Friday, October 28, 2011


I came across Idiot Glee during a weird time in my life. Okay, so I'm still kind of currently stuck in that time, since that was just earlier this month. I had been dumped, had a tumultuous Chicago trip, found a mouse in my apartment... I'll spare you the details. Suffice to say, I was in a weird emotional state: part confused, part melancholia, basic post-teen angst. Well, when I came across Idiot Glee through an email press release and gave the music a listen, I was oddly drawn in by the sound. Even if I didn't catch all of the lyrics immediately, just the droning, fuzzy sounds and deep, crooning voice were enough to hit a note in me.

James Friley, the man behind the music, was kind enough to let me ask him a few basic - and oddly prying - questions about Austin, Mormonism and movies.

What is better in Austin than where you're from?
The BBQ. It's good in Lexington, but really the beef brisket here is mmmmm...

What was your favorite experience in Austin?
The venue and locals were incredibly nice. I just get a good vibe from the place. Also, all of my meals were delicious. Touring is half about music, half about food.

Favorite city you've visited on tour (ever)?
Dang... umm, Berlin. Maybe.

Dream future destination?
Japan please!

And since he'd been interviewed by VICE solely about his Mormon background, I couldn't help but ask
Besides not drinking alcohol, what is the most Mormon thing about you?
Haha...I don't drink coffee*, either. I've tried it so many times. I want to like it. How do you people drink it? GROSS.

What is the least?

Let me try this again: Marry, Boff, Kill - Kirsten Dunst, Zooey Deschanel, Kristen Bell
Oh goody. Wait... who the hell is Kristen Bell? Let me Google this... hold on. Ok just did. Still don't know... buuut, kill Kristen Bell, boff Zooey Deschanel, and marry Kirsten Dunst.

Oops, I mean to say Kristen Stewart, the girl from the Twilight movies.
Hmmm... haha. I think it's the same! She's "meh".

Now the time travel/blonde version: 80s Debbie Harry, 80s Madonna, 80s Cyndi Lauper
Much better... and more difficult. Kill Cyndi Lauper, boff Madonna, marry Debbie Harry. Maybe switch the last two... tough one.

What was your favorite movie growing up? What is it now?
Growing up it was probably Star Wars. Or Dumb & Dumber. My siblings and I would watch Dumb & Dumber all the time... I'm not sure now. I like all the Coen Brothers films a lot, and I think Anchorman is hilarious. Bill Murray.

Favorite soundtrack?
Hmm... I'm going to cheat and say The Art Of Piano. It's about all the great pianists of the early 20th century. I saw it in high school and fell in love with every piece. I'm still trying to finish learning all of them.

If you were going to make music for a movie, what kind of movie would it be?
I scored a documentary last year on James Baker Hall. It was all solo piano pieces... I would love to do that again. A very dark, yet inspiring film... I think I'm better at scoring images with darker themes. But I'd have a blast with a western, or really anything. I want to become part of that world eventually.

What could it be about?
Anything except for a dog's death... can't handle dead dogs.

What projects are you working on? Anything major coming up?
Dunno about major, but I am recording and writing songs. I haven't figured out if it will be an EP or LP... also, a few tape labels want to do releases. So, likely 2 or 3 releases in the next 6 months. Also, heading to CMJ and SXSW next year.

I waited to post this interview to include these pictures of the set I caught, wish they had turned out better. His small show at 29th Street Ballroom with locals Boy Friend was great. It was probably the best intimate show I've seen in a long time. He even covered Bill Withers' Ain't No Sunshine, which has always been a favorite classic of mine.

So you know what seeing Idiot Glee live is kind of like --

Can't wait to catch another set come SXSW.

*Note: I also don't drink coffee. Iced soy chais are a nice sweet caffeine substitute, even if you feel like a total yuppy ordering them.

1 comment:

Girl With A Pearl Earring said...

I really enjoyed the interview. :D
Great blog!
Idiot Glee, ahh. I love the haziness of his music; it's just something I can close my eyes and sway to with a smile on my face.