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INTERVIEW: Miss Velvet & the Blue Wolf

Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

We are great We have been on tour with George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic since 2018, so living a very surreal life right now!!

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Phat Blunt”?

Yes. We have the great honor to have George Clinton featured on it.  And I guess you could say that it’s our band’s tribute to him and to Parliament Funkadelic

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

 It started out, as it often does, with a jam. This time our bass player ‘ Jimi Beamon’ aka James Jones came in with a variation of the Hendrix riff, then our guitarist ‘The Dude’ Henry Ott joined in, then drums and keys fell in and then Miss Velvet started finding the vocals on it and a song was born. The arrangement developed as we had the opportunity to keep playing it on our first tour with George and in Las Vegas at our last show of the Mardi Gras tour in April 2018, he came to the side stage and started whistling which is what he does when he loves something.  That was when the idea started percolating that we would ask him to record on that track when we were ready for our 2nd album.

How was the filming process and experience behind the video?

We shot the whole video while we were on tour with George and Parliament in Hawaii, Australia and Japan.  It became clear to the director, Gabriel Hart that we had to use the cinematic locations that the tour was taking us and those locations inspired him to create a mini action movie. Miss Velvet gets kidnapped and we call George for help: so, for instance, we came off stage in Melbourne and went in the back alley that had this next-level Graffiti on all the buildings, and Gabriel grabbed a taxi and asked if they wanted to be in a movie, so we shot the kidnap scene. The cops then showed up and we asked if they wanted to be in the movie and everywhere we went it was like that and everyone was game.  Was a total blast.

The single comes off your new album Feed The Wolf – what’s the story behind the title?

The title for the single ‘Phat Blunt’ literally came from Jimi Beamon’s Dad who heard him practicing the riff and said ‘that sounds like you smoked  a big phat blunt’ and it became obvious that it had to be title.

The title for the album came from another single on the album which shared the same title FEED THE WOLF.  It’s the idea that the Wolf has to be fed by music and creating. What is also is starting to happen is audiences are beginning to shout out ‘FEED THE WOLF’. So cool.

How was the recording and writing process?

We started recording the album in Ireland at Grouse Lodge when we were on tour with George last June –July 2018.  We played Glasgow together, but because we were such nubies, we couldn’t get on the festival dates in Oslo, Copenhagen and Iceland, so our label Isotopia that had a connect to Grouse lodge had the idea to send us there before we met up with George in Amsterdam a week later.  So in that week, we lived at Grouse lodge and started laying down the tracks focusing on getting Phat Blunt done so George could record on it.  It was just the best as we did with our first album, to live together, eat together and create.

What was it like to work with George Clinton and how did that relationship develop?

Well for everyone in the band, we our super fans so from that point, we are constantly pinching ourselves that any of this is happening.  The relationship has organically developed from being on tour with him. And it’s all really due to our label Isotopia Records that had the crazy  foresight and the courage to take us to United Sound In Detroit which wasn’t an active studio anymore. And we effectively rebuilt Studio A at United Sound where Parliament recorded all their records to make our first record, as Isotopia always had in the back of her mind that maybe George would listen to it if he saw it was recorded at United.  And it that is exactly what happened.  115 shows later tooight with our 2nd album with him on it!!!

How much did he get to influence song?

We wrote the song without him and never thinking he would even want to be on it, so to have written something that he wanted to add the icing on the cake has been the ultimate stamp of approval.

With such a creative mind on your side – how did you get to share and balance all your creative inputs?

It was after our show at Sony Hall in NYC on Nov 2nd 2018 that we ‘kidnapped’ him and asked him to come into the studio in BK which we were using to put finishing touches on what we started at Grouse Lodge.  When he walked in the door didn’t matter how many shows we had done with him and P-funk, we were giddy fans. Just handed him the mic and let him start free styling.  Then our bandmates Nick Carbone and Constance Hauman, the producers of the album, went thru everything “G” recorded and added it through it and sent it over to him for his approval, of course. 

Speaking of balance – how did you get to play with your funk and rock roots and influences on this record? Would a song’s theme make you focus on a particular genre?

We never focus on one genre. It is really a mashup and it just springs up organically from a beat, a riff, a chord progression, a melody.  Also all of the wolves come from different musical backgrounds and training which makes our creative process really lit.

What role does Detroit play in your music?

When we were at United Sound in Detroit, we could feel and hear the juju in those walls. It was amazing and humbling. 

Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

Again, we write collectively and the beauty of that is that is all happens organically.

Any plans to hit the road?

As you know we are currently on tour with George on the One Nation Under the Groove tour which is covering all of the United States, 45 cities to be exact but this time it is not just us and P-funk, but we are opening for Dumpstafunk, Fishbone, Galactic and P-Funk. A once in a lifetime opportunity.

What else is happening next in Miss Velvet & The Blue Wolf’s world?

More music, more videos and more touring next year to Australia and Europe and hopefully the UK!!

Listen Here

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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