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Articles: A Look Into Brad Smith's Melon (October 1995)


A Look Into  Brad Smith's Melon

 By Georgia Lecorchick
 This is one of the last interviews the band did prior to the death of vocalist Shannon Hoon
 October 1st, 1995


Most people probably think of Blind Melon and remember the bee girl and the groovy, pop-like tones of "No Rain." Still others remember the catchy melodies of "Tones of Home" or possibly even the Rolling Stone spread with the non-clothed quintet staring at you from the cover. Whatever you may remember, it's no question that after looking deeper into the realms of this mysterious band, you will only remember the music. These good memories come back to you with help from the second release from Blind Melon entitled 'Soup' and the innermost thoughts of their bassist, Brad Smith.

**New Life**

Georgia Lecorchick: It's been nearly three years since Blind Melon's debut release. Has this given the band a chance to grow and produce songs with an even deeper feel?
Brad Smith: Absolutely. It has allowed us to grow more as musicians. Instead of just running into the studio, we had a chance to go away and ground ourselves before we asserted ourselves as true musicians. I think the people who bought the album and realize what we do as a band will admire what we've done on this album as well. It will surprise the hell out of housewives who run and buy the "Bee Girl Band's" second album! But the true music lovers will dig deep and understand where we're coming from!

Kingsway Studios in New Orleans 

Georgia Lecorchick: It seems like recording in New Orleans set a much heavier mood for this album...
Brad Smith: If you've ever been to New Orleans, you know there's a very thick vibe. There's an extremely happy side and a very dark side. Getting the five of us together in that vibe does come through on the album. We even recorded the album in the French Quarter at Kingsway Studios. It's just an old house with an API console in one room and you use the other rooms to record.I think we did a good job picking up where we left off on the first record, though. The heavier side from before is all over this album.

**The "Galaxie" is the Limit**

Georgia Lecorchick: How does the title Soup explain what fans can expect from this album?
Brad Smith: Soup is a basic metaphore for how the album came together. Everyone brought in songs and had different input-just lik the ingredients in soup. It's hard to say what people can expect. There are no 'gimme's' on this album. There weren't any on the first album. It was just a fluke that 'No Rain' did as well as it did. There's no formula for a 'hit'. Unless you're someone like Pearl Jam or Nirvana where everything you put out is a hit, that's one thing. The sound of Blind Melon isn't necessarily a hit because we are so diverse. We're going to prove just how much when we tour.

Georgia Lecorchick: What touring plans do you have?
Brad Smith: Right now, we're probably starting the U.S. tour in late September. We'll be headlining small clubs. I really want to take out a new band called The Presidents of the United States. Maybe even Morphine.

Georgia Lecorchick: How would you describe a Blind Melon show?
Brad Smith: Rowdiness and a lot of mood. All of our shows are different. Fans will get the album and expect one thing, but we never play the music like it is on the record! (laughs.) I can see our shows being like a long acid trip. There is so much variation- going from a Southern groove thing to an acoustic thing. There's no telling what our shows will end up like!

**Mouthful of Cavities**

Georgia Lecorchick: Do you think Blind Melon fell into the whole Seattle scene?
Brad Smith: Yeah, if you were what was considered popular at that time, you're bound to get that tag put on you. I don't think we sound like the alternative bands out now, though. If you're on MTV, you could be considered alternative. I don't consider it at all to be mainstream either. Alternative is an alternative to the mainstream. We don't sound like any of today's mainstream music.

Blind Melon is one of the few bands left who consider the meaning of the music rather than the meaning of the money.

Brad's comments continued on, talking about the birth of Shannon's new baby, "Nico Blue", and their upcoming release on a compilation disc for "School House Rock" where they covered the children's classic, "Three is the Magic Number."

"No Rain" may have been a fluke and the bee girl may be in the past, but one thing is for sure; Blind Melon is here to bring their amazing sound to whoever listens. It's best summed up by Brad when he said, "I think it's really unique what we've done and we'll always be standing by it."



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