Indie Band The Occasional Angels Paving a New Road

Indie Band The Occasional Angels Paving a New Road

Listen to the Live Interview
January 19: Episode #415: A.V.A Live Radio Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax : http://tobtr.com/9732321

Jacqueline Jax logo photoGETTING TO KNOW THE OCCASIONAL ANGELS
by Jacqueline Jax host of A.V.A Live Radio
Interviewing : David Hart

Music Business…
I am a semi-retired 65-year-old former 4-time Olympian who is a neophyte to the music industry but I have entrepreneurial experience, I know how to achieve goals and have been self-employed for most of my adult life. I learn quickly and I’m intuitive. I am realizing that the ‘traditional’ approaches in the industry seem to be leading nowhere. Main stream radio etc. etc. I am currently ‘finding my way’ through the maze of social media and in the process of building a brand and a vision for moving forward being retired and not depending on music as a source of income has a truly liberating effect. I do this because I am passionate and I have the time to invest. I won’t chase fads or be influenced by corporate music industry ‘advice’.

I would love to have 5 minutes with Jeff Tweedy (Wilco)…
I feel Jeff is one of the great musical geniuses of our era – his band, which gets little or no air-play on main stream media will in the long-run out-live most of the current so-called ‘greats’. We are in an era where the industry is dominated by commerce over art and ‘celebrity’ over –‘true musical genius and ability’ – Wilco have survived and flourished in a way that I admire maintaining one’s artistic integrity and accepting the limitations that this imposes.

Heaven in Denim…
started as an acoustic demo I wrote in the early winter of 2016 for what was planned as the 3rd LP by my old band ‘Blood Earth Blue’ – by May of that year it became apparent that the band was not ready to move forward so I launched into a ‘solo project’, hiring an old-friend Scott Paterson, as my arranger/producer – he heard ‘something different’ in the approach to the demo I had prepared and sent to him…….I loved the soul/R&B groove he tossed back at me and we both agreed it would be awesome to have a female vocalist on it…..but who? – I reached out to a gal I had known only briefly back in 2009 – Cris Ruggiero (she sang harmony parts on a track entitled So Beautiful a song I had co-written with my partner Jamie Douglas from a band I was in at that time called The Powergoats) – when Cris walked into Scott Paterson’s studio to record the song in June 2016 I had NO idea what to expect……..within seconds of hearing her…..both Scott and I were blown away……the morning after the recording session I called Scott back and told him I wanted to scrap the ‘solo’ project and form a musical alliance to be called The Occasional Angels ……..Cris and Scott both signed-on to the idea and project was born! I quickly formed my own record label (Occasional Angels Records) ….and by end of summer we had a full LP of music recorded……

My lyrical approach to song-writing
is very much influenced by writers like Jeff Tweedy (Wilco) and Gord Downie (The Tragically Hip) and others who often apply a ‘cut-up’ technique popularized by William Burroughs (and others) my lyrics are ‘intuitive’, look for unusual pairings of phrases and imagery , the phrase ‘Heaven in Denim’ was something that came to me one day and I built around it. I like to have the listener ‘find their own meaning’ in my writing. I rarely use a ‘narrative’ or story-telling approach. My songs ‘aren’t usually about something’, they challenge or inspire the listener to see themselves in the lyric. I believe having Cris sing this song also transformed it incredibly. I realize after listening to her performance that the song can be seen to be about ‘joy’ and ‘celebration’ in the face of adversity. She embodies that joy, that celebration and in a sense, has brought the metaphor ‘Heaven in Denim’ to life in a way I could never have imagined as I wrote the song……

Our debut album…
‘Renascimento’ is a collection of diverse writing. The title is a Portuguese word meaning ‘rebirth’. It reflects the transformation(s) I was under-going at the time the album was conceived. There is no theme or specific direction to the LP since it started as just a collection of songs I wanted to record for a solo project. I did not even have any singers lined up until part-way into the project when we found Cris. On the LP there is a classic-country track (Winner Takes All) in the spirit of George Jones a tribute song to the late-great John Lennon (heavily Beatles influenced) – a folk ballad (Lullaby) which I was coerced into singing a deeply personal song I wrote for my grandchildren. A funk-inspired track (Make No Mistake) which seems to have been inspired by the recent American election. A track entitled (Reggae N’ Roll) which is a kind of tip of the hat to The Black Key. The rest are a mix of Pop and Rock influenced songs I have already written the follow-up LP (Esperanca – a Portuguese word meaning ‘hope’) and we are recording it now to be released June 1, 2017 this 2nd LP will be more focused and the writing is being targeted to focus on Chris’s strengths as a vocalist while continuing to push her and broaden her scope. We believe her potential is enormous and we are very excited to explore new territory including some jazz influences.

Ottawa…
I live on a beautiful lake in the wilderness 90 minutes south west of Ottawa – both Scott and Cris live in Ottawa. Ottawa is the nation’s capital and is positioned between Montreal and Toronto. Two major music scenes in the country our focus has not yet been on live performances since we wanted to accumulate enough original material to play without relying on covers. We also are focusing on licensing of the material and we are at the ‘ground-level’ at the moment.


Links:

http://theoccasionalangels.bandzoogle.com/home
https://www.facebook.com/theoccasionalangels/
https://soundcloud.com/stream
https://twitter.com/occasionalange5

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