August 3, 2009
Mile High Music Festival 2009 Wrap-Up: Misquoted: w/ HoneyHoney
Misquoted: w/ HoneyHoney
Suzanne Santo & Ben Jaffe, the duo that is Honeyhoney, let me sit down with them for a few minutes during the Mile High Music Festival. And yes, they are as beautiful and playful as that picture would make you think:
Have you guys noticed any current trends in popular, or even unpopular, music in the last few years, and, if so, how do you feel you fit into these trends?
Suzanne Santo: I feel like there's a surge of lots of people "doing it themselves." I keep seeing crazy loop stations, pretty much like what we're doing, trying to over compensate for a full band, like Ben who's using octave pedals and drumming with his feet. I feel like I'm seeing a lot more people doing that, not like we started it or anything, because we definitely didn't.
Ben Jaffe: A lot of bands are definitely shrinking that's for sure. I mean, as it becomes a more financially difficult thing to go on the road, bands shrink to become more sustainable. But I also think we're at such an interesting point in music because, basically, 10 years ago, there were maybe 5% of the bands now that had recorded music. You can go into any town or city, and find a least a few people with recorded music, which is something that's incredibly rare until pretty recently. That trend is really changing music and everything. I think music is expanding. There are definitely categories that are trending, like Indie Rock, and things like this that will embrace certain studio techniques on their records. But, in general, I think the trend is just exponential growth.
What kind of records that have come out recently have really changed the way you think about music?
SS: Hmm, well I gotta think about that, because we keep going to record stores and buying old records.
Well then how about old records?
SS: I just bought Odetta, greatest hits. It's funny, I had to be in the right state of mind for it. I could only listen to four or five songs, because I was driving. Are you familiar with Odetta's music?
SS: Yeah. She's one of the first African American female folk artists, and it's almost like she's putting on a whole show by herself. She does all these different vocals, accents …
Wasn't she [popular in the] 40's?
SS: No, no, she was like Dylan. She was sort of around when Dylan was doing the folk clubs in New York. Maybe it's just this particular record I bought, but it's like she had vocal Tourette's, it's amazing. She would put these accents in … she'd be telling a folk story, like the story about the duck and fox or something, and she'd give them these voices, and it was just really crazy. It was so unique.
BJ: It, like, introduces a theater vibe to it
SS: Yeah, yeah.
BJ: It takes it into more than just "here, I'm going to go and play this song on the guitar." It incorporates a lot of elements.