We caught up with Richie - aka Jape - to talk about his upcoming debut Australian tour with Dappled Cities, Ocean of Frequency, living in Sweden (but representing Ireland) and much, much more...
Hi Richie! How is your day thus far?
my day is going pretty well thanks, i bought a lee hazlewood album on vinyl and also cleaned the litter tray and fed a friends cats because she is gone away on holiday, i'm glad that's over. later on tonight there is a festival on here in malmo so i'm gonna go and watch the hives and grandaddy perform and eat a hotdog, maybe drink a beer.
It is fantastic to hear that Jape will be joining Dappled Cities for an Australian tour in September and October! What are you looking forward to most about the tour?
thanks ! yes ! we are looking forward to coming over so much, we get to leave the european winter and join the antipodean summer ! not to mention we get to see mysterious, huge australia and hang out with the lads from dappled cities.
What do you do to make time pass on that long plane journey over?
mmm, well i'm not the best flyer so probably staring terrified at the little pixel plane for 24 hours as it millimeters its way across the globe. i will try to get some work done too on the laptop but i will probably get distracted watching transformers 2 five times in a row.
I liked listening to Ocean of Frequency (very slowly on Youtube!) and I look forward to it's official release here on 28 September. It still has those dynamic electronic beats it also sounded quite intimate to my ears. Can you take me through the song writing process for this album?
with this particular album i tried to make it so that would be a, 'grower'. i always find my favourite records are ones that take a couple of listens to get, and tried to do this somehow with this one. i wrote the equivalent of about three albums before arriving at the final tracklisting. the one before was a kind of a 'look at me !' record whereas this one is more subdued and subtle and rewards patient listening i hope.
Were there any roadblocks that you had to overcome during the creative process?
yes a lot, i had a hard time in a lot of ways making this record and it was a stressful birth but i love the baby.
This year Jape won a Choice Award for best album for the second time, congratulations! What were your immediate thoughts when when it was announced?
i was surprised, i didn't expect to win with this one, i figured it would be another record from the very strong shortlist. i was really happy though because jape is the only act to have won the award twice and that felt pretty good, and you know because i went through a good bit of stress trying to get this one finished it was like, 'cool i'm glad i went through that stress, it was worth it in the end'.
You have obviously received a great response home in Ireland. What does it feel like to have that kind of support for something you have created?
It feels good, but you are only ever as good as the last thing you do so you can never get complacent. i love ireland and we have played so much there over the years, it would be great to do something outside of there too some day - hey rest of the world !! what's up ? :)
I hear that you now live in Sweden. What is that like?
it's cool, a lot of healthy and nutritious food that's easy to come by, it's different to ireland, has a different social metabolism which i am still trying to get used to but i'm slowly finding my feet here and i'm starting to feel that it is my home. hopefully some of the masterful scandinavian way with melody will rub off on me.
Even if you are no longer based there, do you still know some great Irish acts that we should look out for?
there are so many great irish bands nowadays - too many to mention, a great site for people to check out for all the tips for irish bands is nialler9.com - literally there are too many to mention !
You have played in many different bands over the years, including other projects like VisionAir and The Redneck Manifesto. What is unique about creating sounds for Jape?
both redneck manifesto and visionair are collaborative musical projects, where the writing is shared between a few different people, jape songs are 100% written by me, that's the difference.
You post a lot of interesting documentaries on your website. Have you always been an inquisitive character?
yes i believe there is a lot going on i don't know about so try to learn as much as i can all the time, i just found a website called networkawesome.com which i really recommend people take a look at, the stuff on that is the kind of thing i'm really into.
I also have noticed some posts featuring different novels and authors. What would you say is the most influential book that you have read so far?
straight away i would say, 'narcissus and goldmund' by hermann hesse. anything by hesse really he is my favorite author.
Your music has been re-interpreted by the likes of Soulwax and Brendan Benson of Raconteurs' has even incorporated 'Floating' into live sets. What song, in the history of songs, do you think would be fun to cover?
maybe, 'long black train' by lee hazlewood because as i mentioned above i just bought, 'trouble is a lonesome town' on vinyl today after years of only having an .mp3 of it .
What do you see ahead for the rest of 2012? Before the world ends, naturally...
i want get as much writing as i can done for the next album, and play some gigs that's pretty much all i want to do, and pretty much all i ever want to do.
thanks very much for the interview!
DAPPLED CITIES NATIONAL TOUR with special guest JAPE
(plus more artists to be announced)
DARWIN Friday 28th September @ Railway Club
DARWIN Saturday 29th September @ Railway Club
SYDNEY Thursday 4th October @ The Metro (ALL AGES)
BRISBANE Saturday 6th October @ The Zoo
HOBART Wednesday 10th October @ Republic Bar
MELBOURNE Friday 12th October @ Corner Hotel
ADELAIDE Saturday 13th October @ Uni Bar
PERTH Sunday 14th October @ Amplifier Bar