To celebrate our pretty pink magazine being archived online for the first time in our six year history, we’ve delved into our back catalogue to catch up with a couple of our coveted cover artists. For Issue 17, back in November 2011, bonkers pop sensation LUCKY BEACHES graced our cover with his tales of living in America, putting the finishing touches to his first novel and playing with Pop Levi. Chay Heney (of post-punk fourpiece Sugarmen) who played with Lucky in the oft-overlooked DIY group High School Massacre, catches up him to find out how taking up permanent residence stateside has affected his craft.
CH: I know you have lived in America in the past for shorter periods of time when you were playing with Pop Levi in Los Angeles, but you’ve returned to Liverpool and then gone back to the States since then – how long have you been living there this time round? And is this different, do you feel more like it’s home for you now?
LB: I moved back over in 2011 so I think it’s been a good five years. It’s been a different experience for many reasons. Since moving back, I’ve become a ‘permanent resident’ (weird!) so it does feel a lot more homely. I still compare everything here to Liverpool so I sort of live in both places in my head, they both equal home to me…
CH: Have you lived anywhere else in the US other than Los Angeles?
LB: I have lived a few other places, when I first moved back I lived in Miami where I married the lovely Jenny. We then moved to a three-acre ranch in Clewiston, Florida (AKA – America’s Sweetest Town). We had a little farm there and a dog named Nigel. Then we moved to New York and lived in the Lower East Side. I got to spend Christmas there, that was something special!
CH: Do you think this has affected your music at all as living in America is not an entirely alien experience anymore? Does the culture or landscape or all the people you’ve met and worked with – producers, players and songwriters who have different ways of working and different backgrounds – affect your way of working or your music?
LB: Yes, living out here has heavily affected my music. The landscape and culture play a HUGE role when it comes to inspiration. I’d say the effect on how I work when making music has been more subtle. More a case of fine-tuning the recording/production process.
CH: Can you draw any parallels between your two homes? Or the differences in making music in both?
LB: I’d say they both have great culture & kind people. Oh, & some of the best music the world has ever heard! That’s all I need!
CH: I love how even with the pop sensibilities of your songs and knowing you’re pretty handy on logic or protools, there could be the temptation to clean stuff up, but you still manage to keep it all weird – it’s the best balance between pop and fucked up. Is this ever purposeful or just the inner workings of your mind…?
LB: Haha! You sound like you really get it! I guess it’s a mix of both. I’m really in touch with my inner-weirdo and I also have a boss record collection. So I appreciate the old-world formula but alas! I live here in the future… and so it spews out as a jam.
CH: I gotta ask, are the lyrics to Pink Champagne about someone in particular or a type of person? Or am I completely off the mark?
LB: Completely off the mark! Or maybe 50% off the mark! I think it’s about someone or something but I enjoy the song more when I don’t think it’s about anything. Sometimes it’s about everything… Or is it?
CH: Have you got any plans to get a band together and go out and play or come and play some shows in the UK?
LB: Yes, I’ve almost got a full band here in Los Angeles, I still need a good drummer. I’d love to play in the UK, I reckon I’d put together a band in Liverpool if I was going to play in England or Europe.
CH: Is there an album or another EP on the way?
LB: Right now I’m focusing on releasing singles. Pink Champagne being one of them. I’ll be releasing another album sometime in the future, for sure. The next single will be a song called Go it Alone and I hope you guys dig it!
CH: Who are you currently listening to?
LB: I’m currently listening to David Bowie’s ‘A Reality Tour’. I’m obsessed. ‘Bring Me the Disco King’ is a particularly good one. It invokes the best roaring impression I can do of him. Haha! What a great artist he was.
CH: Will there ever be a High School Massacre reunion?
LB: Erm… No. The werld isn’t ready.