Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Givers Live at The Media Club September 5th 2011

On Monday September 5th Givers found themselves up in Vancouver as part of their tour for In Light. The band took the stage after an opening set from The Kopecky Family Band just after 11 pm. What the crowd lacked in numbers it more then made up for in enthusiasm and Givers were equally stoked. They played a high energy set that covered almost all of their catalogue before ending with song of the summer "Up, Up, Up". After the show we caught up with singer/percussionist/ukulele player Tiffany Lamsen for a few words.

TE - Before you played "Ripe" tonight Taylor (Guarisco, singer/guitar player) said it was about Vancouver, would you care to elaborate on that for us?

T.L. - Tyler was joking on me. I always talk about how I like to come to Vancouver so I guess it was a good joke on me. Then it turned out to be a joke on you… which is wrong so, I'm going to retract that statement. But, I'm sure there is a Vancouver song coming. It's in the mix.

TE - When were you last here?

T.L. - January or something. We were on tour with Ra Ra Riot?

TE - And that was the first time you were in Vancouver?

T.L. - The band. I've been here before. I came here probably when I was young like thirteen or fourteen and then I looked at going to college here. I wanted to go to the Art Institute but I never made it. I did make it here but by a different avenue.

TE - You and Taylor seem especially connected to the songs. Do you feel like it's more of a lyrical or musical connection for you?

T. L. - Well, Taylor and I both write all the lyrics and I guess I'm passionately married to the lyrics most of the time so I always get into that side of it. I mean we write the songs and Taylor or I might come up with ideas on our own or the band will jam and an idea will bloom from there. Ultimately we arrange the songs together so I guess everyone just expresses themselves differently. Whenever you're singing you're a little bit more exposed and naked because your instrument is you, you know. I feel like that could possibly be the connection to the songs that you're seeing.

TE - Where do your inspirations come from? Do you find them walking down the street or are you better locking yourself in a room?

T. L. - I think everybody's different. I do not do well locked in rooms. It's a general statement as well. I feel like everyday, being alive, you can always find something inspirational out of it. It's not like roses you know? You're not just walking along and there it is. It comes at the most unexpected times. Like right before we went on stage, we were trying to warm up and I was just writing lyrics for this new song and I didn't even expect it.

TE - Would you rather be live onstage or in the studio?

T. L. - I get most of my kicks live but there is something very special about recording because that is the only material side of being a musician, otherwise it's a fleeting form. It's weird you know, because you could be in insurance and you're selling things and it's paper but here I'm presenting my art and people are digesting it and that's where the interaction of a career is. So making a recording, there's something really special about it because you can put your ideas down. You funnel them and they become a part of history. So I do love the recording side but you get to experience that over and over and over live and then beautiful mistakes happen and there's always room for improvisation which is fun. They are two totally different mind sets.

TE - How did you and Taylor come together?

T. L. - Well we all live in Lafayette Louisianna and so I knew some of the guys throughout high school and college, from around. I'd seen them around, seen them play in other bands. I'd seen Taylor play in high school. He played in a funk band. I approached him after summer, right before I started college. He was already a year in and we were both going to the University of New Orleans. I decided to do drums, drum set. I'd decided to do jazz so I figured I'd go to New Orleans. It was close and I had friends there and it's such an interesting city. Really eclectic and a really cool place to go. I saw that Taylor was going there too and I said " Hey maybe I'll see you around" and we ended up living in the same house together. Kind of randomly, half by default half by preparation. We ended up jamming together. Him on bass, me on drums and like, all the time. Then the hurricane came and brought us back to Lafayette so we started writing music there.

TE - How did you evolve from a kit player to the percussion/ukulele set up you've got now?

T. L. - I don't know. It's a mystery how the ukulele came in there. In this band, the really special thing is, there are no rules, no expectation. If I don't want to play that on the next record no one's going to say anything. The cool part is that there is no bar set for anything. I decided that there really wasn't much room in the mid range for a guitar but I still want to play a string instrument. I'd been playing guitar for a year or two just in my room so I thought I'll just play ukulele because it's a higher frequency and a cool sound. I get to mess with pedals with it which is weird and fun. I still miss playing drums so it worked out. Kirby (Campbell, drums) and I met each other cause I worked at a drum shop in Lafayette. He'd always come in and I saw him at one of the drum camps we had. We were both drummers and had a passion for it and we get along really well.

TE - Is True Blood accurate?

T. L. - No but I down loaded the season. Some of the scenery is but the mosquitos are the only vampires. I really think that's why they made it down there. The mosquitos will eat you alive down there. They eat everybody else's blood but they don't eat mine anymore. Maybe, because I've been there for so long, they're tired of it or maybe my blood's not sweet enough.

TE - It's really hot down there right now isn't it?

T. L. - Yeah, it's balls hot. I'm really, really happy to be in Vancouver right now. During the summer, we've been touring up north and we're just like, in paradise right now. This is like 70s-80s (degrees Fahrenheit) down there it's around 90 to 100.

TE - You released an EP two years ago and a lot of that re-appeared on your latest album.

T. L. - We went back and rearranged a lot of those tracks. We did that (first EP) in Kirby's kitchen and bathroom and shit so we thought they deserved another chance, a re-birth.

TE - Thanks so much for talking with us. We love the album and your live show is even better. Enjoy the rest of the tour.

T.L. - Thanks!

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