We Love Metal Interviews: Jack O’Shea of Bayside

September 27, 2012
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Heavy Metal Interviews Bayside Jack O'Shea

I need to start out by saying this interview was recorded for audio, but due to a technical glitch (who am I kidding it was a meltdown) I lost the audio on the entire interview. Because of this I will be presenting this interview in a narrative manner. Please do not take anything said by Jack O’Shea as a direct quote as I cannot show evidence of any quotes. This narrative is based on notes I made during the course of the interview.

I reached Jack at his apartment in New York City and we automatically jumped into the new “Cover’s” EP that is being released on October 23rd. I asked why with so much original material the band would release a cover album? Jack stated Bayside was between labels and wanted to give their dedicated fans something to listen to as they expect very regular releases from the band.

I asked Jack if these were covers they have done in the past or was it all new. Jack stated the songs on the album were new to the band, not something they had covered in the past. Some of the names he threw around were Van Morrison, Billy Joel, and even Elvis Costello. When I said that was an interesting choice Jack talked at length about how the song may be built and written but heading into the studio to do your own spin on it creates a different energy that turned out to be a fun experience.

We moved onto 2011’s Killing Time. I personally felt this was a major turning point for the band and Jack agreed making reference to the numerous headlining tours they have done on the album over the last couple years and the critical response.

With the perfect Segway we talked at great length about the legendary touring status Bayside manages to keep. Jack stated he felt very fortunate for the opportunities the band has been given and finds it amazing how young bands manage to go out and tour with a lack of money and promoter interest. Jack showed major support to those younger bands out there trying to make it happen.

We also talked about older bands complaining about not making money off records alone anymore. I asked if those bands needed to get out on the road and interact with those fans. Jack talked about the transition the music industry is in and how the days of making money off a single record are pretty much done. Although he was careful not to criticize he did say that fans expect more from their musicians these days and being on the road gives them that, as Bayside is very approachable and accommodating at their shows.

Speaking of fans we talked about the massive social media support Bayside has. Jack stated it’s a fine line between giving those fans something relevant or abusing the relationship and giving them too much information that isn’t pertinent to the band or the personal lives of the members. The band appears to be very conscious of creating a solid relationship with their fans based on the music.

To wrap up the interview we chatted in detail about Bayside not having a real genre association. I was curious if this was something the band worked towards or if it just happened. Jack was adamant the band gets together and whatever is written becomes the song with no style or genre in mind. Although when talking further it became apparent that each member has definite influences that flatter each other in their song writing. For instance Jack O’Shea is a metal head!

My apologies to our readers and Jack O’Shea for the technical error, but please be assured Jack was a wonderful interview and a true professional. It was my pleasure.

Metal on,

Bill



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