Profile
Search
Register
Log in
Pitchfork: Buck 65 Explains New 1957-Themed Album, Situation
View previous topic | View next topic >

Post new topic Reply to topic
Strange Famous Forum > Press/Interviews/reviews

Author Message
tom inhaler
me too!


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 4398
Location: providence
Pitchfork: Buck 65 Explains New 1957-Themed Album, Situation  Reply with quote  

http://www.pitchforkmedia.com/article/news/44702-buck-65-explains-new-1957-themed-album-isituationi

Never one to fit snugly into preordained genre slots, Buck 65 has been keeping the kids guessing-- and dancing and grooving and head-bobbing and chin-scratching-- for five albums and a good ten years now. The Nova Scotian wordsmith returns October 30 with Situation, his sixth full length, on Sage Francis' Strange Famous Records.

The new disc may very well throw longtime fans for a loop once again; it's a decidedly more spare collection of songs, all loosely inspired by the year 1957. Intrigued and eager to hear more about this project, we phoned the man born Ricardo Terfry for a chat and discovered there's far more to Buck's concept/non-concept album than any one-sheet could hope to contain.

Right now, Buck 65's only scheduled tour date is at the Iceland Airwaves Festival in Reykjavik on October 19.

Pitchfork: So what's with the preoccupation with 1957? You're not 50 years old, right?

Buck 65: [Laughs.] No, but where the idea, or the thought process pertaining to that, started from was... I remember sitting there in my apartment in Paris thinking, 'I really need to start over, but I need inspiration somehow, I need something to motivate me to tackle a whole new project.' So I was looking at my bookshelf, and I was looking at my shelves where my DVDs were, and art on my walls, and music in my collection, and I noticed-- and it really took me by surprise-- that there was a real inordinate amount of stuff from the 50s.

And I thought, 'That's really odd that there's this great creative outpouring of interesting stuff from the 50s,' when normally I've always considered it such a conservative, almost boring, white picket fence, pink flamingo period of history.

I took a closer look as this caught my attention, and I really began to zero in on this year 1957, and all of a sudden it started to make a whole lot of sense to me. The fact that there was this great boom, in that year in particular, that came out of a very conservative time-- there's actually a certain kind of logic to that. I think the conservatism almost necessitated this kind of response. And the more I looked at it, the more fascinated I became and the more wheels started turning in my mind and the more ideas I got. I just started to run with it, basically. Lo and behold, a whole bunch of songs came to me really quickly.

Pitchfork: So why 1957, exactly?

Buck 65: I think a strong argument could be made that, for all intents and purposes, that was the year that rock'n'roll really broke. Of course it existed before that, but in terms of really sweeping the country and taking the world by storm, I think that was the year that it started. And a whole teen culture began to blossom around it and suddenly people like Elvis and Buddy Holly and Gene Vincent were taking over the popular music charts from people like Perry Como and Johnny Mathis and Dean Martin. I think the key to that, quite frankly, was that it was young white guys-- and the fact that they were good looking guys probably helped-- but that made it kind of wild and controversial in itself, that there were these young white guys doing these black things, and it obviously caused a stir and a sensation.

That was pretty much the year the Beat Generation emerged as well, with the first writings of Kerouac and Ginsberg and those guys. Obviously that was a big deal that ended up causing a big fuss, with Howl being banned and Lawrence Ferlinghetti going up on obscenity charges and all kinds of crazy stuff. There was just a lot of controversy there. That was also the year Bettie Page vanished from public view after mounting pressures, and that coincided with the peak of her popularity pretty much.

I think it could be argued that that year marked the beginning of the Cold War, with Russia launching Sputnik and Sputnik II and the first nuclear power plant opening in the U.S. I think that was really important in creating the environment and the mood in which all this other creative stuff was happening. People living in fear and paranoia and with great tension-- and all this other stuff happening perhaps acted as some sort of release from all that.

Very strange coincidences come into the story as well: Sid Vicious was born in '57, and exactly 20 years later the Sex Pistols emerge, which was exactly the same time as Elvis died, so it was almost as if one era of rock'n'roll came to an end just as a brand new one-- arguably an almost as exciting and important one-- was just beginning.

The more I began to look at it, I began to come to the conclusion that arguably, culturally, in modern times-- certainly in the West-- maybe it's the most important year in history. And I think [1957] really has had a way of shaping the way we see the world and our expectations of art and pop culture. I think it's really subconscious for a lot of us, but the fact that it was exactly 50 years ago-- and to compare and contrast where we are now compared to then-- it's just all really interesting stuff. It gave me a lot to think about, and it resulted in a record.

Pitchfork: Are we meant to connect 1957 and current times?

Buck 65: I think we can draw a lot of parallels and see how so many things are similar. For example, with the Cold War, this idea of people living in fear of some threat from the other side of the world-- that's very much what we're about today, with the whole War on Terror and everything. The similarities there are very strong.

The fact is that the times leading up to all of that were very conservative. I think that there's been a real swing towards conservatism [lately], not just in the government but even culturally I think, with religion being really strong, even in the government in the United States, and so on.

The question arises, I suppose: Are we due for another shake-up on that level? And maybe, due to the conservative times we're living in now, are we going to see another Elvis or Sex Pistols or Nirvana or something that's going to shake things up? Maybe we're due again now. Maybe it's prime time now, maybe this is something we need.

You could make an argument for N.W.A or 2 Live Crew when they came along. Even the government was like, "Okay, something needs to be done about this." It's exciting when things are shaken up on that level, but I don't think anything's ever quite matched the out-and-out furor of the events of '57.

It's exciting and I think it's something we've grown to need and want and anticipate. We all love to look back and reflect on how exciting that time was, how exciting 1977 was, how exciting it was when Nirvana came along-- these are the sorts of things that really get peoples' blood running and we still like to talk about it. It becomes a very romantic thing for us. And I think we're waiting for it, sometimes almost to a fault.

But having said all that stuff, and having made all these statements with this record, the last thing I would ever assume or try to position is me being that person. I'm just here to provide food for thought; I like to think of myself as a cultural observer, like everybody else. I'm not the man for the job. I'm expecting it and wanting it and hoping for it just as much as anybody else.

Pitchfork: Do you worry that the 1957 concept is going to overshadow the record itself?

Buck 65: Well, I didn't worry about it when I was writing the songs; I never think about anything else when I'm writing a song, other than whatever inspired it in the first place. I figure putting on the brakes is kind of a real perversion, and I don't want to do that. I don't ever want to get in the way of the flow of an idea. But afterwards and after the wheels started turning on the project, I certainly did think about it. And so it was really important to me to have this starting point, but then to run as far away from it as I possibly could. It was actually a real dilemma for me when dealing with publicists and labels and managers and everyone else, when it came to things like press releases and all the other promotional things that were going on pertaining to this record, because I didn't want to market it as this thing, as this record about 1957.

Pitchfork: So what's next for you?

B65: Well, in the last couple years, due to a variety of factors-- some of which were in my control and others weren't-- I pretty much dropped off the radar altogether. But I spent that time holed up and pursuing one of the most creative periods of my entire life, and I really amassed an enormous pile of work, this album just being one of those things. I think I might have three or four records pretty much done under my belt right now, that I've basically just got lined up and waiting to come out.

So the next one coming along is this other project. I don't really like to consider it a side project; it's something that I pretty much figure on doing for life. [It's] this project called Bike for Three which I'm doing with my friend JoŽlle [Phuong Minh LÍ] from Belgium. We have a MySpace page and that's pretty much all we have to show for our work so far. We have an album, and if I had my way I'd also put that out right now. But politically speaking and for the sake of trying to have some sort of career, everyone pretty much advises that you give a record a little bit of time to breathe and to do its thing. Hopefully I can get away with putting it out as early as next year.

I also scored two films in the last couple of years, both of which are playing festivals now and will see their theatrical releases in the fall. One of them is the latest film by Doug Pray, who did Scratch a couple years ago. He has a new film called Big Rig, which is about long haul trucking in the United States. So I scored that film, and also a French feature film, the title of which translates to The Story of Richard O [L'Histoire de Richard O --ed.]. It's directed by a guy named Damien Odoul, and the film got picked up for the Venice Film Festival, where it will be making its premiere later this month. Then it's being released in September; the big actual premiere for the public is September 10, so I'm hoping to make a trip to Paris for that. There's been no discussion of releasing a soundtrack for the French film, but there has been some discussion for the Big Rig film, so that's a possibility for another record that could come down the pipe as well.

But other than that-- which is a lot of stuff-- just lots and lots of touring and trying as hard as I possibly can not to let work take over my life 100%. Trying to stay a real normal person to a certain extent, but that's hard to do!

Situation:

01 Intro
02 1957
03 Ho-Boys
04 Lipstick
05 Shutter Buggin
06 Spread 'em
07 The Rebel
08 Way Back When
09 Cop Shades
10 The Beatific
11 Mr. Nobody
12 Benz
13 Heatwave
14 The Outskirts
15 White Bread
Post Wed Aug 08, 2007 9:13 am
 View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
adfdub



Joined: 21 Mar 2007
Posts: 293
Location: U.S.A.
 Reply with quote  

Yes! What a great concept for the album. Can't wait for Bike For Three either.



Also, I was very interested in the part where he says how each set amount of years has a shake-up from war, societal problems (elvis, sex pistols, nirvana) and that maybe we're due for another one.

But I just can't see who it could be..........................
Post Wed Aug 08, 2007 9:57 am
 View user's profile Send private message
Nathan Shupe



Joined: 15 Aug 2006
Posts: 736
 Reply with quote  

Falcon vs. Eagle!
Post Wed Aug 08, 2007 10:38 am
 View user's profile Send private message
tom inhaler
me too!


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 4398
Location: providence
 Reply with quote  

nathan, send me an email please?

tom.inhaler@gmail.com

thanksss
Post Wed Aug 08, 2007 12:00 pm
 View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Nathan Shupe



Joined: 15 Aug 2006
Posts: 736
 Reply with quote  

e-mail sent!
Post Wed Aug 08, 2007 2:32 pm
 View user's profile Send private message
subsketch



Joined: 11 Oct 2006
Posts: 397
Location: Sydney, NSW
 Reply with quote  

so excited right now
Post Wed Aug 08, 2007 5:29 pm
 View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Tony Elbow



Joined: 04 Apr 2007
Posts: 51
 Reply with quote  

great concept, might have to look into it more myself. Almost deserves a book to be wrote on it
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 2:25 am
 View user's profile Send private message
the mean
Certified O.G.


Joined: 31 Jul 2003
Posts: 6497
Location: philly/sacto/kauai/ohio
 Reply with quote  

Remember a couple years ago when everyone on this board hated Buck?
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 10:05 am
 View user's profile Send private message
Windom



Joined: 04 May 2007
Posts: 721
Location: Manchester, UK.
 Reply with quote  

the mean wrote:
Remember a couple years ago when everyone on this board hated Buck?


Did A Secret House Against the World come out a couple of years ago? I like when Buck tries new things but that wasn't my cup of tea.
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 10:07 am
 View user's profile Send private message
adfdub



Joined: 21 Mar 2007
Posts: 293
Location: U.S.A.
 Reply with quote  

the mean wrote:
Remember a couple years ago when everyone on this board hated Buck?


It's a god thing I wasn't around to see that.
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 10:23 am
 View user's profile Send private message
CaptainFantasy



Joined: 12 Apr 2007
Posts: 453
 Reply with quote  

I like Secret House. It took me longer to get into that album than any other Buck release, but once it grew on me I really started to appreciate it. I had to learn to listen to the album without going in thinking I'm going to hear a Vertex, Talkin' Honkey, etc. type album. Instead I listen to Secret House when I'm in the mood for some Euro pop.
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 5:04 pm
 View user's profile Send private message
Blackstone Valley



Joined: 09 Jun 2006
Posts: 3587
 Reply with quote  

adfdub wrote:
the mean wrote:
Remember a couple years ago when everyone on this board hated Buck?


It's a good thing I wasn't around to see that.


truth.

secret house is fuckin awesome. devil's eyes in my top 100 favorite songs.
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 5:06 pm
 View user's profile Send private message
BR



Joined: 26 Mar 2005
Posts: 775
Location: SAN DIEGO
 Reply with quote  

hells yeah. and the video is mindfuckingly good.
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 5:11 pm
 View user's profile Send private message
selfportrait



Joined: 05 Dec 2006
Posts: 1596
Location: Toronto, Canada
 Reply with quote  

it took me a while to get into buck too but once i got into listening to him, been bumping him daily. all i can say is can't fucking wait
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 10:13 pm
 View user's profile Send private message
tom inhaler
me too!


Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 4398
Location: providence
 Reply with quote  

you guys ready to join the buck 65 promo army?
Post Thu Aug 09, 2007 11:05 pm
 View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website

Post new topic Reply to topic
Jump to:  
Goto page 1, 2  Next
All times are GMT - 6 Hours.
The time now is Sat Nov 22, 2014 3:53 pm
  Display posts from previous:      


Powered by phpBB: © 2001 phpBB Group
Template created by The Fathom
Based on template of Nick Mahon