Monday, December 18, 2006

The Twelve Bands of Christmas: Day Six - Georgie James

Georgie James is a duo from Washington, DC. They have a mutual love for sounds of years past and it shows in their music. While they may be a relatively new group, they spent this past summer touring the United States with Camera Obscura. With a single dropping in January and a new album shortly after that, 2007 is shaping up to be a breakout year for the group, featuring solo artist Laura Burhenn and former Q & Not U drummer, John Davis. We decided to check in with them to revisit the year that was and see what they had in store for the new year.

Georgie James
Washington, D.C.
Spring 2005
Laura Burhenn (pianos/voice)
John Davis (guitars/bass/drums/voice)
Need Your Needs single coming out January '07
Upcoming Live Dates:
January 11, 2007 @ Rock 'N Roll Hotel, Washington, DC
January 12, 2004 @ Johnny Brenda's, Philadelphia, PA
January 13, 2004 @ Mercury Lounge, NYC
January 14, 2004 @ Middle East Upstairs, Cambridge, MA
January 19, 2004 @ James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA

How did the band form?
Laura and I met through her then-boyfriend (now husband) in 2004. We didn't really see each other much, but a few months later I moved to within a few blocks of where she lived and we all met up. At dinner, we talked about getting together to play music at some point. We finally did in May of '05 and went over some of the songs we had in the works and got to seeing if we could write together. It really worked pretty quickly and we thought that this could wind up being pretty good. We spent the rest of '05 writing songs and recording demos.

How was '06 for you?
It was a good year. We really grew a lot, even though we didn't even have a proper release. But we played our first shows and finished our first record. This year has been a challenge, but it's one we'll look back on, I think, and be glad that we went through some of the uncertainties that we had, 'cause it set the foundation for what we'll hopefully go on to do.

Highlight of the year?

Hard to say. In some ways, it was the tour we did back in July with Camera Obscura. It was the first time GJ had gotten out and toured at length, which was really good for me. After seven years of touring with Q And Not U, it was nice to have a whole different experience. However, working on our album in the studio was also a highlight. Yes, we spent a lot of time on it. Almost three times as long as I'd ever worked on a record before. But, unlike before, it was almost constantly enjoyable. I couldn't wait to get back to the studio to get to work, which was a foreign feeling for me. So, the recording and the touring were really both great.

What do you have in store for '07?
The album should be coming out, though we're not sure when and on what label. But we hope to know that soon. We're releasing a single in January on Laura's label, Laboratory. It'll be two songs from the record and a non-album cover. We'll definitely tour a good bit next year. I'm really looking forward to playing all over the world again.

Goal for '07 and beyond?
Get the music to people and be able to play music for as long as we want to. Get to work on more new music and get that out there, too.

Demo Version
Need Your Needs


3 favorite songs of '06?
Aloha - Mountain
Camera Obscura - If Looks Could Kill
Supersystem - Joys

Favorite album of the year?
Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out Of This Country

Best live show you saw this year?
Aloha at the Black Cat in DC back in August. I've seen them play probably 40 or 50 times at this point and that was BY FAR the best set I've seen them perform.

Favorite holiday song and artist?
Wonderful Christmastime by my man, Macca. Those inappropriate analog synths at the beginning, the slapdash nature of the production, the inanity of the lyrics? It's all vintage "McCartney II" McCartney.

Best present you ever received?
The best present I ever received was my first guitar when I was 12, but that was a birthday present. If you're asking about a Christmas present, I may go with the Burt Bacharach boxset The Look of Love which I received in 1998. I realized around the time that I liked so many of the songs I knew he was involved with, so I thought I'd ask for the box set. It was a life changer.

Worst present you ever received?
Not sure about this one. There are a lot of bad sweaters and forgotten toys that have justly been removed from my memory. I also tend to feel bad when I get a present I don't like. I appreciate the thought of the giver, so I don't know if my mind would hold on to such a designation.

The Twelve Bands of Christmas
Day 1: Telograph
Day 2: AVEC
Day 3: The Hard Tomorrows
Day 4: Middle Distance Runner
Day 5: Thrushes
Day 6: Georgie James
Day 7: Exit Clov
Day 8: Jette-Ives
Day 9: These United States
Day 10: Cedars
Day 11: Two if by Sea
Day 12: Soft Complex

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