Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Interview -- Bishops

I introduced you to the raw power of Bishops a few months ago. Tucker Riggleman took a break from unpacking after a big move to answer some of my questions about his craft:
Photo Credit: Jordan Hudkins
What's your songwriting process like?

Writing songs is a very weird thing for me. Almost every song I’ve written happened in about five or ten minutes. It all happens so fast, and I’m frantically looking for a pen to write down lyrics as they come out. I don’t know how to describe it. I definitely don’t sit down and say, “Hey, I’m going to write a song now.” – it’s pretty organic.

What or who do you see as your most important influences?
Musically speaking, my favorite band is The Replacements, so I think I am definitely influenced by them stylistically. As for my lyrical influences, I draw from a lot of personal experience, be it family, friends, significant others, etc – but that’s not to say all of my songs are autobiographical. Sometimes its interesting to try and see the world through someone else’s eyes and try to write about that.

I noticed that a lot of the songs on this album are about apathy or depression. Which do you find more cathartic: writing these songs or performing them?
I think those are two things that most mid 20-somethings deal with in life - the post-college “now what?” kind of doldrums. It just so happens that writing songs is pretty therapeutic for me, so I’ve managed to capture my anxiety, fears, and hopes and turn them into a record. I think the writing is definitely the most cathartic part of the process. I write these songs for me, and I have hundreds that I’ll probably never play outside of my bedroom. Performing is ridiculously fun, and a great release – and if someone at the show can relate to some of what we’re doing or saying, then that’s just an added bonus.

West Virginia is a tiny state but from what I've seen while writing this blog, it's got a rich and diverse music scene. Where do you think that comes from? What keeps you here?
I think most West Virginians grow up with a chip on their shoulder. We’re the state everyone has forgot. There’s a fierce sense of pride that comes from living here, and it makes it feel that much better when you can go out and accomplish something. It feels like you’re doing it for the whole state. There are some insanely talented musicians residing in West Virginia, and I’m very lucky to call a lot of them my friends. As far as what keeps me here, it’s a beautiful, comfortable, affordable place to live that is very close to so many major East Coast cities --- that being said, I’ve been here my whole life, and I can see myself giving somewhere else a shot in the very near future, but I’ll always be a West Virginian.

What is one thing you'd like listeners to know about Silver Lining?
Just that a lot of love went into these songs and this record. I hope you can find something in there that you can relate to, or maybe you’ll like how the drums sound on a certain track, or a specific guitar part. It’s a very honest record, and I hope you can find some enjoyment in it.

Official, Facebook, Bandcamp, Preorder the vinyl at Twin Cousins Records

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