Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Interview Wednesdays: Jonathan Mattson - Part II

The Mattson 2 with Ray Barbee
photo by Embry Rucker

Last Wednesday you read about Jonathan Mattson and the band he shares with his twin brother Jared - The Mattson 2. I'm proud to bring you Part II of Jonathan Mattson's interview. Read on to discover how Jonathan is a bit of a renaissance man...

Where did you grow up and where is home now?

I was born in Encinitas, CA then moved to central California when I was 2, then back to Encinitas when I was 8. So I spent most of my childhood in Encinitas.

Please tell us how you both got started. Did you start as things are today, with you on the drums and Jared on guitar? Did you both ask your parents for instruments for your birthday or had you played in school...

Well we actually both started on guitar in junior high. There was a little guitar after school special - and we asked our mom if we could join, and she signed us up. We basically wanted to start playing guitar because our older brothers played also. But guitar wasn't right for me, so I switched to bass - then bass wasn't good for me - so I switched to drums.

Did you start out jamming together or learning separately?

Well once I took up the drums, we pretty much played all the time together and jamming would become our practice. And it was so nice to be together all the time because we really got to practice together and in a sense became one unit - which eventually created a tight, cohesive combined sound.

What was one of the first songs you learned how to play?

Well we pretty much started playing rock tunes like Led Zepplin. Probably the first jazz tunes we played (and we had no idea what we were doing) were Full House and Mr. P.C.

You mentioned your older brothers played guitar. So there are other musicians in your family?

Yeah actually our older brother Micah Mattson is a guitarist in a good punk/alternative rock band called Kut U Up.

Any other siblings?

Yes my twin brother Jared, older brother Micah, older sister Sarah and oldest brother Aaron.

Where did your appreciation for jazz stem from?

Well my dad listened to a lot of jazz, and he also listened to a lot of classical - I strongly credit him.

When you are not playing music, what do you most like to do?

I love reading books, and listening to music, doing my artwork, and largely association with my good friends. They are genuine supporters of our music.

Art by Jonathan Mattson
(Click on the photos to make them larger)

What is the last book you read?

Haruki Murakami: Hard Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

What is the last CD or album that you played?

The Apex by Little Creatures.

Being from a coastal town, do you surf?


Do you play locally when you are home?

Yeah, we play shows around San Diego, Oceanside, Encinitas, but we also play a lot in L.A. and San Francisco and perhaps where we have the most recognition is Japan.

What is your favorite local place to play?

Hmmmm I like to play art shows at Thalia Surf Gallery in Laguna Beach - that's always a fun and very appreciative crowd.

What is your favorite place to eat at home?

I really like a taco shop right by my house called Rico's - they have the best burritos.

I believe I learned about Ray Barbee just after I learned about The Mattson 2, due to your collaboration together. I noticed that your CD with Ray Barbee is no longer available. Any word on whether that CD will become available again?

Well that CD is only out in Japan right we are waiting for it to be released in America. It will be out soon hopefully, I'm kind of not sure about all that stuff.

When can we look forward to the next CD from The Mattson 2?

We have an EP that is coming out on Galaxia - hopefully within the next couple of months at the latest. It features 2 songs with Ray Barbee as a special guest, also a performance by John McEntire from Tortoise and The Sea and Cake. It's recorded mostly all at SOMA music studios in Chicago by John McEntire. And the rest of the record is recorded and mixed in San Francisco at Function 8 Studios by Monte Vallier. So it's a good mix of two amazing recording engineers.

The last question is, what is the funniest thing you saw today?

A monkey...

Awesome. Thank you again, Jonathan. You can be sure I'll give a shout out on PineappleLuv when the new EP for The Mattson 2 becomes available.

Monkey business with The Mattson brothers
photo by Embry Rucker


seamouse said...

Cool, Part two was just as good as part one!!!
Looking forward to tomorrows installment of surf fridays!


(P.S. the bag's on it's way over the Atlantic as I type!)

Ryan said...

nice job jamie