The First Single ‘Commuter Love’ is out now. The Band accepted to answer some of our questions.
How are you guys doing today?
Ian -We’re good thank you. It’s bitter cold in London but with blue skies..
Where are you answering our questions from?
Ian – From our home studio… surrounded by sheets of lyrics, keyboards , old movie posters and cups of steaming hot coffee.
First up, we’d like to know more about the band. How did the band form?
Ian – I saw Francesca in a different band when I was out on a very drunken night in Manchester, I loved their music but I was plotting to steal her from them. She lived in Manchester at the time, so she would come down and we’d work into the late hours a few days a week finding our sound.
Francesca: Hahahaha – Ian came to see a band I was in at the time and he did indeed plot to steal me – and he succeeded !
Why did you choose the name I am a Camera?
Ian – I love Christopher Isherwood’s « Berlin Diary’ quote ‘I Am A Camera with it’s shutter open, quite passive , recording , not thinking’ I think it really sums us up as a band. It was written about Berlin in the late 1920’s and early 1930’s. It was a time of hedonism and insanely fabulous private parties but also dark and unsettling.
Francesca: It’s from the book ‘The Berlin Stories’, which then became a play called I Am A Camera in the 50’s. We’re not connected to that era, but it was set around the time when there was a fabulous scene forming, & I think we’ve got that about us.
In terms of song writing, how does that go down? Is it collaborative?
Ian – Alot of the time I’ll have a rough idea of the track.. I’ll have some beats looping and some chords floating around and we’ll generally knock it out from there. We find alot of our inspiration comes from other peoples lives. We also watch dumb reality shows about people having their home decorated and make up stories about their home lives ( affairs, jealously, thieving etc ) and then add a touch of evil.
Francesca: Yes, it depends really. Sometimes Ian will have the chords or a dirty bass line that we work on. Or sometimes we’ll be inspired by a story or a character & go from there.
Can you tell me a little about the recording process?
Ian – Recording can go a few ways. I love to record odd sounds, I carry a recording device with me so a lot of our music will come from hearing different banging from traffic,people chatting or the underground trains and I’ll take that to the studio and then music will start to come out of it. It’s an odd way of working but we love creating things out of everyday life.
Francesca: All our first recordings were done in our little studio, with no one else involved. Now we’re also working in bigger studios with different people, but it all still comes from us.
What bothers you most about the music industry?
Francesca: some of the shit you hear on the radio.
Ian – We try not the think about the music industry too much. I think there’s good and bad times in every industry. We just focus on all the fantastic music that is coming out right now. London has so much energy it’s a great place to live and record.
Has the internet been good for musical development?
Ian – It’s fantastic for getting something out fresh and new and to your listeners as quickly as possible, that to me is incredibly exciting. We can make whatever we want and collaborate with our friends. It gives power back to the artists which is great when you are new and starting out.
Francesca: Definitely, it helped us. We put a clip up of a few songs to get started and had an amazing reaction – that;s how it all started. And with “Computer Love” it has helped us get fans from all over the world from France, to Poland and all the way to The Philippenes !
What kind of jobs did you have before you were in I am a Camera?
Francesca: I worked in a clothes shop, giving dirty looks to any one who came near.
Ian – waiter, DJ ,sex phone worker.
Hopes for this next year for you?
Francesca: finish and release our album, then tour and take over the world. .
Ian – to get more music out, make more short films, do more shows and terrorise the general public with songs heartache and dispair.
Any closing words for TEEZ’FM listeners?
Ian – There is no excuse for having bad hair.
“Commuter Love” is currently available on iTunes.
Thanks to Ian & Francesca
Special Thanks to Carl
Interview by Thierry Jaussaud