Interview with ethereal RnB band KARMACODA

  Image credit: Bill Shupp

Breathtaking R&B & pop band KARMACODA have unveiled their single ‘Make Me The One’ earlier this week, prepare to be a tad emotional while you absorb the mesmerizing energy of this future hit. Consisting of renowned singer & vocal coach (American Idol, The Voice USA) Jessica Ford, Brett Crockett (vocals, production), and Eric Matsuno (instrumentalists) they deliver their own brand of ethereal R&B. This single is lifted off of their upcoming album Slow Down, Melt and Catch Fire via Sola Musa Music, to be released on the 28th of May.

Pre-save ‘Make Me The One’

We chatted with the one and only KARMACODA below.

Please describe your sound for us.

B.: We’re a mix of electronica, pop, a little R&B with elements of trap soul.  We’re musical explorers.

How did it all start for you?

B.:  I had a very musical childhood. Growing up I became obsessed with music eventually getting my first guitar and keyboard in my teens. After I moved to the Bay Area after college I joined several rock bands and recorded often in the famous studios in the Bay Area and LA (Music Annex and Sound City Studios). Eventually venturing into the electronica genre. It was during this time I became interested in recording, producing, and mixing because I couldn’t get the sound in my head to come out of the recordings other recorded and produced and mixed.

Jessica: Music runs in my family, I played flute as a child, then piano, then singing, then guitar. I danced ballet before I ever sang. I also did tap and jazz. My entire family danced and sang. We would do local community shows together from time to time, but mostly I am the singer in the immediate family, the one who pursued a career in it. I have a cousin who does the exact same thing as me and a brother who is a music producer.

Eric: For as long as I could remember, I was known to love music.  My mom and pop were the entertainers in my huge family of some dozens of cousins and it was my dad who played Santa for all of them. My mom plays the ukulele and dad played the harmonica and had a pretty mean whistle.  I adored my sax playing uncle-aged cousin and always knew that music would be a big part of my life.

Which three artists would you say made you want to create your own music?

B.: Massive Attack, Radiohead, Peter Gabriel.

What is your go-to gear/equipment when creating?

B.: In modern music, the computer has become the studio, an instrument, a sketchpad, and a muse. It all starts there. Then when it comes time to add vocals and music we use Vintage U47 microphones, vintage Fender Rhodes pianos, bass, guitar, drums, an Ondes Martenot, plus loads of other vintage synthesizers from the 70’s and 80’s.

What are some of your key influences in your music? Whether it be the sound created by others, imagery, films or any kind of art form.

KARMACODA’s musical goal is to combine gorgeous music that elicits the response “I’ve never heard anything like that before, it’s so lush and new”. And layer on top of that some of the most beautiful, emotional, and engaging vocals people have ever heard.  Additionally, we try to make the lyrics as meaningful and deep as they can be while creating images in the listener’s mind.  We like the phrase “we sing in pictures, not in words”.

We are huge fans of film and movies and have always worked with independent filmmakers and directors to create compelling music videos that have won multiple awards.  To us, music videos aren’t just a means of promotion but an extension of our artistic vision and statement.

What is one sub-genre you think doesn’t get the attention it deserves?

B.: The fusion of pop, with downtempo, and trap soul is something we find fascinating and worthy of exploration.

Any new or upcoming artists on your radar?

B.: Billie Eilish is interesting and doing new things. I saw her perform live at the Grammy’s in LA and it was pretty cool.  He’s not new, but Frank Ocean continues to blow my mind.

What single night out has been the most memorable for you? As a performer? As an attendee?

B.: We played a show at the venerable Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco with Mndsgn a the venue was at capacity with a line around the block.  The crowd was great and really into it.

I saw Massive Attack at the Warfield in San Francisco, a classic theater venue and when the bass kicked in I swear it was so powerful it sucked the air out of my lungs.  Visceral and amazing.

What can we expect from you in the near future? Any upcoming projects in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about?

We’re currently in production for our music video for the first single Make Like Mine.  We’ll release a few more singles this spring and then drop the full album early this summer.

Famous last words?

We love you.

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