JEORDIE WHITE | BASE TENDENCIES
[Translated by enigmata]
It was stressing enough for Tataye and I going to interview the famous band A Perfect Circle… Two minutes before entering backstage, we learned that Jeordie White was going to receive us. Though the interview was a bit short, it was quite friendly with the previous Marilyn Manson bassist, just before the concert at Lyon!
Tataye: Can you tell us a bit about this new tour? You played in Italy, yesterday in Strasbourg…How did this happen?
Jeordie White: We were very well received! It’s always good in Europe, you know.. The audience is always excited to see music, so it’s a lot of fun for us. Last night, the show was superb, I think it will be like that tonight as well…The audiences seems to like it, so it makes us even happier!
Pierrot: Tonight there’s no opening act…Do you know why? Did you not look for a group to join you?
Jeordie White: The dates were added at the last minute, so we didn’t really look…
Tataye: Do you prefer playing big festivals or small venues like tonight’s?
Jeordie White: Both have their ups and downs. It’s good to play in small clubs like these because the whole crowd can see you, being so close, you get all their energy and the energy from the room, it’s your show. In festivals, the energy is different, it’s outside, during the day, and there are tens of thousands of people…But being that there are other groups playing, it gives us the opportunity to play our music for people who normally don’t listen to it. They’re both good, just different…
Pierrot: Talk to us a little bit about “Thirteenth Step”.. Why did you decide to join A Perfect Circle?
Jeordie White: hmm…good music, good musicians! Josh is a great drummer, Maynard is one of the best vocalists in this rock style…And of course the songs were good.
Pierrot: When did you meet them for the first time?
Jeordie White: Well, I’ve known Billy for many years, he worked on a tour that I participated in the early 90’s (NDW: Marilyn Manson + NIN), and after that I met Josh…I just kinda fell into the group, it was very natural.
Tataye: Can you explain the CD cover? The slug, the woman, is there something behind it?
Jeordie White: People can look at it and make their own opinions as to what it means, but you know it was more of an “accident” during the photo session and it turned out better than the rest… It’s really just a slug on a woman’s face, no particular analogy…
Pierrot: I heard, I don’t know if it’s true, the title “Thirteenth Step” was a play on words relating to the 12 step program for alcoholics?
Jeordie White: Yes, that’s one of the meanings, there are many, but this one..How can I say, in the “Twelve Step program”, there’s a thirteenth step when the people who have finished the program meet new comers and generally… When they are not too swift, they take advantage of them physically and sexually...It doesn’t really happen, but that’s one of the meanings.
Pierrot: Who do you take advantage of? What would be your “Thirteenth Step”?
Jeordie White: I don’t know, I’m not there yet…
Tataye: it’s like the CD cover, each person can interpret for themselves…
Jeordie White: yes, exactly, it’s like that with all the songs, for music, for a piece of art or anything, it has a different meaning for everyone…It’s best not to reveal what it means for the person that wrote it, it can ruin your own interpretation… That’s the beauty of music, you can listen and play differently after your own experience. You know, we could probably write songs about potatoes and it could mean something important for the listener!
Pierrot: What do you feel when you listen to the album? Joy, sadness, anger? Are you satisfied with the results, would you change anything?
Jeordie White: You write a disc, you write some songs and you save them, but the minute you get on the road to play them during many months, after a while you say “I should’ve done that, I should’ve played it like this”, and inevitably you change certain things…I think they become much better live!
Tataye: Which part do you prefer, studio or tour? Most people say going on tour is hard…
Jeordie White: both of them, it’s great to be creative in the studio, I like touring also… But it’s true that once you’re on the road you don’t have time to do a whole lot, you just play, going from city to city…
Tataye: Other than the music you play, do you listen to other styles? Would you play any style of music?
Jeordie White: yes of course, I listen to everything, like all musicians…I think. It all depends on the mood that I’m in…So I would play something else…
Pierrot: You’re producing a band at the moment? I heard about March…
Jeordie White: Yeah, sometimes I produce groups, but at the moment I can’t do anything. Concerning March, it’s different, they needed to do a few demos, so I helped them. I intend to do production again, it’s clear.
Tataye: It’s another step, I mean, being a musician and then a producer, are you looking into it?
Jeordie White: Yeah, it’s something I really love doing, it’s a lot of fun! I also think an artist is going to respect someone that’s already been in a band rather than someone that’s just a producer, who didn’t experience it all… Someone like me or other musicians have a lot more to offer to an artist than just a producer.
Pierrot: You all come from different bands, different influences, is it easy to come together and get along?
Jeordie White: We already know the music business, “the whole roller coaster ride”, we can all come with a serene attitude, we’re not interested in getting all worked up, so it’s easy to get along…
Pierrot: So what’s the next step for A Perfect Circle?
Jeordie White: We have some European dates, then we’re going on tour in the States. After that, we’re probably going to do some festivals in Europe. Nothing definite, nothing predicted at the moment concerning that, I can’t really say… After that, we may start making a new album!
Tataye: Did you already start composing it?
Jeordie White: Not yet. But we hope to start it during the next US tour!
Pierrot: I have a final question, that you ask all the bands. What question would you like me to ask?
Jeordie White: hmmm… Do you have any pets?
Jeordie White: I have three cats! Sally, Coco and Lola! And they miss me!
A big thank you to Loic of Virgin Records and to Jeordie for his time.
Interview by Pierrot (Santagore) and Tatye (Hammerock).