Society: Secrets and Soul - Interview with Jamie Girdler | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Secrets and Soul

Jan 24, 2014 Society Bookmark and Share

In the summer of 2012 a song titled “All That We’ve Become” surfaced as an extremely limited 7” single across various U.K. record stores. Though attributed to the name Society, the track itself might have well been made by a figment of fans’ imaginations, as numerous blogs and press outlets were unable to determine who was responsible for the song’s pleasing mix of sampled beats and classic soul.

While rumors spread that the track was some aliased one-off by an industry heavyweight, Danger Mouse being the most prominent candidate, it wouldn’t be until its follow-up single “14 Hours” came out over a year later this past fall that Society revealed itself to be the work of London-based artist Jamie Girdler and producer Brendan Lynch. “We didn’t have any other songs,” says Girdler, explaining the sudden silence after “All That We’ve Become.” “So we just went back into the studio and carried on writing. Everyone thought we were trying to be really cool and create all this mystery.”

Raised in Reading, Girdler first cut his teeth with a band called Beggars when he was just 17 years old. Centered around what Girdler describes as a “beaty” garage sound (“We basically wanted to be The Beatles”), the group was quickly scooped up by Heavenly Recordings. The band was inevitably placed in a state of limbo, locked in a contract but unable to produce an actual album when Heavenly’s partner EMI endured continuous shifts and replacements in its management.

Finding himself with plenty of time to kill, Girdler began spending prolonged bouts of time just loitering around at Heavenly’s office in London. Spending days and nights listening to records, Girdler was introduced to the sounds of old soul albums such as The Impressions’ The Young Mods’ Forgotten Story and Dusty Springfield’s Dusty Memphis. “It was kind of like my schooling,” he says. “I like to say I graduated from Heavenly School of Music.”

Leaving Heavenly following the dissolution of Beggars, Girdler soon teamed up with Lynch, who had worked on the former band’s ultimately scrapped LP. The two immediately began experimenting with Girdler’s newfound influences, juxtaposing his crooning, Richard Ashcroft vocals against Phil Spector-level soundscapes of smoky jazz, cinematic strings, and modern samples.

“Me and Bren just had this vision to do this old-fashioned record, but mixed with really contemporary beats and mad samples and kind of approach it in a different way,” says Girdler. “We wanted it to be like a classic record, which you don’t really hear anymore.”

Keeping things incredibly relaxed, with songs materializing as “happy accidents,” since he and Lynch record everything as they write it, Girdler says the primary goal of Society right now is to produce a great album. If all goes according to plan, Girdler jokes that it won’t take another year for fans to get their hands on more music.

“I suggested doing a single a year until I die,” says Girdler. “But no one was really into that, I guess.”

[This article first appeared in Under the Radar’s November/December 2013 issue.]


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January 28th 2014

Umm…. The article have good. When i read your article.
I feel good and like your site. i like listen music everytime at work.

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