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OKP Exclusive: Son Little Shares The Music + Stories From His Brilliant Self-Titled Debut LP [LP Stream + Interview]

OKP Exclusive: Son Little Shares The Music + Stories From His Brilliant Self-Titled Debut LP [LP Stream + Interview]

“Cross My Heart”

SL: That’s the first song I really did where I knew it was someone. I was trying to make something upbeat, and then it completely, horribly failed.

Sad things happened to me, and the mood shifted. I had a friend die a couple years ago, around that time and that was something I was still trying to process. That same week was the George Zimmerman trial, which changed the mood. I think in a way it was just a way of dealing with it. More than trying to make any kind of statement, because I don’t know exactly what the statement is, but I personally was having a hard time dealing with it, and so that was how I worked through it. It made it clearer for me, and when we play it I can summon some part of that feeling, or maybe just the release of those feelings. It’s kind of an ongoing thing.

I used to be “Little Son,” when I was writing on my own. I ended up flipping it around—I was conscious of the blues connection there with Sun House, even though that wasn’t why I did it, it was just a happy accident. That was the direction I was going in.

OKP: Tell us about that–can you define the difference between Little Son and Son Little?

SL: Son Little is certainly closer to the moodier side of things. I think a lot of times, I’ve been resisting what my natural inclinations have been, which is a lot of times towards that—a darker mood. I try to pick it up and try to break out of that. And with this stuff, I really went towards it, instead of away. If it’s going to be dark, then let it be dark. These are dark times.

OKP: Are they dark times for you personally?

SL: I think in general it’s pretty dark, man. I’ve had my own moments, for sure, but generally speaking…

I always liked messing around with drum machines and sometimes putting drum machines together with things you don’t normally hear. You don’t usually hear a straight blues riff with an 808 behind it. That’s always intrigued me, so it was kind of a starting point for everything that I’ve done since then.

“Go Blue, Blood Red”

>>>Stream & Get The Backstory For “Go Blue, Blood Red” (via OKP Premiere)

See Also

“Nice Dreams”

SL: “Nice Dreams” is fun–it’s kind of about how people can just turn anything into drugs. Any kind of substance—sugar—or any activity or way of thinking can become an unhealthy habit. I was kind of playing around with that idea…and it’s also somewhat based on that Cheech & Chong movie. It’s one of the less popular. It was the first one that I saw and it stuck with me in my head. I’ve always wanted to write a song related to that movie.

OKP: Talk to us a bit about your composition process?

SL: I don’t necessarily have a sequence of how I do things, but it’s one of three things. If it’s not lyrics or my voice and melody, then it’s guitar, or drums. Those three things tend to be kind of the meat of the writing process. I try to open a blank page and add whatever comes to mind first. Sometimes that has more to do with where I am than how I’m feeling about it. If you listened to my voice memos—go back a couple months and you’ll hear [makes booming drum noises].

OKP: Do you have to go to some place, a special spot to write where you can shut things out, or can you sit in a café and write?

SL: I like to be in the bat cave, but I’m not usually there, and sometimes it doesn’t work that well. Sometimes, lately, I’ve been sort of of the mind that the more choices you have, the harder it is to do anything. If I have very little around me then I just use whatever it is that I have. If I walk around just with a book, then I’ll write in that. Sometimes I’ve only got my phone, and I sing into my phone. It’s just as good as being in the studio with a million instruments around you. At some point you do have to get somewhere to record, but up to that point I think sometimes I feel like I’m better off not writing things down and not really working through an arrangement so much, or working on specific parts or sounds. I just feel like so often I go to the studio with somebody, you do a thing, and there’s the idea “We can always change this and replace that” and you end up swimming in choices that you’d be better off just waiting and doing it all at once.

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