An Interview With Sometimes Julie
The new full length album from Sometimes Julie is a colorful array of killer tracks that cross plenty of rock styles from radio rock of the 90's, to classic rock, alternative, and more all sandwiched into one massive record.
The Where Are You? album is laced with passionate performances and soulful vocals while catchy guitar hooks float on and it's all done with a certain edginess to it that makes it addictive.
The record is lush with incredible influences peaking through and at different times you can hear The Cure, Fleetwood Mac, Radiohead, and plenty more.
The songs get anthemic and cinematic with power ballads driven with piano and rock guitars, and vocally gives off a cross between Cher, Dolly Parton, and Stevie Nicks.
Songs have power behind them and they all have a brisk maturity in songwriting with a youthful energy and passion.
There are a ton of surprises on the record and the songs all take on a life of their own while the full album connects perfectly and really showcases the bands knack for writing songs that stick with you.
This is truly a release where you can hear the many wonderful influences each band member has showing face throughout the record's 12 song course.
Fans of classic rock of almost any style will not fine it difficult to fall in love with Sometimes Julie.
Of course, this is not the band's first rodeo either. They have been releasing songs on Spotify at least, since 2014 and are really evolving with each new record dropped.
With such a huge album, we wanted to have a talk with Sometimes Julie to find out where it came from and more.
Here's what happened.
TSWS: So let's begin with the Where Are You? album. This record is very passionately performed and keeps to a strong Americana feel. Where did this album come from?
Our music comes from a place of passion, and compulsion, and laying our souls bare. I wrote the majority of the songs with Rick Walker. In general, lyrics and melodies start with me and then Rick joins in to build a dynamic and organized piece. On this album, Bruce Paul Allen, our bass player, collaborated with us on ‘If Only’ and ‘Knew It All Along’, and Andy Machin, who mixed and mastered the album, contributed some great ideas to our song ‘Walk Among the Dead’ and created ‘Arachne’s Pride’, the beautiful introduction to our song ‘Minerva’. When we collaborate and create our music it is in a fevered way. It’s something we have to do; we are compelled by the music and the moment.
As we rehearsed the songs in advance of our recording sessions, everyone in Sometimes Julie could sense we had something special. The songs all came together with a great groove. We were inspired by each other’s performances and the energy in the room was palpable. It’s really incredible to be in that space and look at each other, nodding, smiling, just knowing we are creating something we love.
TSWS: Listening to the full record it almost feels like it's a concept album. Is this true?
The songs on the album reveal our deepest needs, our humanity, our vulnerability. The record is about longing and trying to find peace, connect the pieces together again, fill in the gaps, heal from a loss. They are about searching. In each song, something or someone is missing. Each song builds on that narrative of needing, hoping, losing, trying again. Only in the final song is there the sense that the pieces have come together and life is balanced and whole again; that love wins. So, yes, there is a story behind the songs and their sequence on the album.
TSWS: How did all of this start for you?
Rick and I started working together as a singer-songwriter duo in 2012, recorded our first album in 2014, and formed a band soon after. We are very fortunate to have found some amazing musicians to join us in Sometimes Julie and help bring our musical vision to life. Each of them, Bruce, Alberto Moreno, Anthony Sarain, and Dave Fuller add something unique and special to our sound. As I said earlier, we all inspire each other and push our performances into unexpected territory. And now here we are, releasing our fourth album, with our most exciting songs to date. We are very fortunate.
TSWS: There are some awesome sounds and styles on this album. What are some of your actual influences band wise?
When I was a child, there was a lot of music in my house. My parents (musicians themselves) played music from every popular genre you can think of - rock, blues, country, soul, jazz, classical, singer-songwriter - you name it. As a result, a lot of those influences can be heard in our music. As you can tell, rock is at the heart of Sometimes Julie’s sound, although we sometimes incorporate other genres.
Specific influences are different for each of us but I would say we carry The Beatles, Clapton, Hendrix, and Zeppelin with us as touchstones, common ground. We also teach each other about different artists everytime we get together. It is invigorating to be under each other’s influence!
TSWS: What sort of things inspire you to write?
I think I must be a very young soul. I find myself in constant amazement of even the smallest things around me and am astounded by the capacity for people to display both tremendous kindness and unthinkable cruelty. I find myself writing about things I’ve observed and lived through, social issues, the nuances of relationships, vivid dreams, mystical things that make me wonder, outrageous things that make me furious, and the stuff in life that breaks my heart and knocks people down - and then about how the human spirit always seems to have a way of making us get back up. I write many songs about the pain of losing my son, and then I write about my gratitude for everything that I still have in my life.
TSWS: What are you guys, and lady, doing when you're NOT working on music?
We all love to spend time outdoors, hiking in the mountains, walking on the beach, or just relaxing in the backyard. We are so lucky to live in San Diego, where we definitely take advantage of the year-round good weather and the natural beauty that surrounds us.
TSWS: This album especially seems like a huge accomplishment. What advice would you have for up and coming artists out there trying to be heard?
Write and play music that moves you. Don’t worry too much about who is or isn’t listening. Just Create. Make art. Don’t be afraid to reveal who you really are. If your music is authentic and comes from the heart, the rest will fall into place. Make yourself happy. Be amazed by the process and grateful when it comes together - then share your excitement.
TSWS: What's next for you as a band?
Once the world is ready for live music again, we are going to return to the stage to perform live. We are definitely headed for festivals. In the meantime, we are putting together a music video for our song “Own Kind of Savior”, and writing songs for our next album.
TSWS: What's your absolute favorite midnight snack? (We love to ask a few random character questions)
I am an ice cream fanatic; chocolate ice cream to be specific. I love banana splits, hot fudge sundaes, and anything you can finish with whipped cream and a cherry on top.
TSWS: Before we go, what would you like to say to fans of the music?
Thank you for taking the time to listen. This world has so many distractions, and we really love that people can make space for our music in their lives and form a connection with us. Also, stay tuned! We release a new album every two years! We hope to see you at a live performance in the near future. And be on the lookout for a new Sometimes Julie video coming