Photo Credit: Jen Squires
The dramatic goodbye at the airports. That’s what comes to mind whenever someone mentions romance. Which is heavy on my mind as I’m currently stuck in an airport due to a summer storm while working on presenting you with the latest from Mike Evin. A self-proclaimed “Recovering Romantic,” Mike Evin thought it wise to name his latest single just that. We talked heavily about love, romance, and everything that falls in between the songs that he sings in this e-meet-cute.
Kendra: You’ve noted that you don’t want to be in love right now because you’re a self-proclaimed romantic. Other than “Recovering Romantic,” how did you manage to take a step back from love? In other words, how does a romantic recover from their addiction?
Mike Evin: I actually DO want to be in love. That’s the conundrum! I thought I was in love briefly a little while ago, and it was a wonderful feeling – even though I got my heart bruised. It’s been so long since I let my heart get hurt. “Recovering Romantic” is about the conflicting feelings toward letting yourself fall or be in love. I don’t think it’s completely healthy to refrain from being a romantic.
Kendra: With love, you’ve said that we lose control of ourselves. How does it feel to be in control? Does that translate into your creative process in a positive way?
Mike Evin: Well, I think it’s ideally a mix of being in control and losing control. Some really inspired stuff can come when I relinquish control and am open to whatever comes to me. On the other hand, it takes some degree of control and discipline to take that energy and craft it into something. Though I’m sure there have been many great songs that have come to people when they had absolutely no control. I’m just not sure that’s a practice you can maintain for a long time.
Kendra: The new album, Evin on Earth, drops this September. Since you’re also a traveler on top of being a musician, where do you feel is Heaven on actual Earth?
Mike Evin: There are still so many places I haven’t traveled to!! Of the places I’ve been, Vancouver Island comes pretty close.
Kendra: This was your second time working with Howie Beck. How was it this time around? Do you feel you guys fell into a better groove?
Mike Evin: Yes definitely! We knew each other better and were more comfortable with each other. So we were able to push ourselves into more ambitious territory. Howie knows how to get a better performance out of me now. Also, we were able to cut to the chase more quickly. I wouldn’t say the second time was better than the first, because they each had their advantages. The first time around, there was a certain excitement of discovering this new creative relationship and what it’s all about. So there was a freshness to it. The second time around, we knew we had a good dynamic, so we tried pushing our boundaries a bit more. But our basic dynamic hasn’t changed. This was the first time I’ve worked with a producer more than once!
Kendra: Sticking with the romantic side of things. What song off your upcoming release do you feel would fit best into a RomCom and what RomCom would that be?
Mike Evin: Probably “Everybody’s Breaking Up.” Any RomCom with Ben Stiller! Maybe The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.
Kendra: How much piano playing are we going to hear on Evin on Earth?
Mike Evin: A lot of piano playing! It’s the foundation of every song. There are a handful of songs that start with just piano, or piano and vocal. Even when it’s a full sound, with guitars and drums, the piano is the bedrock of it all. Some of it is grand piano, some upright piano (“Recovering Romantic”, for instance), and one song has the Wurlitzer electric piano as the foundation.
Kendra: Do you ever apply anything from your love of squash (for readers, the sport) into your music?
Mike Evin: One thing I’ve learned from my squash game that I apply to music is to NEVER GIVE UP! Even when I’m down 10-5, I stay positive, apply myself, and sometimes I make a comeback and win! I look at my music career as one long-ass squash match!
Kendra: Can you let the people know what you have going on in the foreseeable future on top of dropping Evin on Earth in September?
Mike Evin: I’ll definitely be doing some touring to promote the album. I’ve also started work on a musical with Murray Foster, who was in the bands Moxy Fruvous and Great Big Sea. It’s inspired by two months I spent in Cuba learning percussion in the Summer of 2012. We’re pitching it for development right now. Five songs are already done for it!