Laura Gibson Returns To Bozeman and We Got an Interview
The good music just seems to keep on flowing in Bozeman this season through Compound Productions, Chamberlin Productions and other stoked party’s bringing the sound vibes. Grant Gilmore and Compound brought us another show at the Filling Station on March 3rd with Laura Gibson with Ashly Holland of Little Jane & the Pistol Whips. I was able to call up and chat with Laura a bit about her forays into music and the lifestyle therein and this is how it went down.
How do you all come together?
I have known the guys from other bands for a while. I met Bryan and we became good friends and eventually he became my roommate, so he was a natural addition as the drummer for my last record, Beasts of Seasons. Matt who plays base now, was not in the band for the last album, but we were on tour together when he was in another band and he was a lot of fun, very funny guy and great as a travel companion. We are just picking up John for this tour; he plays horn and trumpet, which will be an exciting addition to the act. We have been touring this year since mid January, Matt and Bryan have been committed since, and through mid may
Where do your roots lie in your musical influence?
Originally I started writing songs as a means to learn to play guitar to play songs that I was envisioning in my head, just to get the words onto a tangible plain. I would say I started as a writer before being a singer songwriter even; my writing has truly driven my music to the place it sits today. I love folk music, especially Appellation folk, delta blues, and I do a lot of finger picking so that has put a unique spin on my style. Since I started writing songs, I have gotten exited about production and arrangements. I started when I was 20 and music was so new to me, I did not know how to produce things the right way, I think I have grown in skill and confidence. I love the art of putting together a record. That has really inspired my growth as a musician and an artist. As far as individual music that has influenced my musical style, there are a bunch of small Portland bands, Sparkle Horse for one, people like M Ward, his production and incredible skill on guitar always put fire in my imagination. I feel like I am influenced as much by writers as I am by musicians, poets and fiction writers, Mary Oliver Dillon Thomas. I read more than I listen to music oddly enough. When I am playing and singing my songs, I feel like there is more of a direct line to people who have grafted word onto paper, more than people who have created music.
What makes your band unique?
As I mentioned before, I really love the aspect of word weaving, so I think part of me gets really exited about doing shows just to reveal the words I have put together more than just the music oddly. I think many artists feel the same way, but it makes me feel unique on the stage. We do a lot of three part harmonies in our band, and the way my voice is supported by the guys’ voices really is truly unique. We can be very silly in our stage banter; I think I tend to just be myself and avoid putting on an act, which I know a lot of bands do. People have told me that’s something that’s refreshing, and that they can really connect with me and the guys and we are not an ethereal presence, and more of people just enjoying the shared experience.
What do you all think of Bozeman, and how many times is it that you have been here?
Last time I was in Bozeman, I played at the university. The filling station was booked so we played at a coffee shop, Wild Joes, which was lovely. I was on tour after my last record; three years ago I believe which is the last time I was there. I really appreciated the people in Bozeman. They were one of the most down to earth and friendly audiences I have had, they seemed to genuinely appreciate the show and the music unlike in some larger cities we visit.
What is American music to you all?
Wow, that’s a tough question (laughs). Its so broad, its derived from so many places from all over the world, folk, blues, Irish. The music out there today is such a melting pot that it’s hard to describe the identity. The American identity I think is kind of, rugged individualism in the popular music. Carving a path for yourself as an artist perhaps there is a lot in the identity of music, but it’s so hard to see one message in the whole. You are going to get something different out of every different type of music you experience, which is part of the identity.
Future plans for shows and new music?
Starting to look at summer festivals for shows. Have been so busy with the new record, so it’s only been in the last few days to think about the next record. Starting to collect thoughts and words in my mind. It’s such a crapshoot producing an album and being on tour. It is hard to find a quite moment to think, but it’s nice to start dreaming about words and ideas coming together.