Laish - full interview
21st January 2017 at Le Pingouin Alternatif.
This was the day when I met LAISH, this amazing and oh-so-kind band from London. That night, there were only the two of them: Danny and Talitha.
They accepted to answer a few questions for my very first interview.
We spent a very nice time together. These people are so humble and kind! And we laughed a lot... In a nutshell: an unforgettable moment. Thank you Danny and Talitha!
SERIOUS QUESTIONS SECTION
M&M: Laish is your stage name.
I did my homework, so I know it can refer to a city in Palestine, or it can be a Hebrew word meaning “the tribe of Dan”, or it can mean ‘lion’. Which one is the right answer?
Danny Green: I think they’re all correct. I discovered the word, so when I heard it was “the tribe of Dan”… because my name is Danny, I thought it was kind of cool you know. And then of course I read about it and, the connection with Israel, Palestine… and it’s mentioned in the Bible… I believe in Arabic it also means ‘why?’… So it has many meanings but for me, “the tribe of Dan” was the most appropriate.
So, as you can read, it has nothing to do with his hair 😊 (though Danny admits he used to have really big hair).
* * *
M&M: You both live in London. What are your favourite places to go? What are the best venues for gigs?
Amazing tips alert!!
Talitha: One of my favourite venues is the Lexington in Islington. It’s got beautiful sounds, and it’s the right size. And they always promote amazing artists there.
Danny: If you want to see really good folk music, then the Harrison in Kings Cross is very good because it’s tiny, you can only fit less than a hundred people. It’s a basement room. You cannot talk when you’re in there because everybody tells you to hush… Upstairs it’s a really rowdy bar, it’s very noisy, and everyone’s having fun… but you go downstairs and it’s like… very quiet! And you always meet interesting musicians…
Talitha: I also think it’s worth walking around and not having a plan. Especially in East London from Kingsland Road up to Hackney Wick. […] People plan so much in London. It’s like “I have to go there, and then I have to go there…” But spontaneity you know, it really works, but people forget to do that!
* * *
M&M: What are your networking tips for unprofessional musicians ? (like me … ok self-interest here! ^^)
Danny: If you can help somebody else, they can help you. This is how it works. You need to share information, and a good call comes back to you. And always go to gigs – you only meet musicians and promoters at gigs.
* * *
M&M: Who’s your favourite artist?
Danny: I’ve got so many… (What did I expect... Of course, there are so many talented artists, it's a stupid question!!) At the moment, I really love an American songwriter called Ezra Furman. If I was going to pigeon-hole him horribly, I would say he’s like a cross between David Bowie and Bruce Springsteen… with a bit of 50s rock’n’roll.
Talitha: I really like expressive, thoughtful, deep, minimal music at the moment. The more minimal the better. I listen to a lot of instrumental music as well. I love Andy Shauf at the moment.
Danny: Yeah, an amazing Canadian guy. His last two albums are incredible.
Talitha: Otherwise, there’s a lot of amazing artists on Talitres (their label) as well. Friends of ours: Rozi Plain, Rachael Dadd… Beautiful musicians, amazing, underrated.
SILLY QUESTIONS SECTION
Tea or coffee?
Lager, ale, or stout?
Danny: yeah, she’s a Guinness girl! I’m ale … 100%.
Leader or follower?
Danny: Musically I can be a leader, but I also like to follow sometimes.
Damien Rice or All Sons & Daughters?
Talitha: Someone broke up with me while we were listening to Damien Rice! I was about 20. So I hate!
Danny: I’m sure he’s a lovely guy!
Camping or hotel?
Moderation or excess?
Talitha: We do yoga, so… ^^
Security or adventure?
'Big Bang Theory' or 'How I Met Your Mother'?
Talitha: How I Met Your Mother!
Danny: I’ve never seen HIMYM.
Talitha: No, you have!! You’re lying!
Danny: Ok err… Grand designs! ^^
What would the perfect title of your autobiography be? “Let’s Get Naked?”
Danny: Yes! ^^ I love that one!
Talitha: “Nothern Boy Gets Naked”! ^^
Danny: “The Pendulum Swung”. Sorry it’s a very bad joke!
Talitha: I like “Let’s Get Naked!” Ok the serious answer would be…
Danny: “Laish Should Be A Lion.”
Talitha: An autobiography of the life would be… Maybe: “It’s Too Deep.”
Danny: “Lost For Laish”.