The Music Mix Music news, reviews, albums, concerts, and downloads

Tag: Q&A (21-30 of 103)

Danny Elfman on Tim Burton, Gus Van Sant, and why it's so hard to sing in Russian: An EW Q&A

Ever since he first laid down tracks for Tim Burton’s Pee Wee’s Big Adventure 25 years ago, composer (and erstwhile ’80s rock star) Danny Elfman has crafted scores for dozens of iconic films and television shows.

You can scarcely swing a cat without bumping up against an Elfman creation, be it the opening songs from The Simpsons and Desperate Housewives to now-legendary themes for flicks like Batman and Spider-Man.

You’ll get to hear him again in some of the biggest movies on the horizon, including Real Steel, Men In Black III and The Hunger Games, and if you’re interested in his past work, he recently released a 16 disc retrospective box set of his collaborations with Tim Burton. This week, he also just opened Cirque Du Soleil: Iris in Los Angeles. EW caught up with him recently, and he told us his memories from some of his favorite projects.

The Nightmare Before Christmas
“If I were to list my favorite collaborations with Tim [Burton], I would say number one would be The Nightmare Before Christmas. It was the purest, simplest process I had in all the years with Tim. There was less pressure, and the results came from the ability to kind of wander. We didn’t know how to start doing a musical; there was an animation crew ready to go and there was no script. So we started with the songs. And literally, he’d come over and start telling me the story.

I said, ‘Just tell me the story like you’re reading a book to a kid.’ So he’d take out some pictures and tell a little bit of the story, and as he was telling the story, I’d start to hear an idea for a song. Usually about three days later, I’d play him the song, and then he would tell me more of the story. Ten times we got together, he told me a story and I wrote the songs. When I was writing lyrics for [Oingo Boingo], I would write about abstract things or things that annoyed me. I could be bitter or facetious about something. I had never written anything where I told a story and wasn’t sarcastic in the process. It was a new experience writing lyrics for songs that were doing a complete narrative.” READ FULL STORY

Rob Zombie Q&A: Rocker and filmmaker talks Slayer tour, new movie, and the legend of Mick Jagger

Two nights ago, Rob Zombie turned the summertime volume up to 11 by kicking off his co-headlining tour with shred legends Slayer in Reading, Pennsylvania.

But the multi-talented Zombie has quite a few tentacles in a number of different pies at the moment, so when we caught up with him a few weeks ago, he ran down the seemingly ever-growing list of projects he’s currently advancing.

Entertainment Weekly: The last time we talked, you were also working on a tour and getting movie stuff together at the same time. Can we safely call you a workaholic?
Rob Zombie: I like to have a lot of projects going at once because I work in a very kind of schizophrenic manner. So if I ever get stuck on something, I can just to the next thing and the next thing. It’s kind of a blessing and a curse because at the same time, I hate working that way. I’m like “Boy, if I could just focus on one thing…” but then I’m always afraid if you’re only focusing on one thing and if the one thing falls apart, you’re like “Now what?” It’s sort of a paranoia.

You’ve played with Slayer before in the past, going back to the White Zombie days. Were you a fan before you worked with them?
I was a fan before we opened but not for long time. I was never a crazy metal fan. I saw them at the Felt Forum in New York on one of the early shows on the South of Heaven tour. That’s when I really was blown away by the show and the insane intensity of the whole thing.

Is it inspiring to you that they can still put out that kind of energy all these years later?
It’s not really inspiring to me because we’re all the same age. So I’m not inspired by that. I’m inspired if I watch the Rolling Stones. I think, “Holy f—, Mick Jagger is almost 70 and look at the energy that guy’s got.”

Is that going to be you? Will we be able to see you live at 70?
Who knows? I mean, there’s very few people that have that. Probably not, because when I’m together with all the guys from Slayer, everybody’s  just sitting around talking about how much their necks hurt. Mick Jagger is just possessed. People take for granted that they don’t even understand how great it is sometimes. Like when the Stones played the Super Bowl and everyone complained about it. Give me a f—ing break! You work that f—ing stage the size of a football field when you’re 66 years old, and we’ll see if you come out alive. It’s a phenomenon. READ FULL STORY

Bon Iver's Justin Vernon talks about his new album, Kanye, and why home is where the heart is: An EW Q&A

Bon-Iver

This week, Wisconsin native Justin Vernon released one of the best-reviewed and most anticipated indie albums of the year in Bon Iver’s self-titled sophomore effort.

Bon Iver takes the promise of Vernon’s quiet, insular debut For Emma, Forever Ago and adds a number of new elements to the mix: The sound is more expansive without sounding bigger than itself, and Vernon has layered each track with new rhythmic tricks, production twists, and even a guitar solo or two.His delicate, dynamic voice carries it all, and his surreal lyrics paint narratives about the importance of home.

EW caught up with Vernon while he was in town promoting Bon Iver, and he had quite a bit to say about the approach on his new album, his attachment to Wisconsin, and what he learned from Kanye West.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Is it true Bon Iver was recorded in a converted animal hospital?
JUSTIN VERNON:
Yeah. It was a residence house. The family lived there and the guy worked out of the clinic that he built. It’s huge, this bi-level ranch house that just goes on forever. So we moved in and we’ve been changing everything around. There’s an indoor pool that we made into a recording room and stuff. It’s become a pretty fun place.

Do you live there too?
My cats live there. I have a little apartment in town that I sort of get to when I can.

Bon Iver is a very cohesive-sounding album, like it came out of one marathon writing session.
It’s interesting you say that. It was written in three years, but it’s all part of the same session. It was like one continuous movement of brain. Like, I had all this s— going on, but this record was always the thing I would return to. I would bring the stuff with me to listen to, and work on lyrics. Just like, “What is this?” We figured it out that way, I think, and it had this flow to it that was mysterious even to me. But it worked somehow. READ FULL STORY

'Weird Al' Yankovic talks Lady Gaga, 'Alpocalypse,' and why he's funnier than Madonna

weird_al

Today, “Weird Al” Yankovic celebrates the release of Alpocalypse, his 13th proper album and his best, most consistent release in years. (And thanks to a day-long Internet dust-up with Lady Gaga over his “Born This Way” parody “Perform This Way,” also his best publicized.)

Always the underdog and, by his own admission, a trafficker in extra-disposable culture, Yankovic has made a career of not only making fun of specific songs and artists but also of topical trends and musical styles.

All of that (plus a massive mash-up of polka versions of pop songs) are on Alpocalypse, highlighted by the surprisingly dark “Skipper Dan,” a narrative about an out-of-work actor serving as the host of a jungle cruise ride at an amusement park. Yankovic discussed his new album, his long career and the secrets to a great parody when EW caught up with him recently.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What are the secrets to a great parody?
WEIRD AL YANKOVIC:
Timeliness, sustainability and independence. That third one is really important. It needs to be funny even if you’ve never heard the original song that’s being parodied. It needs to work just as a funny song without having any reference to the source material.

And I think the best example of this personally was when I did “American Pie” as “The Saga Begins.” It was about the Star Wars prequels, and it was a huge hit on Radio Disney. And the people that listened to Radio Disney, I would guess, were not intimately familiar with a Don McLean song from 1971. But they enjoyed the song even without really knowing it was a parody.

And what made that even funnier was that the year after I did my parody, Madonna did her techno-pop cover version of “American Pie,” and all these kids were going, “How come Madonna’s doing an unfunny version of a Weird Al song?” So that was odd.

READ FULL STORY

Duff McKagan gives us the lowdown on reuniting with Axl Rose, his band's new CD, and how to invest your poker winnings

Duff McKagan is best known for playing bass for Guns N’ Roses in their Appetite for Destruction heyday—a period during which McKagan abused his body so badly that his pancreas ultimately exploded.

These days, McKagan’s extracurricular activities are of a more sober stripe: He has written about finance for Playboy; regularly contributes columns to both ESPN.com and Seattle Weekly; and is even now available for hire as a public speaker.

“I spoke to a bunch of businessmen in Seattle,” says McKagan. “Titans of industry. The thing is that business and success, and how hard it is, doesn’t look any different whether you’re playing a gig at eleven o’clock at night or you’re going to work at nine in the morning at a law firm. So I talk about that. But ultimately all those guys want to know about is how many chicks I’ve f—ed!”

The man is also still rocking hard as the frontman for his band, Duff McKagan’s Loaded, whose latest CD, The Taking, is out tomorrow. After the jump, McKagan talks about his new release, his forthcoming memoir, his recent reunion with Axl Rose, and why he is very much not “the Bernie Madoff of metal.”

READ FULL STORY

Jack White Q&A: He talks to EW about life after the White Stripes, becoming a mogul (or not), and more

With the White Stripes officially retired, Jack White could spend his days having cocktails on his tropical lanai if he wanted to. But he is, famously, not that kind of guy.

Instead, he’s running a musical empire in his adopted hometown of Nashville, keeping his hands in two well-established bands (Raconteurs and the Dead Weather), and taking his Rolling Record Store, which he debuted at this year’s SXSW, on the road — while also raising a family and proselytizing for vinyl nearly full-time. EW catches up with him below.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Now that the White Stripes are done, you actually seem more busy than before.
JACK WHITE:
Younger musicians might look at someone who’s quote-unquote “made it,” and think well, that’s it, they won the lottery now they can do whatever they want, and that means go to the Bahamas and just party all the time. But my opinion has always been if you call yourself an artist, you have a responsibility to that liberty that you’ve given yourself.  You don’t have a day job where you work 9 to 5 at a factory because you’re an artist? Well, okay, well then you better make some art. That doesn’t mean you can sit around all day and do nothing. That’s the way I treat myself, and those are the artists I respect who do that. And it doesn’t have anything to do with being a workaholic or anything like that; it’s about creating all the time, because that’s what you can’t help but do.

You have built up sort of a sovereign Third Man nation down in Nashville…
We have a live venue, which is the only live venue in the world where you can record on analog tape in front of an audience and it comes out on vinyl four weeks later. There’s gonna be a lot of special shows on Record Store Day I can’t tell you about yet — I did one with [rockabilly legend] Wanda Jackson. Everyone’s playing there, it’s great for up-and-coming punk bands and all that.

If you’re a producer and a label-runner, does that mean there will there be less music-making for you? READ FULL STORY

Lee DeWyze Q&A: EW talks to the 'American Idol' champ about this year's batch, what he's up to, and defending his season

It’s been almost one year since former paint salesman Lee DeWyze became the ninth victor of American Idol—and the last winner crowned with crotchety Simon Cowell piloting America’s top-rated TV show.

After DeWyze performed his latest single “Beautiful Like You” for the new panel of Idol judges a few weeks ago, Live It Up returned to the Top 100 albums chart. Currently on a lengthy tour, the 25-year-old Illini spoke with us about his favorite singers from this season, how his life has changed, and what he has to say to those who criticized his season. READ FULL STORY

Rebecca Black Q&A: EW talks to the 'Friday' viral video star about getting compliments from Gaga, donating her song profits to Japan, and using her dad as a 'bodyguard'

In the two weeks since since it began its viral rise to Internet infamy, Rebecca Black’s “Friday” music video has amassed a staggering 42 million views on YouTube and shows no sign of slowing down.

That’s an absurdly high number of hits for any singer, but it’s jaw-dropping when you consider that Black is an unsigned 13-year-old from Orange County who only made the video for fun with her friends (and a little help from a vanity production company).

With her song in the iTunes Top 40 and a guest spot on The Tonight Show under her belt, we caught up with Rebecca (after she got finished school for the day, naturally) and talked to her about what she’s doing with all this money, how her dad scares off gawkers in public, and how she felt to hear Lady Gaga call her a “genius.”

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: On Leno you said that you are donating most of your YouTube and iTunes proceeds to earthquake and tsunami disasters in Japan. That’s really cool. What made you decide to do that? I don’t think anyone would hold it against a 13-year-old for keeping the money from her first hit record. READ FULL STORY

Beady Eye: Liam Gallagher talks about his new band's CD, the last time he spoke to Noel, and why he 'likes the Gaga'

BeadyEyeImage Credit: Steve GullickIt has been eighteen months now since Oasis broke up following a backstage blowout between singer Liam Gallagher and his guitarist brother Noel before a scheduled show in Paris.

That’s a long enough period of time for Liam to form a new band, Beady Eye, with Oasis members Andy Bell, Gem Archer, and Chris Sharrock, and for that act to record their debut CD, Different Gear, Still Speeding, which was released March 1. However, a year and a half is apparently not a lengthy enough period for the Gallagher brothers to have kissed and made up.

In fact, Liam says that he hasn’t spoken to his brother since that night in Paris, and that there wasn’t a lot of “speaking” going on then. “We screamed at each other,” he recalls. “It wasn’t speaking, but sort of shouting at each other. And that was it. Never mind.”

After the jump, Liam and Andy Bell talk about the debut Beady Eye CD, the royal wedding, and Lady Gaga.

READ FULL STORY

Slash talks about his tour with Ozzy, the search for Velvet Revolver's singer, and Axl's latest accolade

slashImage Credit: Paul BrownBreak out the top hats and Les Pauls: Slash kicks off a tour with Ozzy Osbourne on Jan. 16 in Omaha, Neb., in support of his 2010 solo album, Slash. Before he hit the road, the Velvet Revolver guitarist and ex-Guns N’ Roses axeman riffed on a variety of music topics with EW.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What can fans expect from the set list this time around? It sounds like you’ve been playing a wide swath of material from your career.
SLASH:
The tour started last March and we took a break, and now we’re starting up again. We’ve been doing a lot of songs off this new record, some Guns stuff, some Velvet stuff and a couple Snake Pit songs. And it’s really cool when we’re doing a headlining set [Slash will perform on his own in some cities] because we really f—ing dig in there and pull out these cool gems. But for the Ozzy tour, it’ll be combinations of those things. It’s a 50-minute set, so it won’t be a lot of either. But at the same time it’s going to be a really cool, very entertaining, dynamic 50 minutes.

Any surprises you can tease?
There are a couple songs that I broke out for this next leg which we haven’t played on the whole tour, so there will be a couple surprises if you went to any of the other shows. If you’ve never been to a show, the whole thing’s a surprise. But give you hints? No.

Will you play with Ozzy? READ FULL STORY

Latest Videos in Music

Advertisement

From Our Partners

TV Recaps

Powered by WordPress.com VIP