Friday, July 24, 2009

The Buckinghams' Music One of the Influences on Successful Contemporary Songwriting Duo

From July 23,, the LA Rock Music Examiner writer Natalie Perez interviews contemporary songwriters Joey Alkes and Chris Fradkin.

Story begins:
A douse of double trouble is heading in your direction with these teamsters known simply as Joey Akles and Chris Fradkin take control when answering these alignment of questions. These two have become well known musicians and have composed and created some of the most catchiest and smoothest going music around. The twosome spoke to me recently about how they formed and what sorts of music they tend to create and what are the plans for them within the upcoming future.

1. How, when, and why did you form?

JOEY ALKES: We worked in the same act years ago in Denver, Colorado. We're talking 76-78. Chris wrote some tunes with these two characters I managed and produced. When the band collapsed in L.A. after signing a deal with Don Williams Music, Chris and I stayed in L.A. and started writing.

CHRIS FRADKIN: That's about it. I was on my way out west, to L.A., and while passing through Denver, I hooked up this act The Jupiter Rey Band. They were pretty wild: a six-foot-two transsexual singer and tons of real estate money. That makes for a potent combination.

2. Who do you consider your major influences?

CHRIS: The real estate people, by far. Oh, we're talking about musical influences?

JOEY: Well, I like most anything if it's authentic, or at least is done so well that it can fool me.

CHRIS: Yeah, the conjurer's trick. The secret to the universe.

3. What do you mean?

CHRIS: Well, there's this shell-game aspect to the popular arts, and by popular arts I mean art consumed by people: the work of Picasso, Woody Guthrie, May Angelou, Will Rogers. There's this familiarity that runs through the work of all those artists: in the lines of Van Gogh's paintings, in the verse of Billy Shakespeare, in the filmwork of Lynne Ramsay (Ratcatcher, 1999). You've heard it before; you've seen it before. It's a familiarity aspect which is a genetic commonality in the popular arts.

JOEY: With music, rock and pop influences me the pop songwriter: Van Morrison, Bob Dylan, the Motown sound as a whole, Neil Young & Buffalo Springfield, The Byrds, Laura Nyro, Lovin' Spoonful, Chuck Berry, The Left Banke, The Buckinghams, The Turtles, Lou Reed. And in my genre: rock/alt/wave/powerpop, it's Kurt Cobain.

CHRIS: For me, there's Iggy (Pop), Bryan Ferry, Tommy James, the Germs, Holland/Dozier/Holland.

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