By Nicholas Jason Lopez
Having had their music featured on NPR, HBO’s “Shameless” and Netflix’s “Bojack Horseman,” indie group South Of France have indeed found their way around.
They’ll continue to do just that with the recent release of their debut full-length album ‘Remember That Cool Thing We Did,’ chockfull of enough melody and nostalgia to remind us exactly why they’ve been able to share the stage with the likes of The Flaming Lips and Portugal. The Man.
The Music Bugle had the chance to speak with Denver-based frontman and composer Jeff Cormack about ‘Remember That Cool Thing We Did’ and more.
Music Bugle – How did you guys decide the band name?
Jeff Cormack – I’ve always been intrigued by the South of France. I was lucky enough to travel there a couple of times and I always came home with a ton of things to write about.
Music Bugle – What was it like making your debut LP ‘Remember That Cool Thing We Did’?
Jeff Cormack – A lot of work for me… so much work. Ha! I really wanted to make a full album 100 percent on my own. Down to the mixing, mastering, etc.. I had done that with a previous album released under my name and I feel like that worked well for me. Overall, it’s one of the coolest things I’ve done and I’m really happy with it. I think it’s pretty obvious to the listener that the album was created to be an album. I’m a sucker for a good complete album. Like a book or a movie, an album is a quick little trip into someone else’s head. It’s immersive in the way a show is and how music was back in the iTunes and pre-iTunes days.
Music Bugle – What has been your biggest challenge lately?
Jeff Cormack – Getting people to listen to an entire album and staying collaborative. I get a lot of my inspiration from co-writes and producing/working on other people’s music. With Covid, there hasn’t been a lot of collaboration happening or motivation to release music. It’s been really challenging to keep the motivation high.
Music Bugle – How have you been personally affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Jeff Cormack – We’re all trying our best to adapt to changing plans and work with the circumstances. I like being incredibly busy, so the downtime has been challenging… but also a good time to create from a more honest place.
Music Bugle – What excites you the most about your type of music?
Jeff Cormack – I love connecting with people through my music. I love people and as dumb as it sounds, I’m happy that people enjoy my work. I’m a cultural sponge and have benefited so much from so many other’s work. It feels good to contribute to some sort of esoteric circle of culture in some way. Hopefully, someone out there benefits from my work in the way that I have from others.
Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise?
Jeff Cormack – Hmmm… On repeat right now, I’ve got – Run The Jewels – RTJ4, Noga Erez, Zella Day, Marinelli, Grimes, The Strokes and Emotional Oranges. I’m a huge fan and consumer of music. I pretty much love it all. I spend a ton of time on the Spotify Viral Charts and Pollen playlists. There’s so much good stuff there and then, I love all of the classics – indie rock, pop, hip hop, Swedish pop, old dancehall, weird soundtracks, etc.. It’s all amazing.
Music Bugle – If you had to pick your own theme song, what would it be?
Jeff Cormack – I haven’t decided yet. Still shopping.
Music Bugle – Which of your songs were the hardest to write?
Jeff Cormack – “Hideaway.” I changed the melody for about two weeks. I like it now, though. It was worth it. Ha!
Music Bugle – Away from music, what’s something people might be surprised to know about the band?
Jeff Cormack – I secretly wish I was an architect or filmmaker.
Music Bugle – Where do you go when you need an escape?
Jeff Cormack – I study old music gear, old cars, travel, cook, take pictures and read architecture magazines.
*Photo Credit – Heather Rotar*