Jesse Jolly Interview – In this interview we talk about Promethean Horde, Nakhiel and more. Interview October 8, 2015. Jesse Jolly AKA Jechael is a bassist and vocalist. He has performed with Amon on the Liar In Wait album.
Jesse Jolly Interview
– What’s new in the world of Jesse Jolly?
Jesse Jolly : Hi Jason! Great to speak with you again; and I really appreciate you checking in on me! Lately, I’ve been focusing primarily on my main band Promethean Horde. A few months back, we self-released our debut full-length album “Ashes of the Empyrean.” Aside from playing playing shows and touring, we’ve began writing material for our second album. I am also part of an atmospheric black metal band called Nakhiel. We’re preparing material for our first LP. The working title for that is “Solar Wind Illumination.”
– What bands are you currently working with now?
: In total I’m working with around 5 bands. Of course the aforementioned Promethean Horde and Nakhiel; but also I’m a current member of Paths of Possession. I also work with Jack Goodwin (Promethean Horde, Paths of Possession,) on a sort of dark country/folk project called Jekyll and The Ripper. Then finally, my project Lull Me To Larvae; which is more in the melancholic-opera spectrum. I do performances (mainly vocal) on the side, as well, for bands who ask me to get involved, both local and international.
– How much practice do you put in on the bass to keep up to date with your techniques?
: Honestly, I go through periods of a few days where I don’t really do anything musical.. and the reason is because I also go through periods where I practice bass for 4 or 5 hours a night, for a couple of weeks in a row. Even months. So when I feel myself getting burnt out, or if I feel the need to break away, I don’t feel too guilty about it. I think if I had to keep my routine strict and regimented, I would enjoy it less and be less productive. Something about occasionally abstaining from practice for a short time really gets my fire going. Like sex.. (Laughs)
– Your voice is a delicate instrument. How long did it take you to perfect it? What do you do to keep it strong and healthy?
: Perfection is something that I’m still working towards; and probably always will be. But I first began my attempts at highs and lows when I was around 20 yrs old. Trust me, I sucked..(Laughs) It probably wasn’t until I was in my mid 20’s that I looked up and thought to myself “Now I’m getting it!.” As far as learning how to do better lows/growls/etc.. I literally just whispered along to George Fisher as he appeared on Cannibal Corpse‘s “Gallery of Suicide” and “Bloodthirst.” I just figured that if I could sound like that while whispering, all I had left to do was simply apply volume to the throat and technique. There’s a certain way he contorts his throat, when he sings, and obviously it works. There were other vocalists that I did this with, as well- Glen Benton, Mikael Akerfeldt, Ross Dolan and plenty of others. Now with the higher vocals, you just have to go at those, full speed. Basically I believe that you need to be in an actual loud-music environment to really understand how you’re going to sound, when you’re trying to perfect it. To address the last part of the question, people do often wander about throat damage and methods in which death/black metal vocalists keep from really hurting ourselves. But I can honestly say, my throat hasn’t really been soar after a show, years. -Not like it was in my early 20’s. I believe once you get the feel for how you need to position your neck, throat and even lower-back, a lot of the strain simply doesn’t happen.
– How is the music scene in your region?
: Here in Tampa, the scene is sort of sitting at a medium boil. I not really implying that it has waned to the point of no return.. but I can definitely say that it’s back on the incline. Especially with local promoters like Pete Olen. Pete has done a great job at bringing some phenomenal touring bands, through Tampa/Orlando. It’s not only great for the fans, but also for local metal acts that get the opportunity to open for and provide direct support for these bands. Less than a week ago, Promethean Horde was able to get on the bill with Arkona. Pete has also made it possible for us to share the stage with other acts like Wintersun, 1349, Origin, Korpiklanni and a ton of others. Nickulus (Promethean Horde) has also entered the promotion game under “Metal Swarm Productions” and has put together “Swarmfest”; coming up in November. So the scene seems to be doing just fine, from my point of view. Also, with the advent of his merchandising company, “Precision Merch”, he’s really helped many of the local bands provide professional quality merchandise to their fans, without having to “take out a loan.”
– Do you see a biography being written someday about the experiences you acquired or will acquire in your life?
: I’d love to think that my trials and tribulations would, one day, be worth documenting. I have some awesome stories, more great times than I can even count.. and also some very valuable lessons that I’ve learned through my successes and mistakes. So someday, yes, I think some of it could really be worth sharing.
– How important are music videos in the industry today? How do they compare to videos from 20 years ago?
: Music videos are still a very important part of the whole experience, to this day, in my opinion. I would say that the one negative (or even) tragic aspect that I notice, is that the funding seems to be nowhere near what it used to be. I agree, there have always been shitty videos, but labels would invest so heavily in creating a quality example of a band’s persona and ideas, compared to today. But that really is a deeper issue than just videos. We’ve all seen where the majority of the music industries finances are going.. – to the “new cutting-edge” girly-dude mic-cupping screamo teenage shit-ass breakdown scene. Or thereabouts… (Laughs)
– What would we be surprised to find in your music collection at home?
: To start off, you’ll find Chicago. As a bass player/vocalist, Peter Cetera is actually an inspiration of mine. Anyone who knows me, knows I love to sing. So love ballads and things of the like, are right up my alley. You’d also find a few country artists like Travis Tritt, Jim Reeves, Randy Travis and Johnny Cash. Theatre of Tragedy is in there as well as Woods of Ypres. Possibly the most unusual or surprising would be Psychotica. I heard them play live back in 1994 at Livestock. I was around 12 yrs old, and hadn’t really even heard of extreme metal, but when I saw their set, I just kinda dug it. Ever since, it’s been nostalgia all the way. Aside from that, I own every King Diamond and Mercyful Fate album. But in my opinion, every metal-head should. (Ha!)
– Could you describe some of your earliest influences in life and in music?
: I would first acknowledge that both my mother and father were exceptionally supportive of my music from day one, as well as my whole family, pretty much. My first real musical inspirations were singers. People that were involved in the power-ballad movement of the 1980’s. If there was a sappy song that came on the radio, I was singing it. I was too young at the time to have realized my future would lie in music, but I knew I loved to sing.. and that I was not terrible at it. Everything from Richard Marx to Aaron Neville, I was all over. To this day, sometimes I’ll sit on YouTube for hours and play random stuff like, The Last Unicorn soundtrack. – Or Tangerine Dream and Enya. Now on the other hand, bass was obviously a different story. My first few influences when I started playing at the age of 11 were pretty standard, with Cliff Burton, Steve Harris, Jason Newsted and dare I say Twiggy Ramirez. It wasn’t until a few years later that I discovered the greats like Bill Dickens, Alex Webster, Michael Manring, Victor Wooten and countless others.
– Any words of wisdom to share with aspiring artists?
: Absolutely! Do everything you can to stay driven and focused on your dreams. It’s only with extreme rarity that fate grants someone their wish of instant fame and success, in the realm of music and especially metal. Work hard, study hard and always be willing to accept and admit you can improve. ..that you can get even better. Stay away from anyone who doesn’t support your aspirations. Learn how to get along with everyone who makes the same effort for you. And only avoid contact with those you have seen to be a negative influence on others. Lastly, remain humble yet determined.
Check out Jesse Jolly and Promethean Horde http://prometheanhorde.com/