Interview: Where the Good Way Lies
"From then on I knew that was the type of music I wanted to create. It’s such a diverse genre with so many flavors and styles, but I feel like this leaves so much room for artists to really find a niche and contribute from new perspectives."
Vince Rogers is the artist behind Where The Good Way Lies. Last July he released the album Nineteen Fourteen. When I first heard the album, I felt the emotion behind it, the same way Hammock invokes emotion in me when I hear their music. This album is full of emotion and great soundscapes. I recently caught up with Vince to talk about the inspiration behind the album and his music in general.
(((o))): How did you get started creating this genre of music?
Vince: It really has been a slow and evolving journey. I grew up playing music, starting with piano and guitar when I was very young. Although music has always been a pretty integral part of my life, it was only within the last few years that the desire grew to actually move beyond just a hobby of playing for fun and the occasional jam session or informal band engagements with various groups. I credit my brother with getting me interested in actually recording and experimenting with new techniques. At that point I had not even heard of the post-rock genre. I kind of stumbled across Tycho’s Dive and Awake albums, as well as Andy Othling (Lowercase Noises) around the same time, and from there on it was a quick progression into the heart of post-rock, falling in love with everything from first wave to the modern bands such as Caspian, Hammock, 65daysofstatic, and so much more. From then on I knew that was the type of music I wanted to create. It’s such a diverse genre with so many flavors and styles, but I feel like this leaves so much room for artists to really find a niche and contribute from new perspectives.
(((o))): What are/is your inspiration and influences?
Vince: This is a very hard question because there really is so much that I soak up and learn from. Aural Method and Lights and Motion have been big influences. Others that I can listen to on repeat are This Patch of Sky, and most recently I’ve had a vinyl of Caspian’s Dust and Disquiet going pretty much non-stop. Sigur Rós, The Album Leaf, Eluvium, U137 (or anything on the Deep Elm label), and my newest favorite, Coastlands out of Portland. Doug Kaufman isn’t really well known within the genre, but he does some really neat stuff with lots of cinematic elements. Check out his newest album, The Valley Below. There are so many more, but I’ll stop there.
(((o))): What instruments do you play?
Vince: My core instruments are definitely guitar and piano, but I also play mandolin, bass, and some violin. Give me something with strings on it and I’ll most likely pick it up pretty quickly. I also love experimenting with analog and virtual synths and samplers.
(((o))): Do you work with other musicians?
Vince: For my most recent work I have worked with a very talented violinist name Andra Stefan, and another very talented musician and audio engineer named Chris Freeman, who contributed drums/programming to some of the songs on Nineteen Fourteen.
(((o))): In terms of the release, I read that you dedicated the album to your brother. Was he the inspiration behind the making of this album and if yes, can you explain a little further?
Vince: I recorded a short video that was an album intro and overall explanation as to the meaning behind the album and the reason I chose Nineteen Fourteen as the title. The video can be seen at:
(((o))): How long did it take to create the album from start to finish?
Vince: I started sketching some ideas shortly after my brother passed in fall of 2013, but the idea for the album and the bulk of writing and recording occurred in the time span between the summer of 2015 and spring of 2016, with the official release occurring in July, 2016.
(((o))): Is there a story behind the title of the album?
Vince: There definitely is a story, but one without a whole lot of resolution. My younger brother was an EDM musician who over the span of 20 years created hundreds of songs under the moniker “verso”. When he passed away in 2013, one of the things that we came across when going through his personal belongings was a mix-CD in his car of various songs that he had recorded. When I listened through it, it was primarily songs that I had heard, but there was one that jumped out at me that I hadn’t. At that point I didn’t know the title or any background on the song, but it really stood out and resonated with me. After digging through recording files from his computer, I came across files for the song that were titled ‘1914’. I to this day do not know the significance that the number or year had to him, but the song really became the inspiration for the album as whole, and was the reason I named it Nineteen Fourteen. The main melody line of his song was adapted and arranged as the violin part on my track, Hope Unfolds. So all in all, the title carries a lot of meaning for me, but even I still don’t know exactly what it means!
(((o))): What’s next? Are you playing any shows?
Vince: No shows yet. Pretty much all of what I have done is studio recording projects fit in around a full-time schedule of a day job and spending time with my wife and two children. I do have as a goal to put a group together to work on arrangements and get live shows going!
(((o))): Are you working on another album/project?
Vince: I will have two singles being released in early 2017, so be looking out for those! After that I will be hunkering down to work on a new album to be released later in the year, with a few surprises in-between. I really love incorporating more traditional/folk elements and instrumentation, so expect more focus on elements such as violin, mandolin, and of course lots of ambient soundscapes melodic guitar hooks. More details on that forthcoming!