(Photo Credit - Nick Faidley)
We got to talk with indie pop artist Stone Irr! The recent Los Angeles transplant just dropped a new album 'Performance' that has been getting rave reviews. Check out our interview with Stone Irr!
1. How did you come to pursue music and how long have you been at it?
"I've been writing music ever since I learned to play guitar when I was around 14. I was self-taught--learning songs by the White Stripes and They Might Be Giants. As I began learning more chords and riffs, I would use those as the base for writing songs and I've been writing ever since!"
2. Could you walk us through your process of writing music?
"Most of the time I give myself time to sit down and write something and just... do it. Usually, this will come about from hearing something that piqued my interest in a song or album. When I dive into writing a song I try to give myself some restrictions and allowances (repeat the chorus 4 times, use no more than two major chords, etc)"
3. What artists have inspired you in your career?
"I've always been a huge fan of They Might Be Giants and Weezer as pop influences. In terms of sonic inspirations, Thom Yorke and William Ian Craig always top the list for me."
4. Do you have any favorite music gear (guitars, amps, effects pedals, keyboards, etc.) that you love to use? If so, what’s the story on them?
"I used to be OBSESSED with guitar pedals when I was in High School. I was always buying and re-selling pedals on eBay using the money I made selling.. no joke... Lego Star Wars figurines. Nowadays I've really kept my set up pretty streamlined--using a Fulltone Fulldrive 2 and cranking up the reverb on a Vox AC15. My favorite pedal of all time though is the Ibanez DE7; the tape delay setting is... so good. I'd also sometimes use it as a boost for solos during live shows. I've used that on so many things--from making weird noise demos with my old roommate to playing in a punk band in college."
5. Can you describe the vibe at your live shows? Also, what do you enjoy most about a venue when you do a show?
"I'd say it's pretty intimate as it's typically just me playing. Recently I've put together a live band for my album release show here in LA -- but I think even then there's a certain, personal vibe that comes across through my music when I perform. The thing I enjoy most about a venue is just talking with the people that set up the show. Being around good, nice people who want to make the show experience best as possible is all I could ask for."
6. What is one thing that you want the public to know about your music?
"Just that it's out there in the world! I mainly write just for myself - always trying to improve this skill that I've sorta picked up. So if other people enjoy it that's great and amazing and more than I would ever want from anyone listening to my music."
7. Can you tell us about the writing, recording, and promotion process of your new album Performance?
"I wrote this album over the course of the past two-ish years following a breakup (classic) and moving to LA from Indiana. Earlier last year, I whittled down a lot of the demos I had been working on and reached out to my buds Mark and Ben to help me record and produce the record. I went back to Indiana and recorded the album in 3 days with them at Primary Sound in Bloomington, IN. I did a few overdubs at the studio I work at and... all of a sudden it was done. Finishing the recording of an album always feels so bittersweet as it's just the beginning of actually putting the album out. So many other components go into releasing an album! One aspect of the release that was so fun for me was working with Will Schaff (the artist behind many of Okkervil River's album artwork) to do the cover of "Performance". It was a dream getting to work with him and made the project feel like a completed package."