Old School Music

dealing with punk rock, speed/thrash and other music styles of the 80ies and beyond, a webpage connected to Red, Black & Green

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

THE MEMORIALS C'est un groupe dont j'ai trouvé la trace sur le site Afropunk.com, et je vous conseille de bien écouter les morceaux qui figurent à la fin de cette interview (que l'on retrouvera sur papier, vous savez où maintenant.. Non? tant pis pour vous!!! indice, zone rouge de lecture...) What does "The Memorials" mean, why did you choose this name? (Viv) I like to think of "the Memorials" as a remembrance of great music’s past. We blend a lot of the old with the new. (Thomas) Viv has that one…. What are your influences? (Viv) Church gave me my start so I can't really get the choir outta my head. Also I was raised on r&b, soul and jazz music. I used to know the words to every song on the radio! I was training my ear to write pop songs but I have a really eclectic palate. As I grew older I started exploring more rock music. Keeping my ears open has made me the musician I am today. (Thomas) Lately I’ve been influenced by life, my family, my constant eagerness to wanna be better on stage and off, musicians who changed the world with music What made you decide that one day you would play a musical instrument, go on stage.. (Viv)I have been singing my whole life. When I got to be college age I was struggling to choose a major and my mom told me "u never wanted to do anything else. Why change now?" She played me a tape of me singing this song I wrote at the age of 3... I knew then I would never give it up. (Thomas) Probably God, I was meant to do this.. this wasn’t something I found by accident... my whole background led me to this. Is it easier to do something else than soul, funk, rap or reggae, nowadays, as black musicians I would say, than it used to be in the 70ies or 80ies or 90ies, according to you? (Viv)Huh? Since when is having our own biz easy? Since when is being black easy? I'm confused...(Thomas) I don’t think anything is easy and with the DIY/direct pay industry we have now.... we might have advantages that musicians in the passed never got People can stay at home and build fans online by being personalities. Thats a huge benefit that was never there in the 70's or 80's or even 90's Did you hear about "Afropunk" and "Electric Purgatory" documentaries? (Viv)Yes... it was like one of those m&m commercials... "...they do exist". (Thomas) I have.. Its weird, it made me think about the only white person who used to come to my church What do you think about Afrocentrism or afrocentrisms (Black Panthers, Malcolm X, SNCC, NOI attitudes, ethics, creeds, thoughts...)? A useless thing, something definitely old fashion/ has been, something people need? (Viv)Every1 needs a role model. They need something to aspire to. What happened to all the great black leaders? Society might be different now for people of color if there were more folks like that left. I'm not sayin kill whitey or anything but u get my drift. (Thomas) I’m from Oakland my grandmother had a lot of friends that were Panthers... My mom always taught me as a black man I had to work harder than anyone else.. I grew up knowing I was black. That didn't mean I was supposed to get militant with it. I think all people need to know their history and the history of others... But to be honest I’m a people person if you’re an asshole I don’t care what color you are… How would you describe the Bay Area for foreigners? (Viv) I would pull out my smart phone and google "the Golden Gate Bridge, Oakland's death toll, sf pride, uc berkeley, E-40 and the Memorials" then proceed to translate...(Thomas) Everyone who comes here wants to move here...Totally sprung. For me Bay Area and Northern California yielded acts like E 40, Mac Dre, Digital underground, The Coup, Too Short for the rap scene ( West Coast sound one), but also acts like Dead Kennedys, Verbal Abuse, DRI, MDC(even if they come from Texas), Code Of Honor, Crucifix ( hardcore scene), and also acts like Forbidden, Exodus, Megadeth, Possessed, Death Angel ( thrash metal scene), where do you fit then ? Next to Stone Vengeance? (Viv) Metallica and Green Day are from here. Tony Toni Tone, and Tower of Power. We ‘re just another dope band that's not trying to fit into any Bay scene. We on some worldwide, ya dig? (Thomas) We aint (yes that is a word) here to fit in... i try hard not to fit in. Fitting in is for people with day jobs. Musically fitting in sucks.... who wants to fit in next to half the famous people in the industry?? Have you watched any of these passed music awards ??? Fuck that Could you talk about the song "We Go To War" ( the lyrics especially)? How did it come to life ( I mean how was it created) ? (Viv)When we got to the end of recording our first album we had two of the hardest tunes left musically. I was really challenged by the time in we go to war. I found it difficult to write to. So me [a]n[d] TP got to talking about the war, and Obama, and Bush, and Bush senior, and our friends who went to war... then he asked me "what if u were a suicide bomber?" The song is simply a reflection of that conversation. (Thomas) I recorded a drum pattern in the studio to the iphone memo.. I was walking around singing the riff while it played on my Iphone, I then sung it for Nick Brewer (former guitarist). We mapped out the parts, played it and it was it! I really wanted him to play a lot on the album guitar solo wise so we added the guitar solo break... Dude (Nick Brewer) had me crying when I sat in the booth watching that Usually it's the first thing people would ask...tell us your story, how did you build/create the band? (Viv)Ask Thomas. He called me... (Thomas) My pure adrenaline created this band that and having loyal, good, talented, awesome people around me …All the other stuff is a Wiki page and im not here for that Do you have some releases? (Viv) Our selftitled debut "the Memorials" is available on itunes and our second album "Delirium" is coming in spring 2012! (Thomas) Yes we're about to release our second record in the spring it’s called "Delirium" and im totally proud of it after all I been thru to even be able to put this out is a blessing. Plans for the future... thanx!!! (Viv) We wanna tour til we can’t tour no more! Catch us out this spring! Xo v (Thomas) Delirium the album, touring w/The Memorials, and my drum dvd... Thank you Et si cela ne vous suffit pas...

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