Ready for some “More B.S.”? Bree Sharp is.
The singer-songwriter, who turned heads in 1999 with her quirky hit, “David Duchovny,” has rebounded from the dissolution of Trauma Records and returns Aug. 13 with her Ahimsa/Union Recording group debut LP, “More B.S.”
Her sophomore effort, produced by longtime collaborator-guitarist Don DiLego, maintains the feisty spirit of her debut album, “A Cheap and Evil Girl,” while displaying a blossoming knack for wordplay.
Sharp talked about more than b.s. in a recent interview with Pause & Play.
P&P – After Trauma basically vanished, did you panic and wonder if you’d ever get a chance to make another record?
Sharp – “Not really. I always knew I could make another record if I wanted, in as much as you can do whatever you want if you put your mind to it. But, I will say that trying to navigate through big business waters can be difficult, if not nerve-racking, to say the least.”
P&P – What was your manifesto for this album, a goal you wanted to achieve?
Sharp – “I had a few simple goals: No. 1 – make new, interesting, good music that I could feel proud of; No. 2 – do it independently.”
P&P – Are you a frustrated novelist? “The Ballad of Grim and Lily” sounds like a book in the making.
Sharp – “I’m actually a frustrated (or re-focused, perhaps) actor. I studied theater in college and have always been a big fan of the movies, and I get inspired by them all the time. Grim and Lily are a sort of amalgam of all of my favorite gangster characters/movies. I feel like I know them so well, I actually found myself crying when I wrote it.”
P&P – On “Lazy Afternoon,” you take it to the fur and fashion industries. What prompted that? Was it something stirring inside and you just had to let it out?
Sharp – “I guess I just can’t stand the idea that after all we’ve learned about the way the fur industry operates (the animals left in unchecked traps for days, often chewing off their own limbs to escape, the anal electrocutions, etc. …) that people still think it’s a sign of status to wear fur. To me, it’s a sign of vanity, cruelty, ignorance and vapidity. When fur started to make its way back into couture and then became big in the hip-hop community, I was so sad and angry. I feel that artists need to be concerned with the plight of all creatures on the planet, not just with themselves and how they look. Of course, I feel the same way about wearing leather and the atrocities committed on factory farms and I talk about that in the song, too. I guess my hope is that people will become more interested in where their food and clothing comes from before it gets to the store. If more people were educated I believe there would be a call for the inhumane practices performed in these industries to be changed.”
P&P – Your version of “Boys of Summer” is refreshing. It’s not easy to do covers, is it? The key is: Do something different to it. Was that your philosophy?
Sharp – “I guess, in general, I feel that you should be able to do the cover in a different way than the song’s original recording, but without losing the essence or spirit of it. In my case, I just always loved that song and was desperate to give my take on it a go. I hope Don Henley and Mike Campbell like it!”
P&P – What’s your gut feeling on how the album will do?
Sharp – “In terms of record sales?… There’s no way to know. I can only hope it takes off. In terms of fans liking it? … I feel proud of the record – I enjoy listening to it myself – which is how I felt about ‘A Cheap and Evil Girl,’ and people seemed to really connect to that record. It’s hard for me to answer a question like that, but I hope that time will prove the album to be successful in all of the important ways.”
P&P – There are a lot of (older) artists who are eligible for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but for one reason or another, they just haven’t been invited to the big dance. What one artist do you think deserves to be in, and why? (Here are a few samples of those who aren’t in: ABBA, AC/DC, Black Sabbath Jackson Browne, Carpenters, Patsy Cline, Alice Cooper, Deep Purple, Neil Diamond, Hall & Oates, The Hollies, George Jones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Willie Nelson, The O’Jays, the Righteous Brothers, Frank Sinatra, War, Tammy Wynette.)
Sharp – “Of the list you’ve (mentioned), there are so many wonderful names. I think I’m most shocked about Willie Nelson. He’s had such a long and fruitful career and has written so many wonderful songs, it’s surprising that he’s not been honored by the RRHF. Plus, have you seen his awesome long braids, gnarly, worn-out guitar and beautifully weathered face? He’s such a rock star!”
ON THE WEB: www.breesharp.com.