fictionalize you life

We can go wherever we please and everything depends upon how near you stand to me

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interviews, conversations

Certains disques sont des voyages immobiles. Ainsi Bexar Bexar, après un premier album intitulé Haralambos (un prénom grec, et son martyr correspondant), revient avec “Tropism“, évoquant à le fois Nathalie Sarraute, une pêche miraculeuse et une tête de taureau. Un disque de monologue intérieur, de folk expérimental et de boucles de sons modifiés, infiniment aimable.

What does your name mean ? Is it because you come from the county of Bexar? How do you pronounce it?

I say bexar but in Texas you say “behar” or “bear”. I come just North of that place but we visit it a lot. It’s had a special meaning for me all my life.

Your page on myspace says your music was played on the radio show “This American life”. I saw on the internet it tells people’s stories. What sort of programme is it exactly?

It’s a very wide broadcast, nationwide in the US. it’s on NPR (national public radio). Every weekend, on Saturday and Sunday, they have a show and they usually use 2 or 3 songs by different artists. It’s a documentary, mostly true stories of everyday people. Each show has a theme with a different producer, sometimes it’s fiction. I’ve listened to it since 1999. I was a fan so I sent them some music and they used it.

You wrote soundtracks for movies. Is it something you’ve wanted to do ever since you started writing music?

Usually they take recordings that I’ve already made but a couple of times so far they needed a soundtrack so I wrote it.

What are your favourite movies?

One of my favourites is “Naked” by Mike Leigh with David Thewlis.

Do you relate to the hero in “Naked”?

Yeah but that would be telling. I surely identify with him. I do. With several characters in the movie. I like most of Mike Leigh’s films, “All or nothing”, “Secrets and lies”.

In Europe sometimes there is a stereotype saying most people in Texas aren’t interested in culture.

it’s true to some extent in big cities, in Houston. But Austin is a college town with a huge university so it’s pretty different from other places in Texas.

Is it your first time in Europe? How much do you enjoy the tour so far?

It’s the second time but it’s the first time I’m staying so long and seeing so much. Sometimes I have enough time to walk around places. We had enough time to explore Amsterdam and Brussels.

It’s very strange, a little bit like the States where you see different cultures in different states but it’s more extreme. We landed in Luxembourg which looks very special with all the big banks. Brussels was very different, very confusing. Amsterdam was wonderful. We played on VPRO. It’s been our best day so far.

When does your interest in music date back to?

I started very early when I was little. My mum worked for a radio station so I listened to lots of records, stuff the radio didn’t want to play so I kept the records. In 1996 I bought a guitar a very bad one falling apart and I started recording. I tried to do singer/songwriter stuff at first then I got into more instrumental music.

Do you have any favourite song lyrics that are special to you and that you’ll never forget?

Yes, plenty. Bonnie prince billy but it’s difficult to chose some words in particular, Talking heads “77″, Electrelane, Songs :ohia, “the tigress” and “the lioness”. That period of songwriting was great, I listened to it a lot at that time.

How important for you is the place where you live?

I lived in NY and it’s much harder to create in an environment like that. It feels inspiring when you’re there visiting but when you’re living there it’s complicated.

You have to work so hard to live there you use your energy working and don’t have much left to create. I prefer smaller quieter places where I can be alone.

What’s your favourite place to listen to music?

Lately, headphones on the computer. Or during the day when I first wake up while I’m making breakfast. The first hour in the morning when I listen to a new record. Later on in the day I have so many things to do but the first hour is good. Sometimes the music loops in my head if it’s good.

Do you have any special records that you listen to a lot at special times, when you feel good, or down? What are your “happy records”?

“Arise therefore” by Will Oldham, Songs: ohia and now Magnolia electric company, Goldmund, just piano.

Happy records: there are lots, Electrelane “Axes”, “The power out”, Talking heads “77”.

What are you listening to these days? in the van? What’s in your mp3player?

Quite a few before the tour I listened to a lot of experimental music to see what they’re doing these days, Alexander Tucker, Philip Glass.

What do you like doing in your free time?

I like to run, look for instruments and odd things in second hand stores, reading. I listen to field recordings and it triggers ideas for some songs. I had a collection of instruments. I’ve been trying to sell some but I still have a bunch of stuff. I use them on the records. It’s inspiring to have new things.

If you could spend one day in somebody else’s shoes, who would you choose?

Does he have to be alive? First thing that comes to mind is Hank Williams sr. Hank Williams had a short life but he was fascinating. I like his grandson more than the son.

What’s your biggest worry?

That I’ll start worrying. I try not to worry because it doesn’t do any good. If something good happens, good for you but if it’s something bad, you should just take action and change it. You can’t worry about everything all the time.

What have you learned recently?

Like a realisation? Lately I learned how to fix cars, I took a class. I worked at a shop, and they did teach me a realisation that I don’t want to do this for a living. What’s most important is that I should try to be happy. I should be doing something that I enjoy. It may not be the best plan but…

To finish with, do you have a crazy pun, a play on words? A silly joke?

There’s one I learned when I was a kid: “What does one wall say to the other wall : meet you at the corner”, but it’s not up to date …

Bexar Bexar chez Western Vinyl

Bexar Bexar chez Own Records

écouter “Sweet devil “, “Oil Thumbprints“,”Voices and organs“.

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