TUESDAY, AUGUST 11, 2015 |
Posted by: Don Saas
Imagine you know me better than you do cause if you're reading this we've probably never met. Now imagine me putting my arms conspiratorially around your shoulders and saying, "I've got this new artist I want to tell you about. He's got the psychedelic synths of the new Tame Impala record, the rock-soul of Gary Clark Jr., and the classic rock revivalism of The War on Drugs. Now, would you be interested in that?" Of course you would cause that trio sounds like heaven. And while it may sound too good to be true, that's exactly what we have in up-coming rock/soul revivalist Steven A. Clark (on storied indie label Secretly Canadian).
We had the chance to chat with Clark about his new song, "Can't Have," his roots as a musician, and what shapes his genre-melting sound. Steven A. Clark's music is unlike anything you've heard before, and needless to say, we can't wait to hear more from this young talent.
What was the inspiration for the solemn violin opening in "Can't Have"?
Steven A. Clark: The song always felt like a beautiful tragedy to me so when Sam Hyken composed the strings I just felt right to have them in the intro to create that feeling of longing or a beautiful sadness.
What are your feelings on the resurgence of R&B in electronic hemispheres and do you feel like music fits into that resurgence?
I think its great what's going on in R&B. It's expanding and taking in influences from so many different hemispheres. It's pretty wide open which is great because I'm allowed to mold it into whatever I want it to be. Yeah, I feel my music fits into many hemispheres. I have many influences from hip-hop to classic rock; it's all in there.
How does "Can't Have" create an entry point for your new album coming out in September?
"Can't Have" is a great entry point because it kind of feels genre-less and that is how the whole album feels to me. I don't want my music defined by genre. The album is a concept album so lyrically it kind plugs you into the middle of the story but sonically it's a great display of how I like to make music and my sound on this album.
In addition to the electronic and R&B elements of the song, I also hear some of the contemporary classic rock resurgence of acts like The War On Drugs & Tame Impala. Do you feel any kinship with specific classic rock acts?
I love classic rock and it was one of the main influences while we were making the album. I kind of knew before I started recording that was at the direction. I went digging for some of the songs I loved growing up and songs I had forgotten about and I really connected with a lot of great classic rock records and albums. I think you can feel a classic rock element throughout the album. Lost in the Dream from The War on Drugs is probably one of my favorite albums of all time and I actually got lucky enough to have Dave Hartley (who I met a couple years ago) play bass on one of the songs on the album. He's a great dude and a great bass player.