Interview: Sean Bones
Published on March 6th, 2012 | Jonny Abrams
“A gorgeous, sun-kissed melting pot of influences and ideas… Unassuming, diverse and downright catchy; a consummate presentation of sunny psych-pop.” That’s how we described Sean Bones’s second album Buzzards Boy in our eight-quail review, so we fired him over some questions in that way that way that we do. The following dynamic emerged…
Congratulations on an excellent second album. Were the songs all written close together, or do some of them date back a bit further than others?
These songs were written in the same general time period, probably 6-12 months. Booking time in a studio has a way of making stuff come together quickly and in the end it all feels like the music came at the same time.
Is that a stylophone doing the first solo on “Four Dub”?
That’s a melodica. It’s a toy piano that you blow into. It’s used a lot in elementary school music programs and dub reggae. There was a lot of melodica on the first record and some on Buzzards Boy too.
Could you list a roll call of all the instruments used on the album?
Otherwise, I don’t remember the full list of instruments on Buzzards Boy. One item that sticks out is that I found this half-melted Radio Shack-grade Casio in a trash heap that wound up getting used a lot, on the “sitar” setting. On another song “Tell Me Again” I pumped a harmonium drone over an ’80s drum machine pattern. I like those juxtapositions. I don’t know who else does Harmonium/TR-808 combos these days.
On “Wondering” are you singing “you’re sleeping with lions” or you’re sleeping with “liars”? (For the record, I hope it’s “lions”.)
The line is actually “you sweet little liar.” I do like “you’re sleeping with lions” though, that’s good.
Do you have material in line for album three? If so, what can you tell us about it?
Yes, I am ready to make a third record and I want to do it soon. I don’t know what I could say about it yet. I want to do something quick and dirty.
How did the Mates of State tour go?
Any plans to come to the UK in the near future?
Oh I hope so. Nothing on the calendar yet though.
Have you been approached about doing any more acting since Wah Do Dem? What was Norah Jones like to work with? Have you discussed the possibility of a Bones/Jones collaboration album, and if so would you play upon that particular rhyme in your chosen nomme de plume? (You definitely should.)
There’s been no movies since Wah Do Dem. It’s not something I’ve ever pursued, but I just recently admitted out loud for the first time that acting is something I’d like to do again. At the same time, I’ll probably hold out until another cosmic situation presents itself.
Do you still design bathing suits?
Yes, but getting around to making clothes these days has been harder.
Are there any obscure and/or up-and-coming artists that you’d like to recommend or give a shout-out to?
Finally, if you were forced to spend the rest of your days in solitary confinement, but were allowed to bring the entire works of five different artists along to tide you over, whose would you choose?
I usually only need Neil Young for stuff like that.
Sean Bones, thank you.
Buzzards Boy will be released on 8th May. You can listen to its tremendous opening track “Here Now” right here on Quit Mumbling. For more information and a list of live dates, please visit seanbones.com or www.facebook.com/seanbonesmusic
Sean Bones will this month play the following dates at SXSW…
3/14 TX Ground Control Touring Party @ MI Annex
3/14 Official Showcase @ The HGTV Studio
3/15 Treehouse Diddly @ Cheers
3/15 Rachel Ray Party @ The Greenhouse
3/16 Solid Gold + Death And Taxes Party @ Cheer Up Charlies