Not Quite Hollywood Music Spotlight - Josh Funk

I was listening to 106.7 Zrock's fifteen minutes of fame (Weeknights from 9:00pm to 9:15pm) as usual on my way home from work. Up next was a new song by local Artist/Songwriter Josh Funk. The song was called "My Supermodel". Having the uncanny ability to recognize true talent when I hear it, I decided to contact Josh and schedule an interview. The interview went well and I left knowing a lot more about what makes the guy tick. Here's a little of what I learned:

Josh Funk now twenty-one years of age after many years of playing with other groups has decided to go solo. Josh has been making music since he was in the eighth grade. He received his first guitar from a neighbor for ten bucks and he began teaching himself songs off of the radio. Josh has been in quite a few talent competitions. At age fifteen he won second place in a Chico songwriters competition beating out some people who had been writing songs their entire life. His prize was two hours in a recording studio. The complete interview follows:

Did your parents encourage your skills? 

They were very encouraging but I honestly think they viewed it as a hobby for a long time. Now it is at the point where they want me to do the normal thing like college but if I made music my main goal they would definitely support my decision.

You've been in several groups . . . Why go solo?

Though I had been playing in bands since I was twelve, I have always found more comfort in expressing myself through songs I wrote by myself and for myself. They are better in the sense that I wasn't trying to please anybody and be anybody. It was just something that I couldn't escape. Im just doing what is natural for myself. It just seems the natural path for me to take at this point in my life. And to be honest I do not have any intention on turning back.

What was the best location you've every played? Why?

I have played many shows over the years so that is hard to pinpoint. I have had some amazing shows that were only for five people, and some horrible shows that I played in front of a thousand. I just feel blessed to have the memories I do. I've played at a Boy Scout jamboree, a Hawaiian themed birthday party above Star Bucks, and many backyard shows. As ridiculous as they sound, they were a lot of fun.

What was the worst location? Why?

I don't have any one bad show that makes me ill to think about. There are just certain types of places I loath playing. Bars and Keggers are usually a waste of time. I've played a lot of Keggers where they just want to hear cover songs and they want to play your instruments. It's no fun playing till 2 in the morning unless the people are actually there to hear the music and have a good time. 

Do your music abilities help you get chicks? Especially now that you've gone solo?

In theory yes, but I have been single for a long time now, so apparently it isn't a proven one. I think that Lawyers and Doctors are the ones who really get the ladies. I'm not very good with lying or using a scalpel though.

I noticed there is a slight change in style from the music you played while with The Farewell Letter and what you do now. What triggered this change?

On the surface it seems like there was a big change. What I do now is what I have always done. When you make it a collaborative effort the music becomes something entirely it's own. Had I written all of our songs on my own, they would have sounded along the lines of what I am doing right now.

Your music is very clean, from what I've heard. Have you ever felt the need to throw in an explicit lyric or two?

I have never found the need to. The song "My Super Model" that is on my new CD uses the word "SHIT" in it. I may sound a bit prude for saying this, but it was very hard for me to put it in. unfortunately I couldn't resist. It was just the funniest way to say what I needed to say. 

On your up and coming CD "A Jukebox Envy" you played all of the instruments except the drums. How was that experience? Would you do it again?

I loved it. It was so fulfilling and if I were a better drummer I would do all the instruments. I spent about 5 months on 6 songs. Some days I would go into the studio unprepared with no written parts and come up with something that I loved. Other days I would be very prepared. In the end, these songs are my favorite to listen back to. They entirely represent me.

I did some research on Elliot Smith after reading The Story on your web site. After comparing some of his songs with yours I realized his influence is truly strong with you. How would you personally compare your music with his?

He was an amazing songwriter and influence on me. I wish I were half the poet he was. He used amazing metaphors and told stories in such a way that you can say, "I know what he was feeling when he wrote that." The way I write is much more blunt. You can tell that I am a fan though, maybe not on the surf