Jake Shears, former Scissor Sisters front man, recent author and Broadway star, is bringing his self-titled album and Big Bushy North American Tour home to Seattle. The emotion and truth behind this album really stand out. Crowds are excited about the music and experiencing it live as Shears intends it to be served. The tour hits Seattle’s Neptune Theatre this Sunday, November 11th and Portland’s Wonder Ballroom the next evening. Get tickets and more info here. His new self-titled album is available everywhere you buy music.
Shears took a few minutes to speak with Equality 365 about the inspirations behind the music, life in New Orleans, and more. Check it out below.
Jake Shears Interview:
Earle Dutton (ED): Are you excited about the tour?
Jake Shears (JS): I am super-stoked about the tour. It has been a long time since I have been able to play American cities. We had a great run in the UK, right after the record came out. We did about 10 shows. The show really started to gel. I felt a kind of freedom on stage that I haven’t felt in a long time. Maybe, because I haven’t really been on stage in a long time. It has been pretty special. I love my band! It has been really fun getting in front of a crowd again.
ED: How do you feel about the album now that you have been out and playing it a bit?
JS: I miss the album. It was kind if hard to hand it over. The record was such a personal thing for me and something I put so much love and work into. It was a strange feeling letting it go. I hadn’t really felt that way about something I have made music-wise before. I miss it a little bit. Once a record comes out, I will never really listen to it again. I basically only know the songs through playing them live. It has been fun. I am insanely proud of it. The response has been so nice. It is just nice to see people love it. It is nice to feel like I have been taken seriously, which I have not necessarily felt like I have been in the past.
ED: What was the biggest influence on this album?
JS: Oh man, the city of New Orleans has influenced this record in so many ways. Strangely enough, there was a Ray LaMontagne called “Ouroboros” that I was really deeply into. I love it so much. It came out a few years ago. I fell in love with it. That is how I found Kevin Ratterman, who produced my album. All of the players on that record also play on my album. I found a whole group of people through that record. In a lot of ways, Ray LaMontagne has had a lot of impact on what people hear on this album. Otherwise, I think I have really taken my major influences and boiled them down into the brew that is this album. There are definitely nods to Bowie, Iggy, Elton, ELO, old BeeGees, Carpenters, and tons of others. I sort of took all of my favorite classic rock and boiled it all down into my own special resin. I think it sounds really unique with all of those juxtapositions on it.
ED: How was your time in New Orleans?
JS: I am still down there so much. I just sort of based myself down there for the last 6 months. It is my favorite place on earth. It makes me really happy. I just love living down there. It has changed my life in a big way. My town down there has just been very fruitful. It is a place that really inspires me. I hope I can grow old there.
ED: Your lyrics on the new record or really emotional and autobiographical. How does it feel to put those out into the universe?
JS: It is a really real album. I feel very connected to it. I feel good about it. I feel the emotion on the album is very authentic. I feel good about handing that over just because what people are hearing is so real. It feels good. I did this whole project with my own money and it has been a completely independent project. It was really important for me to make sure that it was everything I wanted it to be.
ED: Do you think the self-financing made it easier or more difficult?
JS: Basically, I am the record label now. So, I don’t have to necessarily have to make any compromises. There was no one expecting this record and nobody waiting for this record. In that way, the pressure was off. I could do exactly what I wanted to do. I didn’t have to worry about a lot of other people’s opinions. I love working with a major record label, don’t get me wrong. It was just nice to do this on my own. It is a tough world out there though, as far as music goes. It is a big risk. I have a lot at stake.
ED: What would you like your fans to get out of this album?
JS: Hopefully something they can really connect with and bite into. Hopefully, they can find a lot of substance in this album that they can relate to. I think my best is to make music about universal themes. It is about my life specifically, but I just hope they connect with it on an emotional level. It seems like that has been happening so far. I am really happy about it.
ED: You have a new album, a new book out and you have debuted on Broadway. What else do you have up your sleeve?
JS: Oh, I wish I could tell you! I just finished a project that blew my mind. It is a really big deal for me. I have not announced it yet. I would like to do more theater stuff. I just like to have my fingers in a lot of different pots. Making albums and performing my own songs will always be the main thing I do. I feel that I have really branched out now. I realize that there is a ton of stuff I can do. I feel like I have developed some new skill sets.
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