Vancouver-born Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter Alexz Johnson released her new record Let ‘Em Eat Cake on October 14th. After the album’s release, we had the opportunity of giving Alexz a call to discuss strong personalities in the studio, writing a strong record, and oregano oil. Here’s what she had to say:
AMBY: Hey Alexz, thanks for speaking with A Music Blog, Yea? today. You just released your sophomore album Let ‘Em Eat Cake in October. Congratulations!
Alexz Johnson: Thank you.
AMBY: You raised money for the album through PledgeMusic and got David Kahne to produce it. Tell me – what were some of the highlights you had while creating the album?
Alexz Johnson: Just the thought of getting the songs together felt really nice. I had the time and freedom to do what I wanted to do. It was nice to choose the songs based on what I was feeling and this album came from me. I thought that was pretty cool.
AMBY: What was the experience like working with together with David one the new release? I read there was a tug-of-war situation that happened sometimes between you two since you both have such strong personalities.
Alexz Johnson: You did? [laughs] It was a great experience though. I have pretty strong opinions and know what I like so it’s a learning curve – as I grow as an artist, it’s important to listen to people you work with. I was learning to speak up and say how I wanted things to be but also let him do his thing.
AMBY: Did you get into any heated arguments when it came to opinions on the album?
Alexz Johnson: Nah. It was a creative process so it’s always very emotional. When you’re making an album, it’s like your baby so you’re always very sensitive about things that have to do with it.
AMBY: After listening to Let ‘Em Eat Cake, I really got a sense for the album – correct me if I’m wrong, but it has a real “fuck the man!” mentality but also is about discovery as an artist. What exactly were your inspirations when it came to writing this album?
Alexz Johnson: You’ve done your homework!
AMBY and Alexz Johnson: [laughs]
Alexz Johnson: I didn’t want to write a sad album since the previous one was so raw and stripped down. I wanted this record to be a bit more lush and express what I wanted to say. It’s a stronger record, you know what I mean?
AMBY: In support of the record’s release, you’ve been on tour with Jared and the Mill – I recently interviewed them and they’re such nice guys.
Alexz Johnson: They’re awesome.
AMBY: You posted the other night about how much fun it’s been touring with them. What’s been one of your favourite moments on the tour so far?
Alexz Johnson: Mainly just connecting and being able to play the new stuff because I don’t think I’ll be sick of it for a while. I love playing these songs live and seeing the reaction of people when they hear it. I love taking people’s opinions and critics, but everyone seems really happy with it, so that’s probably one of the best parts.
AMBY: That’s great to hear. When it comes to packing for a tour, which items are quintessential for you to have?
Alexz Johnson: Oregano oil is my number one thing. I also like a good eye pillow, lavender oil, a couple capos, and that’s pretty much it.
AMBY: Lastly, what’s something about Alexz Johnson that most of your fans don’t know yet?
Alexz Johnson: There are lots of things… How about this? I’m one belt away from my black belt in karate.
Thank you Alexz Johnson, for giving us your answers!
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Interview by Alicia Atout | @AliciaAtout