April 2014 “Band of the Month” – BOMBADIL
Our “Band of the Month” feature began in January 2012, featuring Savannah-based trio CUSSES in a short interview that gave readers a glimpse of what to expect from one of Georgia’s hardest working bands. We then landed an interview with Of Monsters and Men right before they broke and would then go on to include acts like Ponderosa, Cheap Girls, Swear and Shake, Jonny Fritz, Torres, The Districts, and more over the next two years.
So as we move forward into 2014, our entire staff would like to extend thanks to the artists who have taken the time to speak with us and the readers who have been so dedicated to supporting the site.
Bombadil is on the verge of being ten years old, yet many of the band’s newer fans might not know the full story behind all those years. Can you summarize the time you all have spent together and what has lead the band to where you are now?
Daniel Michalak (all answers): It is ok if newer fans don’t know the story. Bands, music, human life are all full of mystery. Sometimes that is better than facts. For example, I am in a room with a red rug and a brown piano…how did I get here? I walked from the kitchen. James and Stuart are probably having similar existential problems.
Is there a clear difference between Bombadil pre and post hiatus? I understand some of the conditions that made touring difficult are more tolerable now, but how did the break affect the overall mentality of the band?
Breaks and rests are great. Fermatas are better. There is one less person in the band. We have more realistic expectations. We are working harder, practicing more. Happier. More relaxed.
You all have strong professional ties to some of the most recognizable acts to come out of North Carolina through your relationship with Ramseur Records..What about your personal connections to the State? Were any of you born or raised there? How did you eventually fall in with the network surrounding the label?
None of us were born there(except the guy that left the band!). I was raised in NC by Notherners. James also. We were actually born in the hospital in Towson, MD. Stuart was born in a different hospital in Oklahoma. Dolph Ramseur (of Ramseur Records) listened to our demos on MYSPACE.COM. Then we met at Ruby Tuesday’s and had the “all you can eat salad” buffet. We decided to work together. never signed a contract, not even sure we shook hands…
2013-2014 has been quite a year of growth for the band; releasing The Metrics of Affection, a number of high profile tours, and most recently, signing with High Road for booking. What have I missed? How would you describe the effect of all this?
It’s all very organic and slow. It’s is like watching a carrot seed germinate. You missed nothing. however, it does feel good for our self-esteem to be making tangible progress. We are working on a new record now, hope that is comes out in Feb 2015.
Whether you all follow your critics closely or not, what has the general response you’ve personally received about the last album been like? Have there been any comments that stuck with you more than others?
I try to take Paleface’s advice on this and not read what the critics write. We are harsh enough critics on ourselves.
We all met back in October when the band came to Macon as part of the Music Ambassadors program. What was the whole experience like for you? It’s a side of playing live a lot of bands might not get to experience in their careers… If I remember right, it was everyone’s first time in Macon?
This was actually a really great time. I wish shows in all cities could be like that. Loved staying the 1840’s bed and breakfast. Loved the architecture and music history tour of downtown. Loved playing the house show outside. Loved walking through rose hill cemetery. Loved mispronouncing the Ocmulgee river.
I saw you all toured with River Whyless earlier this year, right? Our whole staff fell in love with them when we first heard and met them. I’m just curious about the shows, I hate that I missed them.
They may be our favorite band in the state right now. Wonderful people and wonderful musicians. We’ve had a great time with them. They are playing a hometown show with us in Chapel Hill in June.
We can be quite guilty of only paying attention to what’s going on around us…. What’s happening in North Carolina that the rest of the US should be paying attention to?
Dan River Coal Ash Spill…very very sad there are still pollution disasters like this… The Dan River also is a tributary to the Roanoke river which forms Lake Gaston, with a house on the southern side where we are currently recording our record…I guess no swimming this summer!
Lastly, what’s on the horizon for Bombadil?
Spring gardening, computer programs, podcasts about the stock market
BOMBADIL – “Learning to Let Go” – Music Ambassadors