We caught up with SOJA ahead of their UK headline show at London’s O2 Academy Islington on Saturday 24th June…
You’ll be visiting the UK this weekend and are playing a very special date at London’s O2 Academy Islington on Saturday. Are you looking forward to this?
It’s been like 5 or maybe more since we have been to London. So to say we are looking forward to it would be an understatement. Touring has always been such a big part of the music industry. After the global pandemic we didn’t really know when we were going to be headed back to some of these places. So after a bit of a touring break it’s really exciting to be doing more international shows. London just has a great vibe and a welcoming music scene. Hoping to check out some cool music stores while I’m in town.
What can your fans expect from the show?
We recently have been spending a lot of time perfecting our live show. It has a dynamic mix of new and classic SOJA tunes that we think always keeps the crowd engaged. It also showcases multiple SOJA members as lead vocalists and we like to keep the energy level high. We expect to get off the stage sweaty after giving you 110%!!
You won a GRAMMY Award last year for your album ‘Beauty In The Silence’, this must have been such a huge achievement?
We are very proud to be members of the Grammy Society and being able to win that award is one of the greatest accomplishments yet for this band. It was our third nomination and we will always continue to produce our music at the level in which it can be nominated again in the future and hopefully considered for another Grammy win.
Can you tell us about the creative process behind making the record?
It started out the way our normal process starts. We had a handful of songs, probably 6-7 that we had played as a band and made some demo recordings. We were able to start laying down some of the basics for these tracks between recording sessions at a studio called Haunted Hollow in Virginia and Circle House Studios in Miami. Then the global pandemic hit and everything came to a screeching halt. We decided to continue working on the album even tho we couldn’t be together. Luckily with todays technology most of us were able to set up or already had home studios. I became the hub and everyone worked on their parts remotely. It was a bit of a learning experience for all of us but even now we still are able to do a hybrid of working this way which hopefully means we will release more music in less time between releases.
What is one of your favorite songs to perform live?
That’s tough to answer because I love the dynamics of the show so much. It will go from a slower heartfelt song like “You and Me’ where it starts mellow with Jacob singing then I take the second verse and by the end of it I’m wailing at the top of my vocal range to Bobby Lee’s song “To Whom It May Concern” where the energy level just goes through the roof. Everyone of us jumping off the risers and rocking out. By the end of that song I normally have head banged dreads out from being tied up and am laying on the ground ripping the guitar.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
My biggest music influence was my dad. Which is kinda funny because he wasn’t even a musician. He introduced me to what was classic rock. Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin…He had brought home a guitar and amplifier one day. Black Statocaster copy and a Fender amp just like Clapton. When he plugged it in and started making sounds with it I thought “well I can do better than whatever this is”.
What does the rest of the year have in store for SOJA?
Well the London show is part of a 3 week run of Europe that is also going to have stops in Belgium, Netherlands, France, Austria, Germany, and Spain. Then we fly back to the US and have another 3 week run with our good friend Michael Franti. During all of this we plan on working on finishing work on our new record and hopefully making some releases by the end of year.
Have you got any messages for your fans?
Thank you for continuing to support our group by listening and sharing our music. We plan on traveling the world and performing as long as you guys keep coming out and bringing the energy that you always do. See you all at a show soon.
Tickets for their London show are on sale now and available from HERE