INTERVIEW: Bryan McPherson
INTERVIEW: Bryan McPherson
Los-Angeles based, Boston-bred folk-punk troubadour Bryan McPherson is set to release his third album, the dynamic Wedgewood via O.F.D. Records on June 10th. His sound is somewhere in between Melding Americana, folk, alternative, and punk, although his main influences such as Bob Dylan, The Sex Pistols, The Violent Femmes are only few to count. Check out what Bryan had to say about his upcoming album and let us know what you think.
- What does your new album Wedgewood reflect about you?
I bottomed out on anger during this record. It’s an emotion I’ve used for a long time like a drug and like drugs it used me up. I’m not saying I’m going to stop writing angry songs or anything. I will continue to write what I write but for me I’ve lived too long with the monster and I’ve used it to my benefit, but then it turns on you. This record reflects the fire from beginning to end. A journey into and out of it. Don’t get me wrong this record is about a lot of things but for me personally this is what it symbolizes. For now at least.
- What is your favorite track off the new album and why?
I like all of the songs on this record equally, but for the sake of this question I will focus on “Song From The Moon.” It’s an epic song that took about 2 hours to write and about 2 years to figure out how to perform and arrange. It also took about a year to figure out what this song was even about. A lot of times I don’t even feel like I write the songs. They just sort of appear through me. I cough them up out of the blue. Out of the ether. I love how this one came out. I love Graham Patzner’s performance on it. His string section really brings it out. Lyrically this is one of my favorite tunes because of what it says and the depth and everything it sort of summed up that I was experiencing at the time and some observations of history and religion and control.
- Can you talk more about the songwriting and recording process?
Well I just sort of write songs all the time. I never really go to write songs. I just live and my experiences and thoughts and emotions pop out in songs. Usually when I am busy that seems to be when my walls are down but there really are no rules. I used to think I could only write on a guitar, then I wrote one walking down the street. You can write a song any which way, but naturally is the only way I roll. If I am trying to write a song it’s usually shit. They need to happen organically from the heart and the moment. I rarely write on tour. I think my subconscious is too busy experiencing everything around me. All of the new experiences. At home, not on the road, I can multi-task. My brain can go on autopilot. I feel like traveling uses up most of my senses for the best. I write after tours.
Recording to me is a mountain. The first time I was in a studio I didn’t know what the hell I was doing. I was a live performer. A songwriter. I never heard of a click track. What we did in the studio was unnatural for me then. The next record I got a better handle on it and did more performance-based stuff. Stuff that reflected what I was doing live. The same on this one. I find the studio to be very intense. I’m not happy in a studio. I’m very serious in there. Everything is a magnifying glass. I like it now but I never used to. With Wedgewood, I had more of a vision. I knew what I wanted and we caught the vibe. It’s the most “record record” of the albums I made. Meaning you need to listen to it in one sitting. From beginning to end. It’s not just a collection of songs. They are puzzle pieces that come together to create a larger work.
- Who would you say is your biggest influence?
- What aspect of being a musician excites you the most?
Writing and performing both provide a great thrill and a high I keep chasing.
- What colour describes your music?
- What artists do you want to collaborate with in the future?
I would like to sing a song with Will Oldham.
- Where are you happiest — on the stage or in the studio?
- Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
On tour in a boat.
- What releases do you recommend for people to listen to that came out recently?
Louise Distras Dreams From The Factory Floor.
- Best piece of advice you have ever gotten.
Play like it’s the last time you will ever play. You are going to die after your performance.
- Tell us anything else that you would like people to know about you
I got nothing else. Thanks for the questions and the coverage!
Don’t forget to pre-order Wedgewood here.