Listen to the live interview Episode #477: A.V.A Live Radio Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax : http://tobtr.com/10030555
GETTING TO KNOW RUSTY SHIPP
by Jacqueline Jax host of A.V.A Live Radio
Interviewing : Russ T. Shipp (vox/guitar)
AJ Newton (drums)
Jake Adams (bass)
Song name: Devil Jonah
Music Genre : Alternative Rock/Grunge/Punk/Surf
The song started from a single, heavy, guitar riff I wrote, which I thought was communicating an ominous message of warning about some kind phantom or monster, such as Davy Jones or another agent of maritime judgement. So I expounded upon this feeling that the riff gave me, and tied together several ancient legends to tell a story about how Davy Jones changed from being a man to the Devil of the Seas, the etymological roots of whose name are believed to be “Devil Jonah.” It’s borrowing from legends like The Flying Dutchman and Doctor Faustus to talk about people who were famous for selling their soul to the devil or cursing God, and how it led to their demise; a message which still has application in our modern lives as well.
This is the first album…
we’ve made that was constructed to be a whole, cohesive, thematic piece of art. It’s like getting on a ship that takes you on a journey down under the sea exploring different stories and concepts. All the songs are very different from one another stylistically, and yet they all have common sonic threads weaving in and out from beginning to end. We think the listener will enjoy it most for its heavy, unconventional guitar riffs, and also the catchy melodies and peculiar chord progressions that make the core of every song, not to mention each song being marked by very thought-provoking lyrics.
Our band is from Nashville, Tennessee…
hailed as Music City USA. True to the name, there are more songwriters and bands here than anywhere we’ve ever seen. Which is amazing because of all the resources and opportunities that come with that creative synergy. However, it also means the standards are at an all-time high, so we have to really sharpen our craft to stand out in the sea of competition.
We’ve had mostly positive experiences with it so far. Obviously, we wish that people could take one listen to our song and say, “This is the greatest thing ever! I’m going to play this on our radio station immediately!” But, alas, just like any business, it takes a lot of work and a lot of perseverance to get people to even consider your song, and they’re looking at it from a business angle: “What profits will this song generate?” rather than from an artistic angle like we’d ideally like. But those are the rules of the game we play, and I’m happy to play by the rules and put in my dues if that’s what it takes. It’s taken years, but we’re finally seeing the fruits of all that labor start to pour in now, and now that the momentum has been built, it’s really picking up traction now. So we’re on the good end of the music business spectrum at this point, and we’re so excited that our hard work is paying off!
I would love to have 5 minutes alone with…
I (Russ T.) would love to have 5 minutes alone with Dustin Kensrue, the frontman of my favorite modern rock band, Thrice. He’s the person I see in the music scene who is doing specifically what I hope to do as an artist myself – musically, lyrically, and missionally. He’s a songwriter of a rock band that has a big influence and he uses that influence to specifically target intellectuals with philosophically-provocative lyrics, while doing an almost unparalleled job of blending catchy, pop-influenced music with heavy, interesting riffs, all presented in a distinctly artistic package with a lot of imagery and atmosphere. I want to know how he personally and specifically (outside of the limelight) lives out his mission of reaching the world with his message on a day-to-day basis.
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