Posted on August 26, 2015

Interview Concert Preview

>>>>> New Generation Of Ska Festival Is This Weekend (Aug 29th). DONT MISS IT! <<<<<

Respects is a new band that popped up and got some good feelings going. After they were added to the New Generation of Ska Fest 2015, I figured we better get to know them. I interviewed Respects drummer/producer Jo Sanghyun. 

# Why did you name your band Respects?

Jo Sanghyun: There is no real meaning behind the name. The word sounds good and it is a simple word. We checked online and there were no other bands using the name so we called ourselves Respects. The meaning is good as well.

# The band genre is described online as "Ocean Blues" though most people say it is ska. What is your genre?

Jo Sanghyun: We never consider ourselves a ska band; if we have to put ourselves in a specific genre we would say something like we are a reggae/rock band based in a blues scale. We are a fairly new band so it is hard to say exactly what we are. Our second album will be a really different style compared to the first album. We are not worried about what style comes out, so long as we are satisfied with the results, then it’s cool. If you go to Long Beach (California) you can always hear music from Sublime, but their songs/genre has no real connection to beach life. We also hope to make music that transcends its genre and ends up being music that people like to listen to when they go to the beach. We call ourselves ‘Ocean Blues,’ but the word ‘Blues’ has no real musical meaning. Our album is called <RespectsMusic>, which simply means ‘Our Music’.

# What previous bands have the members been in?

Jo Sanghyun: Not including the bands we were just helping out or in for only a short time... I played drums for Rux. Our vocalist Lim Hyun-jong played drums in 99 Anger and these days has a solo project called Zen Alone. Our guitarist Bang Young-min was in the Strikers and our bassist Choi Min-ho was in a reggae band.

# What are your main influences, both Korean and abroad?

Jo Sanghyun : Personally, I enjoy listening to loads of music from loads of different genres, but actually my roots are in metal/punk and hardcore. I got a lot of influence from there, not so much in a musical sense, but I guess you could say I got my ‘do what you want’ attitude from those genres. I respect people who do what they want and don’t follow trends, be they major or minor trends. If we talk about musical influences then we got our two-chord song style from Sublime and Slightly Stoopid, but our songs feel really different from theirs. I like that. Even though we got some influence from them, we didn’t need to copy them.  

# It looks like you have five members. Can you tell me about the fifth, four-legged member?

Jo Sanghyun: That is Young-min’s pet, a black labrador retriever. It is called Ooju (universe), and you can often see him at the venues. He is very mild and kind but if he sees an ajeosshi (older man) he has a habit of barking like crazy, so, if he barks at you it means you are an old man!

# The band is described as from Seoul and Jeju. Can you explain more about this?

Jo Sanghyun: I am from Seoul and Hyun-jong is from Jeju. Every year we always go together to hang out on a beach in Jeju. One day we decided that you only live once and said ‘let’s do all the things we want to do’ and thus we made this band. So we say we are from Seoul and Jeju. Sometimes in a band with lots of members there are lots of conflicts and changing members can be really stressful so we decided that the band would be just us two, with session members as well. However, we ended up signing everyone up as full time members anyway. We like the other guys a lot. The best thing is, they all have more to do and work harder than we do. The label we release our music through is a Jeju-based label called Pink Moon Music. When we recorded we all went down to Jeju and had a great time. We all love Jeju. 

# The imagery on your band's Facebook page is very different, rather than presenting one unified identity. A lot of it seems to be about the beach and water, and then more of it is gritty and urban. Why is it like that?

Jo Sanghyun: Seoul, Jeju, beaches … this is our identity. Whatever genre music we are playing, if the people listening can conjure up thoughts of Seoul, Jeju and beaches … then we have been successful. Ah, booze as well! If we take any images that suit our identity, then we post them, even if there is no relation to music.

Pictures  : Jang han


Interview : Jon Dunbar
Translation : Patrick Connor, Doyeon Lim, Solmin Park

NGOSKA Festival :

Date : Aug 29th 2015 @ 14:00
Advanced : 30,000 | Door : 40,000

Wire Money to Hana Bank (하나은행) Acc No : 569-910199-54507 Acc Name : 유진석
*If you donated to the crowd-funding campaign the entry is free for you. You will be notified by the organisers soon.

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