Jay Malinowski is best known for his role as the guitarist and singer for reggae-rock group Bedouin Soundclash. On February 16th, 2010 he released his first solo record Bright Lights and Bruises, revealing himself as a diverse and insightful acoustic-pop artist.
We spoke recently about the launch of his record label Pirates Blend and about his feelings toward Bright Lights and Bruises. Bedouin Soundclash will be playing as part of CMW on Friday, March 12 @ Mod Club supported by Charlie Winston and Micky Green.
JAY MALENOWSKI INTERVIEW
BY Meaghan Bent
Brightlights and Bruises is more than a bit different than your work with Bedoin Soundclash. Do you feel any differently toward this album?
Yes. It’s a really different process, because it’s all… instead of using different… it’s just me! Which is a little daunting at times. But the music is stuff that I would write on my own. But in Bedouin I was writing with Eon and writing for that idea. So this is a bit more straight ahead and just more of a diary entry.
How long have you been working on it for?
I guess, like a bit over a year. I started writing when a lot of things on a personal level started happening for me and started to fall apart. I had that impotence to write something a little more personal. And I was literally just writing these songs for myself. Which is different than in Bedoiun when I am writing songs knowing that we are going to release a record. So this was, you know, to get it out.
Are you doing a lot of touring?
That’s one thing I was adamant about for this year. Last year we were saying ‘I like writing. And I like staying at home.’ So, we’re focusing on just writing and playing with the new line-up of Bedouin. Then we will record in the Spring, have something out for Summer and probably then start some serious touring.
How many artists do you have lined up for Pirates Blend?
Eon is getting together a remix record of rarities, sort of a scrap book with scrapbook thing. So you’ll have remixes coming out from K-OS, Bad Brains, King Britt and Pigeon John and Nostalgia 77. And for the future we’re really kind of looking for international artists who wouldn’t really get heard in Canada. We’ve been talking with a few artists in the UK, people who we’ve toured with. Yah, just helping out! That’s really the main goal of the label… is to help out.
Pirates Blend mission has a line about wanting to help film makers. What do you mean by that?
Well, one of our close friends named Charles Officer who came out with a film called Nurse Fighter Boy a while back, we’ve worked really closely with him. And film is just something that we been getting more into. I mean, with all of our backgounds… like our manager Dave Gadett did the music supervision for NFB. I think they go hand in hand. When you have film and music together in an interesting way, and artists working together like that you can make something interesting happen. Charles is someone who we have as part of our camp and I think we’ll all be involved in the future.
Do you mean you would get international music in Canadian films, or vice-versa?
I think it’s just about putting together the dots that, unless you make an effort to, won’t get put together. We were just in Iceland recently and we had dinner with this guy Kari who put together the ‘Heima‘ film for Sigur Ros. And I think we just want to connect with different artists and if we can put (their work) out, then that’s great. But, yah. On the music side… it’s more about if they want to tour here and sometimes it’s hard to find a home. And if it agrees with what we do, we can help them out any way we can.
You went to school for visual and fine arts, do you about to up with that?
I was able to at the beginning and I was showing my work in toronto and then we just started touring relentlessly and I lost the gallery I was showing at and everything. But I hope to later on. Although the one thing they always say is you have to choose one. At least in the art world.
Charlie Winston is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, with a long family history in music. In 2007, Charlie Winston released his self produced debut album Make Way and shortly after embarked with Peter Gabriel on a European Summer tour. Winning “Artist of the Year” and “Buzz of the Year” at the 1stedition of the TIME Awards, his next album, Hobo, will hit the Canadian streets on March 9, 2010.
Santa Monica from Bruises and Bright Lights