Lucid Nation have received high praise from the likes of Keith Richards and Thurston Moore and their new double album "Tacoma Ballet" features the likes of Patty Schemel (Hole) and Greta Brinkman from Moby's live band. Amazingly they're still managing to break every single rule in the book. Keeping it 100% independent the loose collective, based around poetic genius Tamra Spivey, rarely play gigs and release limited edition albums that adapt the theory of jazz to traditional rock & roll.
Q: A double CD in the form of Tacoma Ballet, rare live shows and freestyle radio sessions. You're the thorn in the side of the music industry - the ones that refuse to conform. Do you consider it an enviable position to be in - free from the constraints of big business?
A: Depends on what you're into. An hour of make up, posed photos, interviews, a limo and bodyguard, yeah that could be fun, but all that gowns 'n diamonds stuff is a little too hifalutin' for this tomboy. My idea of fun is being able to make music exactly how I like: no rules, no limits, to try to combine words and sounds in ways that turn on lights in heads and hearts, including my own.
Q: Much of the Lucid Nation sound is about freestyle jamming or adapting the principles of Jazz to rock music. Do you find the rock formula of verse-chorus-verse is an outdated principle or form?
A: V-c-v is an exquisite form, like haiku. Even though we've all heard it a gazillion times a master's work still grabs you (in all the right places). When I'm freestyling, v-c-v is a big part of what I mess with, making the chorus a narrative that acts like a verse, or not having a chorus but using a vocal hook to imply one. I want to get the same bang out of rock music but pulled in fresh ways.
Q: The whole idea of Lucid Nation is that its more an open collective based around yourself rather than a traditional set piece band. On Tacoma Ballet for instance Patty Schemel of Hole and Moby's bass player Greta Brinkman got involved. How did that come about?
A: When a girl who interviewed me for her website told me her roommate liked my music and would play with me, I asked if she ever played in a band before, and she said: "yeah, Hole." Our first choice on bass was Donna Dresch but we couldn't quite get it organized so I whined to my friend Nitebob and he said "I have a bass player for you: Greta who played with Unseen Force." Greta and Patty really enjoyed playing together. And the interviewer played keyboards.
Q: You've said in the past that you don't care about fame or making fans. Isn't there a contradiction between this ideology and actually releasing records?
A: No, because sharing music isn't the same as selling product. All artists want reaction. The CD is still the standard music medium. Fame and fans take time and energy I'd rather devote to art or fun. I have fans. I think of them as friends. I tell them to make music, or write, or do art, I think that's why fans are fans, they want to be artists, and they should be.
Q: Linked in with the last question. Does it mean a great deal to you that praise is heaped on you from Keith Richard's to Thurston Moore or do you view them in the same respect as just a fan at a gig?
A: Do I enjoy having people whose work I respect compliment mine? Fuck yeah! Would I change my work if they didn't like it? Hell no.
Q: Finally with the loose line-up could you ever imagine coming over to Europe and maybe picking up extra band members along the route?
A: Dude. I'm so there. What do you play?
For More Info
Post your own Lucid Nation reviews / comments on our Message Board