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Interview With 'Soften The Glare'

Firstly, introduce yourselves and tell us a little bit about the band and how you came to be?

Soften The Glare consists of myself (guitarist Bon Lozaga), bassist Ryan Martinie. and drummer Mitch Hull. STG sort of materialized when I met Ryan in LA and found out he lived in NC as I do. We talked about getting together and writing some tunes, which evolved into getting a drummer and getting out and playing live, and now a debut album. We really didn't know what to expect as I came from the Jazz/Rock world and Ryan from Nu-metal band Mudvayne.

What were you all up too prior to the band, was this always the chosen path or did you have other dreams and aspirations?

We were all involved in different projects, I was touring with Tiny Boxes and working with some of the guys from the Gong days, Ryan was with Mudvayne and even did a stint with Korn for a tour and Mitch was playing with different bands in NC and also recording. We all have done this our whole lives and have been lucky enough to do some big things in this business. I don't think any of us will stop playing/writing music until we can't!

Tell us about your latest Album and why our readers should check it out.

We just finished recording our debut album "Making Faces" with producer Jamie King (Between The Buried And Me). The album will be released later this month. It really is a mish mash of different musical styles! 11tunes of instrumental music, touching base on a variety of musical genres, focusing on creating moods and textures with composition being the main point as opposed to a vehicle for soloing as many Jazz/Rock and fusion albums are. Our main goal is to get the listener engaged into what we are offering.

Who would you say is the bands main song writer or is it a group effort and where do you draw your inspiration lyrically and musically from?

All of our tunes are written by the three of us with no vocals as of yet. We all basically come up with ideas and throw them into one big musical pot and start developing them together at live rehearsals. All three of us have a very diverse taste in music even though we may be known for one genre or another. Right now I think a lot of the inspiration for our tunes come from each others ideas. Someone will come up with an idea and it forces me to come up with something that will compliment it and make the idea better. It's a challenge!

As a band what do you believe is your greatest achievement to date and why?

Well, it would be completing this debut album and surviving the 40 or shows we did last year throughout the US. The shows were a proving ground for our material and showed us that the music meant enough to us that we could "road dog" a few weeks of touring and survive and still be friends! It was difficult touring without an album out or music for that matter, but it really developed our songs and bond for ourselves.

Have you ever come face to face with someone within the music scene who has left you awestruck and why?

Yes, too many people to mention and some of them completely unknown! There are so many great musicians, artists out there that have something to say. You might meet someone as an opening act, out in the clubs or on youtube that will totally blow you away or touch you in some way. For me, if an artist has something to say in an honest and unique way and can reach people, that usually does it me.

What do you enjoy most about touring?

Most musicians would agree that it is the time on stage with the music and audience that makes all the rest of touring worthwhile. The rest of it is grueling. It is usually so cliche..... no sleep, bad food, away from friends and family, traffic, etc.! You have to be a least a little bit insane to do what we do. If it wasn't for the interaction and exchange of energy with an audience at the end of the night it would brutal. It takes a lot of work and sacrifice to be able to do that hour and a half set of music that makes it all worthwhile.

If we were to head out to one of your live shows what can ourselves and others expect?

A group of three guys who enjoy playing together and are committed to their music. The shows are usually very energetic and quite a roller coaster ride. There is usually something in the show for everyone. There is a lot of interaction going on and an overall sense of good time even though some of the music can get quite dark and dissonant.

What is the most embarrassing thing thats happened to you at a show?

I can't really think anything too bad other than the usual of missing cues and parts!!

If you had one artist/band that you could go on tour with tomorrow who would it be and why?

Prince, why not! He was the whole package, a great musician, performer, composer, entertainer...One could learn so much from him and his band's shows.

You can spend an hour with a musical icon living or dead, who would you pick, why and what would you speak about?

Way too many to pick one but as a guitarist it would have to be Hendrix. He changed the instrument. We wouldn't talk about technique, scales, etc..but what are you hearing in your head that makes you create this music. Hendrix really changed things with that and not his ability as a guitar player.

What comes next for the band?

More writing, recording, and playing shows! We plan on releasing another release before the end of the year and maybe give the fans a tune a month digitally after "Making Faces" comes out this month. We have all ready recorded a batch of extra songs during our session for the "Making Faces" album and constantly write. Sometimes it's hard to keep up with all the ideas that we all bring to the table during our writing sessions.

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