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Interview: Band of the Week – Crosby Loggins

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Crosby Loggins is many things, amongst them he is the eldest child of the Grammy award-winning musician Kenny Loggins and winner of MTV's reality show Rock the Cradle, but most importantly he is a talented singer-songwriter and musician. He may have begun life as the privileged son of an internationally acclaimed rock star, but Crosby is no spoiled wannabe. He is down-to-earth, friendly, open, and very professional.

No doubt inspired by many of the multi-talented musical artists he grew-up around like, Jackson Browne, Graham Nash, Michael McDonald, and Glen Phillips, Crosby set about creating music that is a mix-up of musical genres, for his début album We All Go Home. Bringing together a group of equally talented fellow musicians and friends – many the son's of rock stars themselves – Crosby, under the name Crosby Loggins and the Light, has created an album that is a testament to true talent. We All Go Home has strong flavours of jazz, funk, folk, and rock, catchy riffs, addictive melodies and soulful lyrics. It's a début any aspiring rock star would be proud of.

PhotobucketRecently Crosby took a few minutes (ok it was an hour) to chat with me about his recent appearance, and winning, MTV's Rock the Cradle, what it's like to be the son of a super famous musician, and his own musical aspirations.

Can you clarify something for me first. Who are The Light?

The thing with this is that these guys are buddies of mine from the central coast area in California, where I live. They are spread out over several hundred miles. We all bumped into one another through musical pathways, local scenes we're all involved in. They all have their own careers, this record just revolved around me. We got together and started jamming this very uncool, not very in vogue, Yacht rock. And the stuff that we liked about it was it was a fusion, basically just fun interesting stuff.

The rhythm section was part of a fuck-fusion group from Bakersfield, California [Mother Funk Conspiracy]. The keyboardist, bassist and drummer were good friends with the violinist who started working with the guitarist/co-producer [Jesse Siebenberg] and I. There's a lot of progeny in the band. The guitarist's father was the drummer in Supertramp [Bob Siebenberg], and his uncle is Scott Gorham of Thin Lizzy; the violinist's uncle was the bassist in Oingo Boingo and all these kinds of associations. There is a whole click of us that very randomly started hanging out together.

We released a bunch of other small EP's under different band names in previous years, then released my record and then all went our separate ways immediately after. Now everybody is working for somebody else. We've come back together, in limited capacity, to work out material for this Jive Record deal that I'm working on now.

That's right, the grand prize for winning MTV's Rock the Cradle was a record deal. Are they going to be your band on the new album?

They may or may not be the same backing band for this next record. Some of them are more successful than I am, and I can't even afford them. Which is no bad-blood whatsoever, it's a huge pat on the back, I'm thrilled for them. But the core of the band, which is Jesse Siebenberg and I, the violinist Paul Cartwright and the keyboardist Dennis Hamm, are working on some stuff to turn into the label.

Tell me more about your current album We All Go Home.Photobucket

We All Go Home is a collection of my earlier material. It's a few songs that were co-written with the band, in a writing session right before the first track of the album got recorded. The majority of it is original material that I've had for some time. Basically the whole concept for We All Go Home was… when we were making the record we were into a few different things, stylisticly, not one specific thing. We wanted to try and incorporate all those different things into what we were doing. It's sort of like the iPod being on shuffle, we never felt like we had to stick to any one thing all the time. So it shuffles around from rap to rock to funk to jazz, there are some R&B-ish moments, all under this singer-songwriter umbrella, and we tie it altogether with strong instrumentalists. I wanted to create a synergy that could carry on and expand into a live context. That was kind of the goal of the record.

We wanted to keep it all solo stuff really sparse, really simple from a production because it's about the songs more on the record. So some of the moments on the record are, the electric guitar solo at the end of “March On, America”, that's actually a violin solo.

Really? Cause that really does sound like electric guitar.

No, that's electric violin. That's one of the staples of our live show. And similarly there is a violin solo on “We All Go Home” that we expand when we're performing it live. There's some fun stuff. I think we succeeded.

Also the co-producer [Jesse Siebenberg] and I, both of our parents are famous, they had a lot of pop success, and we both had a little bit of a chip on our shoulder to create and produce some slick popish stuff. Even though we both hate pop and don't even listen to pop, I think, to a certain degree, we got that out of the way.

I wanted to ask you about one song in particular, the last track, “Same Old Song”. It is the only song on the album that seems to be a deeply personal song.

I agree. It is the most personal song on the record. I actually wrote that song with a buddy of mine who passed away a couple of years ago. That is a personal piece for me.

What is it about?

It's really about negotiating the shadow of my father. There are moments where you can interchange whether or not I am talking about Kenny as a young boy, or me as a young boy. The similarities in our journeys.

Can we talk about you being the son of Kenny Loggins?

Yeah, sure.

Do you think it's helped or hindered you in the long run?

A lot of people ask that. I really do believe that it is a fair measure of both. There's a lot of expectation. You can afford to use opportunities that others might not get but people say again and again that if you aren't talented when you get those opportunities you're never going to be invited back again.

PhotobucketEven beyond that, I know, I personally, find it very difficult to take the child of anyone famous seriously.

Yeah, I can recognise that.

I think that is probably extraordinarily unfair of me. But I always think, that they are riding their parent's coattails.

That is absolutely the reason I guffawing at this television show I was just on, because it's all about making people famous. (laughs) And I was laughing because, who would want to watch that?

I don't know if it's necessarily an unfair judgement because there is a large measure of people who have ridden off their parents coattails, in this regard. But always consider when it comes to doctors, lawyers, even high-powered executives that's just the norm. Yeah, it's a double edged sword, there's not two ways about it.

If you would like to learn more about Crosby Loggins you can visit his website, or his MySpace space.

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