Lucius, fronted by two identical looking ladies, Jesse Wolfe and Holly Laessig, took time out to have a chat with Far Out Magazine to discuss the impending release of their debut album set to hit our shores for the first time at the end of the month…
Cheers for taking the time to chat guys, what’s your story, how’d life lead you to this moment?
Well, for your sake I’m gonna give you the summarized version: Jess and I met in Boston about 11 years ago and we bonded over old school soul, 60’s rock ’n’ roll, eccentric figures in music and the occasional 90’s R&B jam. We started writing and singing together under the name Lucius and then about three years ago it all really came together when we formed the band we are now. Danny was producing the record and through the process we brought Pete and Andy on board. We found something very special in the way were able to collaborate.
You just mentioned the record, what Wildewoman symbolize, surely it’s more than just a record?
It derives from the made up word wildegirl that my mom bestowed upon me as a kid. Like wildebeest. You can guess I was a little out there and a little crazy, and Jess was the same way. So we thought, well now that we’re older, maybe not grown up, but older, I suppose we’re Wildewomen. We wrote all the songs together; hashing out our experiences with coming of age, so the album title seemed to encompass that journey really well.
And of course the album is out in the UK soon, how excited are you?
So excited! The last time we were there the record wasn’t even out yet and the audience response was already overwhelming. So needless to say we are anxiously awaiting our return.
Oh cool, where did you play the last time you visited?
As a band we have played London once at Shacklewell Arms and it was packed. What a fun show. I think my mother-in-law was the rowdiest audience member, and it wasn’t tame either!
On that note, you’re taking a trip to Manchester in April, how much do you know about its musical history? Got any favourites?
Well my husband was born there and its influence on music is pretty much all I hear about it, he’s a big Smiths, Joy Division, Oasis fan. I just watched 24 hour party people on the road this past tour, which was great, definitely ready for a bit of chaos.
The tour in general is pretty extensive, where are you most looking forward to visiting in the world?
I’m really looking forward to Germany, I’ve never been! But we’re excited and grateful to go just about anywhere our music will take us and love traveling in general.
How would you describe the relationship you two share, is it purely musical?
I think we grew to become best friends through this process of becoming musical partners. It’s been sort of hand-in-hand which is the best way I could ask for. Sharing your art with someone is extremely intimate and I think as we write more we become closer and as we become closer our writing grows.
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We’ve noticed that you have an eclectic range of influences, ranging from Bob Dylan to Lauryn Hill; our favourite Dylan track is ‘One Too Many Mornings’, what’s yours?
My favorite Dylan song is Girl From the North Country. It’s just one of those songs that brings me to a place and I love to revisit it often.
We hear you’ve spent time as jingle writers for adverts, how do you even get into that line of work?
We’ve done some jingling; it’s actually a great writing exercise. You’re given specific parameters to write by and we’re always surprised by what comes out. It’s also a great way to make ends meat while we’re on the road. We’ve come up with melodies and sung background parts while driving or sitting in the back of the van. We recently did a Mercedes commercial in the US with Willem Defoe and Usher.
We’d love to be at the Forecast Festival in the states with you this summer, the lineup looks fantastic, who are you looking forward to seeing/meeting there the most?
It’s really fantastic, isn’t it? So many talented folks, we’re very excited to see Beck, Sharon Jones, Lord Huron, Spoon, and Gary Clark Jr.
Is it true that you once re-wrote the full Beatles’ White Album?
I don’t think it would be possible to rewrite something that is perfect. Holly and I first connected listening to old school soul music and 60s rock n roll. We thought it would be fun to do a girl group spin on the white album, rearranging the songs with a few friends. We never got around to it, though… we just started writing our own tunes and never looked back.
We’re always up for writing about emerging talent; can you give Far Out a heads up on any bands you’ve gigged with recently?
You Won’t – who just opened for us on tour, as well as Banjotron Monster “Tall Tall Trees.” Yellowbirds out of New York is also just one of those wonders, his voice, the melodies. All those guys are just wildly & wonderfully creative.
15. Tell us something weird
Holly says the word “frag-rent” like “brag”. What?!!