Very seldom do we see a band that successfully combines the sounds of funk, rock and alternative. I’m so excited to have Permanent Ability on the blog. I recently sat down with three time Emmy winner and Grammy nominated front man Brian Lanese, who is extremely easy on the eyes, ladies. :)
JJ: Hey, Brian. Thanks so much for sitting down with me for a chat. I know you formed Permanent Ability back in 2008 and you write, produce and sing all the songs for the band. Tell me a little about what inspired you to form the band and how you manage to wear so many hats?
Brian: I think the origin story of Permanent Ability stems from my love and hunger for music. Particularly funk rock music. I got tired of waiting for my favorite bands to come out with new music and I decided to see if I could create some good music myself. Luckily, I didn’t crash and burn and have been successful thus far. Wearing as many hats as I do, however, does wear on me at times. The reason I do wear so many hats is because no one will push or promote my product as passionately as I would and at least I know it's in good hands. Past band members never pulled their own weight and I learned that for this project to function and stay afloat the best way to do it was to do it myself, and pay my musicians to play. There is no formula for success or for a band’s functionality even...that creates many different ways to achieve the same end result. For my band, this is how it works, and it's been successful thus far for the past few years, proving this work ethic works as well. It was vital to the life of the music so I stepped in and worked harder, and can confidently say all the recognition for my hard work is shown in what has been achieved. I am a “give credit where credit is due” kinda guy and a team player, but I just got tired of people leeching onto my achievements and getting rewarded for their laziness and taking credit too. That shit don't fly with me or the rest of my team, for that matter. Luckily now, every member working with me knows their responsibility within the band and it’s a stress free fun environment to work in.
JJ: Who are your biggest musical influences and why?
Brian: LL Cool J, Michael Jackson and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. For this reason...all great iconic performers, with great music, and longevity. Plus, they all also broke down musical barriers to inspire tons of musicians to work hard and gain a voice within the music industry.
JJ: What’s “A Day in the Life of Permanent Ability” like?
Brian: Since I have duel careers, one being a 40 hour, 9-5pm work week as a 3D animator and designer...I then come home and work another 6-10 hours a day more on Permanent Ability's music, booking, and promotion etc. It's rewarding and, yes, I am a bit of work-a-holic but I budget my time well and make sure I make time to relax as well so I don’t get burnt out. I have many other priorities in my personal life I must make time for as well, so time managing is very important to me. The abundance of work may seem maniacal right now though only because I'm working on the new album...it's prolly a little less hectic minus that factor.
JJ: When you’re not writing and recording, what’s your brand of entertainment?
Brian: Sports. I'm a HUGE sports fan. I love to play and watch. My favorite teams are the SF 49ers and the Oakland A's. You give me any good ball game, family & friends, and some food & drinks...I'm a happy man outside of music.
JJ: Permanent Ability has a strong presence on Twitter. How has social media helped your exposure?
Brian: Social media gives indie bands like us a voice. I am very thankful for social media and the exposure it has helped the band achieve with the grassroots approach that I have, and luckily I've been very fortunate enough to gain success from.
JJ: My favorite song is your new single "Good at Losing;" although, "Bring It On!" is a close second. Rumor has it there’s some Mark Twain blood running through your veins. What’s your writing process like?
Brian: Yes. He was my Grandfather's first cousin. I've been called the lyrical Mark Twain before, I’m guessing because of how vivid and controversial my lyrics can be at times, which to me is very humbling and flattering. He was a genius and simply...great! Being that I am the lone writer for the majority of Permanent Ability's music...the process starts with loops that I find and chop up to create and compose all the music using Garage Band to sketch out demos on in a sense. I seem to start with the rhythm section for some reason too. I always write with my players in mind and always keep an open mind for their input once I unveil the demo to them. Usually, my demos are very tight and exactly how I want them and sometimes they are a little rough and need to evolve with the ideas of the musicians that I work with. I more so recently have been writing with good friend Orlando Mestre whom you will hear his amazing guitar playing all over the new upcoming record "Love You to Death."
JJ: It must have been exciting to be first round Grammy nominees for Bring It On! in categories such as "Best Alternative Album," "Best Performance by Group," "Best Package Design," "Producer of the Year," and "Best Rock Song." Share with us how that experience was for you?
Brian: That’s correct. Bring It On! (produced by Jim Wirt) was nominated for a Grammy last September in those five first round categories. A member of the recording academy heard my music and contacted me. It turned out she was a former colleague and friend of Jim Wirt who produced the record along with other famous notable musicians such as Incubus and Hoobastank. It was the biggest fist full of flattery that has ever punched me in the face when she delivered it to me too. I have never been so humbled by any experience in my career thus far. It's such a huge honor to be recognized and respected by peers in the music industry. It proves Permanent Ability is making some noise...especially since we are currently independent and without representation or major backing. It shows the music speaks loudly for itself.
JJ: Any upcoming tours or appearances where we can catch a live show?
Brian: We played and toured hard for the past couple years. Right now, the focus is finishing the record and it's gonna be our best yet. The songs are great, the vibe is great and it's Permanent Ability's first full length album. Live shows are also our priority, but we may try an alternative approach this time around using social media so fans in other parts of the world can get some live performance love too. Some European appearances are in the works currently as well.
JJ: What’s next for Permanent Ability?
Brian: With the release of the new record "Love You to Death" later this year, we will definitely bring a lot of promotion and tour support. We have a video for the single "Good at Losing" on the way too. It will be our first official music video to date. For the most upcoming news and music visit www.PermanentAbility.com "FOLLOW" our ass on Twitter and "LIKE" us on Facebook too. Stay tuned! Thanks JJ for the fun interview.
Lightning Round Favorites:
Drink: Duvel, or a the asshole drink The Gimlet
Season: Summer...that’s why I live in Los Angeles...it’s summer all year long (wink)
Flavor: Grape or Cherry
Movie: The Dark Knight
Band: Chili Peppers
Go pick up their music! It’s good stuff, y’all! Thanks again, Brian. I really enjoyed hanging with you. XOXO