INTERVIEW: Few Miles South
Hi folks, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
Blake: Pretty tired, just got off the road but we’re about to head back out and we’re excited. Got to see my dogs and wash the van so it’s a good day.
Tori: Agreed. A little tired, need a good stretch after sitting in the car but excited to get back out there.
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “On Down The Road”?
Blake: Been wanting to do a song like that – train beat, chicken pickin’ – for a long time. Musically, that was really fun.
Tori: It’s kind of become our theme song as of late. Been putting in a lot of miles on the road and its always good to come home. It’s a reminder of what’s important.
Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?
Blake: The concept came really quickly. We were in LA and had been talking about moving back home and what that would look like for a while. Both us were ready to get out of the city and just simplify. So lyrically it wrote itself because we’d been talking about it so much.
Tori: I think we were both just going through the motions, working to pay the bills and in a rut, wishing we had more time to do music, be outside, camp, play with our dog, etc. I was tired of complaining so writing it motivated us to go through with the move.
How was the filming process and experience behind the video?
Blake: We hired a guy we found on craigslist, Malcom Guess, and we lucked out because he did an awesome job! Our budget was small so we were planning on shooting in a recording studio but last minute came up with the band playing in the back of the truck. We rented a truck and Malcom found an awesome location in the desert without much traffic which was good because we didn’t exactly have a permit. So, we were out in the desert, hot in the day, windy and cold soon as the sun when at down. We picked up a couple of hay bales which ended up making a huge mess of your clothes and instruments, our pedal steel player, Bob Bernstein was not too happy about that ha! We almost ran out of gas filming and had to ride to the nearest town with the entire crew in the back of the truck.
Tori: A lot was filmed using drones so that cut out costs quite a bit and made for some really cool visuals. We had a blast just driving up and down the road and our dog, Jojo,has a couple cameos. She’s since passed, but it’s cool to have her memorialized in the video.
The single comes off your new album Might Could – what’s the story behind the title?
Blake: Just something I’ve been saying all my life..I thought it was plain English..Tori says its very country.
Tori: It’s one of the first phrases I noticed when I met Blake and you hear it a lot now that we’ve moved down to GA. Gotta be my favorite “southern-ism”. it slipped outta my mouth the other day and I barely noticed til Blake called me on it, so it’s rubbing off haha! It means “probably” but we chose it as the title because it says country, the south, and the song is about wanting to let loose, which definitely sums up our sentiments while writing the EP. We’re also hoping we might could have a go at making music long term.
How was the recording and writing process?
Blake: Awesome..my favorite part. We have a studio at home so we’re able to take our time and obsess until we get it right. It’s free, no clocks running, so that doesn’t hurt.
Tori: I had never written a song, at least not one I’d ever consider sharing, until we started Few Miles South, so I was shy at first, and a little intimidated because Blake has been writing and making music for ages. He showed me his methods and eventually I figured out my own process and gained more confidence. The same goes for recording. I had to get used to singing in front of him and not taking myself so seriously.
Coming from different backgrounds – how do you get to balance them together?
Tori: I think we are still figuring it out, but thats the fun part. I studied classical music for a long while and tend to overthink things whereas Blake is a rocker and more impulsive. I need quiet, a journal, voice recorder, and he will loop a track or fiddle around on guitar until he’s on to something. We have different styles for sure, but its yin and yang I guess.
Do you tend to take a different approach when you are collaborating with someone else rather than in your own?
Tori: Blake is the only writer I’ve really worked with at this point, so I can’t really speak much to that yet, but I do have a different approach than him. Like I said, he’s gotta hear music, whereas I prefer silence for the most part. I keep journals full of notes, most of them garbage, but I’ll sift through until I can piece something together, and at other times it just all comes at once. I can say that we write a fair share of our songs when we’re camping, there’s something about nature.
Blake: My approach is usually the same each time I write. I like to start from the acoustic guitar and most time will have a melody in mind and we just build from there. Most other writers/artists that I’ve worked with don’t seem to mind that approach.
What aspect of your lives did you get to explore on this record?
Tori: It’s about choosing to create the life we’ve always wanted to live. Quitting jobs that weren’t completely fulfilling, moving to the forest, making music, spending time with our puppy dogs and doing it together. As far as I know you only get one chance to live so better do what makes you happy.
Any plans to hit the road?
Blake: We’re always on the road because we live in the middle of no where! But we’re headed out soon and I can’t wait!
Tori: Yep! August 21st is our first stop at WDVX Blue Plate Special in Knoxville, TN. Then we’ll make our way through TX, WY, ID and CO. We’ll be out for about 3 weeks.
What else is happening next in Few Miles South’s world?
Tori: We’re finishing up our first full length album, hopefully it will be ready to go this fall.
Blake: Yep..just writing new songs and recording. Booking shows and trying to figure out how to make some money so we can keep livin’ the dream! HAHA!