1. Happy New Year! Do you have any music based resolutions? Any new goals?
1)Happy New Year to you too! Yes, I would like to have my first number one hit this year and finish and release my first ‘film-you can-dance/work-out-to’ across the country and around the globe.
2. We love your video for the song Chubacadbra. How did you come up with the song and in your own words what is the song about?
2)The song ‘About to Become Your Own Clone’ is really just the first few pages of the 90 minute ‘Duke Rooster’ script set to music. ‘Chupacadabra’ is the name of chapter one, which is the video you saw. Giving names to chapters of a film is a nod to my favorite, Quentin Tarantino. Chupacadabra, in my mind, refers to the magic of the chupacabra, a being first sighted in Puerto Rico in 1995, and mostly seen in and around Albuquerque NM, where I live. In this case, we’re talking about ‘Chupy’ the chupacabra who is paramount to this film. We see him for the first time reclining and observing me in captivity at 1:17. I had him custom made by Wildlife Taxidermy on Central Avenue here in Albuquerque. The other creatures I made myself using liquid latex and cheesecloth. The lyrics to the song invite you to identify with the central character, my character, ‘Duke Rooster’. By becoming Duke Rooster, the viewer’s memories become transferred into Duke Rooster’s body, along with Duke Rooster’s other memories. Cloning a character and transferring his or her memories is an idea I first saw in Arnold Shwarzanegger’s ‘The 6th Day’
3. Why do you call the song Chubacadbra? Do you belive in the Chubacabdra?
3) I call chapter one of the ‘Duke Rooster’ film ‘Chupacadabra’ because it’s a mixture of the classic magic word Abracadabra and the name of the magic animal, the Chupacabra. We are briefly introduced to Chupy early on without realizing how central to the story he is. As far as believing in the chupacabra, I’m not sure it’s a good idea. When I first had the Chupy puppet made at the taxidermist I would leave him out at home and I would wake up with these vampire-like wounds on my neck. The chupacabra is known as ‘the goat sucker’ and apparently it sucks the blood out of goats. The wounds were probably just a psycho-somatic phenomena, but I keep him in a Petco box now. It was really fun having the manager of Petco come up to me and asking him “what kind of animal do you think this is?” and having Chupy pop out of the box. The manager said he needed to go change his pants. I took Chupy around town doing that.
4. Do you believe in aliens?
4) As far as believing in aliens, I think it’s kind of a far-fetched idea to think that humans are alone in an infinite universe. I mean, look at all the animals! All these animals and we still call ourselves ‘alone’. We ignore the animals. It’s ridiculous. I’m not on any high horse about it, I mean, I eat animals, but still… Whether aliens are really aliens or just from a deeper level of here, like another dimension or something, I don’t really know. The ones I depict in the film I see more in what you might consider a religious experience, like a deep trance state, and might just be some kind of personification of my deeper potential that I’m attempting to integrate with. They help me with my creative process. I’ve seen a lot of crazy ufos, but I live right next to an air-force base, so there’s that. It could very well just be experimental aircraft.
5. Do you have an album/EP out now that readers should check out or are you about releasing singles?
5) You know, as far as having stuff out for sale on the internet, I don’t know what to say. I don’t really trust it. I’ve put stuff out for sale like ‘Gotta Keep on Tryin’ which is a guitar heavy album in 2012, and people said they sent money but never received it. I sold a few from the stage, like I usually have done. The way I am I just released it and let it go into the universe and moved on to the next project. I have zero interest in spending all my time begging people to listen to my stuff. I never would have written so many songs if I had spent all my time doing that. Instead I went to UNM to learn about visual media and screenwriting so that I could represent my songwriting visually, because I’m excited about this idea that won’t let me go…of making movies you can dance to, movies you can work out to; catchy operas with a beat, essentially. I know this idea will work. What you saw is the very first thing I’ve done like that- where the song and the story and the visuals are one, written to be exactly what they are. It’s also a departure for me musically; usually I play guitar and there’s no guitar on that. It’s all keyboard driven.
6. Music wise, what are you working on?
6) Music wise, I’m writing a bunch of songs on piano right now and working on translating the rest of that 90 page script into music. On a good day I can do about 3 pages of script-into-music. I like the idea of creating melodies that reflect natural speech. When the characters sing, it sounds more like they’re talking, and the result can be pretty funny. My character from this ‘Duke Rooster’ film, (‘Duke Rooster’ himself), wrote a bunch of ridiculously raunchy guitar songs which can be seen on Youtube. It’s hard to find them on there, and they keep getting removed because these mischievous videos are mashups from famous movies and shows. I edited a mud-wrestling video for ‘Get Down (and Dirty)’, but the WWE had it removed. Probably the lyrics were embarrassing to them and I featured a few of their wrestlers. You might still be able to see it at reverbnation.com/aaronhamre.
7.Who came up with the video concept and effects?
7) The video concept and effects are mine. I learned from Brian Konefsky, Mathew Mc Duffy and the other great teachers at UNM, and also from my experience on public access t.v. in Albuquerque. I superimposed the light of actual ufos wherever possible, even as light fixtures, and the sets are composite images, sometimes 10 or more layers deep using Final Cut Pro X. Some of the backdrops use elements from great architecture and artists I’d like to work with in the future.
8. When did you make music a priority?
8) Music has always been natural for me. I didn’t realize it was anything at all until I played harmonica for my friend in the 3rd grade and she flipped out. That meant a lot to me because i had a crush on her. It was just always something I could do. I could pick up an instrument and play it. I’m mostly a singer. I use instruments to improvise and go way out into the universe on an adventure. In that way, I’m a jazz artist. I also use them to help me write songs, or in this case, a movie soundtrack.
9. What inspires you daily to write & record music?
9) What inspires me daily is a daily interaction, a conversation, a prayer, with music. Music is another name for what you would call God or the Great Spirit or Hashem or whatever you like to call it. A personification, a personality of the sum total of all consciousness that exists everywhere and manifests the whole universe over and over again through vibration. Rhythm, harmony, melody. Dancing, playing, singing. Sex. Love.
10. When you are not making music what else do you enjoy to do?
10) When I’m not writing songs I also enjoy healing work; I enjoy practicing ‘Core Synchronism’ which combines cranio/sacral work, cranial osteopathy, and other modalities, developed by Robert Stevens. Basically you communicate with the person’s (or animal’s) deeper physiology to help it heal itself. After massage school at New Mexico School of Natural Therapeutics, I went back there to learn about that stuff. I used to enjoy stone sculpture, but the dust gets in your lungs no matter what. I enjoy other forms of sculpture, like latex movie-puppet-making obviously, and oil painting and drawing. I enjoy managing my anger issues with the help of a heavy bag and a good counselor.
11. Where you @ online?