interview with j.d. scarcello.

when did you first know you wanted to be a musician?

There was never really any turning point or anything, where I said to myself, this is what I’m going to do. It was always at the back of my mind, but something more as a hobby than anything.

do you have any formal training as a musician?

No, no formal training. I mean, I took guitar lessons when I was like thirteen or something, but after a while, it just got kind of old. Lessons are good for a short while, but at some point, just as is the case with any other “formal training” - as you and some may call it – completely deadens your creativity.

talk about the songwriting process. where do these songs come from?

A lot of it actually happens when I’m driving, or when I’m taking a shower. Usually a melody or maybe a verse will come to me, and then I just keep it in my head until I get the chance to write it down. From there, I go to my acoustic guitar and just belt it out. I try to make it fun. Any time a song isn’t fun to play, it’s never a good song.

who would you say your musical influences are?

That’s a tough call. There are so many. I tend to draw inspiration from just about every good band or artist I hear. But I guess if I had to pick a handful, I’d say Marc Bolan, Lou Reed, Bob Dylan, and even Neil Young. More contemporary artists would be the likes of Thom Yorke, Devendra Banhart, and even Doug Martsch - even though his last record was a piece of crap. Anyone who comes across as though he’s got a screw loose in the head is definitely somebody I try to emulate.

you tend to keep many different side projects going. for instance, there’s urban gangster, the last supper club, jacob scarcello, jacob dempsey, ider down, and probably others that i haven’t even heard yet. is there a reason for this?

No, it’s just...you know. It’s all me.

are there any artists out there that you’d like to work with?

Yeah, there’s a few. In particular, there’s an unsigned instrumental band called Wooderson. They’re just a drum and guitar duo, but what I like about them is that when you think drum and guitar duo, you automatically assume it’s gonna be math rock, but they’re definitely not. They can be really raw and brutal, or they can be extremely melodic and pleasant. Definitely got some loose screws in there.

any artists you wouldn’t want to work with?

Joanna Newsom. She has no talent. At all.

well, i disagree. i think we’d better end the interview here.

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