Joe Tagg/ Solaram Interview

We recently met up with Joe Tagg, formerly of the Three 4 Tens. He’s launching a new solo project, called Solaram, and we love the new album (soon to be released). You can hear some of the songs on Solarum’s myspace page. But first, read our interview with Joe.

JT: After 13 years of playing with The Three 4 Tens, I played my last show with the band on December 13th, 2008, at Mojo 13 in Wilmington, Delaware. It was a benefit show to help raise some money for the son of a good friend and colleague, Chris Tucker from the band, The Situation. Chris had passed away in an accident that summer.The name of the new project is Solaram. I guess I started writing the bulk of the new material over the winter of 2008, with the exception of two of the tracks that I had left over from a few years back when I was playing with Himalaya. I started the actual recording part of it in February after I secured a contract with Rainbow Quartz. The album (Love And The Sweet Divine) should hopefully be out in October. I say hopefully, ’cause the date has changed something like three times already!

I’ve been working with Ryan Van Kriedt from The Asteroid #4. He’s got a great ear! It’s been great working together. Totally laid back. It doesn’t hurt that we’re on the same page as far as music goes, either. Ryan and I laid down most of the tracks. We had some help from my friend Mike from The Three 4 Tens and my friend Jeff on drums. Also, Brian and Jamie from Himalaya came in and did some guitars and pedal steel. All great players.

MD: TELL US ABOUT THE MUSIC.

JT: Well. I guess you could say it’s a bit dark at times. I’ve lost quite a few family members and close friends over the past few years. Definitely rough, coping with all of it. I’ve had some other issues as well, and I guess this album captures that period of time perfectly, for me. My first love is, and will always be rock ‘n roll, so the record’s not this gloom and doom piece either.

MD: A FEW FAVORITE SONGS BY OTHER ARTISTS?

JT: I’m not too good with song titles. I have piles of cds. No cases or sleeves, all around the house. My girlfriend, Carla, hates it and lets me know often! I will say that anything by Zeppelin, The Beatles/Stones, The Who, The Pixies/Spacemen 3/Stone Roses…I can go on.

MD: LAST CONCERT PERFORMANCE ATTENDED.

JT: I haven’t been getting out too much, especially since I started with this record. I know it’s been a while…I’m gonna have to say Spiritualized at the TLA in Philly, last August!


MD: WHAT ARE YOU READING?

JT: I’ve been reading Songbook, by Nick Hornby. It’s a collection of stories of different songs, and how they connect him with moments of his life. It’s a pretty cool book, definitely worth checking out. Everybody has these songs…not necessarily these particular songs, but…

MD: WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR GOALS OR PLANS?

JT: Well, for the immediate future, finish this record and tour. I’ve already started work on the follow up. Other than that, maybe a couple weeks in Paris or Amsterdam or both. They’re my two favorite places on earth.


MD: OTHER JOBS YOU HAVE HAD.

JT: I’ve had a lot of other jobs. I worked at a movie theater, I worked with insulation in low income housing. I was an electrician’s assistant, a carpenter’s assistant. I worked at a wood shop, did demo work on houses in Jersey. House painting, clean-outs, moving furniture. The list goes on…

MD: WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR INTERESTS?

JT: I love film. I would love to score a movie some day. I also love to travel.

MD: FAVORITE MOVIE?

JT: 2001.

MD: FAVORITE VISUAL ARTIST.

JT: Jackson Pollock.

Website: http://www.myspace.com/solaram09

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