Interview: The Moonbeams
Mon, 01 Apr 2013 09:12:08
The Moonbeams shine brightly on "Rock On!".
The Los Angeles trio's latest single shimmers with an infectious and intimate energy. Its slick and sexy swagger immediately hits with a theatrical bounce and undeniable charm. The Moonbeams are going to rise to the top of your playlist quickly and, very soon, to the top of rock 'n' roll.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, The Moonbeams' Beck Black talks "Rock On!" and so much more.
What's the story behind "Rock On"?
In a way, it reminds me of Hollywood. I just imagined two people coming together. There are a lot of nightclubs here, but they pass on the dance floor. It conjures a vision of the whole scene for me, especially in certain verses. I love pink Cadillacs because I love Elvis Presley. The lyrics encapsulate my feelings about Hollywood. It's a little bit about dating. It's also about the notion of "celebrity" here. At the same time, it's a message to everyone to keep shining, loving, living, and rocking on. Rock on, man! It's like saying, "Peace out!"
It's a universal positive expression.
Exactly! I wrote with a piano, and I'm a poet as well. For this song, the riff happened first, and then the story about the two characters falling for each other emerged. The narrative just came to me. Sometimes, you think of lyrics first. I just wrote a song called "Love Code", and the lyrics were first.
What's that one about?
It came out of thinking about the dating scene here in Hollywood. I was like, "Hey, they broke the 'Love Code'." Then I built a riff around that.
Is it important for you to tell stories with the songs?
Definitely! It's almost like a film. You're creating some sort of story. I'm a storyteller, and I studied screenwriting. My songs reflect my screenwriting skills, and they tell stories. Within the story, there's a subtext. That's your message. "Rock On" is an anthem. We've got to keep rocking it. There's a lot of imagery. I have a song about the ladies of the night in Hollywood, aka hookers. It's called "Shiny Trash". No one has heard it yet because it hasn't been recorded yet. It all paints a picture. A song has to give you that description.
You have to see it as much as you can hear it.
Exactly! One thing I've learned is image remains just as important as the music. The imagery is just as important as the melody.
What artists shaped you?
I love The Doors. I grew up listening to them. I love Roy Orbison and Elvis. I revisit them quite a bit as well as Led Zeppelin. I really love Iggy Pop and The Stooges. I've gotten him over the past couple of years. He really has inspired me and so has Joy Division. My inspiration comes from people who were poets first and foremost like Jim Morrison. I love the blues. I listen to a lot of John Lee Hooker and Robert Johnson. I grew up in the south so blues was a big part of my background growing up. That's the first music I listened to in order to learn how to sing.
Have you heard The Moonbeams?
Listen to "Rock On!"
Visit their official site!