By Eriq Rivera
My New Mistress is a band formed in the state of Utah and have released a self titled EP in 2013.
Vocalist and Guitarist Jeremy answered some questions about the band.
Q: I read that you guys formed after the final show of American Attic, can you guys talk a little more about that and how you guys eventually formed My New Mistress?
A: Doug and I had been playing in the band, American Attic for about five years. During this time the band had seen a few lineup changes and the drummer had moved to Salt Lake City, which is about an hour and a half away from Logan. It was becoming more difficult to make the distance work, so I messaged an old friend, Adam to see if he could fill in on the drums for shows that the previous drummer couldn’t make it to.
While the band practiced with Adam to get ready for their first show together with American Attic, I mentioned that we had some other songs that I had been working on and wondered if Adam would like to play them.
After Adam’s first show as American Attic, we decided to start working more on the side project. The side-project slowly took over as the main focus of the band.
Q: Where does the name of the band come from?
A: We were referring to the side-project as our mistress band. We wanted to play off of that for a name, and because being in a band is like having a mistress on the side of our normal lives we felt the name My New Mistress was fitting.
Q: Can you guys talk about the writing process and the making of your self-titled EP?
A: For years I have been writing songs as the lead of multiple bands. Some of the songs that we play now had been written for a long time, but I could never get American Attic on board due to the difference in musical style. I am a night owl and usually write while sitting on the couch at two in the morning.
I’ll usually start something on my own and then come to practice with a song or idea. Then as a group we’ll tear it apart and organize it to what we all feel is best.
Going in to the studio to make the EP was quite the experience. We were lucky to work with Matt Winegar of Secret Side Walk studios in SLC. Matt has brought years of experience and expertise to the table, but most importantly brutally honest feedback.
If we played it like garbage he told us, let’s do it again. There were times I thought I nailed a guitar part and Matt would say “that was ok, it’s getting there, let’s get a few more takes” It made a difference to have someone listen to what we were trying to do with our songs and make it better.
Q: What are the meanings or themes of some of your songs?
A: All the songs on the EP have a common theme of encouragement to overcome odds and not giving up on the things that really make life wonderful to live.
The web was written quite some time ago for my sister who got pregnant as a teen, to encourage her that all though “everyone will talk and everyone will know, and every one will tell you I told you so” to not get caught in the “the web”. Even though people will gossip, you can move forward no matter what anyone says. For the record she did that very thing she’s an amazing mother and my hero.
In Benson, I wanted to write a song that focused on the setting of a defining moment – when my wife and I, after splitting up, made the decision to make things work and move forward together. I named the song Benson after the town that we were living in at the time, under the theme of writing a song based on the setting of where I was while I wrote the song, rather than actually writing about what we were going through together as a couple.
Q: What do you guys think of the reaction of audiences you guys have performed in front of?
A: We’ve had some great audiences that we’ve performed in front of. Just last week we played our release party for our debut EP. The crowd was amazing. We already had people singing along to the songs, dancing, and just having a good time.
Q: What influenced your musical talents?
A: I can’t speak for the other guys but I have a few people that I feel influenced my desire to play and make music; my late Grandmother, Dorthy who was amazing at piano and could play anything by ear or by reading guitar chords. I can remember being maybe 5 when she took me to see Willie Nelson; my mind was blown as I watched him on stage singing songs and see the crowd’s reaction to music. I knew that was something I wanted to do. My mother would play piano in the house growing up and music always filled our home, my mom knew of my interest and love for music and made sure that I was able to take Piano lessons.
In school I played the Violin in the orchestra. I had a teacher, Mr. Shaub, who asked me to stay after class after seeing me plucking my violin like a guitar nonstop and adding my own little flair to the classical music parts that I thought should be there. Thinking I was in trouble was surprised when he said “Jeremy you need to learn the Guitar” I asked” why” he stated that “I needed Rock n’ Roll and Rock n’ Roll needed me” I don’t know if Rockn’ Roll needed me, but I know I needed it.
Q: What are some current bands you guys would love to tour with?
A: Jimmy Eat World, Refused (how else would we see them again), Andrew W.K., Alkaline Trio, The Gaslight Anthem, Slayer(so I can say I died being boo’d off stage doing what I love).
Q: What does rock n roll mean to you guys?
A: I would say it is a passion, our way of expression of what goes on in our crazy minds and hearts. No matter how insane life is you can pick up a guitar, sit at the piano, or put on a favorite record and life is improved by 89.98%.
Q: What is in the future for My New Mistress?
A: We hope to tour more. We also have more songs that we weren’t able to get recorded on our EP. So we hope to sell enough records to help us pay for another album.