First of, just want to thank you for participating in this edition of Infidel Interviews. Could you start off by giving a little information about yourself to the audience? Whatever you feel comfortable with, but name, age, and where you live would be pretty standard? Also what instruments and/or artistic roles you are familiar with?
Juno Watt. Based in Margate and London. Artist, writer and producer. I edit and record all of my work including artwork and music videos. Very average at playing most instruments.
What would you say are your favorite themes and topics to write about? What draws you to those themes? Do you have any personal history that helps push forward the melancholic direction in some of your music?
I like topics that no one has thought of or dares to write about. Partly because I’m sick of hearing love, party and other generic themes being pumped out of speakers everywhere I go but also because I think music is one of the only platforms where you have true freedom of speech with no direct challenges from those who disagree. Music doesn’t have to be art. It can just be entertainment. I prefer it to be more artistic than the latter with a listenability factor to it. The song still has to have hooks for us to remember it by. I love a good hook.
Juno Watt has heaps of history to draw from, as does the rest of the world, there’s a lot of inspiration out there, happy and sad.
Would you say that your choice to pursue music has changed your life since you started? Would you say that creativity has evolved you spiritually, emotionally, or logically?
Chasing music for over half of my life hasn't been a lifestyle choice. I can’t work for many people out of a lack of respect and I don’t like what a lot of career choices have done to many members of society. I think once certain people get cosy in their jobs they have a tendancy to become more self-righteous, egotistical and conservative. This isn’t the case for everyone, I know. This idea serves as a great backdrop to many concepts of mine.
Do you find yourself most alive in the studio or live based atmospheres? Which do you prefer, and why?
Studio, that’s where the magic happens.
What sort of processes do you go through when making music? Do you have a formula(s) that you follow, or do you feel it out as you go along? Or is it more of a mixture of the two?
I don’t have a set technique, my advice for anyone on a similar musical tip to myself would be:
Sit down and write, if it doesn’t sound good after a short while scrap it and move on. It’s better to have 1 amazing track and 99 unfinished ideas than a mediocre but professional sounding EP. Tap into what you are feeling and don’t try and write for anyone but yourself, though be aware that someone else might listen to it in the future so they need to understand where you’re coming from. Just because you can hear it’s potential doesn’t mean it won’t sound shit to the rest of us, do whatever you can to make it relatable to any type of audience. If not, pick your genre and stick to it, plagiarise, only listen to that type of music and treat it like a day job, that’s also a reasonable way of making money.
Are there any particular instruments, programs, or effects that you would say are vital to you making music?
Good microphone is nice but is only as good as your pre-amp and AD convertors. I like Logic X. It’s great for writing and is what I know best. I built my own mac (called a Hackintosh) out of PC parts and saved a lot of money. Weighted hammer action keys are amazing and thoroughly underrated. Speakers are almost the most important and the more pairs the better. I like creating a record from start to finish so my list of gear goes on a bit, I always like picking up a bargain bit of percussion or anything that makes a good sound.
How do you enjoy where you live? Is their a vibrant music community for you to indulge? Would you say you find that your local scene influences your attitude and/or creativity?
I’ve just moved to Margate. There’s quite a lot of trendy twenty somethings here who have migrated from East London but I don’t really integrate much. I like going to fairly barren places and conceptualising. It’s the same at the studio in London. I just stay there and talk to people in the building and that’s about it. We’re taught to integrate and socialise online and offline to gain ground in the music industry, I just don’t think it’s as important as writing original material. I know that’ll come bite me on the arse somewhere down the line when I have no following but for now life seems a little more important than that.
What would you say are your biggest influences when it comes to art and music? Are there any bands that you would say struck you with the chord that inspired you to peruse your current path of musical aspirations?
Not really. I’ve always listened to so much different music I think it’d be unfair to attribute that to a handful of individuals. I like it when I hear or see something that stops me in my track. I like to be in awe, to see or hear something where I think “how did you do that/come up with that? I know it’s an obvious idea but why you and not someone else?”. Or even better when you get left speechless from admiration. That kind of stuff sticks with you for life.
Other then the genres that you are most typically known for working with, and being inspired by, are there possibly guilty pleasure bands or genres drastically different your usual repertoire that find themselves working their way into your inspiration?
Yes….. I’ll be posting some Spotify playlists in the not so distant future which will reveal all of my good/bad taste.
Thank you so much for participating in this episode of Infidel Interview. Any parting words for your fans, or my audience?
Follow me, like me. I’m not going to enrich your lives with inspirational memes but I’ll keep making music and posting my progress (or lack of) on the way.