Fresh Session : Ra Ra Riot on The Laundromatinee & My Old Kentucky Blog 2008 Holiday Interview Series

Ra Ra Riot released an excellent album this year, The Rhumb Line, through Barsuk Records. We liked it so much, we had them break it down and tell us a little about every single song on the record. Here’s what Wesley Miles, lead vox and keys, had to say about the three songs they shared with us during the session…

Ghost Under Rocks – This is a song that John Pike presented to the band in the spring of 2006. It was a beautiful but simple song, and at that time, we weren’t sure what to do with it. So we changed it to a minor key, and John came up with a sick drum beat for it.

Each Year – This song practically wrote itself. It was built up from a bass part that Mathieu (bass guitar) came up with, and everyone basically just threw their parts on top of it. I had recently read To Kill a Mockingbird, which had a huge impact on me, and John and I talked a lot about it on our way down to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Those experiences served as the lyrical inspiration for John and I.

Can You Tell – I wrote this song earlier in college, but it is the most prolific of all of our songs; there have been at least seven versions of it throughout its career.

MP3 Session Download:

Ra Ra Riot – Can You Tell (Live at The Pop Machine on The Laundromatinee)

Watch the videos from their session and download the tracks at The Laundromatinee!

Bonus Album Cut:

Ra Ra Riot – Dying Is Fine

MOKB : Any special musical plans for the Holiday Season? Any specials songs or releases?

Milo : We’ve spent much of 2008 on the road, so we will be taking it easy for a couple weeks surrounding the New Year. We’ll be shooting a video in mid-December for our second single, “Can You Tell,” but other than that, we’ll be catching up on family time and some rest and relaxation.

Read the rest of the interview AFTER THE JUMP…

MOKB : What have you been working on lately?

Milo : We’ve started to work on a few new song ideas… since we’ve been touring so much, it’s really difficult to find time for all of us to get together and write. We’ll be spending some time in January working on new material before we’re back out on the road for most of the spring.

MOKB : What was your favorite album or musician of 2008?

Milo : I’ve been listening to Marnie Stern’s new album “This Is It & I Am It & You Are It & So Is That & He Is It & She Is It & It Is It & That Is That” a lot lately. She is a pretty amazing guitar player and her stuff is so unique. It’s a refreshing change of pace.

MOKB : What’s the plan for 2009? What secret knowledge can you divulge?

Milo : No big secrets, really. We’ll be spending a lot of time on the road in ’09, continuing to support our album The Rhumb Line, and that will keep us busy through the summer.

MOKB : What is your most and least favorite things about the Holiday Season?

Milo : I know it sounds cliché, but being able see friends and family is the best thing about the holiday season… sometimes it’s difficult being on the road for months at a time, so any time off is highly valued.

MOKB : What are your favorite holiday foods?

Milo : Pumpkin pie and hot chocolate

MOKB : Any special holiday traditions?

Milo : Usually there is some sort of big family dinner at my family’s winery. I have a fairly large extended family – lots of aunts and uncles and cousins – and it seems to get bigger every year.

MOKB : If you could collaborate with one artist this Christmas season, who would it be and why?

Milo : I’d love to collaborate with Joanna Newsom. She has written some of my favorite songs, and I’ve always had an affinity for the harp.

MOKB : Favorite holiday movie? song?

Milo : Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas has been one of my favorite movies since I was in elementary school. We got a copy on VHS in my house when it came out on video, and I think I wore the tape out in the subsequent years. The movie is so imaginative and has some really great songs.

MOKB : Santa or Satan? St. Nicholas or St. Paulie Girl? Kris Kringle or Kris Kristofferson?

Milo : Hmmm… Aren’t Santa, St. Nicholas and Kris Kringle all pretty much the same person?


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  • megando

    December 4, 2008 [ 4:17 pm ]

    This interview totally just made my day. RRR is my favorite band and it’s good to see them doing so well. Happy holidays, kids!

  • Susan

    December 5, 2008 [ 11:21 am ]

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.Susan

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