The article is about the modern "folk-punk-acoustic" movement and Joey was one of the interviewees.
(LAGWAGON, BAD ASTRONAUT, THE PLAYING FAVORITES)
Why do you think there is more of an influx of people from bands doing acoustic solo projects than there ever has been in our underground scene?
I have always written with an acoustic and my original intentions are generally lost when a band gets involved. Maybe now that there are effortless outlets for people to release their music they are drawn to putting it out in its purest state. I think the juxtaposition of style is alluring to songwriters from heavier bands.
Do you think the accessibility to home-recording programs, or the ease of being able to release music and promote it through sites like Garageband.com and Myspace.com has influenced this?
For sure. It's very easy to record and post something in a single day-another reason that music is becoming more creatively pure and true.
Do you think it's weird that kids who love, and surround themselves with a lifestyle that is engulfed in "heavy, aggressive music" are loving this sound so much?
Not really. I think people are drawn to intensity, dynamic and overall honesty in music. This can be heard in the loudest aggressive and dense sound and in the softest. I think there is more space for a variety or intensities in a more ambient, delicate recording, not just volume and angst. Ultimately we look for something we identify with.
What traditional "folk" or acoustic artists have influenced you?
Hank Williams Sr., Bob Dylan, The Pogues, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, Johnny Cash, Cat Stevens, Woody Guthrie, Joan Baez. Gordon Lightfoot, James Taylor, John Denver, Peter, Paul and Mary, Leonard Cohen.
Do you think this is something that you are planting the seeds for now, but that might be a much bigger part of your life after your band?
Maybe. I have found a more direct line of communication with the acoustic music. I have a closer relationship with the people who listen to my music now. It's just more intimate.
You have always sort of dabbled in the "less than totally aggressive" side of music, this side of Lagwagon that is, with bands like Bad Astronaut (which, ironically, had like 15 more members than your acoustic project!). Have you, at least in the last 10 years or so, been leaning towards this sort of style?
Yeah. I guess so. I have always made acoustic recordings, but lately I am able to release them and more fully relaize the potential. It's a less congested process and equally or more rewarding.
Are these outlets there because you want to be busier than Lagwagon can be nowadays, or because these are songs that you want to make, and they just wouldn't fit as a Lagwagon song?
Most likely the first is truer, because I love music and it's all that I want to do. After I write a song the aftermath is just style and formatting. It's relatively simple to modify any song I write for any band or recording.
You have been around music for a long time? Have you ever seen such an influx of acoustic records?
Yeah. There have been a few eras in my lifetime. The post Vietnam 70s was full of melancholy acoustic music. I sort of grew up on that depressing stuff. Also, I think there was a large convergence of acoustic artist beginning in the early to mid 90s, led by songwriters like Elliott Smith. It always seems reactionary to whatever pop music, politics and that current popular-culture in general is doing. It's a lot like Punk Rock but wimpy.
Do you think this is a positive thing for the genre and world of folk music, or acoustic songs, by, and for punks? Do you even see it as, for punks, or is it sort of supposed to transcend the borders that the "punk-rock" community has put up?
I like to think it transcends those guidelines. It's just the purest representation of any songrwriter or musician's vision, without all the spice.
What do you have coming up and when might we expect it?
I just finished up an album with some of my closest and oldest friends. The band is respectively called "The Playing Favorites". Now, I'm just about to begin recording a solo full-length acoustic album that I've been writing for about a year.