Awhile ago I had a chance to sit down and have a chat with lead singer and guitarist Jason Darr of Neurosonic to talk about the music business today and his band. This interview was conducted January 29, 2008 at Slim’s, San Francisco on the first date on their tour with Puddle Of Mudd. I would like to thank Jason Darr for his time and Sarah Cunningham of Susan Blonde Inc. and those at Bodog for making this interview possible. You guys were all amazing and I really appreciate everything you did.
Where did you get your name, Neurosonic?
Originally we had a whole ridiculous list of names it’s always really really hard to pick a name that isn’t already trademarked. So we started to think about actually combining words or making up words. So we thought well musically we wanted to portray this idea of how people react, the shock of when you hear something great. Music or you know whatever. So neurology being the brain waves and sonic being the audio, Neurosonic. Kind of a combine effort between me, some people at the label, and our management. We heard it and knew it was right.
Do you like Bodog, because I heard you went on the battle of the bands with them?
We did a whole tour with them as the contest was happening we were making appearances and I actually did a lot of the soundtracks for the TV show, it was just a lot of fun. Making music for other people is always good.
What is one thing most people don’t know of about you?
If they haven’t seen us live they have no idea what this band is about. So once they see us love it will all becomes clear.
What is the message you’re trying to convey to your fans?
Honesty. The whole celebrity thing, which is a completely new lifestyle seems to be popping out of the ground.
I know you like bashing Ashlee Simpson a lot, am I right?
Well that’s a lot of fun. But I feel as a artist I just want to write music that is honest to me and I don’t want to feel bad for anything and I don’t want to not have the answer to any questions people ask me. Hey what’s that song about? I want to be able to actually feel what that song is about. Not go well it’s about this girl that broke my heart when I was 18 blah blah blah. There’s too much of the crap going around.
How has the internet helped you?
We’ve got a great great team that works in our viral department. We’re all very active on there personally which is really excruciating, because were like a hundred pages behind in our messages. It’s a really big effort on our part to keep that maintained, it’s difficult. But I think if you have a real presence online, people will appreciate that. So many artists have hired people for obvious reasons, because they get to a certain point in their career that they can’t do it. We’re going try to last as long as we can and reach as many people as possible.
Other than music what are your other passions?
What do you think of the music business today, because it’s changed so much?
In one way it’s absolutely frightening, because as a business it’s crashing. Without financing it can’t survive and it won’t. The thing that is really really cool of the music business now is that it’s getting back to the single age you know like when The Beatles were popping out singles, you know what I mean. It makes people a lot more honest because they can’t just write one good song and expect people to buy their record.
What about all the illegal downloading?
Well yeah, roll with it or die. The dinosaurs all died.
What are you looking forward to most, being the first day on tour?
The second day, the first day is always horrendous, nothing goes as planned. The nice part of starting at a place like San Francisco, which is great. Is that were staying at a real nice hotel, which is great, but we have to drive all the way to Portland tomorrow. Which sucks.
So what are your musical influences?
A lot of things I mean if you were to crack open my ipod you’d probably laugh. There’s everything from Eminem to Korn to Slipnot to The Beatles to Madonna, Prince, Ravi Shankar, Zebrahead, Good Charlotte, The Used, My Chemical Romance it just goes on, I’d list about everything.
If you could tour with any band, who would you tour with?
I don’t know I’ve always been really excited to be on the tour that I’m on.
Puddle Of Mudd and Tyler Read.
Some great bands, good company.
Is there anything else that you want to tell us about your album Drama Queen?
It’s fantastic and if you don’t buy it you’re missing out.
You also described that album as a very “you” album and a gift to yourself?
Yeah, it was a very selfish record I was fortunate to be signed to a label like Bodog, they allowed me to go in and make the record I wanted to make. They had some creative input when I asked for it, because the head of my record company is a really talented musician, so I turned to him for a lot advice for some of the songs. But, they were really supportive in letting me make a great record. They wrote the check and said here you go. That’s as good as it gets.
If there was something you wanted say to your fans what would it be?
Hello. Come to our show, buy a CD, and if you survive those two thing then we’re laughing.