If that's true, that alcohol kills crickets, then it's a good thing that Jiminy, the 6 piece rock/pop/hip-hop/soul group hailing from Canada's Midwest, aren't a bunch of crickets.
Last year when Animal Nation traveled out to Saskatoon to go on tour with Jiminy we spent more money on booze than we did on gas and food combined. Luckily we took a lot of photos and filmed most of it (video at bottom) because my recollection of the trip is pretty hazy, and goes something like: booze, booze, girls, shows, booze, new friends, house parties, girls, sleeping on floors, booze, wiffle-golf, general stores, and lots more booze... and Enver scaling a 30 foot wall in his socks.
This May we're making another trip back out to Saskatoon to visit our favorite 'Tooners, and embark on another 2 week long half-month-of-mayhem!
Make sure to come check out a show if you're in the neighbourhood! We'll drink drinks! We'll dance dances! We'll all do things that we won't be able to remember to regret in the morning!
Make sure to hit up the Jiminy myspace page to listen to some of the tracks they'll be playing out on tour. (Check out the live videos too! Awwwwwesome!)
In the following interview I caught up with lead singer/guitarist/song writer Chad Reynolds, as well as lead rapper/drummer/song writer/babe magnet Mark Ejack to find out their thoughts on all sorts of things that are completely and absolutely unimportant.
Steige: Does it ever anger you that the coyote never caught the road runner?
Mark: The coyote and the road runner eh?? Both of them just love the chase too much to ever catch or get caught! Perhaps they are subliminally in love, or infatuated with each other. What would happen if he ever did catch the road runner? Their purpose in life would be completely destroyed. I'm not mad that he never catches her, cause it keeps them fit and in excellent shape! It'll also continuously influence the millions of watchers to use dynamite, and weapons of mass destruction to catch what they feel is meant to be caught, even though the traps and bombs, and shenanigans don't ever successfully catch the road runner, it keeps the world violent. Which is just what the world needs right now, more violence...wait. Kids grow up captivated by this constant violent chase, it's kinda fucked up, as well as entertaining. I think they should kill the chase, talk about their distant relationship , and either kick the Casanova romance and get dirty, or blaze a fatty mc fatster doobie and listen to Bob Marley in a hot bubble bath while drinking an ice cold Gin and Gingerale.
S: K, so you've gone down into your basement for a refreshing glass of warm milk, and when you come up everyone in the entire world is gone. First, what happened to everybody? And second, what's the first thing you do after you realize that the world is yours for the taking?
Chad: Dude!! I’ve thought about this!! First thing hey? After finishing my warm milk? I’d probably head over to J-palm’s studio mess around with his equipment… Sit in his chair… you know? See what being a local God feels like… Then I’d start getting lonely, and go on the craziest road trip around the world, in search of people, hopping from car to car and dressing up in crazy clothes… I’d learn to sail… man I’d probably go nuts after a week.
S: Some artists I've talked to turn making music into a job, and spend 6 hours a day writing music, whether they have something to write about or not, while other simply wait for inspiration to come naturally. Which approach do you take?
C: I like this one. Me, I land somewhere in the middle. I would love to spend 6 hours a day immersed in music, in a studio, writing. But I also believe that good songs write themselves; they come out when they are good and ready to, when you need them. If you aren’t out living, doing other things, then you don’t have much to write about, do you? I read somewhere that Ray Lamontagne, before recording his latest album (Gossip in the Grain) went out into the country and built a house, being careful not to listen to any music the whole time. When it came time for him to pick up a guitar again, music was fresh for him. He could go wherever he wanted with it. I liked that idea, but damn it would be hard to go without music for that long.
S: Jet-car, jet-plane, or jet-pack? OR!!! Jet-whipped-ice-cream served in a jet-oven-cooked waffle-cone?
M: Definitely a jet whipped ice cream cone cooked in a jet oven, in a jet plane that turns into a lime green jet boat which shoots Twizzlers (every flavor), then turns into Carmen Electra which does what she does best.. goes down.. under the water, and swims to Never Never Land where she takes the v out of peter pans vulnerability, consequently impregnating her and she has little jet car babies who drive her insane and she jumps off a bridge and misses the water, making her blow.. that's right, blow up into a million and a half jet candy pieces and feed the children of today, yesterday and next Thursday... twice.
S: Who writes the majority of the songs? Are they brought to the band fairly completed, or does everyone have a part in the creation of a track?
C: Jiminy is the baby of Mark and I. We’ve been playing music together forever in other bands but this project has been our outlet to bring our own ideas to life. Some songs are created drunk on a couch in the middle of a party; Mark and I throwing melodies and lyrics off each other, and some songs are born in our own heads individually, then transformed when introduced to the other person... So glad I started with a baby metaphor, check this out: But babies need to be raised and nurtured, see, so that’s where the parental skills of the rest of the band come in. If it was left to Mark and I, all of our songs would be 14 minutes long, contain 30 different hooks, and connect finger-picked folk intro’s to post-hardcore mid-song breakdowns. Papa bear Enver lays down some discipline on our A.D.D. babies with his incredible ability to structure songs perfectly; he’s incredibly important to making the songs actually sound good. Put the song in the oven with Andrew at 325 degrees of jazz, and after it’s cooled slather it with the sweetness of Patrick and Ben. Serve with side of Turntable Terror-Wrist and we’ve turned our baby into a cake.
S: Have you guys been baking anything new lately?
C:Yeah actually. We’ve been going polar opposites lately. I’ve been doing production with Mark on a lot of brilliant in-your-face Hip-Hop tunes he’s working on for his own thang, while writing some quiet folk and soul tunes on my own, really trying to develop my knowledge and honesty as a lyricist and getting comfortable with my vocals. When we get together to meet in the middle, it should be something special. Or bizarre. I’m excited either way.
S: This question comes straight from the mouth of international superstar rapper extraordinaire Mase...
If you had twenty-four hours to live just think
Where would you go?
What would you do?
Who would you screw?
And who would you wanna notify?
Or would yo [sic] ass deny that yo [sic] ass about to die?
M: I would let my fam jam know, my sexy girlfriend know, and Animal Nation show. I would then bone my girlfriend so hard she wouldn't be able to walk properly for a week, then I would slap each and every member of Theory of a Nickel Creed right in the face,,, twice, then listen to Bob Marley and smoke a jzzoint.. yup yup yup.
S: If you had to be chased by a ferocious "will eat you if it catches you" animal of your choosing, what animal would you want chasing you and why?
C: I would choose a crocodile. That scene from Peter Pan where Captain Hook is essentially running on water into the horizon with the croc’ at his toes just crept into my mind. That song, by the way, is brilliant.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XNwhwwuRnB0 …You guys should sample it.
S: That video is amazing! I remember that movie being terrifying as a youngster, but that makes the croc seem like a pretty stable dude. I understand that your bass player/song arranger/spiderman-in-his-spare-time-impersonator, Enver, is in another band, Volcanoless in Canada. Does this lead to any conflictions at all? Are there any benefits to this situation?
C: Enver is a gem. When you find a dude that genuine and creative in a little city like Saskatoon you can be assured you will have to share him. It has been understood all along that Enver is committed to Volcanoless in Canada but has jumped on board the Jiminy project because he loves the music and is great friends with everyone in the band. It just stings a bit when Enver slides his focus over to Volcanoless now because he has become such a prevalent component to our writing and structuring of songs. For example, this epic tour we are about to embark on with you louts is going to be Enverless in Canada because of commitment to his other band. It’s been tough, knowing that, but the Jiminy train is still rolling: we’ve got our friend Soren Nissen, a Jazz bassist from Toronto, placing his golden fingertips on our music for the tour.
The plus-side to sharing Enver is that sometimes we get to sneak our poor-asses into the Volcanoless Jam-space and use REAL equipment for practicing; it’s the only way we can hear what we really sound like every so often.
S: Who's your celebrity crush?
M: Animal Nation. Mmm mmm good. and J-palm.
S: What is your favourite smell?
C: 2 way tie: I collect hot-sauces and I’ve got this favourite bottle of Jerk hot sauce. Opening that bottle every so often is heaven... I’ll be right back... Okay, the other smell that gets me every time is the perfume of this girl I used to see a couple years ago. I run into her every so often, and, unless I happen to be sporting a gas mask that particular day, I am at her beck and call; it’s crazy.
S: Haha! I love it. We toured with you cats last summer (best time of my life! - check out the video at the end of this interview), and your on-stage musicalities absolutely blew me away! You've got trumpets, you've got drummers rapping through bullhorns, you've got a bass player that scales walls, you guys have got it all. How are you planning on blowing our minds next time we catch you live?
C: You are about to find out this May! We've added our awesome friend Ben playing keys. He’s been involved in all of the other music projects that Mark and I have been involved in but somehow it has taken this long for him to be a part of Jiminy. He’s even taller than you, Steige, watch out.
S: No way!?! Am I gonna have to give up my title of "Tall Man" while we're on tour!? What's his super hero name? I met another guy that was right around my height, and everyone called him "Tree".... Alright, imagine you find out that everything you've ever known, your entire life as you know it, has all been but a dream. Would you want to wake up if you didn't know what was on the other side, and if you knew you couldn't come back here?
M: If my life was a dream, which it probably is, I would keep sleeping because everyone in my life is sexy, and super duper. Life is perfect... I'm lovin' it.
S: What song would you like played at your funeral?
C: Let’s Go Away for a While by The Beach Boys
Check out last year's tour video, featuring "The Fez" from Animal Nation's soon-to-be-released album "Understanding More About Nothing Than Anybody Ever Thought Impossible or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Music", which will be available on May 24, 2009!
Also, if you liked this interview, make sure to check out the interview we did with Josh Martinez, or Mat the Alien!
If you're around at all for any of these shows, they are going to be amazing, and you should definitely come check it out! After this series of shows Animal Nation will be heading south into the States, so stay tuned for US shows and show times!
8 May 2009 -TBA- Regina, Saskatchewan
9 May 2009 LOUIS’ PUB w/ Jiminy Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
15 May 2009 The Canmore Hotel w/ Jiminy Canmore, Alberta
16 May 2009 The Lyric Pub w/ Jiminy Golden, BC
17 May 2009 The Rose and Crown w/ Jiminy Banff, Alberta
19 May 2009 Lucky Bar w/ Jiminy Victoria, BC
20 May 2009 The Queens Pub w/ Jiminy Nanaimo, BC
21 May 2009 Railway Club w/ Jiminy Vancouver, BC
22 May 2009 Garibaldi Lift Co w/ Jiminy Whistler, BC
23 May 2009 The Royal w/ Jiminy Nelson, British Columbia