Kickacts interviews Anja McCloskey

Posted onApril 19, 2013
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Special thanks to James Lowe of Transmedia World Wide!

 

Welcome to Kick Acts. Tell us a little about yourself and your band and were you can be found at on the web.

I am a German-American singer-songwriter and accordionist signed to Sotones Records. I spent the last 10 years in the UK, but am currently touring the US. You can find me here:

www.anjamccloskey.co.uk

www.facebook.com/anjamccloskey

www.myspace.com/anjamccloskey

www.twitter.com/anja_mccloskey

www.anjamccloskey.blogspot.com

anja_n

 Who are your musical heroes, influences & why?        

I think my influences are a mad concoction of the music I was exposed to when growing up in 80s Germany, when studying in the ever so eclectic London, and when spending time in the American Mid-West. I was a teenager before the internet was popular, so it was very hard to find underground or alternative music. When the internet finally did come along and I moved to London, it was almost overwhelming. I worked with many different bands and musicians, and I am sure that their approach to songwriting has influenced me somehow. But I was also influenced by other artists who chose the accordion as their main instrument. It showed me that accordion could be cool and interesting.

Do you have any advice for someone just getting started in playing music? Any pitfalls they should avoid?

I think gigging is the most important element of starting out as a musician. Play as many concerts as possible, build up your audience and your confidence. And always be polite! You never know when you will meet people again.

Do you have a greatest gig story you’d like to share?

When I released my debut album “An Estimation”, we had a homecoming gig in Southampton, England, for which we hired an old castle ruin in the city. It was so beautiful. We ended up playing under the stars and it was such an intimate and special experience. I wish I could do it again some day.

On the same token as the above question. How about a “worse gig” ever story.

Every musician will have stories like these. I have played in many peculiar venues and sometimes under difficult circumstances, but I won’t name and shame J

Do you have any other hobbies other than playing music? Collect stamps? Collect hats from off the side of the road? Draw pictures of boobs?

I collect match boxes actually… But apart from that I am also into photography and writing and I love going to the theatre.

What do you think about the present music scene or lack of? Care to address that?

I have had a very positive experience. My label Sotones Records is a very collaborative label and the musicians signed to it are encouraged to work together and share skills. I have made fantastic friends on the label and you just feel that people have your back. We always play on each others’ records and do concerts together and I am lucky to have such a supportive network of fellow musicians.

Tell us something about each of your band members that we wouldn’t expect to hear… Like their hobbies or something like that…headn

Well as a solo performer I will have to talk about myself… Hm, I am generally a little bit peculiar, so there are many things I could tell you. I once wrote a letter to Kenneth Branagh, after seeing him play Edmond at the National Theatre in London. He wrote back and I have kept the letter to this day!

Hypothetical situation. You’re stranded on Gilligan’s island and you get to hook up with only one of the girls… Is it Ginger, Mary Ann or Mrs. Howell and why?

You know, I have no idea. I am not much of a TV person and I have to admit, I have never ever watched Gilligan’s Island…

Our last question is called “Shout It Out Loud”. It’s were you get to talk about whatever you want to talk about. So go ahead and “SHOUT IT OUT LOUD”!

You should take the time to check out some of my label mates at Sotones Records. They are all wonderful. In fact, my label mates Etao Shin and I released a joint Christmas single in December, which you download for free here: https://soundcloud.com/anjamccloskey/eato-shin-anja-mccloskey-red

KickActs interviews “while She Waits”

Posted onMarch 28, 2013
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Welcome to Kick Acts. Tell us a little about yourself and your band and were you can be found at on the web.

 http://www.whileshewaits.com/

facebook_781048956 (2)

Who are your musical heroes, influences & why?

Black Stone Cherry, Godsmack, Creed, Volbeat

Lynard, Shinedown….They rock enough said lol

 

Do you have any advice for someone just getting started in playing music? Any pitfalls they should avoid?

Hmmm tough question. We never like to spill our secrets, but one piece of advice I can give is..think local, stay local…You have to expand your visions and invest in yourself. Pitfalls Ive seen is worrying about what others think (not fans) everyone will down you when pushing music. I learned a great tip from a big artist. He told me, when you become successful your hometown scene will turn their backs on you. We have not seen this and hope not too, but I can understand the theory. The odds of getting signed and becoming famous are really slim, but always follow your dreams. Also play good gear, don’t play garbage lol.

 

Do you have a greatest gig story you’d like to share?

Best gig to date for While She Waits was playing in the town of Kingman on our last tour. Awesome people and many have became dear friends of ours. Those freaking people know how to party…But it is Kingman Arizona, what the hell else are you gonna do there

 

 On the same token as the above question. How about a “worse gig” ever story.

Probably our show with Fuel. We had just gotten off tour and took a few week break. We played very loose and we all knew it. I actually forgot the first line one of our songs hahahah. I mumbled through it lol

 

Do you have any other hobbies other than playing music? Collect stamps? Collect hats from off the side of the road? Draw pictures of boobs?

James Cole- I do tattoos. Aaron Belk- This guy loves to fart, man he is an expert at farting. Blake is an absolute expert in dressing like a clown. A female clown hahah.

Tim Rooen, this freaking guy throws a party for everything. Every weekend is a reason to throw a party.Now Tims wife is expecting so we can imagine the parties to come haha Tommy just had a new son, that his is hobby and pride and joy of his life.

 

What do you think about the present music scene or lack of? Care to address that?

wsw1Uggggg don’t hate me people lol. Too many bands follow what everyone else is doing. Its ok to have influences, but all the new music sounds the same…and you extreme metal heads..expand your music a little lol. I love John Denver for gods sake hahahah

 

Tell us something about each of your band members that we wouldn’t expect to hear… Like their hobbies or something like that…

 

James Cole is old as dirt, was a Parole Officer and can crop dust a crowd like no other.

Aaron Belk collects trolls or something like that wtf? Hahaha

Tommy Gibbons is from South Korea and hates Kim Yuoung Bung of North Korea.

Blake Jordan hangs pictures of buff dudes in his living room cause he wants to look like them hahahah

Tim Rooen is the biggest Ren Fair goober Ive ever met hahaha He collects flags and stuff

 

Hypothetical situation. You’re stranded on Gilligan’s island and you get to hook up with only one of the girls… Is it Ginger, Mary Ann or Mrs. Howell and why?

I think we all agree with ginger…She is hot and can prolly work a pole lol

 

Our last question  is called “Shout It Out Loud”. It’s were you get to talk about whatever you want to talk about. So go ahead and “SHOUT IT OUT LOUD”!

Why is it when a man is wiping his butt and the toilet paper rips, his first instinct is to smell his finger? Hahaha you  re laughing because you have done it. Stay real out there homies and wash your darn hands

 

WSW