Another heavy rockin’ trio from Texas has released their third album earlier this year is Jason Kane & The Jive! I recently reviewed the San Antonio band’s album Soggy Noggin, and now present an interview with Jason Kane [via email]. A cool look in to a newer band you got to check out! On their latest album these guys mix up hard-rock, blues, and funk, and come up with a CD full of great tunes. Check ’em out – Jason Kane Official – YouTube
*To order the band’s CDs and other merchandise (t-shirts!) – go to > https://jasonkaneandthejive.bandcamp.com/merch
[Jason] Prior to the band you were doing an acoustic show!? Anything become of that? [I saw a cool rendition of “Stealin” on Youtube – never seen it done quite that way.]
JK: Thanks for watching! I’m a big Uriah Heep fan, “Stealin” was one of the first songs I learned for my acoustic act. Before I met Nick Jive I was a solo acoustic act and would play where ever I could – I did not care how funky the show was, didn’t care if I was opening for death metal, country or rap, I was hungry to get out and play! I ended up going on 2 tours opening for a local psycobilly act from Texas to California.
Can you tell me a bit about how the band came together and what sort of lead to or inspired the heavy blues and funk classic rock sound and feel of the band?
JK: I got a call one day for a band looking for a singer, ‘specially a Rock n roll singer! I thought it’s perfect and met up as soon as I could, at that point I had done all I could with acoustic gigs. I ended up crossing paths with Nick Jive, we hit it off and shared a lot of inspirations and a lot of them bled into our music unintentionally. We never sit down and try to emulate anybody, we just try to write what feels natural. Nick brought the funk and I brought the blues.
If not too much – can you guys [each] drop a list of favorite bands or players and albums from your youth?
Jason Kane – Boston’s first album, Grand Funk, Sly and The Family Stone ‘best of’.
Nick Jive – Thin Lizzy, Mountain, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Thomas Chapoy, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden.
Soggy Noggin is your third album. For those of us not familiar can you give us a brief run down on the first 2 albums — approach, highlights, reception…?
JK: It was definitely a different approach. We were a little heavier and recorded everything differently, with Soggy Noggin most of it is live – whole band jammin’ at once, more of an organic feel. My favorite highlights off the first 2 albums are “Courthouse”, “How I Do”, “Crystal Ball”, “Pussyfootin”, & “Titty Boi Rabbit”.
You’ve opened a number of shows for acts such as Ace Frehley, Moxy [great Canadian band!], Y&T, Uli Jon Roth, The Winery Dogs … What are some of your favorite shows you guys have opened up, and any stories from any of those shows?
JK: My favorite show had to be Pat Travers, Starz & Axe. We ended up playing Richie Ranno of Starz’ Birthday the day after the show as a private party. They were the coolest, nicest guyz, everyone. I had a chance to talk to the singer of Starz and mustered up the courage to say in conversation ” No offense but you sound like the guy from Cactus”, come to find out it was Jimmy Kunes of Cactus singing for Starz that tour! Unbelievable night! Later on we ended up meeting up with Pat Travers in Chicago and played a handful more shows together in Texas, another group of incredible players and the nicest guys.
Can you tell me a bit about the ideas behind the title Soggy Noggin and CD cover art, to begin with?
JK: We were originally going to call the album “Wet Brain”, but we thought “Soggy Noggin “was funnier to say [haha]. As far as cover art, I wanted to show homage to my first tour when all we had to eat was this raw spam while we were stuck somewhere in El Paso. Not much has changed! [haha]
How do songs come together for you guys? and where lyrical ideas comes from?
JK: We always tackle the music first and then I’ll add lyrics. Someone starts off with a few riffs and some arrangement ideas and the songs grows from there. As far as the lyrics go, those are all personal experiences or the goofy situations of everyday life. I don’t try to get to deep with the lyrics just something that flows and that sometimes makes sense.
You guys take on a few covers – “Burning Ships” [Lucifer’s Friend], and I checked out “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy” [Rod Stewart] — is that one on an actual release? You guys definitely pick a few unexpected songs to cover.
JK: Yes, those are our only covers as of now! We might be doing a few more soon. “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy” was not on an actual release, just a song we have online and a fun little closer we do live. We wanted something nobody would expect! And Lucifer’s Friend was one I just couldn’t pass; such a great song all over, and I’m a huge John Lawton fan!
Can you give a few antedotes or insiration / ideas of some of the tracks on the latest album — like “Machine of Dreams”, “Long Time Comin'”, “Chains”…. ? Any favorites you guys have ?
JK: The biggest thing we wanted on those songs was the live feel. I feel like we really captured that on those tunes. “Machine Of Dreams” was inspired from our trip to Vegas, “Long Time Coming” was just about seeing us live and what it feels like for us. “Chains” was the first song we recorded for Soggy Noggin and it was our first attempt to write with keys and explore another realm and not worry what genre.
“Smooth Operator” kinda reminds me of old Rare Earth – pretty funky, plus the keys, the saxaphone…. Where do some of the production ideas come from on tracks like this – where there’s more than just guitar/bass /drums going on?
JK: When we first started writing for Soggy we really wanted some brass and to capture the funky side of rock. with Spenser Ramzel behind the recording side and Steve Perez on sax we were able to pull it off. Me, Nick & Tom just got to hammer out bongos, hand claps & tambourine after we laid the music down.
Being from Texas, any legendary acts like ZZ Top or Roky Erickson have an influence on you guys?
Billy Gibbon’s slick playing has definitely been an inspiration. But actually, I grew up in Chicago, and that is where I fell in love with blues and that really inspired my playing big time. But some Texas inspiration I’ve found as of late is some of these country finger pickin’ guys out here, pretty insane stuff! Ya don’t get that in Chicago [haha]
How are you guys dealing with the pandemic, surviving?
JK: We’ve been keeping busy as much as we can. Lots of writing, lots of practicing, lots of video shooting, really crossing the T’s and the dotting the I’s and taking care of the legal side of things. but we haven’t stopped for a minute.
Working on any new material or have releases planned?
JK: Yes! We have a brand new album coming out and is currently in the works, 8 or 10 songs new songs! Nothing set for a release just yet! We’ll be waiting for the right time and continue promoting our newest release Soggy Noggin. We still have a few music videos coming out and live studio footage that has yet to be released!