‘ while I played with the album covers.
E: When do you begin making music?
J K: I wrote my first song at 13 and did my first gig at 15 at a local teen center. I eventually learned to play some guitar and started writing solo around 18.
C C: When I met JPK.
E: Was there a moment, when you thought, this is it – this is what I’m meant to do?
GG: When we first got together, it was just one guitar and two singers writing something, hopefully meaningful…and kind of catchy. We love these songs like our dumb, errant children and as we meet people and play with them, the songs grow and learn to walk on their own. We thought (and maybe sometimes still think) our stuff is a little outside for rock. But when the songs hit people, lyrically, it gets meaningful.
E: Did you get much encouragement when you began playing music? Any discouragement?
GG: Liquid courage but no encouragement.
E: What music is in the Grimm Generation record machine these days?
GG: Well, the Grimm Generation, lol! But we also are digging The Brian Jonestown Massacre and Mountain Goats ‘All Hail West Texas‘. Also a lot of Casiotone For The Painfully Alone and M Ward.
E: Any music that you really dig that would surprise the casual observer of the band?
GG: Jason’s a big Belle and Sebastian fan. We both listen to a lot of Prince. Carmen enjoys some Goth industrial from time to time. We tend to wear our influences on our sleeve, like Morphine and Elvis Costello.
E: Social Media and other technology has changed the way music is made and distributed. This can be a good thing or a bad thing? Do you think the bad out weighs good or vice-verse?
GG: In our case, the internet has been good to us. It gave us the opportunity to present what we do without going through traditional channels. We adapted to what would ever get our songs heard. We met most of our band through social media. The internet has been good to us.
E: All things being equal and time and monetary restrictions aside, do you see The GG releasing tons of music in a short time or releasing less music to focus more on each song.
GG: The answer is always releasing tons of music in a short time. We’ve got words We are spazzes. It’s a core Grimm element.
E: If you could pull any band from any time to see play live, which band and from which part of their timeline would you choose? Not thinking in particular about an historic show but more a hypothetical scenario?
C C: Queen, 1977. One of my biggest regrets is not having been able to experience the super showmanship of Freddy Mercury live.
J K: Elvis Costello and the Attractions, Imperial Bedroom Tour…to me, Elvis and The Attractions were the hottest, ballsiest, smartest and most emotionally effective of rock bands.
The latest Release from The Grimm Generation is called Coming Home. It’s more of the brilliant and moody music we have come to expect from The Grimm Generation. Check it out below. We also have the video for the Blink, I’m Gone – the first song on the new record.