Artist of the week

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Permanent Ability

-Hi Permanent Ability! Let's start with the name of the band, why did you choose this? Well I had this philosophy. We are all conceived with a god given gift,  in my case being able to create art and music, which is permanently rooted in me for life; and even if I wanted to get rid of that talent, its an ability that will always be mine, and its up to me to decide whether to use it, abuse it, or let it go to idle. So based on that philosophy, I thought Permanent Ability was suitable for my band name, and the creative abundance given to us as individuals, when we unit as one unit, has proven that we are using such gifts to inspire hearts and minds and using them as our canvas. 

-Why do you make music and what does it mean for you? I make music music because I sincerely & passionately LOVE doing it...more specifically making Funk Rock music. I would like to refresh the genre and bring it new life and i feel Permanent Ability has done that thus far. I'm not going to lie, fame and money are also other cognizant injections of motivation as well...but i'm realistic and have my priorities in a row. 

-A new album ("Love You To Death") is about to be released, is there a link between it and your last one ("Bring It On!") which received Grammy Nominees in five categories (Best Rock song, Best Alternative Album, Best Package Design, Best Performance by Group, Best Producer)? I wouldn't say there is a link more so a mature continuation portraying growth. I feel on "Love You to Death" you will hear a more mature band. My lyrics are well written and not as perverse as some of the songs on Bring It On! which were written in my early twenties. I want to prove that i am a good song writer as well as lyricist on this record. I also take some risks vocally and Im trying different ideas that i wasn't in the mind set of with Bring It On!. You can hear some of the this new style starting to bloom when listening to Bring It On! with the songs "Last to Know" & "Shades of Gray." 

-Talking about working on the record "Bring it On!" it was produced by Jim Wirt (Incubus, Hoobastank, Peter Case, etc). How much he has influenced your work? Jim brought tons to the table back in 2010, but it was already set, so to speak. He simply helped define the sound, and captured it with Bring It On!. With my first EP ‘From the Womb to Hollywood,’ I felt it failed to capture the original sound that I was looking for, and the overall tightness which can only be achieved when taking the time to make a real record. With Bring It On! we worked and worked the songs before recording and had already developed the sound. So when Jim Wirt stepped in, it was easy for him to refine it if needed, and then implemented his producing style to it. I was with him daily for twelve hours, twelve days straight just soaking up all the knowledge like a sponge, asking questions, making mental notes, etc. The final outcome was priceless, and the knowledge he shared, along with resources I now have moving forward to create music, it’s finally becoming second nature. Using what I learned by working under and studying Jim I now have the ability to Produce my records the same way, using the same methods and team, minus Jim. Fortunately, I had a great teacher and the new record "Love You to Death will be produced by yours truly. It's all second nature at this point to me.

-Many reviewers talk about you as the new Red Hot Chili Peppers. What do you think about it? It's insanely flattering. The Peppers have casted a long shadow, and getting out of that shadow has been challenging because we DO have an original sound. However, being compared to such an iconic band is VERY positive, and because few bands ventured successfully down the Funk Rock road, someone will always debate the originality of Permanent Ability. But thats cool. The colorful list of achievements my band has already accomplished in such a short time,  I can say with confidence that we are definitely moving in the right direction.  I mean the Grammy Nods alone make me keep doing what i'm doing, and maintaining a steady speed in this direction is the goal. 

-If it was up to you, how would you define your sound? Original. I sincerely feel Permanent Ability has a uniquely fresh and original funk rock sound that keeps evolving. 

-Talking about the compositions of your songs: how and where they born? Do you have a favorite one? What is most important for me this time around is that I wanted this record to have a less-is-more approach. I felt with Bring It On!That a lot of the music was way too busy, as if we were playing live. I felt it had a dated drum sound, and there were tons of mistakes for the amount of money I paid for it. This time around I have more control and get to explore the concept of having each musician play what is right for each song. When I write the songs, I know the musicians well enough and write the parts with them in mind, and also am aware of how can we can pull it off live… although the bass and drums on my records are always cut together live to keep that feel just a bit. This record, I feel, will be my greatest one to date. The slow song Only Rain ventures out into using different layers, including pianos and violins, as well as, a Pearl Jam Yellow Led Better lullaby guitar tone. I also wrote a song called Punch A Bitch… despite its title, its about an argument I got into with Chelsea Handler at a grocery store in Los Angeles. She put me on blast on her show too, so this is my creative rebuttal. It’s tastefully done, too, and I’m proud of the outcome. Just Another Day is my lyrical unveiling, aimed directly at the phoniness of Hollywood and the music industry. I hate it! I wanted it to be an assault, and expose it for what it truly is… so it had to hit hard for me. I needed the motivation to fuel my anger and deliver an intense performance. This record is more mature, with solidified concepts – and it’s lyrically well-written, as well, I feel. A lot of the songs on Bring It On! I wrote in my late teens and early twenties like i said prior… and that album does have its immature moments, but that’s where I was at the moment. There are some solid songs on that record that kinda peak into Love You To Death’s writing style, though. I felt Love You To Death had the ability, for me, to prove evolution has begun within me as a writer, both lyrically and compositionally. I now arrange the songs without insecurity, and stay true to my creed of saying what I want and doing what I say. Good At Losing was actually supposed to make the record Bring It On!, but I felt it didn’t fit collectively with the rest. I’m glad i waited to release it too. It was recorded [back then] too, but I decided to re-do it. The final song exceeded my expectations, and Orlando’s solo is killer in it too! Some interesting facts regarding the recording of Love You To Death: We were able to use tier vintage equipment on this record. I had access to a 1964 Gretsch drum kit owned by Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. The kick drum alone is 28 inches… and it sounds massive! Taylor Hawkins of the Foo Fighters also lent my drum tech 4-5 different snares for us to try, too. 

-What genres and artists influenced your music the most? Our influences come from a wide variety of artists, ranging from LL Cool J to Led Zeppelin and everything else in between. Keeping our ears diverse to all styles of music is important to us, and also lends to a vast source of creative ammunition. So when I say we listen to everything…we sincerely do!  

-You come from Los Angeles. What do you think about the music coming from your city and country and how how do you see yourself in relation to them? Permanent Ability is unique because our sound is geared towards the genre Funk-Rock. Which makes us stick out like sore thumbs cuz our style is incomparable to the rest of these dime-a-dozen, clichéd acts found in commercial music today, as well as, here in the LA music scene. We are not taking an easy road though; trying to make this indie, hipster music like everyone else, cuz it’s “IN”, or cuz they want a record deal. Permanent Ability revives the fossil of funk, and takes the genre into a new modern day direction. Simply listen to the radio and you will hear, there isn’t one band on the airwaves that currently sounds like Permanent Ability. Plus, our live shows are immensely explosive, showcasing radio-friendly songs which also sets us apart from other live acts both signed and unsigned.

-What's your favorite artist and song? The Chili Peppers. I'd have to say anything off of BloodSugarSexMagik.

-Wanna talk us about your collaboration with bassist Mario Pagliarulo of Serj Tankian's solo band? He is a good friends of mine but we never got to collaborate together and I felt he was meant for this particular body of music. We work great together and we have fun collaborating too. I am very fortunate to have such great guys to be apart of this record too. Having him attached to the record helps our recognition and show a level of professionalism. He was also supposed to perform on my first record "From the Womb to Hollywood" which is currently being redone for re-release by the end of February in my current style now. Unfortunately, Mario was unavailable at that time back in 2008 and Lige Curry bassist of Parliament Funkadelic stepped in andI was fortunate for that humbling experience as well being such a long time fan of Funkadelic.

-Who do you think are the most relevant musicians nowadays and who are you listening to the most? Dave Grohl, Brandon Boyd of Incubus....I know im missing a couple more. There really isn't much more to choose from in my opinion. All the iconic bands will soon be extinct, and I am not buying into all that hipster shit neither. Most of the bands today are flashes in the pan so labels can survive on that fast revenue. Start a band we need rock music! Or just sign Permanent Ability already.

-How much does the live element matter in your music? That's the MASSIVE and one of the most important aspects of Permanent Ability. So much so that we record live to capture that vibe and energy. Usually starting with bass and drums as solid takes using vocal and guitar scratches. Then once the bass and drums are locked in then we add guitars and vocals last. Even when I write the songs i always think, how can we pull this off live. Having that mindset when writing is also key.

-If you could pick an artist or a band to play with on a stage, who would you choose? The Red Hot Chili Peppers...only with guitarist John Frusciante in the lineup.

-What do you think about the music industry nowadays? Wanna talk us about your experience with the labels? And what would you say to all the young bands looking for a record deal? Get a good lawyer. Now-a-days you don't need a label, you CAN do it yourself. It is hard work, but it beats the restrictions and the pauper lifestyle you will still be living signed to a label. Use your money wisely. Have a budget for your bands priorities, so when you do have to spend money you get every pennies worth. Also know sometimes to make money, you have to spend some too. Do your research online so you are not taken advantage of by companies claiming they have services to help you. Use Better Business Bureau..etc. Be mindful of the sharks, if you gotta pay them they usually ain’t legit. The Music Industy is a gamble, there is no formula to success you just gotta pave your own path by any means possible. Famous or infamous…you’re still famous I guess right?!? That’s what PA strives to do, and fortunately we’ve been successful. When TALENT meets the RIGHT opportunity, is when GREAT things happen. So be selective, be patient, and it will come. Hard work ALWAYS pays off!!!

-Do you feel the weight of being a real independent band? At times. But it no label has tons of positives also. We are completely free to do what we want and create our own deadlines and stick to them etc. Besides even label execs do not know what is going to be successful...the music industry right now is a crap shoot. The only weight I carry is funding the record, then not having any money afterwards to promote and market it. Slowly but surely the music makes its own noise and garners just takes a little longer is all. 

-What is the message that you'd like to express to the people who listen to your music and what would you like to say to your fans? Well every song has a message or a theme, but I like to write with a universal message for the listener to apply to his or her own life experiences to relate to it. I don’t like to limit myself lyrically, I will cover any topic I feel I can deliver creatively as long as I have the passion for that particular topic. There really isn’t one message per say, other than we try to make creative songs that are commercial / radio ready, showcasing a funky sound that menaces with energy. I would like to say Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii to the fans.

-What is your favorite book and movie? Favorite book is The Alchemist. Favorite movie is The Dark Knight.

-How and where do you see yourself in ten years from now? In sunny California performing, making and producing records for Permanent Ability as well as up and coming young bands. If any band is looking for quality sounding music and a producer feel free to contact me. 

-Beatles or Rolling Stones? Both. You can't have me choose between two music icons =)

-Where can we find your music? Please visit for all up to date news,shows and music. Like us on facebook, follow our ass on Twitter, support us by shopping at iTunes. Thanks for the fun interview and support. Be good.

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