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Jonathan Tiersten and The Spitting Image Interview

5 June 2018 No Comment

JT Viper RoomJonathan Tiersten is an actor, musician, tennis pro, craft beer enjoyer and general Renaissance man about Hollyweird town. With his new band: Jonathan Tiersten and The Spitting Image, JT will be dropping an EP and then a full length album in the very near future. The dude is busy.

You have lived all over the country what finally brought you to our neck of the woods? What are your thoughts on the music scene here?

I often wonder how I end up in places.  Don’t be surprised if I am living in Portugal in a couple of years. I can’t even sit still.  The first thing I noticed about the music scene out here was the level of professionalism.  They really do it right.

 You have a new album dropping soon, tell us about how the writing went and the vibe and the feel of the songs? 

This album is a collaborative effort with my guitar player/producer/friend Trent Berry. We played some shows with my past material and Trent (and his twin brother Troy) remarked that they were great songs but decidedly written without any discernible contemporary hooks.  I told them that that was on purpose. They wondered what would happen if Trent and I got together to write.  The songs range from hard driving to ballads but they are a little more user friendly than some of my other stuff.

Also is the album self produced? Or did you bring in a producer? Where did you record?

We are recording at Dreamrack Studios in San Francisco. It is in the famed Hyde Street Studios in the Tenderloin District. https://www.dreamrackstudios.com/our-dream

Tell us about the players in The Spitting Image. Where did you find them and what did they individually bring to the project?

The name comes from Trent and Troy Berry. They are identical twins and both unbelievable musicians.  Troy is the one who first approached me about the project.  He owns Surge Entertainment which is a promotion and booking company in Los Angeles. He is the drummer and the spiritual and literal glue for the project.  Trent is one of the best guitar players I have ever heard and he is the artistic drive for the project.  When we play live we also have Bill Scott on bass. He is brilliant (on guitar as well). We have also been extremely blessed to have the amazing Suvi Sweta Suresh on backing vocals.  She is a truly remarkable artist in her own right.  https://suvimusic.com

Lyrically what are you covering and possibly tackling on your new album?

We are trying to tell more stories on this album.  Less imagery and more directness.  It is refreshing. I think it will play into my dramatic nature when we play live.

How do you challenge yourself as a musician to push your limits with both creativity and skill set?

In recent years I have found that it is all the studio work I do at home that keeps me from getting sedentary or ever satisfied.  Then when I go back to my guitar it feels like a long lost friend.

You are also known for your exceptional covers both reimagined and straightforward.  How do you choose the songs and what have been some of your favorites?

I always lean towards songs with great singers. I am first and foremost a vocalist.  When I do a song from another artist it really takes the pressure off. ‘God Knows I’m Good’ – Bowie, ‘Don’t Cry’ – Seal.

 There’s also word that you are writing a score for an upcoming film. Tell us about that project.

There are several films I am working on but the ink is not dry yet so I have to keep that a secret for now.

Speaking of films according to IMDB it looks like you have a few films landing this year. What roles are you playing and what are the films about?

It would seem I am everyone’s favorite bad guy.  In Terror Tales I play a serial killer named ‘The Sledgehammer’(AKA Gregory Tate). He has a pronounced stammer.  I am also going to start work on a film called California Coven which co-stars Laurene Landon and Linda Blair.

How do you balance your work between acting and music?  Which do you prefer?

I am a very serious method actor but music is my life. I just want to stay busy. It keeps me out of trouble.

It appears you love good food and are an avid fitness practitioner.  What are some of your favorite meals to prepare and what is your routine to keep those killer abs in shape? Would you ever consider going vegan?

I love food.  I don’t eat fast food.  I don’t particularly like chips.  I love to cook ribs and seafood and beer can chicken. My abs are painted on. What’s a Vegan?

JT couchYou have also become a pro tennis instructor. Was this a long time goal of yours? Will you be competing in any tournaments where we can watch you compete?

Not really. I played when I was younger and picked it up with the tennis pro who was teaching my son Micah.  Our matches became more and more competitive. When I moved to California the pro out here suggested I might be able to get my USPTA certification.  It was a lot of work and time but I did it.  I am just to about to enter into some tournaments.  Trying to figure out how to fit that into my schedule.

Despite your exceptional fitness routine it appears you also love craft beer. What are some of your favorites?

I have truly fallen in love with some of the breweries out here. There are so many amazing beers I feel like I might leave someone out.  I find new ones I like almost every day.

Where can people find you online and what are some of your upcoming gigs? Will there be a tour to support the new album?

jonathantiersten.com will be up an running shortly.  Other than that you can find us on reverberation and a million other places.

Anything else you would like to add?

No animals were harmed in the making of this interview.




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