Right now, Jaren Love (The lead singer and lead guitarist of the band “The Lampshades“) is just about to leave my room to go do his radio show. We just talked about a whole bunch of music, and things pertaining to music. Somewhere in that conversation he did an interview for me in which he talked about his awesome band. And this is what went down…
Knox Road: What are your personal influences?
Jaren Love: As far as bands go, I have always been a fan of the first two Weezer albums, The Beach Boys, Teenage Fanclub, Sloan and 90’s Indie Rock like Guided By Voices and Pavement.
I like a lot of 60s pop, like the Beatles and Zombies, 70s Powerpop like Bigstar and Badfinger…pretty wide range. Oh, I am also as of late a pretty big Wilco fan as of lately, especially Summer Teeth and Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, except I’m like 7 years too late.
KR: What kind of band would you consider your band to be?
JL: Well, that is always tough because you kind of want people to take their own definition out of it, but in the most generic sense, I tell people that it’s like indie rock
and powerpop. But I mean, I think we have a wide range of influences that go beyond that.
KR: I have noticed there is a lot of contrast between different songs on the album. You seem to have a lot of different styles of music coming through.
JL: It was definitely, I don’t think, initially intended to be that way. It sort of ended up happening. Initially, I wanted Are Alright to be a straight forward pop rock album but with the collaboration of Dane Adelman, now our drummer but originally just a friend who was going to produce the record, he definitely took the songs and helped us present them in a more visionary way and sort of reconstructing like finding ways to get cool guitar feedback and doing horn and synth arrangements. It like took the record to what I thought would be a collection of regular pop songs into something beyond and in a great way.
KR: What would you like to see your band accomplish?
JL: I would really like for us to be able to have a lot of people hear the band, see the band live, the typical get bigger, and get more attention with things like blogs.
I have been playing in this band for five and a half years, and you get to a point where you think there is a level of sophistication where you want other people to hear it as well.
KR: Tell me the story behind the song, “My Boyfriend’s Band” because I love that song.
JL: In the late spring of like 2006 when I was a senior in high school, my buddy who went to school down at Drexel in Philadelphia called me and told me this girl he knew had a boyfriend in a band who was playing in Altoona which is the most major metropolitan where I grew up. She wanted to surprise him by going to the show. So, he asked me if I’d meet this girl in Bedford, PA because she was getting a lift from someone heading to Pittsburgh. I only got 10 bucks in gas money out of this and the privilege to hear about her boyfriend’s band for the whole car ride. I was so inspired by her enthusiasm that I decided to write the song. The song has somewhat of an identity crisis because it’s like half sarcastic and half sincere, as time goes by I wish for it to be the latter.
KR: Where in general do you get your inspiration for lyrics?
JL: Honestly, for the most part it’s that typical pop songs about girls stuff. I did try the whole story song thing a little on this record with “My Boyfriend’s Band” and “Mad Father’s Got a Gun” though.
KR: Where did you learn to sing?
JL: Well, I did the whole school chorus thing growing up but as far as singing in a rock band that came with practice, really, I’ve been playing in bands for like 8 years and singing lead in bands for like 6 years so I just got better over time. I was told I was pretty bad at first, real kind of deep monotone. I think I am a lot better now.
KR: What do you expect to do with your next record?
JL: Hopefully, we will go somewhere a little different sound wise and have an overall better record. We really feel an imperative to make a better record than Are Alright, even though we believe Are Alright is a strong record.
KR: Are you going on tour soon?
JL: We’d like to at some point, maybe late spring or summer, but for now we really want to start rehearsing new songs and rehearsing more because of our geographic separations of me being in the DC area and the other guys being closer Pittsburgh. We rarely get to practice.
At this point we just started to talk about random bands and nothing really pertaining to the interview. But all you need to know is that The Lampshades Are Alright. That’s the name of the album. The Lampshades are an excellent band. See what I did there.
Also, Jaren wanted to let you know that you can get the whole album by going to this link and downloading. Sweet? Yes.