First Look Friday: Govales' Synaesthetic Soul Features In Spike Lee's New Film 'Da Sweet Blood Of Jesus'
Govales shot by Eddie Pearson for Okayplayer
Govales has recently grabbed the attention of music aficionados with the placement of his song “Doors To Nowhere” in Spike Lee‘s eerie new effort Da Sweet Blood Of Jesus, featuring prominently in the film’s ominous trailer (the film hits theaters, Feb. 13th–watch the trailer below). Entering on an atmospheric wash of synths and Govales’ soulful falsetto whispering: “There’s six ways to kill a heart…“, the track then proceeds to alternate deliriously between a grungy, yet distant, psyche-rock attack and passages more recognizable as modern r&b. It is the type of song which immediately prompts the question, Who is that?
The answer has proven increasingly intriguing. Delaware-bred, Bed-Stuy-based Govales had already released a powerful, more conventionally soulful, single in “Go For The Kill”–but a little digging reveals that he has been making music since his pre-teen years. Okayplayer linked with the young producer to talk about the synaesthesia, the angelic origins of his name and his own aspirations in film. Read on to hear more music and receive a proper introduction to a formidable new talent:
OKP: we understand you started out in a group called Bassline–tell us a bit about how you got into the group and into music
Govales: We started out in the 8th grade in this program called Micro Society, which was a microcosm of the real world. It was for us to learn about how the world works. We had all kinds of fake businesses and fake money. This teacher named Ms. Bishop asked me and my class what kind of business we’d start if we had the chance, everyone kind of just went silent and when she asked me I immediately said “A recording studio!”
Not thinking she’d take it seriously, but she went and got a grant for around $9000 and bought us our first round of equipment. We had auditions for others to be in the group. She brought in two awesome men by the names of Dr. Shuaib Meacham and Tony Anderson. Tony would go on to be the group’s manager and my mentor throughout my childhood and into adulthood. After we graduated 8th grade, it turned into a summer program where we got on the Scream tour with B2K & Bow Wow. From there, we got on numerous tours and opening slots across America and got to tour a bit in Europe. During that whole process, I started producing and writing in the group and it sparked a lifelong obsession.
OKP: But there was some support from the University of Delaware (?)–how did that come about?
GV: That came through Dr. Meacham and Tony Anderson. The group was generating a lot of positive press in the community and we got rewarded a bit with the best equipment and programs at the time to keep improving. I took full advantage of it and spent everyday after school and everyday literally during the summer making beats and songs. Also University of Delaware had a fashion program that worked with the New York University Fashion School and I wrote a business plan. When I was too young to get my first fashion line funded, they gave me a whole senior class of students and in order for them to graduate, they had to produce my line. From my drawings to CAD to real world prototypes.
OKP: We understand the tracks that have leaked so far are pieces of a completed LP titled Lovetron–when was the material on the album recorded–and what are your plans for releasing it?
GV: I’ve recorded so much material, starting around 2011-2012 and I’m still recording and coming up with ideas constantly. I’ve had a set playlist for L O V E T R O N for awhile, but nothing is ever done ’til it’s out, to me. I’m watching what the people love and based on that continuing to mold the collection they’ll receive.
OKP: How did you link with Spike Lee to place “Doors To Nowhere” on Da Sweet Blood Of Jesus soundtrack?