Sugar and Gold

Interviewed by Meghan Logue at Noise Pop 2009

Here's a podcast of our interview with Sugar and Gold:


Phillip: My name is Phillip and I play guitar and sing.

Nicholas: My name is Nicholas and I play keyboards and I sing as well.

Meghan: To start off, how did you guys all meet and form a band?

Phillip: Nicholas and I have been songwriting partners for a good long time, since school, and then we met a bunch of friends.

Meghan: Did you both go to school together?

Phillip: Yes, it was middle school.

Meghan: Here in the City or where abouts?

Phillip: Monterey.

Meghan: One thing I found interesting about you guys is that you have a very distinctive look. Can you tell me a little bit about that?

Phillip: Sure. We don't have so much of a look as it is that we want to make a distinction between our street clothes and our stage clothes. Putting on other clothes for your live performances helps you get into the spirit and out of the street mood, and you know, get into supernatural states. Fatima, in our band, is a fashion designer, too.

Meghan: Ah, OK, I kind of figured that someone in the band had a fashion influence.

Nicholas: We have a wardrobe section, too.

Meghan: Where is your wardrobe?

Nicholas: In the van.

Meghan: Does it all hang in the back?

Nicholas: Yeah.

Meghan: Does she control what you all wear or do you have creative control there?

Nicholas: No.

Phillip: We have creative control but she makes lots of custom stuff which is cool.

Meghan: Do you guys go out of your way to coordinate or does it just magically happen?

Nicholas: Sometimes.

Phillip: We try to, but as close as we can get it is colors.

Nicholas: Accessories.

Phillip: We all have our individual look with maybe one thing that ties it together.

Meghan: Can you guys tell me a little bit about the track "Neighborhoods?"

Nicholas: Yeah.

Meghan: Where was it born? What is it about?

Nicholas: It was born in the Bay Area. The song was written when I was living in Oakland. I've moved back in forth between San Francisco and Oakland, whatever, and yeah, it's a love song about your neighborhood.

Meghan: What neighborhood were you living in at the time?

Nicholas: I was living in East Oakland.

Meghan: Oh, really?

Nicholas: But it's not about East Oakland. It was inspired....actually, the original melody, the original beat for the song kind of happened when we were in New York. The three of us, Jerome, Phillip, and myself, we were doing some recordings out there and it was something that was in my head out there and when we came back we started putting it together and the lyrics became about here, so it's kind of....

Meghan: East coast/West coast hybrid?

Nicholas: Yeah, where ever you're at, all over the world.

Phillip: That's what it's about, it's the neighborhood you're in, not a specific neighborhood, but your neighborhood.

Meghan: Do you have any thoughts about East Bay versus the City music scene, or in general?

Nicholas: Versus? No, I think there's a lot of cool stuff that goes on both sides of the bay. I think people try to make more of a distinction about the East and West bay than there really is, because, for myself at least, I like to consider myself living in the bay area, and like any given day I could be anywhere, so I don't consider myself one or the other, this or that thing. But I understand people like to have pride in their side. There's a little tension every once in a while, but y'know, I don't claim one or the other. It's not that far away. People make a big deal about it.

Meghan: It is a solid four dollars away.

Nicholas: And it is a different vibe. I mean, you get off the BART on either side and you're like, "Oh, I'm in a different city."

Phillip: That four dollars keeps people on their side of the water.

Meghan: Four dollars and the hour you'd spend commuting, yeah. What do you guys hope listeners will feel or think or have with them when they leave a show that you play?

Nicholas: Hopefully nothing too specific, hopefully they just feel good.

Meghan: What's in the works for you guys right now? Are you working on a particular album that you're trying to put out?

Nicholas: Yeah, we're working on a new record right now. We just finished a video"" We're just about to finish it. We produced and directed a video that's going to be released March 6th. Then we're going to South By South West. We're wrapping up our record, and then we'll go to New York.

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