According to a recent press release: “Hattiesburg, Mississippi-based Power Pop / Alternative Rockers Paul Johnson and The About Last Nights have released the Official Video their single, “Burn It Down.” Originally premiered on Relix, “Burn It Down” is the first single off of their forthcoming, debut EP, Give Up The Ghost, due Spring 2017.” We get Paul Johnson to answer our 10 Quick Ones about the new disc and more…
1. Tell us a little about your latest release. What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through? Are there any hidden nuggets the band put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?
I am always going for the first listen. I want our songs to stand on their own individually as well as an album. I hope the listener hears more than a catchy song. I poor my heart into those lyrics. I strive for the purist form of rock n roll, but my strongest desire is for someone to put the car windows down, and sing.
2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?
Freedom of thought and expression of one’s true self. Music has always been a central focus in my home. My dad listened to outlaw country while my sisters listened to hair metal and glam. I was stuck without feeling I could identify with anything bands were writing about. I had not lived the life my Dad had lived yet. Then Nirvana happened, and suddenly music spoke to me in a language I could understand. Being a Southern boy, I had no access to punk rock at all. Radio only played Top 40 hits, so scoring a tape of Nevermind from a girl in Texas changed my life. I felt a sense of self, and rebellion against the status quo. It was liberating. Now, I simply want to give “that” back to anyone who has ever felt like an outcast, uncomfortable in their own skin and the culture of their upbringing. You deserve an outlet of expression in your life. rock ‘n’ roll did that for me.
3. Who would be your main five musical influences?
Nirvana, Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers, The Replacements, Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band, Waylon Jennings
4. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be?
Butch Walker, he is our producer, he just doesn’t know it yet.
5. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before?
American Dirt Rd Rock n Roll, Power Pop with the emphasis on the power.
6. What’s the best thing about being a musician?
When your a loner with no voice, it is not only a voice, but a comforter. I take solace in songwriting.
7. When the band are all hanging out together, who cooks; who gets the drinks in; and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?
The cook…. Zack… Band meals are a very sacred thing to us. Drinks? None of us are really big drinkers.. there is always a pot of coffee going if that counts? Daniel would be the one to crack open the guitar case for a sing along… he’s a walking Rolodex when it comes to material, but usually it’s him giving us the latest impersonation of his daughter singing along to one of our songs.
8. If you weren’t a musician, what would be your dream job?
Any job where I could have a few days off, get some bills paid, and live as free as possible without losing my soul.
9. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over”?
I think my passion in my youth worked against me. I had an urgency I couldn’t shake. Most young folks just didn’t get it. I am happy to be at a place in my life where I am better a navigating through different personalities without ever compromising my passion. If I had a do over, There are some folks I may have never played music with, and some business choices I may have not brushed off.
10. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?
Any Beatles Record, but Revolver is one of my faves. Also, Tom Petty’s Damn The Torpedoes would have been a lesson in Rock n’ Roll.
PAUL JOHNSON AND THE ABOUT LAST NIGHTS LINKS:
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